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  #11  
Old 07-27-2013, 05:45 AM
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Anyanka Anyanka is offline
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Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
Just for your edification, polyamory is having multiple loves. What you are talking about would most easily be described as swinging. Unless one of these threesome buddies becomes some kind of romantic love interest for one of you, it isn't poly.
I do understand the difference .. the distinction is actually part of my confusion .. I am unsure if this 'have other people in the bedroom' is the focus right now with a view to have full relationships in the future or, if it is only really about 'fucking' other people ..


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Originally Posted by Marcus View Post

Agreed, making promises of longevity actually apply negative pressure to a relationship. It builds a barrier to exit which makes it difficult to discern what decisions are made from genuine interest and which ones are motivated by being in it "for the long haul".

My goal is for my partner to do exactly nothing for me that they do not have a genuine desire to do. I don't want to emotionally bully them, guilt them, or coerce them into doing something nice for me... I want them to do it because that's what they wanted to do. If they don't want to do a thing for me then PLEASE don't do it!! While most people can get behind this sentiment they have a hard time being able to recognize the fact that they are building agreements into their relationship which are contrary to this idea.

If IV leaves me tomorrow I will be crushed; my heart will be shattered into a thousand little splinters. HOWEVER, if my alternative is for her to stay with me because she is "committed to our relationship" then I'll take my broken heart any day. Love should be genuine and offered freely, building a longevity clause into a relationship is synonymous with saying "I want you to stay with me even if you'd rather leave"...
I understand and have long understood the potential negative aspects of saying that one is 'committed' ... I get it. But, I am not going to be entirely able to divorce my tendency to want a 'partner' as well as a lover and for me to do that, I need some sense of security.

I don't believe in marriage, I refused to marry my LTR ex of 16 years because he and I met when I was just 18 and I told him that I had serious doubts that we could possibly be together forever but, unless things went horribly wrong, I was there (as opposed to "i'm keeping one toe out the door in case something better comes along/you need me too much/whatever").

I am not sure that building agreements into relationships compromises the idea that the other person is acting from their own desire to do so .. I don't think it is productive to ask for any guarantee irrespective of changing circumstances, .. I guess what I am talking about isn't so much longevity (although that does come into it) but being 'in' the relationship while it is alive. I am not 100% sure that talking about longevity automatically means that there is a 'clause' that someone restrains the other person irregardless of their needs/wants in the future .. that seems a bit reactive to me but perhaps I misunderstand what you mean here.

Thanks for your input

Last edited by Anyanka; 07-27-2013 at 06:00 AM.
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  #12  
Old 07-27-2013, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
Words are labels intended to convey to someone else a picture in our head.
Nothing more.

Actions are the results of our inner truth.

Thus the reason actions speak louder than words. We could lie in words-but really actions don't lie.

I can SAY "til death do us part" but I can't be certain that is true until one of us dies-because i can't predict the future.

I understand wanting the words-because they make us FEEL like we have more certainty-but the truth is-they aren't ACTUALLY increasing the certainty.

GG and I have 20 years now. At no point have we agreed to "life". Our dynamic has altered from "just friends" to "fwb" to "just friends" to part time lovers, to boyfriend/girlfriend, to roommates, to just friends, to co parents etc.
As needs have changed, the dynamic has changed and because we both accept that-the relationship hasn't ended.

I would focus more on authenticity then labels.

It's something to consider for you. Because he seems to be saying you ARE important but you need to be clear about need versus want. This is true for me too. If my bf says "I NEED you" and my kids just need tucked in but they are otherwise good to go-I will leave them with their older sister to tuck them in and go to him. But if he just wants to go dancing? I'm going to tuck them in first and he's going to wait.
I hope I am not coming across as wanting labels or guarantees because this really isn't the case .. well, in my head I would 'love' to think that he and I will be involved for a long, long time .. but I am in no way 'expecting' or trying to find a way to induce this.

I am trying to find a happy balance I guess whereby his issues of smothering and my issues of abandonment can meet in the middle. Interestingly, I also have smothering issues, just way less than him and he also has abandonment issues, but deals with (supresses) them better than I do .. so we both 'get' each others triggers .. I am trying to find a dialogue that allows me to feel some security - while it is genuinely there - and for him to feel safe that he isn't going to lose himself.

Thanks + thanks also for sharing your personal history with GG - that was enlightening.
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  #13  
Old 07-27-2013, 05:54 AM
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Galagirl:::

Many thanks for the links and info .. I am going to have a look at those as soon as I have finished responding - TY
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  #14  
Old 07-27-2013, 05:58 AM
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Originally Posted by BigGuy View Post
I might be able to speak to point number 1.

I don't believe I experience love as an emotion like most other people do. I experience NRE, hard, but when that is over, there's not much there. That being said, I enjoy the company of cohabitation and prefer it to being alone. I am where I am because that's where I want to be.

For me, love is a conscious decision. It is making decisions every day about doing things that enhance our relationship. It is making decisions every day about doing those things that I know will enhance my life in the long run. I love my wife. I want and do that which is best for her taking into account that which is best for me. I just don't experience it as an emotion.

It's taken her some time to wrap her brain around that just as it still takes me time to feel comfortable with those who make decisions based on emotions.

