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Old 07-01-2011, 04:29 PM
bookbug bookbug is offline
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Default Emotional Triad

I am now the second (a female) in what I would define as an emotional triad with a married hetero couple. We began as a full triad, but it has not worked thus far.

Back story:

Our triad did not come about because any of us were seeking the lifestyle. I'm a long time friend of the wife. She is with her second husband. I did not get to know him until recently because life took the wife and I in separate directions for a long period of time (years). According to her husband, within the first day of meeting me, he felt we were kindred spirits. He pursued me. And within a very short time, I could see in him what he saw in me: our minds work exactly the same. I can't begin to describe what a delight that it is. I can tell what he is thinking far better than his wife of over a decade, because if I'm thinking it, he's thinking it too. And there is the fact that while their marriage seems to function well enough, they at near opposite ends of the spectrum in how they interpret life.

In the past, they've had a couple of sexual threesomes. In the one that was more long term, the wife had a strong bond with the other female, while the husband's bond was more peripheral. Given that experience, the husband thought our new triad would be fantastic, as the wife and I already had a bond and he and I have a bond too. What he failed to consider (as did I) is that our situation is far different than their previous experience because of the strong bond he and I have.

Instead, the wife felt betrayed, inadequate, feared he would leave her (he'd probably die first, but her first husband did leave her), etc. That said, she never took out her distress on me. I offered to leave, but neither of them wanted that. Nor did I really.

He and I discontinued sex to give them time to regroup with the hope we could resume at some point. They have now again achieved their previous state of harmony, but the wife still wants nothing to do with the triad. (I think at heart she is a traditionalist despite her sexual ventures.) In the interim my bond with the husband has only deepened, and now that the wife's insecurity is abating, she and I are closer than ever.

We function emotionally as a triad. There are so many benefits to three working to maintain a household. I love everything about it ~ except for the fact that, to put it crudely, I'm not getting laid. The thing of it is, at this point, I cannot picture my life without them. I love both of them that much.

The husband is hopeful that eventually he and I will still get our shot. As he said to me the other day, "I love my wife, and I love you for entirely different reasons that have nothing to do with her." I am able to give him some things that his wife does not; but likewise, I cannot give him what she does. I accept this. She accepts it as long as he and I do not have sex. I can't fathom the reason for his optimism, but at this point I'm not yet overly concerned about the lack of physical intimacy in my life. We have been together only five months, (although it seems much longer).

In the event that sex really is off the table forever, I'm entertaining the idea of maintaining our emotional triad and yet finding someone else to fulfill me sexually. As I am really a novice to the polyamory lifestyle, this seems ungodly complicated.

Has anybody else found themselves in this rather awkward position? I would appreciate hearing all thoughts, experiences, insights, or advice.

(Btw, neither the wife nor I are bisexual.)

Last edited by bookbug; 07-01-2011 at 04:34 PM.
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Old 07-01-2011, 05:24 PM
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SNeacail SNeacail is offline
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My husband has a non-sexual partner (she hates g/f or "other wife" title), she has adopted the title of "sister" and in many ways it fits. She is married, but it works amazingly well for all of us (now). Their emotional relationship gained strength as his and mine was pretty rocky and it did cause issues for me on different levels over the years, but usually only when things were bad between us. If they came to me tomorrow wanting to add sex, I would be ok with it (NOW), but for so many reasons I never see that happening, but you never know. We aren't a triad, but an "emotional Vee"

She and I just went out to dinner last night, just us girls.
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:04 PM
bookbug bookbug is offline
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Thanks for sharing your experience. In some ways it gives me hope. I don't know how our situation will ultimately configure itself, but I do know that I want to maintain what I have. It's rare to find this level of love, trust, and compatibility between three people. Definitely worth holding on to.
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Old 07-04-2011, 05:25 AM
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redpepper redpepper is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bookbug View Post
Our triad did not come about because any of us were seeking the lifestyle.
eek, there is that "lifestyle" word again! Poly isn't a lifestyle so much as its an identity... it isn't something that you can go away for the weekend and do like swinging... its how most of us function on a day today basis because baby we were born this way... I know, that could be seen as "lifestyle" but some people get offended by the word as it indicates that we are , well,,, primarily, swingers and not poly.

