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  #51  
Old 11-01-2012, 06:05 PM
Lydia1 Lydia1 is offline
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Thank you, guys, for your advice. I'm taking it all in and trying to breathe. John seems to be in the dark on how close we really are to the end of our marriage. He doesn't realize that my primary-ship isn't something I can bend on. I'll have to find a way to get through to the day he knows what his answer is, or end it myself.
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  #52  
Old 11-01-2012, 10:22 PM
Lydia1 Lydia1 is offline
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Update

John has texted me this afternoon that I'm his top priority. He says that it's been so hard for him to say that because he thought I'd just turn around and tell him to break up with Sarah, even though I've told him that woulnd't be the case. He says he's still not comfortable telling me what's going on in his relationship with Sarah (they're both purposefully keeping me in the dark these days), but that he won't let an outside force split us up. He believes he can be a committed and loving partner to me even with Sarah in our lives.

So, that is definitely something. I no longer feel like my whole world is ending. Just him saying that we are a priority to him makes such a difference to me. But it also shows me that he's still not confiding in me 100% (which is its own problem), but that's something we work on over time, hopefully during the break which will last 2 months.

Breathing has commenced.


Meanwhile there's the friendship with Sarah. She hasn't really talked with me since I made it clear the break is happening. So I reached out to her and asked - what's up, John says you're mad at me, can you tell me why?

Sarah said she's angry with me for enforcing a break on November 4th. I asked her if she knew why a break was necessary. When she said she didn't, I explained why (which you guys all probably know by now, but I'll list for any newcomers).

1.) Her husband Mike has made it clear that he absolutely needs a romantic relationship with John to end. So Sarah may not be in the picture for John in the long run if she doesn't divorce Mike.

2.) John has been confiding and depending on Sarah more than he is on me, and for our marriage to continue that can't continue to be the case. I don't want our marriage to end, and he doesn't want our marriage to end.

So for both reasons, he needs a break to distance himself from Sarah, who he says he's become dependant on, and develop a support system that doesn't revolve around her, as well as to heal the damage that our relationship has experienced over the past several months.

Instead of addressing those fairly sound reasons, Sarah then jumped to saying she's mad at me for pulling the rug out from under John - support-wise - without putting something else in place first to compensate for her absense, as if he's is a helpless child.

And mind you, the November 4th date was something they had come up with, before they backed out of it without consulting me at all. On Saturday (a week before Nov 4th) when John told me they decided to back out of it, I said - oh no, it's happening or we're getting a divorce, so get a support structure in place right now. He made it clear to me that who he confides in and when is his decision to make, and I completely agree.

I listened to Sarah, told her that her feelings are real and that I hear her and she's important to me, and I said to her - John's an adult, and he's in charge of his own decisions as to whom he wants to confide in. I've suggested to him that he get a therapist for just himself (not our couples therapist), and/or confide in a friend or his brother. But those are his choices to make, not mine. I can't force him into therapy. So, she is saying she's mad at me for something that's outside of my control.

And even though I've expressed that to her, she doesn't really want to acknowledge or accept it. She just wants to be mad at me for taking John from her for a limited period of time in order to save our marriage.

So I guess I've lost my best friend, at least for now. Maybe eventually she'll come around. If she continues to resent me for trying to keep my marriage from ending, I really don't see it working out in the long term with her as a metamour.

I sometimes feel like I'm in the Twilight Zone. Sometimes I just want to take John and Sarah by the shoulders and say - snap out of it! You can't be a team against me, that withholds information from me and resents me for my most basic needs, and expect to continue to have a romantic relationship with each other without ending our marriage. Wake the fuck up!!!

They have the power to make this work (as long as Sarah decides her marriage with Mike isn't worth saving, or she somehow convinces Mike that he doesn't really have the needs he openly says he does). And they have the power to make this fail.

It's not an easy situation, or a pain free one, but it sure as hell isn't complicated.

