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  #71  
Old 02-25-2011, 10:04 PM
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A lot of this struggle has nothing to do with "group" opinions of what love is or the value of sex. It's about individuals defining those things for themselves and determining who fits their criteria to share both with.

The other big part of the struggle is finding the strength to be true to ourselves and saying this is what I need/want and being able to admit when some one doesn't meet those.

No group defines love or sex or has any authority to say this is how you should think...individuals do. There is no right or wrong, only acceptance of each others differences and recognizing that based on those differences not all people are meant to be together in some ways.
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  #72  
Old 02-25-2011, 10:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Magdlyn View Post
Your partner will love others all their life (unless they are a hermit). Friends, children, parents, mentors and protegees.
Yeah, I get that. I love other people too. I guess love isn't the issue, it's the level of involvement that is implied by a romantic sexual relationship.

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Your partner should have divided attention! People that love each other so much and disdain the company of others to the point of never spending time with others are pathological and codependent.
We are a bit codependent, sure, but that's the thing. We also happen to be best friends. We like to spend time together, and lots of it. She often complains that I'm at work too much, because my commute eats up 3-4 hours of every day. But yes, I am needy. I don't have other friends that fulfill me the way she does.

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It's the sex. Our culture just doesn't know how to deal with sexual desire! We're a bunch of Puritans and it's so fucking outdated and hurtful.
I guess the real funny thing is I don't mind so much if the sex is just sex. When it becomes lovemaking, I get real worried for some reason. I'm pretty weird about my sexuality. I don't toss it around casually.

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Well! You don't have to have another partner just to fill your time. There are a million things you could be doing instead. Activities with platonic friends (especially those friends/activities your wife doesnt care for!), hobbies, travel, reading, shopping, masturbating, TV/internet, calling your mom for once.
Lol my mom calls me every day, so I have no choice but to talk to her all the time. As for activities my wife doesn't care for...I do them when I'm with her, while she's doing activities I don't care for. she writes fanfiction while I'm coding my web projects. And my friends...most of them are too busy for me or live too far away now. I get lots and lots of alone time, and rarely do I get time to meet people, even when my wife is away for a day, I can't just go down to the coffee shop or a bar and make friends with strangers, because that's not really how I roll. Masturbation...meh. Rarely worth the time I spend doing it. I spend all day long on the internet, I can't afford my hobbies. I guess I'm in a weird place where I don't have anything to do for fun that I'm not already doing all the time, so time without her is lacking...well...her, and lacking little else.

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So actually, you CAN turn it off, it's just not easy. It gets easier my friend. Practice makes perfect.
I haven't been practising enough. She's only really involved with her girlfriend, and they never get to see one another.

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I get this. It can feel like you're actually dying, when you feel betrayed and jealous. (But you're not, or I'd be in the grave 10 years now. I got on Zoloft instead of actually driving my car off a cliff as I often wished I could, if not for my children who needed me.)
I don't think I have problems with depression, I just get so damnably lonely when I'm alone. I'm a clingy socialite who is used to hanging out in a big room full of friends in between classes at school, both in high school and what little college I took. I no longer have that comfortable mechanism in place to keep myself sane, and spending too much time alone slowly drives me wonky. I get really annoying and overly talkative and emotional when I spend too much time alone. Like today, for instance. Notice the ranting? Of course you do. :P

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True, jealousy happens. But it can be worked through, and turned into compersion, given time and effort and much reading of books and boards like this. Perhaps therapy. And of course, searing openness and honesty with your partner. Use "I" statements, not sarcasm, try not to use the terms "bullshit," "you whore," or "fuck you." And no playing of the victim either.
Agreed. We talk a lot, and we try very hard to understand one another and explain ourselves clearly and in a non-threatening way. It is a very good thing to be doing. But I think I have stopped making progress, perhaps because there doesn't feel like there's a need to, so I've stagnated into a comfort zone. Hmm...
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Old 02-26-2011, 12:44 AM
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Also wanted to say that you don't come across to me as ranting, but really are asking good, thought-provoking questions and expressing what's going on for you quite well and clearly.
I agree. I think the questions/thoughts warrant attention and understanding.

