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  #11  
Old 12-02-2012, 12:14 AM
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Arrowbound Arrowbound is offline
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I find when it comes to certain situations, its necessary to do the 'we' thing, but not before consulting my SO or at least being 95% sure of what he's relayed to me in conversations before.

I have always seen myself as 'me' whether in a relationship or not. Before my current I didn't even do the 'we' thing, not at all. I considered all my exes and I to be separate islands coexisting. Yet still with this particular commitment, I make it a point to speak for myself, and exist as myself, because you can definitely get into a place where it is 'we we we' all the time and 'me' is nowhere to be found.

'Me', choosing to commit to 'him', who has also chosen to commit to 'me'. We are 'we' in that sense.
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  #12  
Old 12-02-2012, 08:47 AM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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Originally Posted by MeeraReed View Post
One more thing: I just want to point out that if you ever meet a partner who isn't comfortable with poly family group hangouts, they might just be very introverted or prefer more solitary time. It doesn't mean that they need to be the center of attention.
LoL... that pretty much describes every [summer/winter] solstice gathering at my girlfriend's. Ok, the chain is: my husband=-=me=-=my girlfriend=-=her husband=-=his boyfriend=-=his wife. All but my girlfriend are introverts. What's great about their gatherings is that everyone is comfortable to be around the people for a while but every now and then, someone will just disappear into a corner by his/herself to be alone for a little bit and express their introversion... and then quietly wander back.
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  #13  
Old 12-05-2012, 03:18 AM
MeeraReed MeeraReed is offline
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Originally Posted by InfinitePossibility View Post
.
I consciously make more effort to maintain my friendships and interests as an individual than was necessary when I was single. I mostly also turn up to family events alone - if pushed, I sometimes offer to bring a friend.

I remind people also that I am a whole person on my own, that I love my SO but he doesn't complete me and he doesn't need to follow me around and do things with me unless he wants to.
IP
I really like this and I admire your success with it.

It's a struggle for me to explain this to my family, though. I've been getting some "Why didn't you bring him to Thanksgiving" hysterics. If I say "I'm a whole person on my own," they say, "Of course you are, dear, but why don't you want to spend holidays with him and have us meet him and don't you want your brother to meet him and doesn't he know we REALLY want to meet him?"

I only told them about his existence in the first place because my grandmother appeared to be dying! Nothing makes her happy except to hear that I have a man in my life. But, it turned out she didn't die--she survived a heart attack at age 95 and now seems to be going strong...

The one time I brought a (gay male) friend to Thanksgiving, my family pitied him for "having nowhere else to go." In fact, he'd come to my house to avoid his own family and to help me demonstrate to my family that I have a perfectly happy, fulfilled, sociable life even when I'm not dating someone...but that backfired...we were both regarded with pity...us sad lonely singles! Never mind that this friend is STILL one of the most important people in my life, after nearly 10 years, while many sexual & romantic partners have come and gone.

So, now I go alone to Thanksgiving and drink a lot of wine.

Also, if I brought a sexual/romantic interest to Thanksgiving, my family would ask him a lot of detailed and irrelevant questions about his family history, childhood, upbringing, etc. Instead of just normal things that one would ask a friend.

I daydream about bringing my current lover-friend to Christmas and having him talk about the kinky sex he has with other girls...that might finally kill off my grandmother...
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  #14  
Old 12-05-2012, 07:14 AM
InfinitePossibility InfinitePossibility is offline
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Originally Posted by MeeraReed View Post
I really like this and I admire your success with it.
Thanks.

Quote:
It's a struggle for me to explain this to my family, though. I've been getting some "Why didn't you bring him to Thanksgiving" hysterics. If I say "I'm a whole person on my own," they say, "Of course you are, dear, but why don't you want to spend holidays with him and have us meet him and don't you want your brother to meet him and doesn't he know we REALLY want to meet him?"
I'd be tempted to say - but which 'him' do you want me to being? Should I just bring them all along?

Och - really - I understand why families get like that. They just want us to be safe and to most people, being safe as a woman means being married, living with your husband and producing children.

The whole thing is easier for me because my family have all met my SO and most of them know him pretty well.

Plus I've been with him for over 2 years now and was completely solo for 7 before that so my family have had a long enough period of adjustment that they can deal with it.

IP
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  #15  
Old 12-08-2012, 04:17 PM
Daysleeper Daysleeper is offline
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It seems as though you are reading my post as evangelisation rather than description. I thought I made it clear that I was talking about what poly means to me, in my situation, in my life. I certainly don't take the position that everyone should believe or behave as I do. Sorry if I left the wrong impression

My comment about being the center was probably difficult to understand. I wasn't talking about being the center of attention at all. I was talking about being the central figure in my arrangement. I am just a part of this larger thing, my sense of myself as the center of my own life has changed. I think it's been great for me. I know others disagree on this issue, and I am 100% ok with that.

I have met several people who did not want to be a part of group hangouts. Our desires weren't compatible. I didn't think they were evil people or anything like that. I just knew we would not work well together romantically.