Last edited by Lydia1; 11-02-2012 at 12:08 AM.
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  #53  
Old 11-01-2012, 11:07 PM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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They remind me of teenagers who think the world as they have come to know it will vanish in a puff of greasy black smoke if someone takes away their iPod.

I really hope for your sake John means what he says, because words alone mean ALMOST nothing (I realize that hearing the words means something to you but it's only a token step). It remains to be seen whether John's ACTIONS agree with his words. You seem to know that already.

It sucks that your best friend has turned into your adversary though.
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  #54  
Old 11-01-2012, 11:20 PM
Lydia1 Lydia1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoringGuy View Post
It sucks that your best friend has turned into your adversary though.
Yes, it really does. Either she doesn't realize or she doesn't care how much harm she is adding to my life. All she can focus on right now is what the break means to her.

Later she texted me that she didn't know the Nov 4th day was ever really official, so there was nothing for her to back out of. I said - that's not what John told me. She said she's not John so that's not her problem.

And that's when I caught her - I said so then since John had a week to prepare for this, you're not really mad about his needs not being met. You're mad about your own. Own up to it.

And to that she had nothing to say.

Last edited by Lydia1; 11-01-2012 at 11:24 PM.
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  #55  
Old 11-02-2012, 12:07 AM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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"Lydia, you are my best friend and I would never do anything to intentionally cause harm to you or your marriage. Through some series of events however, I happen to discover that I have feelings of more-than-just-friendly love for your husband. Since this feeling has been acknowledged as mutual, I would like nothing better than to find a way to make this work for all of us. I do not wish to bring misery into your life - I want to work together to bring more happiness into John's life, and hope that by doing so that we might even realize a deepening of our friendship. It was never my intention to "steal" your husband from you, and I understand that you probably feel pain and betrayal to a certain extent. I am sure I would feel similar things if I were in your position. Can we please figure out a way to move forward so that we might eventually arrive at a dynamic we all feel comfortable with? I know you said you need some time - a "break" you call it - for us to all clear our heads and figure out what we need from each other. I have so much respect for you as a person and as a friend, and John is such a wonderful man that he is worth the extra effort and deserves two women who love him so much, that I would like to take you up on your offer to get some space in order to try to work things out. You are such a generous wife, partner, and friend to have opened yourself to sharing your husband with me; not many women would do that and I will try to do whatever I can to not come between you and John because I value your friendship as much as i value the new level of relationship I have discovered with him. Please tell me what you need from me in order to give this a chance to work.

Your BFF,

Sarah"




Anything less than that is unacceptable, as far as I'm concerned.
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  #56  
Old 11-02-2012, 01:06 AM
Lydia1 Lydia1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoringGuy View Post
Anything less than that is unacceptable, as far as I'm concerned.
Oh my god, BoringGuy, you actually brought me to tears. :-(

I wish she could not just say, but really believe those things.
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  #57  
Old 11-02-2012, 02:02 AM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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I agree with BoringGuy.

Anything less is not acceptable. It's already been too much drama. Sigh.

Galagirl
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  #58  
Old 11-02-2012, 02:15 AM
Lydia1 Lydia1 is offline
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And it definitely does not help that when John came home and I told him how upset and angry I feel right now so that he would know where my head is at, that his first reaction was to defend Sarah. Without even seeing the text conversation. Because it doesn't seem to matter that her feelings of resentment toward me are completely unreasonable. I asked her why she was mad at me, and she gave me an answer, so John and Sarah think it should just end there.

But whenever Sarah asked Mike what he was feeling and he told her (and it was often unreasonable as well) - of COURSE she got mad at Mike and told him why what he said was unreasonable. But no - when I'm the one dealing with someone who feels put upon and resentful because I don't want my marriage to end, I should just suck it up and accept whatever answer I'm given.

Such complete and total bullshit. Total hypocrites.

