Polyamory.com Forum  

Go Back   Polyamory.com Forum > Polyamory > Poly Relationships Corner

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #31  
Old 06-24-2013, 01:37 AM
sparklepop sparklepop is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 350
Default

Hi DFW

I’ve just read through your thread and I have some thoughts for you too.

Quote:
Since L lives so far away, and really wants some "alone time" with J, they are pushing for an overnight
You used the word "pushing". That sets the undertone for the rest of the feelings you are exhibiting in this thread. This current situation isn't what you want. Not only that, but you feel it's happening regardless. Things are spiraling.

Quote:
How did you handle your spouse's first weekend away? I'm worried that I will feel alone and abandoned. I'm jealous of their NRE and wish I had that in my life too.
Your demons seem to be:
- need for attention
- fear of abandonment
- envy

Quote:
In other words, most of their time together will be without me. Which would be easier for me to handle (I think), if I had a sweetie other than J,
You know, I used to think this. My girlfriend had an intense relationship for two years, followed by another intense one for about 7 months. I always wanted that elusive "sweetie of my own" to make the blues go away.

8 months ago, I decided that I actually had a lesson to learn here. I stopped dating and forced myself to go it 'alone' whilst she was going through her recent intense relationship. It was difficult, very difficult. But God, it made me so much stronger. And I am no longer as dependent on other people to take my pain away. It's just something to think about.

Incidentally... as a side note... the one my girlfriend went the most gaga for was this latest 7 month guy... and she'd known him for a couple of years previously, too. I think that, in the case of your wife, and my girlfriend, there can be something to be said for long-awaited relationships. That chemistry burns away for years, you place all of your poly hopes on that person and it can become consuming. My girlfriend will admit now that she spent "too much" time and energy getting caught up in that relationship. Basically... what I'm saying here... is don't panic yet. Sometimes the hottest flames are the ones that burnt out the fastest. And lessons can be learnt.

Quote:
I'm not a solitary type of person. I love being around other people, so I never really look forward to ANY alone time, as odd as that may sound. J on the other hand LOVES it, so the good news is that when the shoe is on the other foot, she will be much less of a wreck than me, hopefully.
Absolutely nothing wrong with being a people person. Extroverts feel recharged when they absorb energy from others; from the environment. Introverts need to be away from the energy of others to feel recharged. However, you should think on this and ensure that you aren't relying too much on your wife for attention, or have an unhealthy expectation in terms of how much attention you expect.

Quote:
As for the advice about J's "working on it", I actually read that post to her last night and she agreed to hurry it up. Which brings us to trying to figure out the best way to meet people. I figure online is pretty much the number one option. So, which sites are good?
Just be careful here. Maybe finding someone else will be the answer to all of your problems; but I actually believe that it's avoiding self-growth. Your issues, that were evident at the start of your thread, were:
- need for attention
- fear of abandonment
- envy

How are you conquering these by getting someone of your own? You're just feeding them by soothing them with a person, instead of teaching yourself how to feel happy with less attention, secure when alone, and compersion, happiness, instead of envy.

Don't get me wrong!! I'm not saying that you should be mono... I'm saying that, even if it's not right now, it can be useful for one person in a relationship to work on some core issues, rather than following a knee-jerk desire to soothe their bad feelings with a new relationship.

Quote:
she sat in his lap and they kissed for an hour while I tried to occupy myself around the house doing other things. After a while, I sat down near them and tried to start a conversation, you know as if to say "hey, I'm still here."
Now... this wouldn't be acceptable to me. But, I'm not into cuckolding, and I'm not a voyeur when it comes to someone I'm in love with. As a previous swinger, you've obviously seen her with other people plenty of times. So, what really hurt you was the *lack of attention*.

I don't blame you for that. What's going on here isn't swinging. It's polyamory. The two of them, with you on the outside.

I think it was good that you removed yourself. I think it was beyond awful that she continued to have sex with him and that she gigged on the phone. Beyond awful. That's my opinion.

