Polyamory.com Forum  

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

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 07-26-2013, 09:11 PM
PuppyPhoenix PuppyPhoenix is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Default Trying to communicate anxiety and fear; end up feeling guilty and selfish.

Post 1 of 2
First of all, hi everyone! :-) First-time poster on here, hopefully this thread might result in a few nuggets of wisdom, or otherwise helpful input in regards to my current situation.

A quick word of warning though, I have a habit of making posts a bit lengthy, but I'll try to add a TL;DR at the bottom. I find it hard to describe the issues of today without sharing a little bit of history of the contrasting backgrounds of my partner and I, and summarising that + the issues in our relationship into as few words as possible is something I'm finding a little hard... :-P

Almost 3 years ago (mid-august), I met the most wonderful woman ever.

I'm from Europe, but at the time, I was in my first year of overseas studies in Australia. By then, I had been there for 6 months, and had already had time to get into, and out of, a rather messy mono relationship (her history of severe mental issues turned out to be less "history" and more "current events", and thus she broke up with me "to spare me" the stress).

During the obligatory mourning period of getting dumped, I came across a note that was given to me at the local SEXpo just a few weeks after arriving in Australia. On it was the URL for FetLife, and I decided that I might as well explore this community a little, being far from the smaller and more narrow-minded territories of home. I had always been somewhat intrigued by that lifestyle, and had made it an objective to try it out at some point in my life, so I figured that was as good a time as any.

After spending a couple of weeks on FetLife, messaging interesting people and participating in the local BDSM groups, going to a few parties and even playing with a few ladies, I came across a very interesting profile on there. I thought she seemed very interesting, and somewhat familiar, but it took a while before I was able to pinpoint where I had seen her before. She was one of the Pro-Dommes that had been presenting at the SEXpo (6+ months earlier by then), and it was her sub that had given me the heads up about FL. That, and I wasn't really very attracted to any of the other people there that day, but she was just... divine!

I figured I should send her a quick message and let her know that she, indirectly, had helped me find a new scene that worked rather well for me, and that I was grateful for that. Her reply was prompt, and rather surprising (paraphrased):
"Hi! Thanks for the sweet mail, I love presenting at expos, like your profile, want to go out on Friday?"

It needs to be said that I am 10 years younger than her (at the time, 23 / 33 now 27 / 37), and was extremely inexperienced sexually back then, so the prospect of a bombshell like her actually replying to my message, but also inviting me out on a date, was just... mind blowing.

That very Friday we went out. We had a lovely lunch, a long walk, talked about everything and nothing, and the energy was just really amazing. There was surprisingly little talk about BDSM and sex for a long time that day, even though she had a few questions about "this new cute boy" and his interest in kink. The date "ended" down by the river after we had been kissing for a while, by her inviting me to come back to her's (home + workspace dungeon in the basement), and being rather explicit about what she wanted to do once we got there. Before we left though, she wanted to have a quick chat about something important. That was my first encounter with the term "polyamory".

She told me about having been in open relationships most of her life, and when she hadn't been, she had often found herself feeling trapped and overwhelmed with the responsibility of having to provide everything her partner was looking for in a significant other. She told me that she had a few play partners and lovers (of all genders), and that if I wanted to be a part of her life - big or small - I had to be aware of that. At the time, I was just desperate for an adventure, and the thought of being able to get laid, but without having to invest too much emotionally into a relationship was perfect for me. Especially as I would be just "the latest fuck-buddy", and not an established lover, etc.

From there on, we stayed as fuck buddies for maybe 4 months before I was about to go home for the Christmas holidays. Just prior to that, she invited me along to her best friend's wedding (as her date, but some of her other play partners was also invited so I didn't think much of it), and a few days before I was due to leave for home, she told me that she loved me. I actually didn't respond in kind back then as it took me by surprise, and I still -felt- monogamous, and the prospect of being in a serious open relationship didn't really entice me that much. She did though. A lot. And having read "The Ethical Slut" at that point, I was also agreeing immensely with polyamory on a purely intellectual level, but I was still very insecure about my abilities to deal with such an arrangement emotionally. Of course, after being back home for 2 months, I came back to Australia and things quickly escalated drastically from there (I even returned the "I love you!" after not too long).

Back then, I was rationalizing my decision to stay in a poly relationship (even if I didn't FEEL ready for it) with all sorts of things. "I agree mentally, I'm sure the emotions will follow", "if I can tell it really doesn't work, I'll just break up before I get too deeply in love", "she has so much experience with sex [being a pro-domme etc for the past 12 years], BDSM, relationships, etc, I'll just soak up as much knowledge as I can before I have to move back home overseas", "what the hell, I'll just have the adventure" and so forth.

We just clicked. She brought me to all sorts of parties, introduced me to her lovers and friends, set me up with a few of her female friends, helped me get dates, etc, etc, while at the same time -expressing- values of being very poly, but still acting very monogamous with me. She began ending some of her other relationships, stopped going out as often, stopped hooking up with people when she did go out (for the most part), seemingly did a 180 on certain topics when she talked about them (monogamous couples vs poly couples, and how she was feeling so monogamous when she was with me, and how it actually felt surprisingly good), and would often text me when out on a date with something along the lines of "why did I go out with this guy, I just want to be back home with you ".

I was trying to get into poly at this time, and when we were travelling to Sydney and other bigger cities, we would attend munches with the local poly scene (and she used to live in Sydney for a long time, so she has a lot of close friends in that scene), get invited to parties, play parties, discussion groups and much more. I was learning heaps, but I was finding it difficult to apply it as we were getting very monogamous, and my emotions were kind of welcoming her changing towards mono, even though my head wanted me to be the one changing.

