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Old 04-09-2012, 10:45 PM
HapaxLegomena HapaxLegomena is offline
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Default This is one of those "help me, I'm confused" posts

I'm not sure if I belong here. But maybe somebody who has the patience to read through this whole thing will be able to give me some insight. Or maybe not - either way, getting it off my chest has become necessary to my mental health.

I am two years into a committed monogamous relationship with "K". I love her deeply and we have a strong, happy and healthy relationship (with the occasional bump, but nothing that most couples don't experience). She feels like family to me and I can't imagine leaving her.

I am also helplessly, intensely in love with another woman, and have been since before I met K. (I'll call this person "V"). Before I met V, I had only dated men, and she was the first woman I consciously allowed myself to fall for. Because I was anxious and uncertain about this new emotional terrain, I kept a distance between us, even though I was sure I could sense an attraction on her part. We went on a few platonic dates, but because she intimidated the hell out of me and I was frustrated with my inability to break out of my own shell, I gave up. And joined an online dating site, and met K.

With K, everything clicked into place easily and naturally as if we had always known each other. Being an introvert, I had never experienced anything like that - all that corny stuff you hear about, feeling like we understood each other without having to say anything, finishing each others' sentences, etc. And I was (am) attracted to her physically, though not in the same intensely visceral way that I am to V. Despite the fact that I was well aware of my continuing attraction to V, I rationalized that K was better for me, that there was a reason things were easier with her, and that in time my feelings for V would fade as my relationship with K progressed.

They have not faded. They have, if anything, grown stronger. And V, for her part, has become more flirtatious and affectionate with me since K and I began dating.

K and I moved in together about a year ago. I have been thinking about proposing to her, but I don't want to do so until and unless I manage to deal somehow with my feelings for V. I actually wish I could talk to K about this - but she is absolutely intolerant of any hint of infidelity, even if it is purely emotional/mental and not acted on at all. It's one area where we disagree - she believes that if you're happy and in love with one person, there is no room for any feelings of that kind towards anyone else, whereas... I know there is. I'm living it. And I'm pretty sure it's normal and common for people in happy relationships to experience attractions or infatuations to other people. Regardless, I don't think our relationship would survive such a conversation. And breaking off ties with V isn't really an option either, even though I know that would probably be the most emotionally healthy thing to do, because we all have a wide circle of mutual friends, and explaining to V, K and everyone else why I've suddenly cut her out of my life would be impossible without some kind of reasonable explanation.

So why am I posting all of this on a polyamory support forum? Polyamory is something I never really thought much about, or knew much about, until I started participating more actively in the queer community. I have never personally experienced anything other than monogamous relationships, and never seriously considered the idea that I might want things any other way until recently. And I don't know at all if that's actually what this is all about. I don't know how I would feel about being in a poly relationship, even if I was in the position to have one (which will never be the case as long as I'm with K.) But I've had to start asking myself, is it "normal" (apologies, I know that's not really the right word) to be completely in love with more than one person at a time? Am I assuming that I prefer monogamy because it's what society expects and I've never tried anything else? Is it simply that I selfishly want to stay with K but have the chance to be with V as well? V, I should add, has denounced relationships altogether and seems to prefer keeping things casual with her partners. So maybe I'm only wondering about this because she (inadvertently) put the idea in my head? Is it just that because V was the first woman I fell for, and my feelings for her were never resolved, I'm not able to let go of them? Or if I did manage to get over her, would I just end up falling for someone else eventually and find myself in the same conundrum? Is it true that humans aren't "meant" to be monogamous? Or is this something that lots of monogamous people go through, and I should just suck it up and learn how to make a real commitment? But if it turns out I am polyamorous by nature - if that's a thing - isn't that something I should share with my partner? And can people be poly but still be happy in a mono relationship? None of my previous relationships lasted this long, and most were quite dysfunctional, so it's not like I can look to them for clues either.

I am confused, as you can see. And I know nobody can really answer these questions for me. But I am desperate to figure this out, and I thought maybe someone could give me some insight into the whole concept of being polyamorous, or whether any of this jumble of thoughts and feelings sounds familiar. Thank you to anyone who actually takes the time to read this all the way through, you rock.
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Old 04-10-2012, 05:58 AM
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NovemberRain NovemberRain is offline
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Oh welcome (it wasn't that hard to read through!). You're in the right place.

If it's any comfort (actually, it likely won't be), I never got over my first female love. She's not even female anymore. The last time I saw him, my brain lost it, just as much as it did 30 years ago. Fortunately, he lives on another continent now.

Your feelings and thoughts are absolutely normal (well, normal for poly) and the longer you hang out here, and read folks' stories, the more you will recognize how familiar and how normal.
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  #3  
Old 04-10-2012, 07:27 AM
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Hello and welcome.

I know this second last paragraph of questions. Oh, I know it well. I asked myself all of those. I will tell you my conclusion, but this isn't what all the others found for themselves, therefore I am afraid, that a solid answer to those questions relevant for you can only be given by yourself.