Unless... she's verbally requested that her and L be a couple, instead of the FMM and you've ignored it. In which case, she'll be feeling resentful.

Quote:
I mean I would NEVER have let her leave the house if the shoe was on the other foot.
Then, you wanted her to stop you. You didn't want to be out of the situation - you wanted her *attention*.

Quote:
The next day I took my kids out for the day, but before I left I told her that, given everything that happened the night before, I would really appreciate some affection when I got home..
I think that this is fair to ask for. But again, it does make me wonder about your need for attention. You didn't say "I'd love to spend some time alone, as I'm feeling a little sensitive and could really use a hug to make me feel better"... you said: "if I can get some positive re-enforcement that leaving the two of you alone makes you happy and you appreciate me, some kisses, some snuggling, etc. then this will help me get more comfortable and WANT to give you that time"

You were saying "if *I* get this this and this, I'll give you something."

What may have been more productive is to request that you two have a brief talk about guidelines during that time, or after the weekend. Because I don't think it's just about the attention you want - it's about a situation that you feel is out of control.

Quote:
When she returns, I feel much better and pull her close to me to snuggle in my lap. L is taking a nap at this point in our bedroom. After J and I snuggle for a minute, she says she wants to go wake L up, and leaves.
You pulled her close to you and she left quickly. Is there any chance, whatsoever, she is feeling claustrophic, controlled, manipulated, that you need constant attention? Or, is she really just being insensitive and like a kid in a candy store with L? (This is a genuine question - I don't know the answer).

Quote:
Swinger mentality strikes again.
I'm somewhere between polysexual and polyamorous, but it irritates me when polyamorous people get irritated with 'swinging mentality'. There are an infinite number of relationship models, guidelines, agreements and comfort levels. Poly people judging swingers is no different to mono people who judge poly people.

So what if you do want to only be a swinger? So what if you don't? So what if you wanted to have a house boy and got him to pick the living room up while your wife fed the kids instead

The point is - you have to figure out what *you* want.

It sounds like your wife feels that you've made XYZ agreement. This is either because you have; or because there has been a communication breakdown; or because she wants to tell herself you've made ABC agreement.

You're feeling the same thing. It's why you're resenting it. You thought the agreement was MFM. She thinks it's FM FM and a little MFM. (With her at the centre.. yes? ~winks~)

So... to conclude...

In my opinion? Poly, for me, is about:
comfortable - what are *you* comfortable with? what is she? L?
Compatible - what do you *all* want?
Agreeable - what can you all agree on?
Practical - what practically works?

My GF and I also have a 0-5 rating system that helps us to navigate poly stressors. 0 is not at all bothered, totally cool. 2 is general poly pangs; nothing that won't improve with time. 3 is time to take it carefully. 4 is stressful, danger zone. 5 is a guideline dealbreaker and possible cause for breaking up.

So, for example... my girlfriend going on a date these days would be a 0-2, depending on the person and circumstance. Dating someone I had an issue with of whatever kind might be a 3-4. Going for coffee for two hours with date? Around a 0. Going for a 9 hour fuck fest? 2-3. Weekend away? 4-5. Sleeping with someone and lying about it? 5. Moving someone in with us. Potential 5. We are clear about what we've signed up for, we'll discuss things as they arise, but nothing is pushed - we either want the same things, or we don't.

So, say you two used this system. J asks you "how do you feel about me and L spending a weekend together?" you say "4-5". You agree to leave it for a month and rediscuss. If you're constantly giving honest 4 4 4, 5 5 5 .. it's time to slow down. Something isn't working. Only use this technique if you won't be tempted to treat it as a control mechanism. 4 does not mean J has to stop. It means she can see, clearly, you are stressed. She might decide that you'll always be stressed and will never accept polyamory. Or, she might be sympathetic and slow down. The idea is to give honest, measurable answers.

