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  #801  
Old 03-29-2014, 10:32 AM
FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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Yes, it rings true. I am somewhere between two and three. I let go of the pain when I was able to release it and stop holding it in. I could jump up and down on the furniture in my therapist's office and and yell until I am blue in the face, but it was more of a release to actually say the words directly to Si. In therapy, it just felt like a one-sided conversation. I was able to get feedback and ask questions that only Si had the answers to. The conversation provided clarity and understanding.

While I do not condone what she did or consider her apology absolution, I am empathetic. I do appreciate her apologising, and I believe the apologies were sincere. I am not completely shutting myself off from her. In some ways, I find myself taking Matt's approach and trying to find something good in every one. She made rotten choices, but I do not think her core is rotten. I have no idea what the future holds, but if we can reach a place where trust can grow and an honest friendship can blossom, I am okay with that.

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Something that has struck me about those four levels is that the higher the level, the more it tends to require the participation of the person who hurt you. You could let go of the pain without any effort on Si's part, perhaps without Si even caring whether you forgave her. But now that she is beginning to participate, and is beginning to take action and begin the repentance process by expressing regret for what she did and owning up to it, it seems to make it possible for your heart to open up to her just a little. Maybe even do something (just a little something) nice by giving her a hug.
I noticed that as well. Truthfully, there was no awkward energy between us. It was reminiscent of talking to an old friend that I had lost contact with. Am I happy that she owned up to it and is taking responsibility? 100%. That little act just might be the beginning of her getting back into my good graces. We are a long way away from daily contact or being buddy buddy, but I can respect her taking responsibility and admitting her mistakes. Time can supposedly heal what has been hurt.

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In any case, it would be hard for both you and her to go as far as that fourth level. My brother says you have to give the offending party a reasonable set of steps they can follow to regain your trust. Well, I am thinking the quest Si would have to accomplish would be that she would have to regain Matt's trust before she could regain yours.

I can't imagine how Si would accomplish that. I don't know where Matt is in terms of forgiveness level but I'm sure it's far from the fourth level. I wonder if it would help if Si wrote Matt a hand-written letter? I'm sure Matt wouldn't be willing to meet her for lunch or tea, but maybe he'd be willing to read that letter (without crumpling it up). If so, it would give Si a chance to apologize to him, and own up to what she did.
Matt is the key piece. He tries to see the good in people, and if she apologises directly to him in whatever form, he might be receptive to the idea of giving her the chance to earn his trust back.

I cannot definitively say what level he is on. He is able to talk about her without changing the subject or getting irritated at the very mention of her name. Does he want to be around her? I am sure he would prefer to keep it like it was the first eight years. Minimal to no interaction. He has no interest in telling me who I should and should not be friends with, so as long as I keep them apart and her away from our children, he is not likely to say anything.

It is quite possible that he has forgiven her, though. He is devout in his faith, and if he felt like God was displeased with his dislike of Si and the harbouring of ill feelings, I am sure he found a way to reconcile both. He has been in therapy for months, and I am sure his feelings regarding Si have been discussed. It would seem as if he was at peace with it. Yesterday was the first time we talked about Si in more than passing.

I was a bit thrown off by him not checking out of the conversation and actually engaging in dialogue. That was not what I expected. It is possible that he might be willing to meet with her face to face. I think he would be receptive to a handwritten letter, and he might be willing to talk to her face to face with some type of signed agreement stating how it will and will not go down. I am not refereeing or chaperoning any meetings. After the last public display of foolishness, he might not trust her to behave and conduct herself calmly and rationally. The reluctance will probably stem from her side. It was easy to face me and own up, but could she do the same with him? I know him well enough to say that he will give her the chance to speak her peace, but he has no filter. If he is thinking it, nothing will stop it from coming out. I attempted to protect her feelings while being direct and carefully selecting my words. If she takes offence to anything he says, face to face interaction would sour in about 15 seconds flat. History has a way of repeating itself. They are petrol and fire. Volatile and flammable. A video chat might do the job. If it gets too intense, end the call, walk away, and take a breather.

