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  #11  
Old 01-20-2010, 10:22 PM
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MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
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Originally Posted by MrMom View Post
Hopefully it's not all wishful thinking, because I'll admit that I've read many stories of people believing the same thing as me when it's just not reality.
From what I have seen, your observations are correct. You are almost certainly going to make things worse by putting a band aid on a relationship that is haemorrhaging...get some stitches and healing time first.
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  #12  
Old 01-20-2010, 11:58 PM
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As the grown up child of parents who likely stayed together, up to the breaking point, "for the kids," I recommend not staying "for the kids". If your relationship is strained, painful, unhappy..., that's no good for the kids: take my word for it.

Others say it all comes down to whether trust can be established / reestablished, and that's largely true -- but trust alone isn't enough. There has to be genuine loving, which obviously involves trust importantly.

Polyamory can be a good thing, I believe. And sometimes people can transition from deceit and cheating ... followed by honesty about deceit and cheating... and into some sort of happy poly situation, but, as others here have said, there's no covering up that you got treated badly by being lied to and cheated on. So the ball is mostly in *her* court, I think, in terms of taking responsibility for f-ing up and trying to set it right.

If you both can look into each other's eyes and say, "I love you and want this to work out; and I'm willing to work to be sure that it does," I'd give you good odds. If things are beyond that point, never mind the kids. They'd be better off with happy divorced parents than unhappily married ones.
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  #13  
Old 01-21-2010, 05:41 AM
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Hi MrMom!
I found myself in a very similar situation last year... though we don't have kids, my husband admitted to being in love with another woman, and eventually left me for her. He then changed his mind, and came back to me, and agreed not to see her while we re-built our relationship with different boundaries. She didn't wait for him, but we are happy in a newly poly relationship.

It was a very challenging thing for me, to change my thinking from being extremely monogamous. I think it was a great idea to join this board: I wish I had had the courage to do so in my investigations of what it means to be poly. I borrowed some books from friends, interviewed them, and observed their relationships for a period of about six months. What I found most helpful was a book written memoir-style about the journey of a woman's journey towards polyamoury, how she cheated on her husband, confessed to him & worked through it, and their path to solid and comfortable boundaries together. I appreciated being able to see the whole process, and to begin to understand her feelings, which were similar to those of my husband, without all of the personal pain that accompanied them. It's called "Open: Love, Sex and Life in an Open Marriage" by Jenny Block.

I also liked Tristan Taormino's "Opening Up", though I wasn't ready to read it until I had grieved for a while.

I'd be happy to share how things went between my husband and I, if you have any questions, or if you need to let off steam or anything, PM me...

Last edited by Seasnail; 01-21-2010 at 05:46 AM.
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  #14  
Old 01-21-2010, 07:23 AM
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The first thing you truly need to decide:

Do you want to save your marriage for your kids' sake or because you still love your wife and want to be with her?

Look deep into your heart and be sure before you answer that question. The road you must follow to save your marriage is long and can be very hard. Be sure it is the road you want and need to travel.

If you truly want to save your marriage, your first step is communication, honest, deep, even painful communication. You need to discuss what has happened and what each of you want and need in order to continue as a family. Do not argue. Discuss it with open minds and hearts. I suggest these conversations take place in neutral territory. A restaurant, a park, where ever you are comfortable, but not necessarily in your home territory. Often people become extra defensive when on their own turf. You have to tell her honestly how you feel, and you have to be willing to listen to how she feels as well.

This will not be easy, nor will it be fixed overnight. But if you can get through this, you may find your marriage will be stronger and more secure than ever before. Good luck.
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  #15  
Old 01-21-2010, 01:00 PM
NeonKaos NeonKaos is offline
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You could also decide to stay together and raise the kids but have separate "social" lives (I mean "social" in the "sexual" sense). I have a friend that has been doing like that for the past 10 years or so. They have separate bedrooms and see other people but they are best friends who raise their son and run their household together.
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  #16  
Old 01-21-2010, 10:29 PM
StitchwitchD StitchwitchD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrMom View Post
She believes that she needs another outlet because things are so hard on all of us right now. And I'm trying to believe that her not getting what she's needed is a result of the drama in the other areas of our lives, and that if we can get some stability then I could provide her what she's been missing.
So, if you won the lottery or got 3 wishes and all the other stresses in your life were magically fixed, then she wouldn't be in love with this other guy anymore?

That doesn't quite sit right with me. I'd suspect that when she's with you, she has to deal with money problems, job issues, the sick kid, the dirty dishes, and all that other crap, but when she's with him, she can focus on the fun stuff and forget about everything else...and if he was part of your household, and she had to deal with all the stressful stuff with him, and he'd babysit so that you could go have a romantic getaway at a bed and breakfast- then you'd be giving her what she's been missing. (Of course, that'd be with the other guy assisting with stability, which is one of the advantages of poly that people don't always think about.)

