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  #11  
Old 10-28-2012, 12:52 PM
dingedheart dingedheart is offline
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Hi and welcome,

Referring to post # 5 ...communication skills and past issues do " you" think you had a happy marriage.

The reason I ask is ...poly never fixed a bad or suffering marriage.

And if you had problems and issues arising from poor communication .....this definitely not a good sign. One could argue this is the land of over communication.

Are you involved in kink? Or is poly lumped in with other alternative lifestyles?

How " out" of the closet was she planning to be.

Last edited by dingedheart; 10-28-2012 at 01:03 PM.
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  #12  
Old 10-28-2012, 09:44 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is online now
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I have always wanted more intimacy than she has given me. I have a higher sex drive, and I am much more touchy feely than she is. So, no, our history is not the best when it comes to intimacy. There are several extenuating circumstances, but that's a short history.

The odd thing is that since we've been talking about this, we have actually been more intimate. I have been working on some of my issues, and she has been more attentive to me
Let me clarify -- EMOTIONAL intimacy. I was not talking about the body intimacy of sex or the mental intimacy of thoughts and ideas shared. Or spiritual intimacy of laying one's soul bare to another. I meant emotional intimacy.

With the communication issues you guys have? I was wondering how you can possibly create safe emotional space to enjoy emotional intimacy with each other and sharing of FEELINGS. Can you and do you go to your spouse for Shared Vulnerable? Can /does she come to you?

If you open, poly brings on a bunch of feelings and emotional management is going to be a big factor. If you don't even communicate well now in monoship, how will that fly in polyship?

It is not odd to me that you may find yourselves more body intimate with touching/sex (that's what I infer) since you've been talking more heart-to-heart. Sex can be an expression of sex all by itself. Just the body bucket. But sex can also be a high expression of love -- in the heart bucket.

For myself? I'm not up for casual sex. However when mind intimacy and heart intimacy happens? Body isn't too far behind!

Quote:

So I said that I understood, but that I still wanted the opportunity to meet them. I feel pretty strongly about being able to look them in the eye, get a sense for their personality, see what their motivations are. I told her that they would have to know in no uncertain terms that I will always come first in the grand scheme, and I think it would help me accept it if I could see that they understood that. If they are serious about being a secondary in an open relationship, they should be more than willing to oblige me.
So it sounds like you would want a primary-secondary style model of open relationship. Is this what she wants?

Then later -- is this what the dating partner would want? How does she plan to ask the dating partner what they want?

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To that she said she would rather choose not dating then. She wouldn't be comfortable with that aspect of it because she thinks I just want to get into some big pissing match with the other guy because I really don't want her to do this.
If this is a dealbreaker limit for you "Date, but I have to meet them" and she would rather CLOSE than open. Close then.

It is not the time. Go back to education and introspection to see WHY she cannot meet this reasonable request.

Is she PROJECTING her insecure/fear stuff at you? Is that why? She worries she can't handle poly well?

Or is this her REFLECTING past experience at you? Because in the past you have not created safe emotional space for her to share emotional talk in?

What insecure is that speaking to?
  • Insecure that you won't agree to Open? (And you do not have to agree. You could prefer to break up if you cannot come to compromise. Then she can pursue polyshipping on her own. Everyone is in charge of their OWN behavior. Everyone is adult.)
  • Insecure that she wants to be Open but doesn't have the personal skills to do it WELL? (What skills? Emotional articulation? Conflict resolution? Jealousy management?)
  • Insecure that she is going to be judged by you? Fearful of dealing with jealousy issues?
  • Insecure that she is ..... (something I cannot guess at? What could it be?)

Quote:
But as I said, I feel pretty strongly about this. I mean, I am trusting her to go out and date and have sex with other guys. Shouldn't she trust me enough to let me meet the person once? Am I asking too much? I really don't think I am, but I wanted to see what others thought.
Speaking as a married who is talking about Opening? I expect to bring my dating partner round the house to meet DH. I would expect him to do same. I am entrusting the care and well being of my partner to a stranger. Well, I want them to NOT be a a stranger! Work on building trust has to happen. I can't trust someone I don't meet, know, or spend some time with. I don't have to be their best friend or shopping buddy, but I do want to put face to name and get a sense of the person. So I can try to be a polite metamour and be in a harmonious polyship here.