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Of course, even doing all four levels would not mean that you could let her back into your life again. It's not a matter of trusting her. The fact is, there simply isn't room for her in your life anymore. You have found out that polyamory doesn't work for you. I suppose the best Si could hope for (hypothetically) is to become a cordial friend, though not one who could ever see the children. How could she ever regain their trust? It is a riddle; perhaps there is no answer.
Absolutely. There are no guarantees that I will be able to fit her in my life as a friend. I am willing to try should the opportunity present itself. Romantically, we are done. There will be no reconciliation, and if the hopes for one are alive, they need to be dashed right now. It has been a day shy of a year since we broke up, and if I had any interest in renewing a romance, it would have popped up by now. I doubt she would ever regain my child's trust. She wants nothing to do with her.
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  #802  
Old 03-29-2014, 10:58 PM
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I would say that you definitely don't yet trust her (yet) in the sense that
  • you don't yet entirely trust her motives,
  • you don't trust her to keep it together if Matt gets too forthright with her.
I would not rush into anything with her, I would let some time go by and let her be the one to take the responsibility for initiating contact, in whatever form. Sometimes it wouldn't be appropriate to trust a person, if they haven't (yet) followed the necessary steps that would make trusting them make sense. Si has taken a few tentative steps, but has many more steps to go.

It sounds like that situation is actually more hopeful than I thought it was, so that's a comfort to hear.
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  #803  
Old 04-05-2014, 01:13 PM
FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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Not much going on. I have pneumonia again. I found out after about five days of feeling bloody horrible. My symptoms are quite similar when I have a cold or allergy/sinus issues, so I was not overly concerned until I started sounding like a wheezing dragon. How the hell did this happen again? I literally just had it in January/February. My GP suggested seeing someone who specialises in pulmonology as a precaution. Physically, I feel fine, but I will be getting checked out because in almost 34 years of life, I had never had pneumonia. Twice in a short span? I am inclined to believe there is an underlying cause. (I am trying not to let my mind think of worst case scenarios.) I am on a longer and more aggressive course of antibiotics and on a very strong cough suppressant/expectorant that is apparently a sedative, too. It leaves a lingering metal taste for hours. When everything tastes like metal, it is not exactly pleasant. Nasty side effects vs. not coughing up a lung...oh joy. It has been a bottle of surprises of most unwelcome kind. I took a dose last night, and it was a struggle to keep my eyes open or lift my head. Eventually, I just fell out and did not wake up for hours. Nonetheless, I am good spirits and taking it easy. The good news is I had already started my holiday to coincide with their term breaks, so I was not forced to scramble because of work.

We are departing for the UK in a bit under an hour. I will have plenty of time to rest over the next couple of weeks. I was given clearance (and two additional injections in my hip) to make the trip. We are not due to return here until the evening before Easter Sunday. Resting adequately is mandatory, so when we get to London/Weybridge, GP's orders will be followed. I hope everyone is doing well.
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  #804  
Old 04-05-2014, 10:52 PM
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Hmmm, I wonder if whatever bug caused the pneumonia didn't really quite die out completely. Maybe it sort of went into remission? In any case, I think you are wise to have a specialist take a closer look.

Enjoy your trip and get as much rest as you can.
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  #805  
Old 04-08-2014, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FullofLove1052 View Post
I am on a longer and more aggressive course of antibiotics and on a very strong cough suppressant/expectorant that is apparently a sedative, too. It leaves a lingering metal taste for hours. When everything tastes like metal, it is not exactly pleasant. Nasty side effects vs. not coughing up a lung...oh joy.
Sympathies! Whatever this junk is, it seems to go around twice and then linger forever. I too am still trying to cough up a lung 2 months later, but luckily no wheezing. I'm on double doses of sinus/allergy meds with a nasty nasal spray that makes everything taste like metal also. It's frustrating to see no end in sight. I wonder what it will be like to taste things normally again?

Have a good trip, get lots of rest.
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  #806  
Old 04-10-2014, 03:05 PM
FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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We made it to London on Sunday afternoon, and it has been wonderful to be back. I have especially enjoyed visiting our old haunts like shopping on King's Road, waking up and seeing Regent's Park, Bubbleology, LouLou's/5 Hertford, our friends, our family, and our home.

We are staying in our home instead of in a hotel. The last months in this house were not exactly happy or pleasant, and I am finding that when I walked in on Sunday, a flood of bad memories and unhappiness waved over me. It was no longer that happy place I once remembered. When I was alone earlier this week, I walked on all five floors, and the nostalgia was not there. All I could remember were the arguments over the years and a lot of miserable moments from last year. I did remember some happy moments, but then I started wondering, "How many of those "happy" moments were just to prevent an argument, Matt stifling his discontentment, or to keep me from bitching?" Where is the joy in knowing that we are back in our first marital home? Where is the joy in knowing that this is the home where we brought our children home from the hospital? I do not know what is wrong with me, but I am trying not to let it get to me. I would hate to be a Debby Downer and insist that we stay elsewhere for the remainder of our trip. Here is to hoping this is temporary. I used to love this home.