There is no norm, just the way you are. Some seem to be 'mono by nature', meaning faling in love with one person, when coming across a new love interest, falling out of love with the old person and falling in love with the new one. But some are just like you discovered you are. If this is given 'by nature' or just an urge ... decide for yourself, there is no proven answer to that. But you should be able to answer this question: Can you continue living with your feelings without acting on them? And yes, acting on them will be selfish, as you do this for yourself. But this doesn't have to mean that you disregard the feelings of someone else. All I found I could do was be the person I simply am. I didn't want to live a lie or to disregard a part of me. As I knew that I wouldn't be able to ignore my feelings ultimately (I tried for years actually and it didn't work). Some people manage to do so, choosing to stay in a mono relationship while having poly feelings, but they hurt.

Our current situation is stable, I found a way through my personal inner jungle, but it took time. My husband and boyfriend had to do the same, but all of us felt relieved when things where out in the open, as none of us can live well with some hidden truth, the elephant in the room. First of all it is all about your decidion which road to take. Make up your mind when thinking about this long term. What will you be capable of and what do you want to be capable of when you thing about this?

Wishing you luck and some peace of mind.
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  #4  
Old 04-13-2012, 02:51 AM
HapaxLegomena HapaxLegomena is offline
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Thank you both for your comments. I know that ultimately it comes down to me figuring out how to answer those questions for myself, but you've given me some things to think about, and it just helps knowing that other people can relate to what I'm going through. Thanks again.
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Old 04-18-2012, 01:19 AM
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NakedEarth NakedEarth is offline
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Thank you for this post. I read it! You conveyed my thoughts and feelings almost perfectly. I am feeling and wondering the same things. I talk about this with a new friend of mine and we both agree that polyamory is both natural and seems right to us. I have always loved more than one person but I assumed that it was because I was a born cheater like my parents and grandparents. That is very negative, I know... but I have grown up now and have been thinking and experiencing a lot these past years. I have always questioned monogamy. It seems restricting and broken. I wonder if its even in human nature to be with only one person or that is just what the church, society and the corporations want. I feel in my heart that being with more than one person is right.

Unfortunately (or fortunately...depending on how you look at it) I am so deeply in love with someone who is so amazing. He is completely and 100% monogamous. He, like your partner, would be devastated if I even brought these feelings up to him. I broke up with him 6 month ago because I had been feeling this way (and told him so..in not such a direct way).. but he fought so hard to have me back and I put my feelings of not wanting to be with one person on the back burner. I have been "faithful" since this break up.. but I hate that word... and I love and want to be with another person who I have already met and fell and at the same time I want to be with the person I have been with already for sooooo many years. I want to be honest with myself and who I am...and with my partner(s).

Its a hard decision... I know... is the strong love for one person worth loosing the possible loves of many more? Or what if I throw this away and find out I can not share my partner but only want to be shared.

I don't know.
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Old 11-15-2013, 12:41 PM
Dirtclustit Dirtclustit is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NakedEarth View Post
Its a hard decision... I know... is the strong love for one person worth loosing the possible loves of many more? Or what if I throw this away and find out I can not share my partner but only want to be shared.

I don't know.

Yes, you do know, perhaps the problem is really that it's not convenient.

If any of you are half as close to the person whom you all say things like there is no way I could even begin to bring up this topic

then you are well aware that they are at least somewhat knowledgeable of your secret

My advice would be to quit avoiding the obvious and lying to yourself because everyday you believe those lies you actually understand less truth of both yourself and this world

Because you need figure out why you claim to understand how a person can love two people, yet you yourself are consciously choosing to loose both making two mistakes, withholding the information from the one you claim to do love, but are not respecting by keeping your secret and not allowing them to choose for themselves whether or not they can actually handle polyamory

and the worst thing is the reason you rationalized this, is because it was you who ultimately wasn't capable of sharing

and if I were you I would figure it out, because you are likely to loose it all


oh!

and everything was actually directed toward you

Last edited by Emm; 11-15-2013 at 02:29 PM. Reason: Removed name-calling.
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  #7  
Old 11-15-2013, 04:22 PM
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Magdlyn Magdlyn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HapaxLegomena View Post
I'm not sure if I belong here.
You do. Welcome, Hapax. It took me a while to see if you were a formerly gay IDed man, or a formerly straight IDed, now acting bisexual woman. But it must be the latter!

Quote:
But I've had to start asking myself, is it "normal" (apologies, I know that's not really the right word) to be completely in love with more than one person at a time?
It's normal, it's common, to feel love for another person other than your spouse/SO. Or to just feel attracted, aroused, a crush, an infatuation. A few people are so mono they never stray in any way. Most others do have a bit of a roving eye, whether to a mild or strong degree. Some admit it, some repress it. Some act on it, some don't. Some work out the jealousy aspect with their SO, come to terms with the topic and live happily. Some argue, can't or won't get over feeling jealous and threatened, and live with a huge angry elephant in the room, or... split up.