To me I see it like my sexual identity. I am pansexual, and that is NOT a lifestyle, its something I was born with. I didn't chose it.

Make sense?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bookbug View Post
We function emotionally as a triad.

(Btw, neither the wife nor I are bisexual.)
So you are not a triad by technical terms then? You are a Vee it seems to me. And then I would wonder if you are actually a roomate as the fulfilment of the sexual aspect of your relationship dynamic seems to of vanished.

Of course you can have a non-sexual relationship, but in terms of clarity for yourself, what do you think? It doesn't sound like you are okay with that. What are you planning on doing to rectify the situation? Will you approach them in the future to change that up? Is it temporary this situation sexually?

It's only been five months right? Are you sure you didn't move in too fast? That is REALLY fast for a relationship of such dynamic to move in together. Sometimes things work themselves out if there is more pacing. Then again, there seems to be a complete stop of sex, so that might be the "slowing down" that was needed... I could see how this might change in time or the relationship aspect of your arrangement end.
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Old 07-04-2011, 12:56 PM
bookbug bookbug is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
eek, there is that "lifestyle" word again! Poly isn't a lifestyle so much as its an identity... it isn't something that you can go away for the weekend and do like swinging... its how most of us function on a day today basis because baby we were born this way... I know, that could be seen as "lifestyle" but some people get offended by the word as it indicates that we are , well,,, primarily, swingers and not poly.

To me I see it like my sexual identity. I am pansexual, and that is NOT a lifestyle, its something I was born with. I didn't chose it.

Make sense?
Yes, I understand what you are saying. I don't know that either myself or her husband are pansexual, and yet we both understand that you can love more than one person. Apparently, she does not, although we didn't realize it at the outset. She had no problem with sexual threesomes or vees up until she realized we loved each other. So, it appears that under her rules we can love each other, but not have sex; or we can have sex, but not love each other. We can't have both.

Her willingness to easily engage in sex play confused us. We thought love would only make the whole thing better; not worse. Instead it's become "if you love AND have sex with her, you must not want to be married to me."


Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
So you are not a triad by technical terms then? You are a Vee it seems to me. And then I would wonder if you are actually a roomate as the fulfilment of the sexual aspect of your relationship dynamic seems to of vanished.

Of course you can have a non-sexual relationship, but in terms of clarity for yourself, what do you think? It doesn't sound like you are okay with that. What are you planning on doing to rectify the situation? Will you approach them in the future to change that up? Is it temporary this situation sexually?
That is the $64,000 question. :-) I don't see it changing, but he does.

Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
It's only been five months right? Are you sure you didn't move in too fast? That is REALLY fast for a relationship of such dynamic to move in together. Sometimes things work themselves out if there is more pacing. Then again, there seems to be a complete stop of sex, so that might be the "slowing down" that was needed... I could see how this might change in time or the relationship aspect of your arrangement end.
Her husband seems to believe that given time, things will work out. I'm willing to give it time. That said, my personality is such that I always need to figure out how I'm going to cope with a worst case scenario. While yes, I'm am feeling the lack of physical intimacy, he and I are still very connected mentally and emotionally. Ironically, I have a deeper level of trust and connection with him than I've ever had before in my life. (One of God's little jokes, right?) And I think that is the crux of the matter of with him. He loves his wife, no doubt about it. That said, because of who they are personality-wise, he does not always get the connection he needs from her. I'm not sure he realized it until he met me, but now he knows something was lacking. Perhaps, she realized it too.

The thing she doesn't understand is that by denying us, she has actually weakened her bond with him. Whereas if she permitted at least the vee, he'd be happier and more able to appreciate her.

As for my part, this is the thing that screws me up ~ do I give up the best mental-emotional connection I've ever experienced in hopes of finding someone somewhat compatible for sex? Or remain celibate my entire life? I don't see either happening. I'm trying to find middle ground, which seems impossible.

I appreciate you conversing with me about this. It all seems so complicated and a bit tawdry at this point.

(Oh and I noticed a thread about MBTI personality types here. If it clarifies anything, he and I are both INTJs and she's ISFJ.)
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