If they end up smothering my DH with a pillow I want to be able to call the cops and jail their sorry selves! I exaggerate to make a point.

Parents do this for their children when they start to date. Not that the spouse is your mommy or your daddy. When I was a single woman I would have a friend check out my dates and leave "in case of emergency" info somewhere with someone. Nobody wants to be a hermit. Neither do you want to turn up missing and nobody know what happened!

How is general concern over your wife's well being and the company she keeps a horrible thing? I am not hearing you saying "NO." I am hearing you saying "Go slow, go easy on me, go safe."

Baffling.

Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 10-29-2012 at 12:03 AM.
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  #13  
Old 10-28-2012, 10:34 PM
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kboz2112 kboz2112 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dingedheart View Post
Hi and welcome,

Referring to post # 5 ...communication skills and past issues do " you" think you had a happy marriage.

The reason I ask is ...poly never fixed a bad or suffering marriage.

And if you had problems and issues arising from poor communication .....this definitely not a good sign. One could argue this is the land of over communication.

Are you involved in kink? Or is poly lumped in with other alternative lifestyles?

How " out" of the closet was she planning to be.
We've had our ups and downs, but for the most part I would say I was/am happy with our marriage.

No active involvment in kink. But when she first brought up the Poly desires, she also said she had submissive urges. So not only was I dealing with everything that comes along with opening the marriage, I was also struggling with what being submissive meant. She talked with a Dom for a couple months... I guess he was mentoring her, she never told me everything that was going on... but the last two or three weeks, she hasn't talked to him at all. She indicated that she realized the BDSM scene wasn't for her, but that she still felt a need to explore other relationships.

I don't think she is planning on telling anyone other than a couple of her closest friends. One of whom is also Poly, and is probably the main reason my wife decided it was what she needed too.
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  #14  
Old 10-28-2012, 11:03 PM
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kboz2112 kboz2112 is offline
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Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
Let me clarify -- EMOTIONAL intimacy. I was not talking about the body intimacy of sex or the mental intimacy of thoughts and ideas shared. Or spiritual intimacy of laying one's soul bare to another. I meant emotional intimacy.

With the communication issues you guys have? I was wondering how you can possibly create safe emotional space to enjoy emotional intimacy with each other and sharing of FEELINGS. Can you and do you go to your spouse for Shared Vulnerable? Can /does she come to you?
Based on your description, I think we both suck at emotional intimacy. I substitute sex for feelings of adequacy and emotional bonding. Always have. And my wife is simply not good at expressing her emotions. She is not very demonstrative, and keeps a lot of things to herself. I feel like I have had to pull teeth to get her just to talk to me about what is going on in her head and heart with regards to any of this stuff.

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Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
If you open, poly brings on a bunch of feelings and emotional management is going to be a big factor. If you don't even communicate well now in monoship, how will that fly in polyship?
Not well. We start marriage counseling tomorrow to help us with this very thing, hopefully.

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Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
So it sounds like you would want a primary-secondary style model of open relationship. Is this what she wants?
Yes, we didn't have a label for it, but this is what we've been discussing.



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Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
If this is a dealbreaker limit for you "Date, but I have to meet them" and she would rather CLOSE than open. Close then.
I am not sure it is an absolute deal breaker. If there is some other way I can be assured that he isn't a total douchebag, that he has decency within him, that he intends no harm to my wife or my marriage and that he has no qualms about being a secondary in a Poly arrangement, then yeah, I don't need to meet him. If I am not satisfied with any other arrangements though and she decides to close everything, I will feel guilty, and worry that she is going to resent me forever.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
It is not the time. Go back to education and introspection to see WHY she cannot meet this reasonable request.

Is she PROJECTING her insecure/fear stuff at you? Is that why? She worries she can't handle poly well?

Or is this her REFLECTING past experience at you? Because in the past you have not created safe emotional space for her to share emotional talk in?
Honestly, it is probably both. I have had depression in the past, and am overly sensitive sometimes. So that could contribute to it.



Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
What insecure is that speaking to?
  • Insecure that you won't agree to Open? (And you do not have to agree. You could prefer to break up if you cannot come to compromise. Then she can pursue polyshipping on her own. Everyone is in charge of their OWN behavior. Everyone is adult.)
  • Insecure that she wants to be Open but doesn't have the personal skills to do it WELL? (What skills? Emotional articulation? Conflict resolution? Jealousy management?)
  • Insecure that she is going to be judged by you? Fearful of dealing with jealousy issues?
  • Insecure that she is ..... (something I cannot guess at? What could it be?)
I pretty much agreed to let her date last night. That was right before we got into it over me having a meeting with her potentials. But, I think it is a combination of all of those factors to varying degrees.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
Speaking as a married who is talking about Opening? I expect to bring my dating partner round the house to meet DH. I would expect him to do same. I am entrusting the care and well being of my partner to a stranger. Well, I want them to NOT be a a stranger! Work on building trust has to happen. I can trust someone I don't meet, know, or spend some time with. I don't have to be their best friend or shopping buddy, but I do want to put face to name and get a sense of the person. So I can try to be a polite metamour and be in a harmonious polyship here.
This is exactly where I am coming from as well!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
How is general concern over your wife's well being and the company she keeps a horrible thing? I am not hearing you saying "NO." I am hearing you saying "Go slow, go easy on me, go safe."
Wow, you already hear me better than my wife! (I kid... sort of).


Gala, I cannot thank you enough for taking the time to help me through some of my thoughts and feelings on this. You are too awesome!
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  #15  
Old 10-29-2012, 12:08 AM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is online now
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Most welcome.

You sound like nice people -- just perhaps not yet sure people? That doesn't have to be a bad thing. Being in a Time of Discernment isn't horrible. It's where you figure stuff out.
Quote:
If I am not satisfied with any other arrangements though and she decides to close everything, I will feel guilty, and worry that she is going to resent me forever.
You might feel bad that you have to tell her "no, not like that." You can even say that.

"I'm sorry. I feel bad I have to tell you this but NO. I do not feel emotionally safe that way. I would not be free of worry if I don't have some assurance you aren't off with a weird stranger. I care for your well being.

So my idea so that you can meet the need for you to date and so I can meet the need for me to feel safe about your dating is for me to meet the person you date.

What is your idea to get both our needs met? To close. I am ok either way and you don't like my idea so we pick yours. You cannot resent me for that being the thing chosen when you do not put forth a better solution to meet both needs. "
You are responsible for your own and your partner's well being -- in mental health, emotional health, physical health and spiritual health. Saying "yes" to conditions where you feel mentally unsafe, emotionally unsafe, physically unsafe or spiritually unsafe for you is careless. Why hit your own head with a frying pan?

All she has to do is a) work on meeting the requirement for your suggestion and she gets to date like she wants , or b) propose some other acceptable to both solution that meets the needs for both.

It is not a crazy thing to ask. A call, an email, a face-to-face meeting... something to help reassure the spouse a bit? How is that evil? It isn't.

If her proposed solution does not ACTUALLY meet her need and she feels resentful of that being the choice chosen?

It's on her to own her resentment. She can't fling her yucky feelings at you. Because she did not meet her OWN need. She has to own her OWN emotional management and not expect you to own it for her or mind reader her.

Slow things down. Talk this stuff out. There is NOTHING wrong with taking your time to educate selves and grow stronger skills.

Going in under-prepared? That's not exactly UPPING the odds of successful polyshipping.

You guys have started with the initial ID of weak points in the monoship -- communication skills, emotional articulation skills, sorting out what kind of open relationship model you would like. But it's just the start.

You are going to a counselor -- perhaps a talk with counselor can help ID other places that could be strengthened before major life changes are made?

Hang in there.

GG

Last edited by GalaGirl; 10-29-2012 at 12:28 AM.
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  #16  
Old 10-29-2012, 02:29 AM
Stevenjaguar Stevenjaguar is offline
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kboz, I think I understand where you're coming from. When I got into a poly relationship (we didn't know what it was called, we just did it) it was an opportunity to communicate with a woman directly and frankly in ways I never had before. Yes, jealousy is an issue and even when you say you're comfortable with her and another person, it's still there a little. Takes a lot of work and a lot of tears, too, but it's worth it when you come out of the woods on the other side, if you can.