Quote:
Am I assuming that I prefer monogamy because it's what society expects and I've never tried anything else? Is it simply that I selfishly want to stay with K but have the chance to be with V as well? V, I should add, has denounced relationships altogether and seems to prefer keeping things casual with her partners.
It is society's norm right now, and has been since Yahweh decreed a woman should have lust only for her man. (Genesis in the Bible).

In other words, men who wrote the Bible wanted to ensure the kids they were raising were their own genetic material.

Quote:
So maybe I'm only wondering about this because she (inadvertently) put the idea in my head? Is it just that because V was the first woman I fell for, and my feelings for her were never resolved, I'm not able to let go of them? Or if I did manage to get over her, would I just end up falling for someone else eventually and find myself in the same conundrum?
Depends how easily you fall in love. For me, it was quite often, until recently, when I finally feel like I have the two partners who meet so many of my needs. I still ogle cute boys and girls, but I've stopped dating. It's an informal decision, but I am just not motivated.

Quote:
Is it true that humans aren't "meant" to be monogamous? Or is this something that lots of monogamous people go through, and I should just suck it up and learn how to make a real commitment?
Never suck anything up! It's a short time we have on this planet. Why not be true to oneself? Why live a lie? But, since you're already in a relationship, you must learn to negotiate opening up with K, or be ready to split up and live your authentic life.

Quote:
But if it turns out I am polyamorous by nature - if that's a thing - isn't that something I should share with my partner?
Yes.

Quote:
And can people be poly but still be happy in a mono relationship? None of my previous relationships lasted this long, and most were quite dysfunctional, so it's not like I can look to them for clues either.
Just like you could be bi, but be content being mono with one gender or another, so you could be poly by nature but content being in a closed relationship with one person. It could depend on life circumstances, and be open to renegotiation. But it shouldnt be hidden you ARE poly by nature. I tried that. I tried to deny it to my ex but he always could tell. I felt bad, sinful, evil, to be so "faithless." Now, I know it's just my nature! Not immoral, and completely ethical if done properly.

Quote:
I am confused, as you can see. And I know nobody can really answer these questions for me. But I am desperate to figure this out, and I thought maybe someone could give me some insight into the whole concept of being polyamorous, or whether any of this jumble of thoughts and feelings sounds familiar. Thank you to anyone who actually takes the time to read this all the way through, you rock.
Carry on talking and reading around the boards. There are lots of poly resources online and a few good books. You might especually enjoy Sex at Dawn, an anthropological study going back to prehistory, of human mating practices.
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Love withers under constraint; its very essence is liberty. It is compatible neither with envy, jealousy or fear. It is there most pure, perfect and unlimited when its votaries live in confidence, equality and unreserve. -- Shelley

There's no lying in polyamory!

I'm a 58 year old woman with 2 partners:
miss pixi, my live-in gf, 36 (together since Jan '09)
Ginger, bf, 61, married, lives nearby (together since Jan '12)
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  #8  
Old 11-15-2013, 05:17 PM
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Emm Emm is offline
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The OP's last activity on the board was over 12 months ago, so it's likely that he'll not respond.
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  #9  
Old 11-15-2013, 09:03 PM
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Magdlyn Magdlyn is offline
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OH godammit, Dirt necro'ed a thread again! *headbang*

Dude, can't you mention you're digging up a corpse when you decide to comment on an old thread?
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Love withers under constraint; its very essence is liberty. It is compatible neither with envy, jealousy or fear. It is there most pure, perfect and unlimited when its votaries live in confidence, equality and unreserve. -- Shelley

There's no lying in polyamory!

I'm a 58 year old woman with 2 partners:
miss pixi, my live-in gf, 36 (together since Jan '09)
Ginger, bf, 61, married, lives nearby (together since Jan '12)
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  #10  
Old 11-15-2013, 11:54 PM
Dirtclustit Dirtclustit is offline
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Default "digging up" does not compute

Trust me, I am just as confused as some of you people are, what I am doing is called "dating"

only it is not dinner and a movie, it's embedding something like what you would call 11.15.2013@15:33

except using a different system that I find less confusing

all I meant to expand on what NakedEarth said, as I thought everybody missed the point of the words I quoted.

To the OP, I was saying it is important to ask yourself whether it is the SO who can't handle polyamory, or the OP

again, NakedEarth's very pertinent quote

Quote:
Originally Posted by NakedEarth
....and find out I can not share my partner but only want to be shared....
as I tend to agree with people who can recognize truth, it means they respect truth, and only those who respect it, ever truly know it


allowing yourself to be shared between two lovers doesn't make you "poly"
as much as being able to honestly share your lover with another person,

and even that wouldn't necessarily mean you are "poly"

which I would say means an ability to respect the people you share a lover with wherein that respect -- if not love -- is free from manipulation, secrets, ill will, lies and then finally when the point is reached, that you consciously choose to share your lives with other.


dating, is very important so that those I choose to share my life with, completely and fully understand what time it currently Is which means not using flawed system built with the intent to distort what the Calendar speaks
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