Something I think is worth considering within the thought that the mono is the one that is asked to change or leave, is the following:

For me, that's not true. What's true is that myself (the poly) and my husband (the "mono") had to address that there WAS a change in our situation due to my new-found understanding of myself.

Either WE could change, or our relationship would fall apart. It would be just as devastating to me to lose him as it would be for him to lose me. Just because I love another, doesn't diminish the pain I would feel if I lost him.

So, it wasn't a matter of "he could change and learn to deal with me or lose me" it was a matter of WE could change and learn to incorporate my needs in our relationship or we lose each other.....


I do hear what you are saying SS. AND I understand why you are saying it-a lot of people do seem to take for granted that the mono person should just "deal with their emotions". But, I think it's simplifying it overly much to say that the mono is expected to change or lose. If that's true, that would mean that if you don't "change" and you choose to accept "losing" your wife... that it wouldn't be as significant a loss for her... because if it were, it's not YOU losing, it's the two of you losing....

I think... I'm not being bossy-just thinking out loud (fyi).
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  #74  
Old 02-26-2011, 02:09 AM
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Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
But I'm wondering now, how many couple are out there who had The Big Talk and it was the poly partner who made the choice to give up pursuing poly and just stay mono. Because of that choice, maybe they just don't come here and we don't get to hear that side of it very much. So it seems that here, and at other poly-oriented sites and communities, that it's always the mono that has to make the biggest sacrifice. Maybe not.

Also wanted to say that you don't come across to me as ranting, but really are asking good, thought-provoking questions and expressing what's going on for you quite well and clearly.
That's a good point. I forget that this isn't a balanced microcosm I'm seeing here. This is a fairly biased forum. I say that not in a mean way, but in the way that it's a forum centered around polyamory, rather than a forum about relationships in general. That would definitely lend weight to what I'm perceiving. I think this warrants a gigantic worldwide study.

And thank you. I tend to carry on a bit and talk and talk and talk...I worry that I'm a little bit self-centric and overbearing and annoying. While I probably am, at least I seem to be participating in some kind of constructive conversation here.

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Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG View Post
No group defines love or sex or has any authority to say this is how you should think...individuals do. There is no right or wrong, only acceptance of each others differences and recognizing that based on those differences not all people are meant to be together in some ways.
And another good point. You're right. Nobody has the right to tell me, or my wife, how we must define our sexual and romantic preferences. We each get to define that for ourselves, and the challenge (and beauty) comes from learning to balance differing ideas.

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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
I do hear what you are saying SS. AND I understand why you are saying it-a lot of people do seem to take for granted that the mono person should just "deal with their emotions". But, I think it's simplifying it overly much to say that the mono is expected to change or lose. If that's true, that would mean that if you don't "change" and you choose to accept "losing" your wife... that it wouldn't be as significant a loss for her... because if it were, it's not YOU losing, it's the two of you losing....

I think... I'm not being bossy-just thinking out loud (fyi).
I understand what you are saying, but I have my stupidly-coloured world-filter in the way of me accepting that feeling unto myself. I know that a poly partner feels just as deeply for any of their partners as a mono partner feels for their sole partner, and therefore any loss for the poly individual is just as painful as the loss for the mono individual (and come to think of it, being poly is walking a dangerous road, allowing for more opportunities to experience love, but also allowing for more opportunities to experience pain).

I think what's keeping *me* from accepting it is that I still *think* of the love of a poly individual as divided. Which is dumb, because I already know that I love multiple people very deeply and could be in romantic relationships with them...but some part of me tells me that's wrong and I shouldn't do it. I'm willing to bet there are plenty of monos out there who feel similarly to me on the issue. So I know how this loving multiple people thing works, I just have some block keeping me from acting on it. Maybe I need to try being in romantic relationships with multiple people, but keeping the sexual activity to just one. Or maybe cutting it out altogether. I'm finding that sex, for myself, is not very important to me anymore, though that's probably just hibernation combined with the fact that my wife and I seem to be on opposite sexual cycles. I think I could be ok with having a second romantic partner, who is also my sexual partner, and not be involved in sex at all with my wife. Or maybe even the other way around. Really, I think it all hangs on sex, for me. I wonder if that's common among monos in my situation?