Mostly she would really only be practicing her polyamory (and that's still the case), when she went traveling to visit friends in other cities and countries (she's an expat and has lived in a variety of countries over the past 15+ years so she has friends, fuck-buddies and lovers almost all over the place). I've realized that while I have very little issues with what she does for work (and the level of intimacy she shares with her clients), and what we do with other people when we're at a party, and even when we're only apart for a few days, I am finding it really difficult to deal with her being with others when she goes traveling for multiple weeks (or more).

The way poly has been introduced to me is "multiple loves". Her approach to figuring out if there's something there with someone else is a bit more hands-on than mine. She likes to get the sex out of the way rather quickly just to see if there's any chemistry underneath the covers with whomever it is. This might be related to her work, but also her past of always being very gregarious and enjoying to pick up men (and women), and also having worked within other branches of sex work previously. If whoever she hooks up with isn't good in bed (by her requirements), she loses interest, and prefers figuring that out ASAP.

Me, on the other hand, have always preferred taking it slow. I usually take days and weeks talking, chatting, flirting, hanging out and such before there's ever any sex in the frame. I guess I want to see if I match with the person on a lot of other levels before I want to get into that situation (sex) with them. I had one (1!) one-night stand in all my life leading up to meeting this woman, and that number hasn't really gone up much since. I guess her approach just seems like it's more about the "multiple", and not so much about the "love" (as it is the play/sex/adventure).

See next post for the rest

Last edited by PuppyPhoenix; 07-26-2013 at 09:28 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 07-26-2013, 09:24 PM
PuppyPhoenix PuppyPhoenix is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Default

Post 2 of 2
About a year ago, while we were still in Australia, I had -a lot- of issues going on back home. Several relatives died, others became severely ill, financial issues caused havoc with parts of my family, I was broke and unemployed (had a lot of issues getting work on my working holiday visa, which I was on at the time after my student visa expired), and I started getting rather depressed (runs in the family, multiple generations). It didn't help that I was overindulging in soft drugs to cope with it, either.

At the time, we were living together (with two other flat mates), but she spent one month working out of town (which had been planned for some time prior), and then her Dad became severely ill so she had to immediately go back home to Latin-America to deal with that for another month. The month of not being with her while she was in Sydney, knowing fully well that she was seeing clients on a regular basis (some of them through the brothel, and not her regular BDSM clients), as well as being with her other lovers AND meeting/trying out new lovers when going to parties, while I was still not managing to meet anyone myself was hard, and dealing with the depression and emotions of being lonely made it almost unbearable. That I had to deal with another month when she went to Latin-America, and had only 3 days of being together in between the two trips was even worse. We then spent 6 out of the next 8 months being apart because of me having to move back home overseas to be with my family, while she was sorting out things in Australia. All the while, when she was visiting Sydney or other places with lovers, she would seemingly frequently be intimate with someone, somehow.

It especially didn't help an emotionally monogamous / intellectually polyamorous lad that, seeing as we'd been together for quite some time and were living together, the excitement of us being intimate was (and is) often absent for her. This especially changed after she had her IUD inserted, and she'd often just blame hormone imbalances when not in the mood. Often we'll go 2-4 weeks without having normal penetrative sex, and when we have it, it feels like she's just going through the motions to please me. The rest of the time, I'll satisfy my urges through porn, or she will help me with very simple and mild BDSM play that doesn't really involve me being able to give her much attention. It just seems like something that's being done to make me climax as quickly as possible so we can "get on with the day", or whatever. After her coming her to stay with me in Europe, and having had almost 9 months of LDR in the past year, the sex is still infrequent. Does she still find my pheromones such a turn-off? And now she's abroad for 2 weeks, having met this new boy that just has... a lot of the qualities she fell for with me in the first place, and is being intimate with him while my summer is being spent working to be able to pay our rent.

This isn't to say that we never have sex frequently. Maybe once every 6 weeks or so, we'll have a week (or two, sometimes) where she wants to have sex with me. Often. I love those weeks. However, when we're not in those weeks... Well, that's where the crux of the problem comes into play.

Her playing with others, and multiple people at that, every time she goes traveling, while being so unpredictable with our sex life when she's home, often makes me feel like a bit of a cuckold. Now, I know that there are people in the BDSM environment that find this extremely hot. I don't. I find it emasculating in a way that I am having severe issues dealing with when she's out traveling. When I try to communicate these issues of mine (and I do clearly state that I'm aware of this being an issue of my emotional programming growing up, and not an issue of her and her chosen lifestyle - at least, so I think), she always becomes very defensive, and accuses me of wanting to take away her freedom, etc. If I say that I'd just like a little bit more communication around whom she goes to bed with when it isn't me, she puts words in my mouth and portrays it as me demanding that she calls and asks me permission to do so. If not that, then it's me trying to change her spontaneous nature.

"All" (not many) my previous relationships before her was monogamous, and most of them ended with my partner cheating on me. Thus, I have some trust issues and fears of abandonment, and for these reasons I've requested a lot of transparency regarding whom she's with outside of our relationship. I'm finding it increasingly difficult to talk about these problems when they arise because of this, and I am afraid of being 100% open about the level of fear/anxiety these issues are causing me, due to her past history of quickly dumping anyone that makes her feel like she's losing her freedom.

We've recently just moved back to Europe for me to spend some time helping out my family, and for her to go back to uni for a while as I'm doing so, so I don't doubt her love for me. And I do love her. More than anyone. But I am finding it hard to share my issues with her as I'm afraid they'll spook her, and make her leave me.