Last edited by Lydia1; 11-02-2012 at 02:22 AM.
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  #59  
Old 11-02-2012, 12:10 PM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lydia1 View Post
Oh my god, BoringGuy, you actually brought me to tears. :-(

I wish she could not just say, but really believe those things.

It wasn't hard to write because that's what i would be feeling if i fell in love with and expected to pursue a relationship with the spouse of a close friend.

Of course, i don't speak that way, and i am capable of being equally nasty in writing when the situation moves me to it.
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  #60  
Old 11-02-2012, 01:28 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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DISCLAIMER : My apologies for the looong ass post. And all the rainbow color crazy. But it helps me keep track of points. Please bear with me. I am in no way minimizing your own struggle or pain here even though the rainbow stuff makes it appear kinda eyesore.

My intent is to try to give you constructive feedback. I sincerely hope things get to a happier space for all 4 people involved one way or another. I don't think any of you is bad people -- but I do think there is 4 people in a mess and struggling to get out of it.

best wishes,
Galagirl

--------------------------

COLOR CODE
  • bold = "Serious Relationship Discussion over cel phone text" problems.
  • purple = bumping into (John + Sarah) polyship tier privacy limits / behavior that bumps into this
  • orange = lydia fear she is not primary / need to be primary / looking for primary reassure / behavior when in this mode
  • red = how Lydia feels when she gets reassure from John / when John reassures
  • green = John speaking to fear of losing Sarah / behavior when in this fearful mode
  • blue = "John as hinge" related problems / behavior when in this "leaky hinge" mode
  • magenta = Sarah & Mike stuff

Quote:
John has texted me this afternoon that I'm his top priority. He says that it's been so hard for him to say that because he thought I'd just turn around and tell him to break up with Sarah, even though I've told him that wouldn't be the case. He says he's still not comfortable telling me what's going on in his relationship with Sarah (they're both purposefully keeping me in the dark these days), but that he won't let an outside force split us up. He believes he can be a committed and loving partner to me even with Sarah in our lives.

So, that is definitely something. I no longer feel like my whole world is ending. Just him saying that we are a priority to him makes such a difference to me.
But it also shows me that he's still not confiding in me 100% (which is its own problem), but that's something we work on over time, hopefully during the break which will last 2 months.

Breathing has commenced.
bold = You could accept limitation of the media and STOP having Serious Relationship Discussion by cel phone text. Your relationships deserve a serious platform. Not the platform for "Don't forget the milk, hon!"

A large part of communication is the paraverbal. You won't get body language, tone of voice, immediate feedback, etc over cel phone text. Could consider making this a policy for YOU. You do not do serious romance relationship talk with John by text. You do not do serious best friendship/metamourship talk with Sarah by text. Face time best, then phone or email. Not text.

purple = Lydia bumping into tiership privacy. Possibly from orange and blue reasons:
  • orange = lydia fear she is not primary / need to be primary / looking for primary reassure
  • blue = John as hinge problems

Could learn about and understand your polymath tiers. Every "mini relationship" tier inside a larger polyship needs its own privacy and air time. It does not mean you are not primary if he does not share every little detail with you about his relationship with Sarah.

When he overshares, even if he does it because you asked him to... does it ADD to your emotional health stability or TAKE AWAY from your emotional health stability? To me it sounds like takes away from your emotional health and well being. So why ask for this? If all it does is feed your fear? Is that what you want to feed? You find a balance to asking for what it yours to know and what is TMI and not your biz. He finds balance between appropriate telling/oversharing.

When you get reassure from John, you notice you feel a LOT better. Could consider asking John for more of this rather than asking for more of the other. It calls for you being super brave and letting go of the need to know everything on their tier and getting secure in your OWN tier with John. Identify what takes away from "secure" on your tier with John. John oversharing information you do not need to know is one of them.

Anything else? Could all players learn their polymath tiers better?

Could his fear of losing Sarah cause him to let you run right over his own privacy boundaries? Then you get yourself in emotional hot water. Could he get firmer with you to HELP YOU find emotional stable ground? Maybe you could ask him to get firmer with you and with himself.