And by the way, you don't come across as bossy at all.

Last edited by SimpleSimian; 02-26-2011 at 02:19 AM.
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  #75  
Old 02-26-2011, 03:13 AM
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Hmmmm, that's an interesting thought... having a romantic partner whom you aren't sexual with... or even discontinuing sex with any/all romantic partners for a period of time...

I think it would make me batshit crazy... I'm NOT good enough at masturbation to want to give up having any sex partners for a significant period of time.

BUT-at the same time, there have been periods in my life where I wasn't sexually active (last summer for 8 weeks for example) and that certainly didn't change my romantic relationship status.....

Have you ever read up on what happens on a chemistry basis in the body/brain leading up to/during/after sex?
I was just doing that a few weeks ago and think that it would be an interesting addition to the conversation.
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  #76  
Old 02-26-2011, 03:31 AM
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I think it would make me batshit crazy... I'm NOT good enough at masturbation to want to give up having any sex partners for a significant period of time.
For me, I just don't really enjoy masturbation, so it happens quite rarely to begin with. I don't think I would be missing much by cutting out sex; it's quite hilarious, actually, because last time I was on here, I was bitching about how sex was so important to me.
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Have you ever read up on what happens on a chemistry basis in the body/brain leading up to/during/after sex?
I was just doing that a few weeks ago and think that it would be an interesting addition to the conversation.
Have I "read up on it?" Not really, I don't think...but I am at least somewhat aware of that, and also of the supposed differences between men and women, how women expect a bond and how men don't and all that bullshit. (generalizing when it comes to sex...just shouldn't be done. I know too many people with too many very different views on sex and very different sex drives and preferences). If women are the only ones who use sex to feel connected and close, then what the hell am I doing with a penis? And why doesn't my wife have one?

For example: to me, sex is rarely just sex. It's almost always got to be deeply involved; lots of touching, lots of foreplay lots of spending time together being close, laughing, playing, teasing, cuddling -- because it's not about the sex, it's about the emotional attachment, and the gratification of pleasing my partner. I'm the type to give a surprise sexual favour and not expect anything in return until later, whenever that later happens to be. And I enjoy the same in return, because it's fun sometimes.

Then when it comes to my wife, she's much less into long sessions, too much closeness, doesn't really like foreplay, doesn't like to give or receive sexual favours just in and of themselves (it needs to be part of or leading up to a full-on sexual act), and she likes to get to the point quickly; not that she doesn't enjoy it, but she enjoys it differently. Quite contrary to what all the "sex scientists" say about how women are supposed to be.

Man, I could go on about this...I'm stopping while I'm ahead. :P
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Old 02-26-2011, 03:46 AM
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Originally Posted by SimpleSimian View Post
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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
Have you ever read up on what happens on a chemistry basis in the body/brain leading up to/during/after sex?
I was just doing that a few weeks ago and think that it would be an interesting addition to the conversation.
Have I "read up on it?" Not really, I don't think...but I am at least somewhat aware of that, and also of the supposed differences between men and women, how women expect a bond and how men don't and all that bullshit. . . . If women are the only ones who use sex to feel connected and close, then what the hell am I doing with a penis? And why doesn't my wife have one?
No, no, I believe LR is referring to the chemistry in the brain and hormonal shifts that happen during arousal and orgasm, etc. -- dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, endorphins, all very interesting stuff! What was that link? ... oh yeah:

http://www.reuniting.info/science/sex_in_the_brain

LR has a few more links, I believe. Reading about all that does put a different spin on things!
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Old 02-26-2011, 03:46 AM
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... having to learn to be okay knowing that your partner's love is divided (yes, I know that's not how it works, but that's how it feels to me, a mono),......
...... and their attention is divided (yes, it is, you can't pay full attention to two people simultaneously),
.......and sharing secrets and deep spiritual connections and dreams and ideas with somebody else besides you.
....... The reality is that those kinds of things can make a mono feel useless, hopeless, not needed, and a whole host of other things. Going from thinking you're the one person your partner can and will come to for anything, to knowing that they don't *need* you...hurts.
This is difficult and I get that... however, ones love is not divided in poly, its increased to incorporate other people and expands past what would be the bounds of a monogamous relationship.

Time is divided, but not love. Sometimes not even time... I only work 6.5 hours a day and live with two of my loves... the other two I see when I can, one more than the other... it suits our needs and has been negotiated that way. I don't think anyone suffers from lack of time with me for long... they simply have to say they are feeling like they need some time and we adjust... everyone considers the other and is willing to give so that I might be freed up.

Yes I share secrets with them... but I also share them on here and to other friends. I don't reserve my secrets for my loves exclusively, that is way to co-dependant for me and not fitting to my personality anyway.

Need can expand just like love... what a mono person needs to grasp is this. Just because someone wants to spend time with another in no way means that they don't want to spend time loving you also... this takes time and practice and becomes evident as time goes on.

What I think is not realized is that time reveals much and when you are starting out with poly in your life, all is not evident yet. One has to ruminate and be open to experience. Rather than try to control it and just shove poly and its ideals aside. I know that is hard. It is not pleasant to be forced to face something new, but that, quite often is life, and this is just part of its great journey.
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Old 02-26-2011, 03:57 AM
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Originally Posted by SimpleSimian View Post
For me, I just don't really enjoy masturbation, so it happens quite rarely to begin with.

Have I "read up on it?" Not really, I don't think...but I am at least somewhat aware of that, and also of the supposed differences between men and women, how women expect a bond and how men don't and all that bullshit.
I hear you on the masturbation thing. Not really my ball of wax.

But, that wasn't what I meant about the chemistry. I happen to be one of those people who can TOTALLY enjoy the lovey dovey "making love" experience and the "FUCK ME HARD" experience-to hell with the pre-concieved idea of "woman/man" b.s. It's bs.


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Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
No, no, I believe LR is referring to the chemistry in the brain and hormonal shifts that happen during arousal and orgasm, etc. -- dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, endorphins, all very interesting stuff! What was that link? ... oh yeah:

http://www.reuniting.info/science/sex_in_the_brain

LR has a few more links, I believe. Reading about all that does put a different spin on things!
This-is what I was talking about. I was researching it for a different reason (regarding ADHD and addiction). BUT-it's very interesting to note that the human body (doesn't matter if it's male or female) sends out certain hormones and endorphins at specific times. Sex and "love" being VERY intriguing times when some intersting stuff happens. The internal chemical reactions of the body during sex are similar to the internal chemical reactions when smoking crack.
Anyway-it's pretty interesting.
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Old 02-27-2011, 10:30 PM
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Default Poly-Mono relationships is not about change, but acceptance.

I tend to agree with several of the responses in this thread. I am in a V with two monogamous women. Both of them are into me and accept that I do commitment and relationships a bit differently than what they are accustom to.

However I was very clear early on that if they do or do not desire to have other lovers that so long as we are loving, communicative, accepting and supportive that anything we wanted for ourselves was completely possible. That like all things good in life, it required a bit of effort to visualize, communicate and accept.

The not so obvious key in this is acceptance. I like to believe that love is really about acceptance. That you accept that the person you love is different than you are and that difference is a part of the person you are in love with, a part of the package you sign up for when loving them.

I am sure that this likely goes without saying for many "old" polys, but to attempt to change a love to suit your needs is not very dissimilar to treating the person as if they were property. Attempting to change or willingly giving up who you are in the name of love will likely end in a trainwreck of a relationship or an unfulfilled life full of regret.

acceptance = love.
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