I don't find myself struggling with issues of jealousy, fear of abandonment, etc. when she goes out with others and spend the night with them. I don't feel them when she goes away for a few days to be with someone else. I don't experience them if we go to a party and hook up with other people, either together or separately.

What I do struggle with is her going away for multiple weeks at a time, knowing fully well that she'll be "intimate" with her clients, but also going to a lot of parties. At the parties, she'll usually stick to BDSM play where she stays at least partially clothed, but sometimes she'll find herself in a group and have full on sex, either there or at an after-party. That, or she might just go home with one guy, and just have regular sex. This is very difficult for me when she openly argues that "well, you know I don't want to have sex very often with you, as we've been together for so long and I'm just too used to your smell/pheromones/etc", but being with someone else makes her "realize what she has waiting for her at home" - just that, when she gets home, the sex is still as unpredictable and rare as it was when she left. While she usually / always orgasms when we have sex, this still makes me feel inadequate as a lover for her, and - at times - a bit of a cuckold.


I'm sure I left quite a few pertinent details out, but I just can't think of them right now. Hell, I'd be surprised if anyone even read this far.

Oh, and it should be said that during the entire start-up of our relationship, she was always reassuring me that she would be my mentor with anything poly related, that she'd he take me to munches, parties, discussion groups and generally do what she could to help introduce me to someone. I don't feel like she's taught me very much about how to enter into another relationship with someone, but mostly just about how to "cope" with your partner being with others. It's making me increasingly suspicious to the lifestyle as a whole, which I know is wrong as there is obviously many for which this functions just as great - if not better - than the majority of monogamous couples.



TL;DR! This turned out to be way longer than what I expected so, honestly, writing a TL;DR is a bit too difficult. Summarized quickly, this is my first and only poly relationship so far. My poly-mentor and life partner is increasingly making me feel like a cuckold by the way our sex life is dwindling due to her IUD and the hormone spikes that come with it, and that she's supposedly too familiar with my pheromones/smell to be interested in frequent sex with me. At the same time, she seems to have no lack of sexual desire when she goes traveling, and becomes extremely defensive (and later, aggressive) when I try communicating the emotional distress I am having adjusting to this relationship format.

That TL;DR totally doesn't manage to convey enough information, but I did promise one so I guess it'll have to stay.

I'm not sure what I'm looking for from you guys, it's just that I know no one that I can speak to about these issues, as most of my poly friends are initially her friends, that I met through her. Any thoughts, ideas, suggestions, pats on the back, flames for being such a cry baby or other submissions are highly appreciated.

Thanks! :-)

Last edited by PuppyPhoenix; 07-26-2013 at 09:32 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 07-26-2013, 10:34 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 3,208
Default

Correct me if I am wrong, ok? It seems to me that...

  • You have different dating approaches and poly approaches where you like to "go slow" and she likes to get to sex "fast."
  • She has failed to make good on introducing you to anyone or "coaching" you in polyshipping skills. They way she practices her poly with you is unsatisfactory.
  • You don't enjoy this dynamic you have with her to the point where it puts you off polyamory almost entirely
  • She doesn't meet your needs for sexual connection at this time. Neither in the quality of sex nor frequency of sex. The sex you do have is unsatisfying and feels like "go through the motions" to shut you up.
  • "Cuckholding" isn't your scene.
  • She's not willing to talk about problems in the relationship (sex or otherwise) in a constructive way, but is defensive/aggressive toward you when you bring it up.
  • She's not willing to change her time management to spend more time connecting with you in other ways -- quality time, talks, etc. so sex between you could arise naturally. She rather spent her time working, and then attending sex parties and coming home too tired to spend energy/time with you. Much less participate in sex share with you.
  • In short, this relationship does not seem to meet many of your needs and seems treats you less than respectfully.

Is that about it?

If so, you are not really compatible and don't sound all that healthy together. Could give being apart a shot to see if it is better for your long term health and well being.
  • Staying here = more of same endless suckage that you don't like.
  • Breaking up = some more short term break up suckage, and then hopefully gains in long term healths once healed from break up. The suckage ends.

If your relationship brings you no joy, no peace of mind, no peace of heart and partner is not willing to work with you to change anything about it?

How is you being willing to continue in this relationship enduring more suckage at your own expense you taking the best care of yourself and your healths? (Physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual healths?)

Could take better care of your own well being.

Do you believe you deserve better treatment than this in a relationship? I sure hope so. She might not be willing to give you better treatment than this.
But YOU could be willing to treat you better than this.

I'm sorry you hurt and you are going through this. But you could treat yourself with more care and more self-respect than you knowingly keeping yourself in harm's way.

You could GET OUT of the line of fire. Break up and leave. Put your own oxygen mask on first.

Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 07-26-2013 at 11:08 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 07-27-2013, 10:33 AM
PuppyPhoenix PuppyPhoenix is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Default

Thanks for the reply, GalaGirl. Gosh, even after reading through what I wrote before posting (and again today), I had no idea my relationship could be read/interpreted as being that bad. Let me just say, I don't feel it's anywhere -near- as bad as what I think you might have interpreted it. Yes, we're struggling around the polyamory aspect of our relationship. In most other areas of being a couple, she is the most thoughtful, considerate, loving, caring, kind, supportive and downright amazing person I've ever been with, and she has helped me improve for the better in so many areas. Some in which I already strongly wanted to improve, while other areas she has made be realize I can be so much more (and, for the most part, is).


Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
Correct me if I am wrong, ok?
Some of your bullet points are accurate, others are somewhat wrong. I'll see if I can set things straight. Thanks for the input! :-)

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
  • You have different dating approaches and poly approaches where you like to "go slow" and she likes to get to sex "fast."
Accurate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
  • She has failed to make good on introducing you to anyone or "coaching" you in polyshipping skills. They way she practices her poly with you is unsatisfactory.
Yes and no.

It's not that she hasn't made good on her intentions at all, it's just that it feels like she wants me to change in this area, now. I had never even heard of the term polyamory prior to meeting her. According to my friends, I've always been very "picky" as I never (bar once) picked up any ONS while out partying with my mates, but - beyond the flirting while out partying - I never saw the appeal of bringing a total stranger that I knew nothing about into my bed (or join hers). She, on the other hand, has had several hundred lovers and sexual encounters over the years, and that's not including those she's met through work. I had 4 or 5 prior to meeting her, if my memory serves me right (and I was a virgin up until I was 21, she started at 14 or 15).

I feel that she spent some time the first 18 months giving me information about poly, but mostly through handing me a few books, and going to a couple of munches / discussion groups. Outside of that, I was either brought to play parties with many of her previously established lovers, their SO's and fuck-buddies initiated in that group of friends, or left at home while she was traveling, and seeing her lovers alone for quality time. When I had emotional problems with this, the patience for listening to my insecurities and fear was initially good, but it didn't take long before accusations of me "wanting her to become 100% mono, and just abandon who she is, and has been all her life" appeared, and slowly came out quicker.

She's very good at sharing with me, after the fact, that she's been with someone else. She tells me she can't tell me beforehand, because I won't be able to deal with it, but I'm struggling more with her having sex with so many people that she's never even met BEFORE the night she fucks them. The ones she likes, she stays in touch with and develop a friendship of sorts (where sex occurs when they're together), but I am rarely introduced to these people before she fucks them (and, often, not after either), and there's is rarely a conversation beforehand of "I'm feeling a little cramped/trapped, I think I need to meet someone else". She claims that she doesn't know of this need before it happens, and she's in the situation, and just needs to go with it (or lose the opportunity).

Also, she KNOWS - and always has known - that I'm absolutely not interested in having sex with other men. I find it hard to perform with other men present, but this I have tried changing. I've been part of threesomes with some of her male lovers, and with the exception of one of them being extremely great at making me feel at ease (and thus being able to perform), the nerves just got the hold of me the other two times, and I was totally freaking out. I was crying, albeit very quietly, in bed both of those times, while she was having sex next to me. After the sex, she would try to comfort me, but the feeling of her having sex right next to me, with someone whose presence made me extremely uncomfortable, was a nightmare. I can't blame her too much for it though, I did say that I would give it a shot on all of those nights, and I did cry very quietly, so she might not have actually noticed. Although, I was kind of trying to squeeze myself as far into the wall as possible, as I didn't want to physically be near them while it was going on, and I didn't want to ruin their night by storming out of the bedroom during.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
  • You don't enjoy this dynamic you have with her to the point where it puts you off polyamory almost entirely
True. I don't feel like I can share her with others, when she's hardly showing any interest in being intimate with me. The approaches we talked about on how to solve this issue (her taking out the IUD and us exploring alternate contraceptives, her/both of us seeing a counselor), has had no progress, but I'm still expected to deal with her going out and being "poly" (fucking someone she's never met because they -MIGHT- be amazing people that she -MIGHT- connect with, but only -OCCASIONALLY- does).

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
  • She doesn't meet your needs for sexual connection at this time. Neither in the quality of sex nor frequency of sex. The sex you do have is unsatisfying and feels like "go through the motions" to shut you up.
The quality of sex is good when she's into it. The frequency too. But she's usually only into sex with me for about 1-2 weeks every 6-8 weeks or so. And the sex we have when she's not into it, well... No, it doesn't really satisfy me, and yes, it does feel like going through the motions. Mostly to please me, and not to shut me up, as I don't tend to ask for it very often anymore. That being said, I've always enjoyed cuddles like crazy, and we cuddle practically all the time. So we are very intimate in some ways that I really like, but that alone doesn't fulfill my sexual needs, no.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
  • "Cuckholding" isn't your scene.
As much as I don't like the idea of being a cuckold, she's repeatedly said that she'd never want me to be one either. Still, the way in which we go about our polyamory is making me feel like one, and it's killing my confidence.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
  • She's not willing to talk about problems in the relationship (sex or otherwise) in a constructive way, but is defensive/aggressive toward you when you bring it up.
Partially true, yes. She'll listen to me for a bit, but anytime I try suggesting a temporary break in seeing others, she immediately assumes I want it to be permanent, so she refuses. She then says that "but we're practically mono anyways, I hardly ever go out to see someone else", and think that I should be happy with that. It's tricky because she loves me a lot, and really enjoys our current dynamic (where she gets a lot of cuddles and shows of affection, etc), so she doesn't often feel a need to be with others when we're in our hometown. But we travel a lot. And she travels more. And when we/she travels, she wants to be "slutty". I like slutty. And I like her being cuddly. But I rarely get to see the slutty, and have to settle for cuddles, cuddles, cuddles.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 07-27-2013, 10:34 AM
PuppyPhoenix PuppyPhoenix is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
  • She's not willing to change her time management to spend more time connecting with you in other ways -- quality time, talks, etc. so sex between you could arise naturally. She rather spent her time working, and then attending sex parties and coming home too tired to spend energy/time with you. Much less participate in sex share with you.
We have a lot of quality time. In fact, now that we've moved to Europe (as opposed to being in Australia), and I have my friends available again, I try to spend less time with her as that might make her miss me more. Back home, she would work often, but seeing as her workspace was in the basement, and she usually only had 3-5 sessions (1.5-4 hours long each) per week, we'd still have a lot of time together. But the energy is always practical (doing tasks around the house, or elsewhere), or cuddly. I miss the passion. I miss feeling wanted and desired. So I've kind of taken to indulging in eating a bit more. And smoking up, giving me munchies, making me eat more, and not really being as fit as I once was. I still look thin and such, but I'm not so fit anymore (what was the point, she didn't touch me more then either, so).

