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  #1  
Old 12-14-2013, 07:55 AM
Kraven Kraven is offline
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Angry A Dying Love!

I've been with my fiance for almost two years now. We've lived a beautiful life, her kids have grown on me. Now she knew I was poly when we met, she claimed to have been for 13 years. We've been great for each other...the ying to my yang. But she's changed lately! Suddenly she's reconsidering being poly. Claiming it's just too hard for her, she's got "things" on her plate and can't deal with it. I feel like it's a breach of contract because I'm poly through and through. To ask me to change who I am and go back to monogamy, when I've seen time and time that it doesn't work for me, isn't far! No relationship has ever lasted more than a year for me but this seemingly Polyamorous love has enriched my life and we've celebrated many milestones together. Then I met this wonderful woman on the other end of the nation, develop feelings for her and I tell my girl about it. Half way through the conversation she storms off! Feelings of jealousy or whatever she's feeling is surging through her and rather than work through those feelings and talk to me she rashly decides that she doesn't want to be poly anymore. Never asked me how that makes me feel or how I may feel lied to or hurt by it. Some say just leave cause deceived you, others say work it out and you'll be fine! I honestly just don't know what to do! I don't have many poly friends so that's why I'm here asking for everyone's advice...this is a serious issue for me, please offer any advice that you can!
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  #2  
Old 12-14-2013, 09:16 AM
london london is offline
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I would say that I understand that polyamory isn't working for her any more, that she doesn't have the resources to maintain multiple relationships at this time, but I do. I'd remind her that we always had a poly relationship and it's unfair to expect you to change. However, she is free to date as she wishes and you understand that needs change. Her need may have changed and you acknowledge that your needs may now be incompatible and that's sad, but pressuring one another to consent to something that makes them unhappy is not going to create the healthy, happy relationships you both strive for.
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  #3  
Old 12-14-2013, 10:39 AM
Hmm Hmm is offline
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I'm going to preface this by saying I'm still young and very much learning myself, but I'm going to give my best shot at making sense of this situation.

It sounds like maybe the jealousy hit her harder than she was ready to handle. That she said she was poly for 13 years is one thing...but time doesn't necessarily translate to experience? I'm thinking she may be asking you to consider monogamy because she is scared to lose you. By not talking you with it openly, it sounds like she is dealing with a past hurt or insecurity which she hasn't fully come to grips with yet. It's definitely understandable that you feel hurt by her not considering your feelings, but at the same time, the reason she may not be doing that is because her feelings of anguish are clouding her perceptions. When someone holds onto pain in their heart like that, it can create a wall that is hard to pull down, but must be pulled down before communication is reinstated.

My advice for you: stay calm even when your fiancee isn't. I wish there were an easy answer, but for the person who is holding onto the anger, it is entirely up to them to release it. You can't change anyone but yourself, as the saying goes. By being there and being calm and unaccusatory and unpressuring and whatnot, you help create a calm and serene environment where even if your fiancee feels threatened inside, she can be coaxed to relax and be more likely to open up. Nobody's perfect, and no relationship's perfect, and polyamory is essentially built around navigating, not avoiding, jealousy. You will both feel it, and as you are engaged, communicating is especially important, more so than just dating or being a couple. There's a promise of commitment in marriage, beyond that of normal friendships and relationships, even poly marriage. Perhaps saying that to your fiancee would help remind her where your loyalties lie and that you're not just some free bird who could fly away. I could be wrong, but it seems like part of the jealousy stems from her fear of losing you. It's a scary thing sometimes, and I think I can see well where both of your feelings on this are coming from.

I hope not too many of the things I said were projections, though I'm sure some at the end there were more personal than universal beliefs. I hope at least they resonate some. I wish you and your fiancee the best of luck in communicating and being intimate and working through this however feels right.

Last edited by Hmm; 12-14-2013 at 10:44 AM.
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  #4  
Old 12-14-2013, 03:47 PM
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Magdlyn Magdlyn is offline
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I would take anything your fiancee does or says right now with a grain of salt. Being poly can sometimes feel like a rollercoaster. You can be fine with it, even turned on by it, one day, and overcome with horrific jealousy the next day.
Have you 2 been mono since you met? It sounds like it. Poly was more theoretical until now?

Unfortunately it's quite common to be poly for oneself, but then feel raging jealousy when one's partner gets interested in someone else.

If your gf is busy raising kids, maybe working full time as well, and doesnt have time or interest in dating others right now, good for her. But to expect YOU to not date just because she isn't, smacks of possessiveness.

Give her a few days to simmer down. Don't talk more about your new potential partner right now. Sometimes our hearts have their own reactions to things, that are in conflict with our rational sides. Love her up, take her out, watch the kids so she can go do something nice for herself. She needs reassurance.
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  #5  
Old 12-14-2013, 10:03 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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I am sorry you struggle.

Quote:
Suddenly she's reconsidering being poly. Claiming it's just too hard for her, she's got "things" on her plate and can't deal with it.
Reasonable. If she no longer wants more partners or any other partners at this time, that is on her.

Quote:
I feel like it's a breach of contract because I'm poly through and through.
She's never supposed to change or change her mind? She can't decide to stop dating? How is this a breach? You do not explain.