Either way, you have to get the agreements out on the table. Ten or so written agreements you can refer to. Things like set number of dates for you two vs those two. Etc. I have no idea how you've coped with this pace - but more power to you. Your wife, I think, needs to take her head out of distractionville with L and tell you what's really on her mind. You have to get out of being sweet, then passive aggressive, and just be honest. You are also entitled to grieve the MMF between you. You are also entitled to find it very difficult for a while. Let us know how you guys get on.
__________________

Me: (30f) open poly
Serious long-distance relationship with GF (40f)
Casual FWB with Descartes (27f)



“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without." ~ Buddha

Last edited by sparklepop; 06-24-2013 at 01:39 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 06-24-2013, 02:29 AM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Nowhere
Posts: 1,647
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Magdlyn View Post
I blame BoringGuy for recommending drinking.
This entire fiasco is all my fault. Therefore, I beseech the Blessed Virgin Mary, all Saints, and you, my brothers and sisters, to pray to the Lord our God for me.

Amen.
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 06-24-2013, 03:01 AM
Maynard Maynard is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 6
Default Thanks..

I really wish that I had known of this site and this post before wife went for her first overnight/ week trip with the gf. I handled it poorly, and I made it a complicated and confusing trip for them. I will say wife did have her fault in it, with the lack or no communication with me while gone. That was a big part of my insecurities becoming so intense and this fear that it was a mistake. Needless to say, I ruined their week, and it made for a couple uncomfortable and argumentative days when she got home. I am looking forward to her going on her second trip this week, and will be using this advice. I want this to work. We have discussed that she needs to keep a form of communication with me, not isolate me while with the gf. Especially when me and gf are also exploring our own personal relationship. So thanks again, going to be reading all the links gala noted in her post.
Reply With Quote
  #34  
Old 06-24-2013, 12:35 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 3,057
Default

Quote:
Also, I'm angry that they don't want the same relationship I want...I think this goes to the root of the issue. I want a threesome with some alone time for them on the side. They want a twosome with some time with me.

I've come to terms with that BUT the time with me is REALLY time for the two of them while I pick up the living room, fart around on the internet, and generally try to disappear into the woodwork.

Do I have a right to be upset about that? Am I being a bad primary and unsupportive?
You can feel whatever it is you feel. If you don't like how you are feeling, could change your behavior, see what new feelings ensue, and if that serves you better.

Since you did not sort out the relationship shape ahead of time...
  • I want a threesome with some alone time for them on the side.
  • They want a twosome with some time with me.

you got some upset/discomfort. I'm sorry it hit you like it did. Doesn't sound like fun to feel.

While accepting the shape you still don't know how you fit in that shape or what is expected. "Some time with me" is WHAT? Once a week dinner and movie out together as friends? Something else?

How much public display of affection is ok with you and how much is too much to witness while this is still new?

WHEN are they seeing each other and what does that mean for you/kids? Are you always default babysitter or do you hire one sometimes so you too can get a night off parenting? Or do they babysit together while you go out to do something?

Could sort these detail things out so you can move it forward. Talk together. Make the plan for the next 3 mos, try it on, and then make whatever tweaks necessary. It's takes a while to find the "new normal."

If you come to find this is more than you can handle at this time -- could say so up front.

Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 06-24-2013 at 12:38 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #35  
Old 06-27-2013, 12:37 AM
DFWPolyGuy DFWPolyGuy is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 7
Default

Sparklepop - Good Glory, you just read me like a book!

Gala - Thank you as well for those insights.

Here's the fallout:

After hours and hours of discussion, it turns out I was WAAAY crazy on Friday night and TOTALLY out of line. This is after I returned home after too many drinks. Prior to that, I agree it was an unrealistic expectation that after not seeing each other for a month, that they weren't going to be lost in one another.

Anyway, I caused a great deal of emotional harm to the both of them. This behavior BTW is completely out of character for me. I NEVER drink when I'm upset. And I won't be doing that again either.

So we all sat down on Sunday, after their lunch date, and discussed. L was ready to bolt after Friday night, but stuck it out. J was hurt terribly and didn't understand what I wanted from her. L said some things that really hit home with me, that his relationship with my wife is one of the few positive touch-points in his life. He is in a stressful place right now and his time alone with her allows him to forget those things. I mean, it was some heavy shit. Also, he values my marriage more than his relationship with J and was considering breaking it off because (in his eyes) he is the one "causing" the problem.