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
  • In short, this relationship does not seem to meet many of your needs and seems treats you less than respectfully.
She meets almost all of my needs in all other areas of our relationship. It's true. I've even sat down and made a list of what I look for in a partner, and she checks so incredibly many of the boxes that it's almost creepy. Except for the sex.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
If so, you are not really compatible and don't sound all that healthy together. Could give being apart a shot to see if it is better for your long term health and well being.
Well, as I wrote, for the past year, we've spent about 8 months apart. First 1 month of her in Sydney, while I was at home, back in Australia. Then 1 month of her being in South America to deal with her dad being sick. We had 3 days between those two separations. Then we had a few weeks together, before she was off to a 1 week tantric course, but I had to move back to Europe while she was there, as my dad had a heart-attack and that was the final straw that made me realize I had to come back home to be with my family, and offer support and help.

We spent 2.5 months of her being in Australia and me in Europe, before she came for 1 month of Christmas holidays with me and my family. Still, after having been separated almost continuously for 4 months, we didn't have sex until day 4 of her being there. And it was extremely quick, she was really not in the mood. We had more sex later, but still. I was really hurt that, after all that time, she still didn't crave sex with me. She cried from the cuddles though, and was really happy with that (as was I, as I hadn't seen her for so long), but little sex. I had even rented a rather fancy room in a romantic mountain hotel, at the height of winter with all the white snow falling and the beauty that comes with that, and drove her up to that little town where we had a great holiday. Still didn't manage to inspire passion in her.

After the month of Christmas, she went back to Australia in mid January to sort out the final bits before moving to Europe with me for the next 2 years. We were apart from mid January to mid May, and I really thought that NOW, NOW she would definitely want to have sex with me when she came back. And she did. For a few days. And mostly her choice of positions, energy, etc. While I enjoy switching, and our sexual dynamic always has mostly centered around BDSM sex, she increasingly wanted more "vanilla" sex, and then more "vanilla" sex with her being pounded, and me being the more "dominant" party in the interaction. So, when she came back in May, while we had a lot of sex, I mostly had to put on my dominant energy and be the one giving it to her, if I wanted it. We've always said that our relationship is 75/25 as far as who's the most dominant, her being the 75%.

Couples usually have some things they both enjoy doing sexually, some thing one party enjoys, and vice versa. Me being the dominant one in bed, even if it's just "vanilla", is something I enjoy doing occasionally. Her being dominant, is how we started out, how I thought the dynamic was supposed to be, and what I crave once in a while, just to empty my submissive bucket, and to be able to crave reestablishing my masculinity. She knows that when she dominates, like... full on, as we used to do, that I tend to feel the need to flip the tables on her, but she still finds it hard to be inspired. I don't know, she's just really confused and keeps telling me a lot of contradicting things in this area, so I'm not really sure anymore.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
If your relationship brings you no joy, no peace of mind, no peace of heart and partner is not willing to work with you to change anything about it?
I think our sexual issues is partially to blame on having been together for so long, and partially to blame on us having very incompatible deep-seated fears. I am very afraid of abandonment and being alone (as so many of my partners have cheated on me in the past, and made me feel inadequate), she's very afraid of commitment and losing her freedom.

This makes it hard for me to just *accept* her being with others, when my sexual needs aren't remotely met. And it makes it hard for her to stop having these sexual encounters, and the occasional emotional connection with someone else, as she already feels that we are just - so - extremely - mono these days, and that she needs to be able to do these things to vent/reestablish her individuality, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
I'm sorry you hurt and you are going through this. But you could treat yourself with more care and more self-respect than you knowingly keeping yourself in harm's way.
Thanks. I still feel like it's a relationship worth fixing, I just don't have anymore tools suited for the job.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 07-27-2013, 03:29 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 3,208
Default

So when you add up all the bullet points the bottom line is what?
Because to me it still seems to end up here:
"We are not entirely compatible at this time. My needs are not being met here. I think she's lovely in many other ways... but she's not willing to meet my needs. I am not willing to meet my needs either. "
Whether it is a 90/10 split or 80/20 or 70/30 -- it still seems to come out on the side of...
"We are not entirely compatible at this time. My needs are not being met here. I think she's lovely in many other ways... but she's not willing to meet my needs. I am not willing to meet my needs either."
Quote:
She tells me she can't tell me beforehand, because I won't be able to deal with it,
That could be reframed as
"I won't tell you beforehand because I don't want to deal with your response if I do. "
She cannot claim she is not aware of her need to be with others for casual sex. You are aware of her need for casual sex. She's had it before, and prob will in future. The need is THERE.

It seems she does not want think about working to meet BOTH her need for casual sex and your need for it to come with a heads up of some kind so you can feel safe. She appears she'd rather just meet her own needs.

Quote:
I'm absolutely not interested in having sex with other men.I find it hard to perform with other men present, but this I have tried changing. I've been part of threesomes with some of her male lovers, and with the exception of one of them being extremely great at making me feel at ease (and thus being able to perform), the nerves just got the hold of me the other two times, and I was totally freaking out.

