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  #1  
Old 12-29-2012, 02:33 AM
thebutteryfly thebutteryfly is offline
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Default A complicated Poly Invitation

I was recently invited to be the 5th member of a current Poly situation involving 1 man and 3 women. I had been dating one of the women with his consent, and recently met the second one. We really connected and she is courting me to become officially involved in their circle. The primary male and I get along and he feels the need to offer more support to the other women on all levels and told me he would also like me to get involved.

Has anyone else had a similar situation walking into a pre existing multi poly situation? Any things to look out for or protocols to follow?
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  #2  
Old 12-29-2012, 03:56 AM
Becca Becca is offline
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I'm not sure I understand your situation.

You are dating one woman. You are thinking about dating another.

What is the difference between dating these two women, and being in the poly circle? Are you talking about moving in? Sharing expenses? Communal living, sharing assets? Getting involved with the other two people in some way? Or just dating these two women, and being a friend to the rest of the household?

There are no protocols. We all do this sort of thing differently. That's why I'm not really sure what you mean by getting involved with this circle.
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  #3  
Old 12-29-2012, 12:09 PM
thebutteryfly thebutteryfly is offline
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I think this would mean being a friend to both. Taking them both as lovers and getting involved sexually one on one, with them both and in a group situation when all 5 have their play nights. While I think it is a bit premature to have one or both of them move in with me... that could be considered down the road. I could help them both out financially some. Not sure how that works best when one has a good job and the other not so good.

The complaint I am hearing is that none of them get enough time spent with the primary male, so I would be a secondary to help out emotionally and sexually.

I understand this board is not really sexually oriented, but these girls apparently are not getting enough attention in that area either from the one male primary. I know this seems silly, but he claims he needs help keeping 3 of them happy.

But I would definitely be in the secondary role.
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  #4  
Old 12-29-2012, 01:39 PM
Becca Becca is offline
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Okay, well here's my advice, based on what you've described.

It sounds like you've encountered a poly group that is having some problems. If the man at the center has three girlfriends who are all dissatisfied in some way with their relationship with him, it's very unlikely that he can "fix" things by bringing another person in. Some people have an impulse: "Relationship broken, add more people," which is generally bad news.

If, however, he recognizes that this structure (one person being primary to three, all of whom have no other relationship aside from their connections with each other) is a little unstable, and he is encouraging his girlfriends to develop other relationships so they don't only look to him for emotional support, that could make sense.

It sounds like you already have/want relationships with the two women you are dating/about to date. That's great! And it's good that their poly group is welcoming of you. If you are also invited to participate in group sex, well, think about whether or not that's something you want. Nothing wrong with it! But you should only go for it if you have the desire, if you feel that all physical safety considerations have been met, and if you have the emotional constitution for it. It can be fun and fulfilling, and it can also be hard, depending on how you bond with people, how you feel about casual sex, and why you're going for it

My word of caution, though... be wary about any situation that presumes that you will have a relationship of some kind with your partner's partner. That sort of thing can only grow organically. If someone really expects you to develop some sort of bond with someone you don't know well, it suggests a degree of naivete about the way human hearts work. You could hit the jackpot, and it could work out great, but it could mean drama.

As far dating someone when you know that the only role available to you is secondary... that's something I can do, and have done, and do. But you have to know your own heart, know what you want when you get into a relationship, and know exactly what they mean by "secondary," because different people mean different things. You'll want to find out what sort of time commitment, what sort of emotional availability, these two women foresee that they could have with a secondary relationship.

So I guess my best advice is to ask a lot of questions. Get to know how these different people relate to each other, what they expect of each other, where their expectations aren't being met. Date slowly. Jump into bed, if you like, but let your emotional bonds move as slow as you can, because you want to make sure that you manage your own expectations.

And if this group of people are very sex-driven, and sex-focused, my advice stays the same. Not all poly folks are interested in group sex, casual sex, sex parties, kink culture, etc. But for those of us who ARE, we are just an tender hearted as the more conventional types, and my best advice remains this-- take care of your heart.
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  #5  
Old 12-30-2012, 05:32 AM
thebutteryfly thebutteryfly is offline
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Thanks for the advice... makes clear sense and well written.