I explained that, no, that is not a reasonable conclusion. He is not responsible for the success of my marriage relationship. He is not responsible for J and I being OK or not. I told him that, furthermore, it is not fair to me or to J to threaten their relationship over something that is going on between J and I.

Since Sunday, J and I have spent a ton of time sorting through this, deciding where we go.

1. We are using Sparklepop's stress system to communicate our respective comfort levels (I say respective because I'm talking to a potential interest and now J needs to express these things to me). BTW, I am NOT doing that because I want to replace clinging onto her with clinging onto someone else. It does, however, give me some perspective on her point of view and it is easier to empathize with the feelings she has towards L.

2. We came to the conclusion (before reading the Sparkelpop's reply) that I have some deep abandonment fear issues, and that I cling to J because of that. I have been really diving deep into those and have begun using some techniques to address them. I feel stronger than ever now actually. It feels good, like when I first tackled my jealousy and beat it with a stick. Feels really good.

3. J is going on a weekend trip with L in a few weeks. I'm nervous as hell, but feel like it will be good thing in the long run. I will face my issues within myself and not rely on her or anyone else to fix them for me. We have discussed my biggest concern, that she is and will continue getting more "lost" in him and that I have a concern about her returning her focus to us when she gets back. She agreed that that is valid and we discussed ways to deal with it.

Our plan is to see how the trip goes, then in August we are passing through his town and they will go out on a date then. At that point, we can asses where we want this to go in terms of dating arrangements. What we want to avoid is the scenario wherein we are all together and she gets wrapped up in him and I'm the third wheel. If their NRE is a little less and my issues are improving, then we may get together (no sex) for the weekend at our place, giving them ample alone time. We'll see where we are after August in any case.

Overall, we are much stronger and I am feeling considerably better now that we have pinpointed the core of my problem. I'm getting pretty good at working through these, but until you know the root, the damn weed keeps growing back.

Thanks again guys!
Reply With Quote
  #36  
Old 06-27-2013, 12:42 AM
YouAreHere's Avatar
YouAreHere YouAreHere is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: SoNH
Posts: 848
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DFWPolyGuy View Post
I'm getting pretty good at working through these, but until you know the root, the damn weed keeps growing back.
I am a huge user of analogies, and I really like this one. I may steal it some time.

Glad to hear you've (all) been talking, digging into the problems, and trying to find solutions. Hope things keep looking up.
Reply With Quote
  #37  
Old 06-27-2013, 02:38 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 3,057
Default

Glad to hear you all talked and came up with a plan to try on with reasonable checkpoints.

That's impressive in such a short turn around time. Kudos to all of you.

Now go try it on and see how it goes. I hope it goes better for all of you.

GL!

Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 06-27-2013 at 02:48 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #38  
Old 08-07-2013, 10:18 PM
Labs07 Labs07 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 11
Default Sleep overs

I have started a new relationship and have been asked by my lover if I could spend the night. My wife and I discussed this and she is good to go. I understand about NRE and want to and want to be with my lover a lot but I don't want to overdo it. I know the boundaries with my primary will determine how often we can do this but am looking to gain a bit of understanding of what others have done before.
Thanks for the thoughts on this!
Reply With Quote
  #39  
Old 08-07-2013, 11:10 PM
nycindie's Avatar
nycindie nycindie is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: The Big Apple
Posts: 7,255
Default

Do you have any specific questions? I'm not sure what kind of response you're looking for.
__________________
The world opens up... when you do.

Oh, oh, can't you see? Love is the drug for me. ~Bryan Ferry
"Love is that condition in which another person's happiness is essential to your own." ~Robert Heinlein
Reply With Quote
  #40  
Old 08-08-2013, 03:34 PM
Labs07 Labs07 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 11
Default

I am just looking for others experiences regarding this matter. Any advise or experiences would be helpful.

Thanks
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 12:47 PM.