I was crying, albeit very quietly, in bed both of those times, while she was having sex next to me. After the sex, she would try to comfort me, but the feeling of her having sex right next to me, with someone whose presence made me extremely uncomfortable, was a nightmare. I can't blame her too much for it though, I did say that I would give it a shot on all of those nights, and I did cry very quietly, so she might not have actually noticed. Although, I was kind of trying to squeeze myself as far into the wall as possible, as I didn't want to physically be near them while it was going on, and I didn't want to ruin their night by storming out of the bedroom during.
This is messed up. If you want to get comfy in threesomes, you could go a hell of a lot slower than jumping into bed. Maybe just threesome kissing or something and then ramp it up as your comfort level changes.

She could treat you better than this.

You could treat you better than this.

Certainly both of you co-creating a situation where you are experiencing THAT kind of drama. You did not look out for yourself. She did not look out for you either. She seems to have a record of not meeting your needs. You seem to have a record of not looking out for your needs.

Quote:
I still feel like it's a relationship worth fixing, I just don't have anymore tools suited for the job.
I see that you want to fix it. She doesn't.

Your 100% is only 50% of the fuel it takes to run this relationship. If she's not willing to put anything in on her end? You can't put in 200% to make up for her lack of participating/willingness. It is impossible for it to fly well like that. I am sorry.

You seem to be going through your stages of grief.
You seem like you haven't yet arrived at full acceptance and are letting it come in baby steps. You do see this much --
Quote:
I just don't have anymore tools suited for the job.
Ok... so what kind of support do you need in the meanwhile and you navigate through all that for yourself?
  • You seem to want to tell the story. So... tell it? Maybe start a blog thread?
  • Go out with friends and air out? So you aren't always thinking about this problem?
  • Do your self care things as you digest all this? Eat well, sleep well, get some exercise, do your destressing things you like to do?
  • And while I hope you are NOT being abused, but because it smells VERY weird here... you could read this list. Highlight if she does any of those behaviors. See how many you have happening to you.

You may not like it, you may not want it, and it may take you time to arrive at accepting it. But it seems like the end of the line here to me. I just can't see another alternative. It's not like you can FORCE her to be willing to meet your needs.

I'm sorry. I know it's hard for you. You deserve better treatment than this. You cannot control how she treats you. She doesn't seem to want to change and cease fire. Stop dinging you thoughtlessly/intentionally.

But YOU could treat yourself better than this and get you out of the line of fire then.

If it is that you don't want to leave because you don't want to be alone? Don't be then. Find a new honey first and then break up with this one. But staying with this one like this? For sure doesn't sound like "healthy for you" to me.

I don't know what else to tell you other than to BREATHE, let time do it's thing so you get there whenever it is you get there.

I know that you have to process to get to the the place of being WILLING to break up. You don't seem there yet.

Then more time sorting out to be ABLE to move on -- maybe you have joint accts and property to sort out before either of you can move on. You don't seem to be there yet either.

Only you know where you are at in your process and when you will allow yourself to "arrive."

I know it isn't fun right now for you. But you could take better care of you.


Namaste.
Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 07-27-2013 at 07:36 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 07-27-2013, 04:59 PM
bookbug bookbug is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 747
Default

Perhaps you should consider finding an additional partner and getting some of those needs that are not being met taken care of elsewhere?
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 07-28-2013, 11:08 AM
sparklepop sparklepop is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 385
Default

Hi Phoenix,

Firstly, I absolutely sympathise with your situation and can relate to this very well. I've read everything you've written and I'll try to work through parts of your repsonses to GG in particular to tell you my thoughts:

Quote:
I had never even heard of the term polyamory prior to meeting her.
But darling... ~grins~ ... you met three years ago. That's three years of opportunity to learn about poly yourself, isn't it?

Quote:
According to my friends, I've always been very "picky"... She, on the other hand, has had several hundred lovers and sexual encounters over the years, and that's not including those she's met through work. I had 4 or 5 prior to meeting her, if my memory serves me right (and I was a virgin up until I was 21, she started at 14 or 15).
Do you think, you perhaps just don't appreciate her *general* sexual outlook, regardless of poly anxiety? Her attitude to sex seems to trouble you. I'm almost 29 and used to be a serial long-term monogamist - I haven't been single for longer than a month since I was 16. I have only chosen to sleep with with... ~counting~ 7 people. If I never hit 20 I'll be very happy. I'm one picky bitch. But I can be guilty of judging promiscuity. I can also see where two differing approaches to sexuality can cause trouble in relationships. For us slow-moving types, it can all feel like a bit of a whirlwind, because we place a higher importance on sex.

Quote:
I feel that she spent some time the first 18 months giving me information about poly, but mostly through handing me a few books, and going to a couple of munches / discussion groups.
Darling... why do you feel that your girlfriend should give you information about poly? I am a Domme, so I am wondering whether a little of the D/s dynamic is spilling out into your general relationship; where you are subconsciously looking to her to 'look after you', instead of, perhaps, looking after yourself. Especially since she's ten years older than you and had the 'poly experience' already.

Quote:
the patience for listening to my insecurities and fear was initially good, but it didn't take long before accusations of me "wanting her to become 100% mono, and just abandon who she is, and has been all her life" appeared, and slowly came out quicker.
Everyone has a limit of patience. If you don't think that is fair, say so. But also consider whether there might be any truth in it whatsoever. Perhaps you do want more control over what is happening? Perhaps you want more communication? There is something that you want that you aren't getting.

Quote:
She's very good at sharing with me, after the fact, that she's been with someone else. She tells me she can't tell me beforehand, because I won't be able to deal with it,
Would you be able to deal with it? Do you actually think that knowing about all the sex helps you? Have you ever thought about simply agreeing that when she goes away, she will be having sex? I'm not suggesting this will work for you - it's just an angle to consider. A more autonomous approach, where you are still a couple, but release expectation and act more independently of each other.