This is our oldest's first visit to the UK, and she has been on a happy high. We have went above and beyond to make this a memorable trip for her. It gives me joy to see her smiling, laughing, and having the time of her life. She has found joy in every moment. I guess I took things for granted. I have an affinity for London, and being away has made me appreciate it more than ever.

She has never been to Paris, so we are flying there tomorrow. We will be flying back early Sunday morning, as we are due to attend church with my parents. I am looking forward to Sunday lunch/dinner with my parents, siblings, nephews, etc.

I am feeling better, so I have been getting out more. I have gotten plenty of rest. My mum has been watching me like a hawk in the sky, and to make sure that I comply with GP's orders, she has taken up temporary residence in our home. She makes sure I take every pill, breathing treatment, and dose of cough suppressant. I will not complain because she has been spoiling me and cooking all of my childhood favourites. Plus, my children love having their grandmother here.

My ex and I are on speaking terms. We have exchanged a few text messages here and there. I video chatted with her for almost an hour while we had a layover in Singapore. Matt actually said "hello" to her. When you are in the air for 20+ hours, you have nothing but time to talk, so it was interesting to hear his explanation regarding forgiveness. He said that he has [surprisingly] forgiven her and is not completely opposed to the idea of talking to her in a controlled setting like via Skype. He is more devout in his faith and believes that part of being a Christian means being able to forgive--not for them but for yourself. I have to applaud his efforts because several months ago, the mere mention of her name was enough to cause a negative reaction. I am not rushing towards a friendship or cordial interactions between them. At this point, the exchange of one or two words between them is sufficient. As long as I respect his wishes not to have her around him or our children, that should keep potential confusion down.

I have enjoyed my conversations with Si. I managed to lose all of Matt's trust, so I know how much work goes into earning it back. It was a mutual effort. Give and take, if you will. She took a few steps, and I am taking a few by extending opportunities for her to earn mine back little by little.

I have only seen one member of my paternal family. I had high tea with my aunt in Taplow. I have chosen not to see the rest of them. They thrive off of drama, bringing up the past, and just ridiculousness. There is a reason why they have not met any of my children and why they have no access to me. They do not know that I am here, and I want to keep it that way.

Outside of that, I am taking it easy, recovering, and enjoying my family. I hope everyone is doing well!
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  #807  
Old 04-10-2014, 09:14 PM
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Sounds like the only fly in the ointment has been the negative memories your old home has stirred up. Maybe this trip can be the beginning of sowing some new memories in that home?

Kudos to Matt for sticking to his faith and practicing forgiveness. Likewise kudos to you. Si doesn't have to become a big part of your life, but it probably feels like less of a burden to be able to talk with her in a relatively warm and friendly manner.

Glad that pneumonia is starting to recede.
Sincerely,
Kevin T.
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  #808  
Old 04-20-2014, 11:48 PM
FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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Good morning. Happy Easter to those in the States and Happy Easter Monday those who celebrate it. I am in excellent spirits for no other reason than the fact that I woke up today and was given the chance to try my hand at this thing called life again.

We are back in Oz after a whirlwind hols in London, Paris, and a 13 hour layover in Singapore. We left the airport and spent the entire day at Universal Studios. The day trip to Singapore was quite fun. It was not the original plan. Our connecting flight to Oz was delayed four hours from its destination, and the next flight all of us could get on did not depart until almost 10 PM. They had one-three seats on the other flights or they were arriving too late. It was a mess, but the airline handled it and offered us freebies for our inconvenience. We made it home at 6:14 AM on Easter morning, and we were able to attend the [Anglican] family worship service at 9 and the Solemn Mass at 11. It worked out beautifully, and yesterday was a lovely day. It was our first Easter with our oldest and the first Easter in our new home, so it was already a special day.

I am feeling much better. I am due for another chest x-ray this week, so fingers crossed that the infection has cleared up for good. I am not trying to be back at my GP's office in another eight weeks with pneumonia again. No complaints, though.

Being back in our old home did turn out to be a trigger for me. Ironically, I was worried that it would be a trigger for him. It was awful the first few days. I spent as little time there as possible. I have not figured out what the trigger was, but I am working on it. I thoroughly enjoyed our hols. It was our oldest daughter's first visit to Great Britain, so it was special and great for making new and happier memories. My paternal family did not know I was there, so I did not have to worry about them bringing up my past life or anything that could lead to drama. It was peaceful and just what I needed for my recovery.