Quote:
To ask me to change who I am and go back to monogamy, when I've seen time and time that it doesn't work for me, isn't far!
To ask you where your willingness lies is totally fair. She is not a mind reader. She can't know if you have changed your mind or not. She must ask if she wants to know where you stand on something at this point in time.

You are free to answer how you wish:
  • No, I am not willing to close. My mind hasn't changed. I'm sorry. Thanks for asking.
  • Yes, I am willing to close to present partners only. No new people. Thanks for asking.
  • Yes, I am willing to close to just you. No other partners but you. Thanks for asking.

Quote:
...rashly decides that she doesn't want to be poly anymore. Never asked me how that makes me feel or how I may feel lied to or hurt by it. Some say just leave cause deceived you, others say work it out and you'll be fine! I honestly just don't know what to do!
How ARE you feeling right now? What is hurting? How did she lie?

Right now both seem upset, so rather than try to solve it this second, I'd suggest you both take a time out to chill and collect yourselves. Then come to have serious conversation with cooler heads.

You could ask your partner to clarify WHAT she is asking you to consider here. I am not clear from your post.
  • CLOSED -- like you do whatever on your side, but on HER side she's done with extra partners/dating?
  • CLOSED -- like no new dating for EITHER of you, just existing partners?
  • CLOSED -- like no new dating for either and no new extra partners at all for either -- just you two? <-- this seems to be the one that upsets you. Is she indeed, asking this one?


And for how long? Through a career change? A pregnancy? A death in the family? Something else?

Maybe some of those sound doable to you. Some just don't. But there's different kinds of CLOSED. Could get calm, then ask for clarification.

If she is asking if you are willing to participate in a new relationship model? All you have do to is consider it. Decide. And if not for you? Could say "No thank you."

You are also free to ASK things yourself. Are there things about the old model that could be changed so she's more willing/able to continue with it?
  • What blocks her willingness to participate in polyship with you?
  • What blocks her ability to participate in polyship with you?
  • Is she worried about joint finances if you take a new dating partner that lives across the nation? The expenses that would entail?
  • Something else?

If talking it through doesn't arrive at better understanding of each other or new agreements and it is basically "limit reached?" Then could move on to talking about how you want to break up. (Nobody can force anyone to participate in something they don't want. She can't be forced to polyship and you cannot be force to monoship. )
  • Good break up, good exes and walk away?
  • Good break up, good exes, and still interact as friends?
  • Something else?

Painful, disappointing, hard to feel... maybe yes.

What to do about it? Pretty straight forward -- could talk and sort it out.

But right now to me it sounds like taking a time out FIRST to gather your emotions together and gather your thoughts and talking points together could be helpful to you.

Hang in there!
Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 12-15-2013 at 05:58 AM.
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  #6  
Old 12-15-2013, 01:06 AM
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kdt26417 kdt26417 is offline
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Re (from Kraven):
Quote:
"I feel like it's a breach of contract because I'm poly through and through ... Never asked me how that makes me feel or how I may feel lied to or hurt by it."
... and re (from london):
Quote:
"I'd remind her that we always had a poly relationship and it's unfair to expect you to change."
Cue monogamist when their spouse (having previously thought they were monogamous) hears about polyamory and then asks permission to practice it: The monogamist might say, "I feel like it's a breach of contract because I'm mono through and through ... You never asked me how that makes me feel or how I may feel lied to or hurt by it ... We always had a mono relationship and it's unfair to expect me to change ..."

What's good for the goose is good for the gander. [Oops; bad proverb usage. What I mean is: What applies to the transition to polyamory, may also apply to the transition to monogamy -- in this case I think.]

Re (from Hmm):
Quote:
"Polyamory is essentially built around navigating, not avoiding, jealousy."
Monogamy should be too.

Re (from london):
Quote:
"Pressuring one another to consent to something that makes them unhappy is not going to create the healthy, happy relationships you both strive for."
Yes. This.

Re (from GalaGirl):
Quote:
"Nobody can force anyone to participate in something they don't want. She can't be forced to polyship and you cannot be forced to monoship."
Right on.

Kraven, you may need to break up (preferably before marrying) if monogamy isn't a life you can live. Either that or the two of you will need to agree to a mono/poly arrangement.
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Last edited by kdt26417; 12-15-2013 at 02:56 AM.
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  #7  
Old 12-15-2013, 04:35 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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I think you need to treat her with more compassion. She is obviously struggling, upset, and probably was triggered by something that affected her deeply and you seem to be pissed off and thinking only of what you want and what you get out of the relationship. Your partner of all these years deserves to be heard and respected for whatever she is going through, doesn't she? There is no way to get through it without communicating, and getting all defensive and whiny about it isn't going to make things better for either of you.
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An excellent blog post on hierarchy in polyamory:
solopoly.net/2014/10/31/why-im-not-a-secondary-partner-the-short-version/
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  #8  
Old 12-15-2013, 09:04 AM
london london is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
I think you need to treat her with more compassion. She is obviously struggling, upset, and probably was triggered by something that affected her deeply and you seem to be pissed off and thinking only of what you want and what you get out of the relationship. Your partner of all these years deserves to be heard and respected for whatever she is going through, doesn't she? There is no way to get through it without communicating, and getting all defensive and whiny about it isn't going to make things better for either of you.
He's been with her two years. She claims that she has been poly for 13 years.
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