Quote:
but I am rarely introduced to these people before she fucks them (and, often, not after either)
Why is that a problem for you? How is it making you feel? Unimportant? Invisible as her boyfriend? Something else?


Quote:
Also, she KNOWS - and always has known - that I'm absolutely not interested in having sex with other men.
Why did you find yourself in threesomes with her? By choice? Did she pressure you into it? Was this a D/s-enforced situation? If so, I'm assuming you and she know your soft limits, hard limits and so forth? You are the first person who is responsible for your comfort - nobody else. If you try something once, or a few times as you've stated here, and you just wanted to test it out, fair enough.

Quote:
I'm still expected to deal with her going out and being "poly" (fucking someone she's never met because they -MIGHT- be amazing people that she -MIGHT- connect with, but only -OCCASIONALLY- does).
You are feeling angry and judgmental about her behaviour. There is almost a subtle hint of ridicule here - you are clearly losing respect for your girlfriend. In my opinion, at least.

Quote:
The quality of sex is good when she's into it. The frequency too. But she's usually only into sex with me for about 1-2 weeks every 6-8 weeks or so.
This is tricky. Ultimately, stripping away all of the poly stuff and looking solely at your relationship, you only have two choices. Uncover whether there is a sexual problem, something you two can improve on, that might help your sex life. Secondly, if there is nothing wrong and it's just "the way it is", then... it's the way it is. I don't mean that harshly. Let me give you an example.

Before my GF, I was in a relationship for three years that was extremely sexually fulfilling. We had sex around three times a week, for hours. It was... well, it was just fantastic. This girl was also around my age. Cut to meeting my current GF. As I've told you, she's 38. Though she can be very sexual, the regularity and consistency of sex between us is far less than with my old girlfriend. When we have sex, it's absolutely fabulous. It matches, or even beats, my ex girlfriend. But the quantity was a massive issue for me.

This bothered me for a very long time. I also went through the hurtful feelings of seeing her seem absolutely sexually switched on with her other play partner/s, whilst we were going through slow patches. I do completely understand your feelings.

However, it became apparent to me that it was a mismatch, no matter what way I looked at it. Age gap, libido differences, expectation and need differences. Also, I told myself that in the plain, hard, light of day, humans tend to find new things exciting. I accept that after two years together, my GF might not find me as exciting *in a particular moment* as she finds it when she's meeting a brand new person and all the hormones are flying around. Like your girlfriend, though, her other relationships often don't last. And when they do, the sexual energy between them often dies off - or becomes *less* important than the problems they experience. I have simply come to accept that my GF is wired to feel a high level of sexual buzz with new people.

Do you see what I'm saying? It is absolutely acceptable for you to have your own ideas on sexual fulfillment. It is acceptable, but unfortunate, if your girlfriend loves you dearly, but gets her sexual kicks more often with strangers. You honestly... have no choice... but to accept this viewpoint and essentially get your sexual needs 'met elsewhere', if nothing changes.

(part 2 to come!)
__________________

Me: (30f) open poly
GF: (40f) My long-term, long-distance partner

Metamours:
Hubby (37m): GF's husband
Garcon (27m): GF's submissive



“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without." ~ Buddha
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 07-28-2013, 11:09 AM
sparklepop sparklepop is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 385
Default

Part 2...

Quote:
As much as I don't like the idea of being a cuckold, she's repeatedly said that she'd never want me to be one either. Still, the way in which we go about our polyamory is making me feel like one, and it's killing my confidence.
Ok, so what is it about your situation that makes you feel like a cuck? The fact that you are something of an invisible partner? That she tells you all about it? That, perhaps, you feel like her *audience* - not someone who has any say whatsoever in her choices? If you pinpoint exactly what it is, you may find it easier to fix or accept that problem.

Quote:
She'll listen to me for a bit, but anytime I try suggesting a temporary break in seeing others, she immediately assumes I want it to be permanent, so she refuses.
Ok, put yourself in her position (and I'm not saying hers is the right one - I think you both have valid points for the type of poly you want).

You know how you're feeling right now? That all of this isn't really sitting well with you? That it's conflicting with your nature, morals, needs, etc? That's how she feels when you suggest she takes a break from sleeping with others. She feels that this goes against her needs.

Does this help you to understand her needs more?

Quote:
It's tricky because she loves me a lot, and really enjoys our current dynamic (where she gets a lot of cuddles and shows of affection, etc), so she doesn't often feel a need to be with others when we're in our hometown. But we travel a lot. And she travels more. And when we/she travels, she wants to be "slutty". I like slutty. And I like her being cuddly. But I rarely get to see the slutty, and have to settle for cuddles, cuddles, cuddles.
You’ve basically voiced the exact thing that you need to come to accept if you are to stay in this relationship.

She is getting what SHE needs from your connection – and getting other things that SHE needs elsewhere. Have you ever considered that because she is a pro-Domme, therefore able to enjoy putting a sexual hat on where there is no connection, this might be part of her personality? Perhaps she doesn’t feel that she wants to, or even can be, her ‘slutty’ self when there is a deeper connection like the one you two have? But that YOUR personality is that you feel MORE able to be a cute little puppy ‘slut’ ~grins~ when you ARE connected to someone deeply? That you are both wired differently?

