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  #21  
Old 08-18-2013, 10:05 PM
JaneQSmythe JaneQSmythe is offline
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I'm sorry you (and he) are going through this.

I have no great insight but I think you were right to bring it up and put it out there - since it arose naturally out of conversation. BUT I don't think that he could possibly in a place where he has actually sorted out who and what he wants out of his life in the long-term. He just broke up 2 weeks ago - he is still in a period of grief and adjustment - and probably will be for quite some time. He may withdrawal from getting close to ANYBODY during this time period - because allowing someone to be THAT close opens you up to vulnerability and pain - which he has just suffered through.

I'm sorry you are feeling rejected, but my (amateur) advise is to just wait and see. Be the supportive friend that he needs - without pushing him too fast to commit to anything or make him make rash decisions in the face of his tumultuous feelings in this "freshly broken up" state. That what he can give, give what you feel comfortable giving and just ... breathe.

I may have missed it but, how long was he with this person? How long have the two of you been together in your current state?

JaneQ
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MrS: hetero polyflexible male, live-in husband (together 21+ yrs)
Dude: hetero poly male, live-in boyfriend (together 3+ yrs) and MrS's best friend
Lotus: poly bi female, "it's complicated" relationships with Dude/JaneQ/MrS
TT: poly bi male, married to Lotus, FB with JaneQ
VV and MsJ: bi-women with male primaries, LTR LDR FWBs to JaneQ


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  #22  
Old 08-18-2013, 11:56 PM
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idealist idealist is offline
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Originally Posted by Krys View Post
Thank you for the positive outlook bookbug. I think in this case though, he just does not find me girlfriend material. Accepting that is very difficult for me and has wrecked havoc on my self worth.
Thanks for sharing and I am sure you will get a lot of good feedback here!

I would encourage you to answer these questins.

What do you consider to be the qualities of a secondary girlfriend?
What do you consider to be the qualities of a primary girlfriend?

What would the process look like in transitioning from secondary girlfriend to primary girlfriend?

Everyone would answer these questions differently. I can't answer for you, but I can share a few of my experiences as a primary. I am also a secondary in a few relationships and it is very different for me.

For me, a primary is more like a spouse. As a primary (we do not live together) I am the one that is there for him when he is tired, sick, depressed or anything like that. And he is there for me also during times when i am struggling. When he is working extra hours, I will do things like help around the house, wash and organize his clothes etc.

We plan and work on large projects together (like re-modeling projects- landscaping projects). We might support each other in making large purchases like automobiles, household appliances, etc.

I attend weddings and funerals with him and he does with me.

We help each other around our houses.

We are planning a future together.

As a secondary- my role is different. I may do some of the things that I do as a primary, but not nearly as much.

If I were wanting to try out a more primary role in someone's life, I would simply start doing some of the things that a primary does. And I might ask him to do a few things for me that I might ask a primary to do.

A friend of mine was starting a long distance relationship when he was hospitalized. She asked me if I thought she should go over there to "nurse him back to health". I said that she could make a decision based in where the relationship was at the time which was still casual and in a getting to know each other phase, or she could make a decision as if they were already in an established committed relationship. That is what she decided to do and they were eventually married!
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Last edited by idealist; 08-19-2013 at 12:02 AM.
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  #23  
Old 08-19-2013, 12:22 AM
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Dagferi Dagferi is offline
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I do not play the whole primary secondary BS game.

Murf means just as much to me as my husband. The only persons who come above him are the kids and that is just for now. When they are old enough to care for themselves then they will handle their own business.

I take care of BOTH Murf and Butch when they are sick. I help Murf with important life decisions as I do Butch. We attend important events together weddings, funeral, kid events, holidays and etc. I make sure he has home cooked meals just as Butch does.. I do yard work at both homes, clean, and etc.

We consult each other on life.. I can have just as much of a future with him as my husband. I can do forever with both. Just because he doesn't have a piece of paper from the government doesn't mean he is any less important in my life.
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  #24  
Old 08-19-2013, 11:15 PM
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idealist idealist is offline
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Originally Posted by Dagferi View Post
I do not play the whole primary secondary BS game.
You don't play the whole primary secondary BS game because you don't have a secondary. I play the primary secondary bullsh*t game because I choose to play it. I choose to have a primary and I choose to have secondaries and the relationships are very different. My relationships are sacred to me and I don't consider it to be a game.
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  #25  
Old 08-19-2013, 11:21 PM
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Dagferi Dagferi is offline
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If those relationships are so sacred then why are they treat as less important than your other relationship.

Why not call it what it is FWB or a casual relationship.
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Murf my monogamous second husband has been with me since May of 2012.
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  #26  
Old 08-21-2013, 01:06 AM
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idealist idealist is offline
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Originally Posted by Dagferi View Post
If those relationships are so sacred then why are they treat as less important than your other relationship.

Why not call it what it is FWB or a casual relationship.
Secondaries are not less important to me. We just have different roles in each others lives. My point to you is - don't judge. The good thing about poly is everyone gets to do it the way they want to do it.

If you don't want to classify your relationships that way- it's fine, but don't trash people who choose to classify their relationships that way......it's basic forum etiquette.
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  #27  
Old 08-21-2013, 01:33 AM
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Marcus Marcus is offline
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Originally Posted by idealist View Post
My point to you is - don't judge. The good thing about poly is everyone gets to do it the way they want to do it.
I don't think Dag was trashing anyone. She seemed to be trashing the concept of hierarchical classifications of people (primary, secondary, meaningless-ary).