While I am no stranger to Poly having been in both an FMF and MFM situation, both were ultimately unsuccessful. But I was in a primary role in both of those situations.

Playing the secondary role feels more sustainable from my end at least. I'm not one to bring drama into things. My wife now is very understanding of my desire for more social activity in my life as well as more sexual relationships than she is interested in at this point. I would consider her a veteran seasoned swinger who became disenchanted with that scene over time. I also... to some degree, but I do see the arguments for both swinger and poly. I feel this board at least from what I have read is not very swinger friendly... and I do understand this also. We went from Poly to swinger.. while I think for most it might work the other way around. I am revisiting Poly now.

This Poly group seems slightly out of balance but in no way toxic. The male primary is very kind hearted and not alpha acting in any way. He comes across as a lover of female energy both patient and respectful. I am not sure though that the girls know their place in the primary, secondary .... etc.
My feeling is that this needs to be understood. I have know Poly folks who claim everyone is a primary. I disagree, and I am sure I could pick any of those situations apart and show them why it is not that way in reality.

In this situation, one female gets most of the sex, one gets most of the time, and one seems to be a bit of an outsider.

I feel I could enjoy two of them on a somewhat limited involvement, but not three. I have already been sexual with both of them, but never one on one.
Only in group situations which is fine with me. I could see myself going there, but I would need consent from my primary (wife) before I would ever be sleeping over or meeting one of them for one on one sex.

Again, I feel this board frowns upon sex talk, but I do feel it is important because without sex, to me at least.. it is then just a friendship.. which of course can be very deep and emotionally intimate, but sex does change things. It does become something different, especially when it becomes ritualistic.
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  #6  
Old 12-31-2012, 03:23 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebutteryfly View Post
Again, I feel this board frowns upon sex talk . . .
Really? Why do you think that? Because it is often said that relationships, rather than sex, is the focus of poly? That may be true, but we talk about sex here a lot of the time! Sex talk is welcome here. If it seems to be veering off-topic or not having much to do with polyamory per se, however, a thread about sex might be moved to our Fireplace section.
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  #7  
Old 12-31-2012, 07:45 AM
thebutteryfly thebutteryfly is offline
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Really? Why do you think that?
I was browsing the discussion on the recent Showtime TV Poly show... and many of the posters here seemed disappointed that the show had many fairly graphic sex scenes, and a lot of the conversations were about sex... and many of the posters seemed to view that as not representative of the community in general... and that gratuitous sex displays and episode topics where only to enhance TV ratings. Personally I thought the show was very well done all things considered. I hope they extend to a second season.

Other threads I have read seem to avoid direct sexual focus.. and certainly swinging is like black sheep cousin who won't behave properly. Many of the regular posters here come across as very judgmental if Poly is expressed in a way that is different from their own belief system on the subject at hand.

Certainly my wife and I are totally capable of both swinging and poly... we see them as under the same umbrella in many ways, but different it some ways such as commitment level, time frame, or simply blending lives in a more complete or integrated manner.

We have swinger friends who think Poly folk are literally out of their minds.. and Poly friends who view swingers as superficial shallow heartless sex addicts. Our feeling is that there is a lot of cross pollination going on.
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  #8  
Old 12-31-2012, 04:39 PM
thebutteryfly thebutteryfly is offline
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Quote:
Really? Why do you think that?
I was browsing the discussion on the recent Showtime TV Poly show... and many of the posters here seemed disappointed that the show had many fairly graphic sex scenes, and a lot of the conversations were about sex... and many of the posters seemed to view that as not representative of the community in general... and that gratuitous sex displays and episode topics where only to enhance TV ratings. Personally I thought the show was very well done all things considered. I hope they extend to a second season.

Other threads I have read seem to avoid direct sexual focus.. and certainly swinging is like black sheep cousin who won't behave properly. Many of the regular posters here come across as very judgmental if Poly is expressed in a way that is different from their own belief system on the subject at hand.

Certainly my wife and I are totally capable of both swinging and poly... we see them as under the same umbrella in many ways, but different it some ways such as commitment level, time frame, or simply blending lives in a more complete or integrated manner.

We have swinger friends who think Poly folk are literally out of their minds.. and Poly friends who view swingers as superficial shallow heartless sex addicts. Our feeling is that there is a lot of cross pollination going on.
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