Quote:
But the energy is always practical (doing tasks around the house, or elsewhere), or cuddly. I miss the passion. I miss feeling wanted and desired. So I've kind of taken to indulging in eating a bit more. And smoking up, giving me munchies, making me eat more, and not really being as fit as I once was. I still look thin and such, but I'm not so fit anymore (what was the point, she didn't touch me more then either, so).
Sweetie, I feel for you. You’ve become despondent. A common complaint in relationships is that one person has changed in some way (put on weight, become lazy, etc) that isn’t as sexually appealing to their partner. There are two ways to look at this and both are valid. To feel sexy and project sexiness, one has to feel good about themselves. If being fitter makes you feel better about yourself, being fitter is how you will feel the most sexy. BUT it doesn’t mean that you are to BLAME for the sexual mismatch in your relationship. Let’s say you start working out and feeling great. Let’s say, HER personality still finds that she still feels fulfilled with the cuddles and intimacy between you and that SHE needs newness to feel the heat of passion. You cannot change that, if it’s the case. But, you will have the benefit of feeling better about YOURSELF, regardless of her personality or desires.

Quote:
She meets almost all of my needs in all other areas of our relationship. It's true. I've even sat down and made a list of what I look for in a partner, and she checks so incredibly many of the boxes that it's almost creepy. Except for the sex.
It’s wonderful that she does tick so many boxes for you and you for her. What I’m seeing is that you are in a place where you need and expect your ‘primary partner’ (or whatever model you want to adopt) to also have a strong sexual chemistry with you. What I’m seeing is that she seems not to need this, or be able to achieve it.

Quote:
While I enjoy switching, and our sexual dynamic always has mostly centered around BDSM sex, she increasingly wanted more "vanilla" sex, and then more "vanilla" sex with her being pounded, and me being the more "dominant" party in the interaction. So, when she came back in May, while we had a lot of sex, I mostly had to put on my dominant energy and be the one giving it to her, if I wanted it. We've always said that our relationship is 75/25 as far as who's the most dominant, her being the 75%.
You know about sub let down? Do you also know about Top Drop? This is something my GF and I, who are both primarily-Dommes have discovered over the past two years. As you've recognised, it can be very draining to wear the Top Hat. If this is a hat that is worn often, this eventually creates a bucket of responsibility and energy that needs to be emptied by having a break from wearing the Top Hat for a moment.

When myself or my GF are in a dominant headspace for a period of time with other partners, or even with each other, we eventually start to burn out. We end up feeling the need to relinquish dominance. Not necessarily to submit, though sometimes – but actually, more along the lines of the exact thing your girlfriend seems to want – “getting pounded”, as you say. You know how you need to release your submissiveness so that you can get on with feeling masculine? Sometimes, dominant people need to release the constant need for control, in order to feel themselves again.

If your girl is still pro-domming, or finds herself being the Domme more often with other partners, it could be that she (whether she realizes it or not) is needing a place to let go of sexual control once in a while. It might be that you are not the person for that – and that is not a failure. You’re not a burden by being primarily submissive. If you weren’t the way that you are, she might not love you as much as she does (and she is clearly very attached to you). It could even be that she’s getting the need for letting go met with her random hookups whilst she travels and that this is a form of release for her.

If this helps at all, my GF recently discovered that she’s craving primal heterosexual sex. We realised that this is very likely because she isn’t getting that anywhere. She's getting primal *lesbian* sex with me, vanilla sex with her husband and she's always the Domme with her other male partners. I can’t give her the same type of primal sex that a man can give her. Ignoring my insecurities and whatnot, it's a simple fact. It could be that your girlfriend simple *needs* something that you cannot (in her mind, or in actuality) give her. It could be that she needs to release control > i.e. be slutty > she feels she can only do that when there's not much of a connection > she cannot meet that particular need with you, who she is very connected to.

Quote:
I just don't have anymore tools suited for the job.
What you need is to find more tools, if you don’t want to leave the relationship. And it does sound that you two have a very wonderful connection, outside of the sex and compatibility issues. You are clearly very emotionally attached to each other.

You could read more about poly, but even more so, you could read more about yourself. You could see a poly-friendly counsellor or use self-help books and websites to help deal with your abandonment issues. You could do all kinds of things to help yourself feel better about what you are lacking in your relationship, if you simply cannot get everything you need from it.

To round up… basically, I empathise and relate to what you are going through. I have been in a very similar position and both my girlfriend and I have had similar struggles to the ones you two are going through.

The thing that has helped me the most is actually adopting a far more autonomous viewpoint of poly. The more control I give up, the better I actually feel. If I keep telling myself “this is your emotion – stop trying to control what’s causing it”, this actually really helps me. Once I accepted that my GF was less couple-centric than I was, I started to adopt her mentality and found things easier. I accept that my GF the way that she is. For example, she was at a family funeral a few weeks ago. She was really having a very hard time. Yet, during that time, she was still on FetLife, responding to messages from guys. When I’m upset, I don’t even think about dating-relating activities. But I understand that she does; so it helps me to let go of the upset.

Do you see what I’m saying? Ultimately sweetheart, we cannot get everything we want from one person. We have to reach a point where we discover something that we need isn't being met. If we can't 'make' it be met, we have to accept that the need will be fulfilled elsewhere. But we also have to know what it is that we do want. She isn’t going to give up freedom, just as you’re not going to give up your needs. It really does come down to a bottom line of attempting to find a compromise, or genuinely accepting and understanding the differences in each other. If you can do the latter, you might find that all of the other problems start melting away anyway.
__________________

Me: (30f) open poly
GF: (40f) My long-term, long-distance partner

Metamours:
Hubby (37m): GF's husband
Garcon (27m): GF's submissive



“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without." ~ Buddha
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 10:00 PM.