If he wants to be with you, he will be with you. As long as you can communicate your needs to each other and are willing to adapt to meet them, does it really matter if he's "faking" it?
Thanks so much for sharing your experience with me .. this was incredibly helpful - I can see exactly where you are coming from and it does help to dilute what, for me, seemed a direct contradiction in him .. I couldn't reconcile what he was saying in any way .. but this, what you have written, makes perfect sense.

I do hope that he isn't just experiencing NRE .. distance does tend to amp up the emotional and prolong the 'new' phase somewhat .. but, we are both grown-ups now and hopefully know our own minds and hearts
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  #15  
Old 07-27-2013, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Anyanka View Post
More excellent advice - thanks.

I need to do some adjustment in my thinking and in particular my vocab.
You are not the only one who has trouble with vocabulary. Our societal vocabulary is built for traditional coupledom - and words do create pictures that affect how we think. My SO and I have struggled with this very thing. Our relationship was resurrected from a failed triad. While our relationship is very strong, we do not feel like a couple. We feel like two individuals who are very special to one another. But there is little vocabulary to describe this. I know many people use the terms bf / gf, but we both shy away from it because for us those terms mean couple. The closest accurate term I use is SO, because it didn't come out of our Christian dominated societal vocabulary. My SO giggles and uses the term "special lady friend" taken from the movie, The Big Lebowski.

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Originally Posted by Anyanka View Post
Just so you know, we had a video skype chat this morning for a couple of hours and (based upon what you had said here) I told him that I had considered his question about my 'expectations' and that really, what I want is what we already have .. just with him closer .. he seemed a little surprised but very happy with that response.. I am going to bring up the needs/wants list as per your suggestion when we are next face to face (I am off to visit in a couple of weeks) .. but, for the moment, this seems to have made us both feel better - so, thanks.
I am so glad to hear it!
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  #16  
Old 07-27-2013, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Anyanka View Post
I understand and have long understood the potential negative aspects of saying that one is 'committed' ... I get it. But, I am not going to be entirely able to divorce my tendency to want a 'partner' as well as a lover and for me to do that, I need some sense of security.
I don't think there is something inherently negative about saying "he and I are in a committed relationship", I just think it's best to be precise about what that means.

I am committed to my relationship with IV, for example, but it doesn't mean what most people think it means. I know IV well enough to know that we work well together; our sex life is fun, our time together is entertaining, our worldviews are compatible. I will cut IV some slack if she is having a hard time and is being emotionally unstable or temporarily detached. I am committed to having her in my life as long as our fundamental approaches to life remain compatible; regardless of whether or not she's going through some kind of contextual craziness.

I also believe in being flexible for the sake of my partner, though probably not in the way most people think of it. As long as what I am changing about my behavior is irrelevant to me or it is a change to something I also see as a natural behavior for me, I will do it. Once I need to change something fundamental about myself or I need to put up with something that I think is unreasonable I am going to need to make a change. That change doesn't necessarily mean breaking up, but I'll need to change it to the degree that allows me to freely be who I am while enjoying what my partner naturally has to offer.

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Originally Posted by Anyanka View Post
I guess what I am talking about isn't so much longevity (although that does come into it) but being 'in' the relationship while it is alive.
What does this mean to you? I propose that you will have a better chance of getting what you want from life if you can be more concise about what that actually is. "Being 'in' the relationship" is about as vague a statement as I could imagine someone making and anyone you said that to would likely be blindly guessing what you meant.

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Originally Posted by Anyanka View Post
I am not 100% sure that talking about longevity automatically means that there is a 'clause' that someone restrains the other person irregardless of their needs/wants in the future .. that seems a bit reactive to me but perhaps I misunderstand what you mean here.
Talking about a topic doesn't mean action should be taken. Making promises about a topic insists that action be taken to see those promises through.

"I'm going to stick with this thing as long as we are fundamentally healthy for each other. What are your feelings on the topic?" - This is stating my level of commitment and prompting a conversation about what the other persons views are. I am not proposing anything nor suggesting any promises should be made. I would consider this to be a healthy approach to the conversation.

"I'm committed to being in this relationship for the long haul; are you committed to being 'in' this relationship?" - This is attempting to solicit promises of longevity and being incredibly vague about what that actually means. This is not what I would consider to be a healthy approach to the conversation.
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  #17  
Old 07-28-2013, 07:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
I don't think there is something inherently negative about saying "he and I are in a committed relationship", I just think it's best to be precise about what that means.

I am committed to my relationship with IV, for example, but it doesn't mean what most people think it means.
I know exactly what committed means to me .. If I was asking/explaining it with somebody with whom I was wanting committment then I think specifics are indeed important but, for general conversation - while I can concede that the word has a variety of connotations/meanings - I think there is a basic, collective understanding at work that allows the term to be mobilised without too much angst.

Thanks
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  #18  
Old 07-29-2013, 01:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Anyanka View Post
I think there is a basic, collective understanding at work that allows the term to be mobilised without too much angst
We were having a rather in depth conversation on which the use of a vague word was hinged. No angst, just trying to be clear about what we were talking about.

I also wanted to make sure that the lurkers understood that it is more efficient to be precise with language than to use vague and easily misinterpreted terms. Sometimes it's unavoidable and a short discussion is needed for the sake of clarity - but avoiding that and being precise is a better approach to communication.

You're welcome
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  #19  
Old 07-29-2013, 06:34 AM
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Valid point/s Marcus - thanks for the clarify
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