There is a difference between being free from oppression and being free from judgment. This is just criticism of an idea which you personally are in favor of. Criticism in this format is healthy and can promote intellectual growth for all of us. Attempting to discourage someone from calling an idea BS is counter productive.

If my ideas are BS I encourage people to say as much. Granted, I then try to get them to clarify the basis of their opinion so I can decide if I agree with it or not.

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Originally Posted by idealist View Post
Secondaries are not less important to me. We just have different roles in each others lives.
All relationships are viewed by the types of encumbrance, pleasures, amount of time shared, etc. If some kind of distinction needs to be made between these relationships it seems to me that it would be better to use words which actually convey this meaning.

If all of your relationships are just as important to you as the others and there is no inherent hierarchical ranking to them - why use hierarchical rankings for them? If the distinction is that you live with one partner, raise kids, etc and see the other one as an intimate loved one (but don't 'partner up' with them) then why rank them? It would seem to be more clear to call one a "life partner" and the other a "boyfriend" or some similar kind of label.

I'm not a big fan of using labels to begin with but I *do* think that if I'm using one it might as well be descriptive of the role they play in my life. At the very least I should avoid using hierarchical terms for them because that just seems cruel.
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  #28  
Old 08-21-2013, 02:09 AM
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idealist idealist is offline
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Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
If all of your relationships are just as important to you as the others and there is no inherent hierarchical ranking to them - why use hierarchical rankings for them?.
I do not have an aversion to labels and I do not consider them as cruel as long as the people I am labeling do not object to them. I use the labels of secondary and primary simply because I chose to use these labels. I like the labels. They work for me.

To me- calling it bullshit was judgmental and offensive. We all have our opinions here and when I post I try not to judge. I try to state my opinions without judging. Marcus- you know I love reading your posts and I respect your opinion. However I hold the position that if me and my partners choose to classify and label ourselves as primary and secondary then that is perfectly okay and there is no need for anyone to find that offensive. I'm not labeling any of you. This is between me and my partners and it works for us.
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  #29  
Old 08-21-2013, 03:21 AM
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Marcus Marcus is offline
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Originally Posted by idealist View Post
I use the labels of secondary and primary simply because I chose to use these labels. I like the labels. They work for me.
I'm glad you have found something that works for you; I expect that is what all of us are looking for to some degree or another. However, within the context of a discussion forum I fully understand that whatever personal information I provide or ideals (which someone else has provided) that I choose to endorse are fair game for discussion.

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Originally Posted by idealist View Post
To me- calling it bullshit was judgmental and offensive.
I can objectively state that calling hierarchical labels "bullshit" is a judgment. It is a value judgment based on a personal assessment of the details available to the person stating it.

Is calling an idea "bullshit" offensive? That's a purely subjective decision. I guess it would irritate me for someone to tell me that independence is "bullshit", though they would quickly get the business end of my "Really? Please, do explain in detail exactly why you make this rather interesting assertion" blaster!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by idealist View Post
Marcus- you know I love reading your posts and I respect your opinion. However I hold the position that if me and my partners choose to classify and label ourselves as primary and secondary then that is perfectly okay and there is no need for anyone to find that offensive. I'm not labeling any of you. This is between me and my partners and it works for us.
Labels have a different 'volume level' for some people than others. I see folks using labels simply because that's the first one that they heard and they are sticking with it... just because. Others find the concise use of labels to be important because accidentally attributing assumptions to their lives is something important to avoid.

I personally *do* find hierarchical terms for loved ones to be offensive. It doesn't necessarily offend me that other people use them for their loved ones, but I still make a general judgment call on the use. Just because an act isn't perpetrated upon me personally doesn't mean that I am not entitled to make a judgment call on that act being perpetrated on other people - right?
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  #30  
Old 08-22-2013, 01:54 AM
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idealist idealist is offline
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Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
I personally *do* find hierarchical terms for loved ones to be offensive. It doesn't necessarily offend me that other people use them for their loved ones, but I still make a general judgment call on the use. Just because an act isn't perpetrated upon me personally doesn't mean that I am not entitled to make a judgment call on that act being perpetrated on other people - right?
Okay- I guess I would agree. It is certainly your right to make a judgement call if that is what you feel like you need to do.

i'm trying to think of something that offends me in terms of something that someone else is choosing to do and I can't really think of anything. Maybe it's my age. Or- my therapist finally got through to me. She told me "live and let live". Also- I am a trained Life Coach. It was an 18 month training. As a life coach it is not my job to judge others. I can help them decide if they are "using terms that really work for them" or if they are just basically making decisions that are in line with what they are trying to create in their life.

One of the most powerful questions I can ask someone- after they have shared where they are and what they have created is "so how is that working out for you?"

If it is working for them- then I will support that.

In the 80's I was an outspoken feminist. I saw so many things that offended me because I saw a lot of things (including the bible) as an attempt to oppress women.

When I got sober and drug free, I was offended by people who pursued anything that created a mood change.

When I got into an intense spiritual practice, I was offended by anything that I didn't consider to be spiritual.

When I started my own business, I was offended by any client who asked for a discount.

I guess I can honestly say that today, I am not easily offended by anything that someone else is choosing to do in their life.

And- in my opinion- when person A is offended by something person B and C are doing within their own relationship- it means that person A is projecting their own unresolved issues onto the couple......but that's just psyche 101.
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Last edited by idealist; 08-22-2013 at 03:35 AM.
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