I'd be willing to give her the benefit of the doubt and assume she didn't exactly plan it- more like she got in touch with him, made plans to get together with him, and was going to tell you, but then she got stuck working late, and the kid was sick, and the electricity was going to get shut off, and she just didn't find a good time to mention it....and then she got together with him, and the chemistry was still there, and she was going to tell you, but with all the crap you deal with everyday, there just wasn't a good time without the kids around to bring it up....and then she got together with him again and things happened, and that made it even harder to find a good time to tell you....And if she's anything like me, it was a horrible weight to bear, and she felt like crap every time she could have told you but didn't, even if it didn't involve actual lying. I can't keep a secret like that without much stress and wangst, I'd be trying to find some way to tell, bringing up things that were related to it in hopes of somehow easing into it instead of just blurting it out.
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  #17  
Old 01-22-2010, 12:19 AM
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"trying to believe" vs. KNOWING as a result of trust are very different.

Trying to convince is along those same lines.... I strongly believe in everything people have said here regarding trust. It looks like there is alot of communicating that you two still need to do that is completely unrelated to being poly.
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  #18  
Old 01-22-2010, 04:36 PM
MrMom MrMom is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redsirenn View Post
"trying to believe" vs. KNOWING as a result of trust are very different.

Trying to convince is along those same lines.... I strongly believe in everything people have said here regarding trust. It looks like there is alot of communicating that you two still need to do that is completely unrelated to being poly.
You are absolutely right, and unfortunately while I'm trying to tell myself that I need to rebuild the trust I'm also finding out new information (not from her) that she's yet to tell me. But I'm committed to trying to make this work.
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  #19  
Old 01-22-2010, 05:21 PM
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CielDuMatin CielDuMatin is offline
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MrMom, rebuilding the trust is not something you can do alone - you can take some pill and suddenly start trusting.

While there is still stuff being uncovered, while you are still in huge amounts of fear about what other stuff is going to come to light, then you aren't ready to start rebuilding anything.

To me, this is getting everything out in the open and damage assessment phase - has stuff happened that is a complete show-stopper for you?

Then you need to be prepared to feel what you feel, based on how you have been treated.

Then, maybe, you can start looking at rebuilding some trust.
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  #20  
Old 01-22-2010, 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by MrMom View Post
Another clarification: We've been married a little over 10 years now, but the last 5-6 years has been very difficult because of her job changes, moving, losing a house to the bank that we couldn't sell, and a child that had a very serious illness. She believes that she needs another outlet because things are so hard on all of us right now. And I'm trying to believe that her not getting what she's needed is a result of the drama in the other areas of our lives, and that if we can get some stability then I could provide her what she's been missing. Hopefully it's not all wishful thinking, because I'll admit that I've read many stories of people believing the same thing as me when it's just not reality.
I'm going to second the notion that you shouldn't stay married for the kids. I'm 37 and I'm still begging my mother to leave my dad. Kids know when you don't like each other any more. If you can't at least be friends, then they'll be happier if you move on.

Of course she likes this guy--they have less history. Things are easier with him. She doesn't have to pay bills with him, she doesn't have to be a parent with him, there are no worries and stress that come with a long-term relationship by its very nature. This is not a judgement, it's a statement of fact. Sometimes it's hard for me to see my husband with our girlfriend because I know he can put down the large amount of stress he has with me. But if your needs aren't getting met, you talk to your partner(s). That's true in any relationship!

You need to figure out what you want and need. You both need to do some communicating. Say it all. You need to find out what the future looks like in her head. See if the two of you can find a future where you're both happy. Do *not* open your marriage because you think it will save your marriage. If you decide you want to try it, you should do it after your marriage is solid again. If you want to remain married, you love her and feel that you can work past the pain, fabulous! I have faith that you can do it. But poly is hard and a lot of work, and so is fixing a marriage. Add kids to the mix--especially if one of them is still sick--and you don't have a lot of resources left over. And any poly parent will tell you that you need to make sure that your kids don't suffer because of it.

If it were me? I'd figure out if I still wanted the marriage; if yes, then I'd ask my wife to stop her other relationship for a set amount of time, probably six months just because that's the minimum amount of time I would expect necessary to feel secure again. During that time, I'd try to find a poly-friendly therapist for marital counseling (just because they're poly-friendly does not mean they will push it on you), re-establish a connection with my wife, and focus on the primary relationship. I'd probably do some research on poly and figure out what I would need to be happy. THEN I would figure out whether I thought it was for me and discuss it with my wife. Of course, her happiness matters too, so I would need to discuss what she felt was necessary for her to be happy.
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