I was in one relationship where I knew the other guy, and one where I didn't. It worked both times. I don't think it's that important. I suggest you let her establish a relationship, taking her word that she's safe, and ask to meet him later. I personally don't think laying a ground rule as a non-negotiable demand is a good way to do it. I prefer that tack that you can't and shouldn't control someone's behavior, just let them know what you want and what you may do if they do something you can't accept. That makes them a whole, separate human being with choices. I don't think you'll regret it if you do it that way.
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  #17  
Old 10-29-2012, 07:47 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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I commend you for considering opening up your marriage at your wife's request. It speaks volumes about your open-mindedness and willingness to see your wife happy. However, it should not be done at your expense! There is a lot of work and talking to do between the moment someone in a couple says "I want to open up our marriage" and the marriage actually becoming open. This is something that definitely should not be rushed. Some couples take a year or more of communicating and resolving issues before either of them ever actually has a date with anyone new.

If she wants additional relationships to add quality to her life and enhance her relationship with you, then it would behoove her to wait until so many, many things are discussed before she pursues/dates/has sex with anybody! One person announcing what they want, the other going to a website for a list of do's and don'ts, and a few therapy sessions is not enough preparation. There can be many many baby steps to take, you don't have to jump in right away just because she wants it. Wait until after the foundation of your marriage is solidified further and communication improved. You will both be grateful that you didn't rush headlong into a mess that you'll have to clean up later.

There is so much to read and learn before you make this fundamental change to the dynamic of your marriage. I suggest you both read Opening Up by Tristan Taormino; in fact, read it together. Go over the points the author discusses and use her lists for figuring out how you two will incorporate ethical non-monogamy into your lives.
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The world opens up... when you do.

"Oh, oh, can't you see? Love is the drug for me." ~Bryan Ferry
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An excellent blog post on hierarchy in polyamory:
solopoly.net/2014/10/31/why-im-not-a-secondary-partner-the-short-version/
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  #18  
Old 10-29-2012, 01:50 PM
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kboz2112 kboz2112 is offline
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Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
I commend you for considering opening up your marriage at your wife's request. It speaks volumes about your open-mindedness and willingness to see your wife happy. However, it should not be done at your expense! There is a lot of work and talking to do between the moment someone in a couple says "I want to open up our marriage" and the marriage actually becoming open. This is something that definitely should not be rushed. Some couples take a year or more of communicating and resolving issues before either of them ever actually has a date with anyone new.

If she wants additional relationships to add quality to her life and enhance her relationship with you, then it would behoove her to wait until so many, many things are discussed before she pursues/dates/has sex with anybody! One person announcing what they want, the other going to a website for a list of do's and don'ts, and a few therapy sessions is not enough preparation. There can be many many baby steps to take, you don't have to jump in right away just because she wants it. Wait until after the foundation of your marriage is solidified further and communication improved. You will both be grateful that you didn't rush headlong into a mess that you'll have to clean up later.

There is so much to read and learn before you make this fundamental change to the dynamic of your marriage. I suggest you both read Opening Up by Tristan Taormino; in fact, read it together. Go over the points the author discusses and use her lists for figuring out how you two will incorporate ethical non-monogamy into your lives.
Thank you for you thoughtful post. I just got done looking at Opening Up on Amazon, and suggested your idea to my wife. We will probably order a copy :-)
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  #19  
Old 10-29-2012, 06:12 PM
dingedheart dingedheart is offline
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We've had our ups and downs, but for the most part I would say I was/am happy with our marriage.
Ok... have you asked her that question?


Has she had emotional affairs online? Ones that have come to light now?


You might want to throw Gary Chapmans book on the pile ...Love Languages. I think you can find the exact title in the recommended reading list. It's a quick read and it might help the 2 of you see how disconnected you were and how to connect better. All unrelated to poly but worth the read.


"Doesn't plan on telling" ....What about all the what If's .....the list is long aqnd has she given any thought to that? Have you? ....just another way of saying what cindie already mentioned. Rushing can cause a mess you cant clean up or you'll just lose interest in cleaning up.
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