As for the issue of selfish vs not, for me that gets just about impossible to argue about when you throw in the Ayn Rand type arguments. I have no desire to go there.
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  #16  
Old 12-08-2012, 04:21 PM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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Originally Posted by Daysleeper View Post
As for the issue of selfish vs not, for me that gets just about impossible to argue about when you throw in the Ayn Rand type arguments. I have no desire to go there.

LOL there should be a Godwin's Law for Ayn Rand-isms. The instant someone invokes Ayn Rand in an argument, their credibility goes out the window and the other side automatically wins.
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  #17  
Old 12-09-2012, 01:39 AM
MeeraReed MeeraReed is offline
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Who threw in an Ayn Rand argument?
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  #18  
Old 12-09-2012, 12:26 PM
Vinccenzo Vinccenzo is offline
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Originally Posted by Cleo View Post

I remember a time this summer when my husband was in a crisis and he asked me to skip a visit to C, my BF. My husband was upset and hurting and I wanted to be there for him, so I did what he asked. But at the same time I felt he was pushing a boundary, and had he asked me again, we would have had a big problem.

That was the first time I felt that if he, or any other person in my life, would ask me to choose, I would not choose one particular other person - I would choose ME, even if that would mean losing one or more relationhip(s) with others.
This word crisis; I do not think it means what you think it means.
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  #19  
Old 12-09-2012, 02:32 PM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleo
I remember a time this summer when my husband was in a crisis and he asked me to skip a visit to C, my BF. My husband was upset and hurting and I wanted to be there for him, so I did what he asked. But at the same time I felt he was pushing a boundary, and had he asked me again, we would have had a big problem.
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Originally Posted by Vinccenzo View Post
This word crisis; I do not think it means what you think it means.
- Inigo Montoya

I don't understand; did you WANT to be there for him or didn't you? It sounds like this "crisis" was inconvenient for YOU and you did NOT actually "want" to be there. You only AGREED to "be there" because he ASKED. Then you call it "pushing a boundary" and got all resentful about "this better not happen again or else". Doesn't sound like you "wanted' to be there at all, in fact the opposite. Meh.

I may be just weird, but to me being in a relationship means that I REALLY DO care about the person and want to be there for them (especially in a so-called "crisis"). The other person is not "pushing a boundary" when they need or ask for my help or support. I can't seem to wrap my mind around it when people consider supporting their partner through a difficult time to be "a big problem". Is your boyfriend going to dump you because you stayed with your husband to help him? Would you not expect either or both of them to help YOU through a "crisis"? Why bother being with someone if whenever there is an unpleasant situation they go "Wah! You're pushing my boundaries!"

(Yes, I know I just made more enemies by saying these things above. It's ok - I already have enough friends.)
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  #20  
Old 12-10-2012, 01:03 PM
Cleo Cleo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinccenzo View Post
This word crisis; I do not think it means what you think it means.
- Inigo Montoya
English is not my first language, so please forgive any misuse of words. However, my dictionary says
an emotionally significant event or radical change of status in a person's life
My husband had just found out his GF was cheating on him and was trying to decide wether to break up with her or to forgive her and move on. Sounds like a crisis to me.

Quote:
Posted by BoringGuy : I don't understand; did you WANT to be there for him or didn't you? It sounds like this "crisis" was inconvenient for YOU and you did NOT actually "want" to be there. You only AGREED to "be there" because he ASKED. Then you call it "pushing a boundary" and got all resentful about "this better not happen again or else". Doesn't sound like you "wanted' to be there at all, in fact the opposite. Meh.

I may be just weird, but to me being in a relationship means that I REALLY DO care about the person and want to be there for them (especially in a so-called "crisis"). The other person is not "pushing a boundary" when they need or ask for my help or support. I can't seem to wrap my mind around it when people consider supporting their partner through a difficult time to be "a big problem". Is your boyfriend going to dump you because you stayed with your husband to help him? Would you not expect either or both of them to help YOU through a "crisis"? Why bother being with someone if whenever there is an unpleasant situation they go "Wah! You're pushing my boundaries!"
BG, do you never experience any conflicting emotions? I do, all the time. Sometimes I want to be there for someone but it's not possible, because maybe I'm too emotionally drained to be able to support someone. Or there is another person who also needs me and I must choose. Recently, a friend who was having an affair asked for my support and I told her I could not support her the way she wanted me to until she told her husband what was going on. This doesn't mean I don't care about her. It means I have to make decisions about my life and actions based on what I believe in.

I wasn't 'resentful' when my husband asked for my support. The boundary he was pushing was that he was asking for my support to break up with GF one day, and for my support about his decision to stay with her, the next. I used this example in my OP to illustrate the point I was trying to make: that over the summer I realized a shift was taking place in my thinking about poly dynamics, and that instead of the husband-wife dyad that had been most important up until that point, I felt that it was about ME - the way I choose to distribute my time, love and energy.
It's no longer the case that the needs of my husband will always trump the needs of other loves. He was asking for this, to be 'the most important one', and I felt that if at some point he would make me choose, we would have a problem... where as 6 months earlier, I would have said ' of course! you are the most important person.'
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