Let's look at recent John hinge problem. I won't list them ALL throughout your thread. But it's a running theme here. He's having to learn how to be a hinge on the fly. I still think he could start posting for support here himself -- or at some other poly forum. Nobody is going to judge him. He seems to need support though -- if he's leaking all over you and Sarah.

Quote:
Meanwhile there's the friendship with Sarah. She hasn't really talked with me since I made it clear the break is happening. So I reached out to her and asked - what's up, John says you're mad at me, can you tell me why?
Why does John tell you Sarah is mad? If Sarah is upset, she can come to you direct and own her upset herself.

John could could tell Sarah "If you are upset with Lydia, tell her direct if you want to resolve it. Do not tell me. Eliminate the middle man so there's no triangulation. And it is better for my emotional health anyway."

You could learn to tell John "Do not tell me things like that. Sarah can tell me direct. Do not put yourself in a position where you could be caught in crossfire. That is not tending to your own emotional health. "

John telling you hurtful things 2nd hand helps how? Avoid triangulation.

Quote:
Later she texted me that she didn't know the Nov 4th day was ever really official, so there was nothing for her to back out of. I said - that's not what John told me. She said she's not John so that's not her problem. (my side note: actually it IS partially her problem. It is a TRIO problem if John is a leaky hinge. The Trio players may just not realize this yet about the Trio Communication Well Being.)

And that's when I caught her - I said so then since John had a week to prepare for this, you're not really mad about his needs not being met. You're mad about your own. Own up to it. And to that she had nothing to say.

You did a good thing trying to seek the clarify from Sarah. Did you guys ALSO clarify with John? Again, avoid triangulation.

Here you gave her no "how to" for betterment. You let your need to be top dog in the [(John + Lydia) to Sarah] tier of polyship get you in defensive mode. Was John here in this conversation? No. You are talking about John, but he's not here. Who is here? The (Sarah +Lydia+ tier. How was your behavior helping to cultivate the friendly metamourship you claim you want? It wasn't.

Could learn to focus on what tier you are on in what moment.

Could learn to tell Sarah
"Look, I came to you because John told me you were mad. I prefer you come to me direct if you are mad at me. I don't want to add to the with he-said-she-said stuff. Let's agree to go direct.

I see the break thing also upset you. It is not my fault that John did not give you enough notice that a break for our marriage repair was needed. My marriage also needs air time and tending. Every marriage does. Should I have told you direct on that too? So you got 2 directs on the need for our marriage to repair?

We could talk to John together. Clear up this miscommunication thing so it does not happen again. I want to work with you so we are in good metamourship - not adversaries."
That tells her how to solve her yucky next time and park it at the right door next time -- come to you direct, don't heap john hinge issues on to you.

blue = John as hinge problems.

He is the Shared Sweetie. (even if temporarily). He overshares in your direction. He could stop doing this, and you could stop putting him in a position where he is tempted to overshare because you ask for information that is not your right to have.
You could tell him "Hey, I'm learning too. If I intrude on the poly tiership of John/Sarah privacy, tell me I'm stepping over the line. But then reassure me that you love me and I am primary so I can relax about it. I want to learn to give you privacy without having a cow."
On the Sarah side, he doesn't share enough! He did not tell her about the Nov 4 break? Even you noted he then had a week to get used to it and she did not! You guys ended up sniping at each other when really? Problem is John not communicating as hinge well.

He could tell Sarah:
"Look, we all need a time out. You need space to sort things with Mike. I need space to sort things with Lydia. So let's have a face time break to do that in and have a checkpoint on _____ in 2 mos. In the meanwhile, we can have unlimited cel phone text. It's worth a short 2 mos break right? If it can help lead to harmonious polyship? "
(cont.)

Last edited by GalaGirl; 11-02-2012 at 06:23 PM.
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