Si and I have talked quite a bit over the past couple of weeks. We are rebuilding slowly. I missed talking to her and just her presence. She made some bad choices, but at some point, she was a good and decent woman and friend. We used to be friends, so there is hope. We have agreed not to rehash the past and to move forward. Therapy is not off the table. I am not foolish enough to believe that we can do it all on our own. I have no desire to bring it up, but I am all for learning how to effectively communicate and blend our styles. I have said everything I needed to say regarding that situation. I do not feel any anger towards her. I have every intention of respecting Matt's clearly expressed wishes. More importantly, he trusts me AND my judgment regarding her, so in that sense, I do have something to lose. My eyes are open, and I am cautious and more aware. I am looking for red flags.

She invited me to her birthday dinner later on this week. I might make an appearance. My schedule is clear that evening, and Matt has plans with friends. Our children's nanny offered to watch them, so there is nothing really stopping me. During her birthday last year, I did not see her in person. I think I might have told her happy birthday via Skype or FaceTime. It has definitely been less of a burden to be warm and kind towards her. It is not costing me anything, and I am not losing anything in my marriage. I have softened quite a bit towards her. Disliking her weighed me down and caused me unhappiness. How was that affecting her or her life?

There is one drawback to being friendly towards her. My dislike of her masked any feelings that might have been left over. Since I am warming up to her again, the mask is being lifted. I do still have feelings for her. I am not surprised. I figured they were still there under all the dislike. I invested almost 13 years, so it is not unrealistic to feel something. I love her, but I can say with certainty that it is not romantic love. Talking to her has elicited that "old feeling." I am not in love with her, and I do not want to rekindle a relationship or start one with anyone for that matter. The desire to date is not there. I feel strange having feelings for the once perceived and proven enemy. I feel like a traitor. To who or what? I have no bloody idea. The situations I get myself into.

It is in my best interest to ignore whatever I feel for her and keep her at a safe distance. It is not because I do not trust her. I do not trust my ability to realise and process when something is amiss. I have taken this fork in the road before, and I know what the next series of novels entails. I do not want to get caught up in emotions and feelings. When that happens, all common sense and logic shoot to hell. I have already worn the rose coloured glasses once, and I am not going to do that again. I had a soft spot for her in the past, and nothing good came of it. If I reach the point where my feelings start clouding my judgement and causing me to miss red flags, I will cease all contact. Lessons learned and vividly emblazoned in my mind.

We finally have the date for our meeting regarding the approval or disapproval for adoption: 1 May. I am quite calm. Praying for the best and secretly preparing for the worst case scenario. It is out of our hands, so I am not going to worry myself to the point of distraction. Keeping calm and carrying on.

I am off to cook breakfast for my duckies. They are returning to school on Wednesday, but they are out again on Friday. They should have just given them the entire week off. I hope everyone is doing well and enjoying quality time with their families and loved ones. Happy Easter (or Easter Monday) to everyone!
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  #809  
Old 04-21-2014, 12:16 AM
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Thanks -- I am such a stick in the mud when it comes to holidays, I just sit at my usual spot on the computer.

As for Si, I think the secret is to take tiny steps and carefully analyze your mental/emotional state after each step that you take. I doubt you would, like, start going out with her or something. You've been through too much to go down that rabbit hole again. But keep an eye on your state of mind and proceed with caution. I actually think your blog here is a great way to do that.

It sounds like things are going pretty well in general. The scary part is the May 1 meeting. My fingers are crossed for you.

Sincerely,
Kevin T.
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Old 04-21-2014, 01:23 AM
FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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I generally have an aversion to holidays. I am learning to make a big to do about them because of my children and their insistence. If I had my way, we would be tucked away at a resort in the middle of the ocean with limited to no cell coverage, WiFi in the room only, spa treatments, plenty of sunshine, white sandy beaches, and fruity cocktails. I could skip most holidays and be happy. (I think I need to check out Luxury Lodges of Australia and New Zealand for my next weekend getaway.)

I have definitely been doing that. I have been double and triple checking myself and my overall state of mind. I question everything I do and say and if they are emotionally driven decisions or not. It is best to keep my emotions and feelings compartmentalised and separate from the rational and logical side of my brain when it comes to her. I can just see myself falling into the rabbit hole again. I am not one who thrives off dysfunctional, unhealthy relationships, but some people love them and love even more fiercely while in one. I can forgive and agree not to bring it up, but I cannot forget what happened. I am going to keep myself in check, though. I think I will use my blog as a way to work out these thoughts and feelings. If I was still in therapy, I could devote some of the time to discussing this matter, but that is not an option.

Everything is going well. Thank you. We found out the date on Thursday. I was not expecting it to be so soon. I just knew we would have 60-90 days or something. Fingers crossed over here, too.

I hope everything is going well with Snowbunny and your brother-husband.
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