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Old 08-23-2011, 03:30 PM
Sharer Sharer is offline
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Default Helping the Mono Find Happy

I'm in a relationship with a married couple. He's poly but she identifies as mono and although shes trying very hard to adapt she can't seem to relax and let go. I've known them both for a very long time so I'm not a stranger but this doesn't seem to be of any comfort. She treats me as competition which is a very weird vibe. Im worried because she seems to be struggling with all of this and as a means of coping she has begun to control every aspect of his and my relationship.

Currently they are on vacation which is great. I'm hoping it may help her to relax a bit and it's always good to have some focused time with your love. He and I communicate by text once a day and do a check in. As part of the control she reads every single text and email he receives. Personally, I don't mind if she does, were not trying to hide anything, but it inevitably upsets her. Since it upsets her he has begun to edit his texts to me so they are very generic and emotionless. Hes told me hes doing this on purpose so she won't be hurt but it really irks me.

She and I are very different people. She's funny as hell but pragmatic and grounded and I'm a little more giggly, romantic and bohemian. Strangely, she seems to find these differences a threat. I think she believes that because hes poly it means that shes not good enough and if she becomes more like me he may decide he doesnt need to do this anymore. Both he and I have explained that its just not so and its not about me being a better fit for him. He loves her just the way she is and just because Im in the picture it doesnt mean he loves her any less. It just means he loves me too.

Shes trying very hard to make his poly needs fit into her life but Im worried that we are going to break her. I like this woman and dont want to see her shattered but I also love him and would be terribly hurt if we had to end our relationship. Soooooo after that very long intro I'm just wondering if there any monos out there who can give me some advice on how to help her find her happiness in this situation?
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Old 08-23-2011, 05:00 PM
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Some tough questions as there are some missing bits of information here. When they got married did her husband identify as poly already or has the nature of their relationship changed since you were added? How did you become introduced to their lives? This makes a difference in how to offer help or relate to his wife's frame of mind.
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Old 08-23-2011, 05:12 PM
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Good questions! He only "came out" as poly in the past year. I've known them both for a very long time and was introduced into the mix shortly after he asked her to try it and she agreed to give it a go. It's still pretty new.
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Old 08-23-2011, 05:30 PM
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I'm a long term mono secondary so I can't fully relate to his wife. Sage on here is a great source from her perspective though. That being said...have maximum patience. I know it is frustrating but you have to push yourself beyond the norm to give her space and let her find her way in this.

This won't sound very nice but I am coming from some experience so please don't take this personally - Don't forget she is giving you a gift, you are taking something from her. At least that is how she is likely perceiving it. From my perspective as the person who entered into a relationship with a married woman, I felt this way too. Redpepper's husband gave me a gift just as she gave me the gift of her love. I offered nothing in return but the difference is that he is also poly so he thinks differently than a monogamous partner. There is something in being poly for both of them. There is very little to create that type of compersion in a mono/poly relationship.

Give space, be patient, don't push. If she can be healthy and happy in this than you will see the rewards in time.
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Old 08-23-2011, 05:32 PM
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Another thing..she may see you as the reason for him "becoming" poly. That could cause a very big hurdle. And if she suspects an affair of a physical or emotional nature with you before his declaration of poly things will just be harder. Find out and deal with it.
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Old 08-24-2011, 04:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG View Post
I'm a long term mono secondary so I can't fully relate to his wife. Sage on here is a great source from her perspective though. That being said...have maximum patience. I know it is frustrating but you have to push yourself beyond the norm to give her space and let her find her way in this.

This won't sound very nice but I am coming from some experience so please don't take this personally - Don't forget she is giving you a gift, you are taking something from her. At least that is how she is likely perceiving it. From my perspective as the person who entered into a relationship with a married woman, I felt this way too. Redpepper's husband gave me a gift just as she gave me the gift of her love. I offered nothing in return but the difference is that he is also poly so he thinks differently than a monogamous partner. There is something in being poly for both of them. There is very little to create that type of compersion in a mono/poly relationship.

Give space, be patient, don't push. If she can be healthy and happy in this than you will see the rewards in time.
Agreed, when my ex-husband asked me to try poly, I very much felt that I was giving something to the women he saw. Some of them I wanted to give to, others not, depending mostly upon whether they were also acknowledging the gift or not...

I wish you all three the best.
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Old 08-24-2011, 02:33 PM
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I guess my only wonder after reading your post is if she is having such a hard time with this and its making her feel not good enough and at competing odds with you - how did this get to the "he and I love each other too" stage? I'd never keep pushing to a connection of that level with so much being left unresolved. Maybe this is all why she is struggling? She feels no matter if she can't accept this and it will mean she has to exit stage left, the two of you are just going to keep on going no matter what the result for their marriage?
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:09 PM
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First off there is A LOT of threads here on mono/poly relationships. Its our biggest tag. Do a search for "mono/poly" under the tags and have a look around.

I am Mono's partner. I agree that in time she will tire of the texting rule and other annoying attempts to control. I would just give control to her as much as I can and pick my battles. Funny how giving someone some control makes them want to give it back.

She might very well feel as if she is giving you a gift. I wanted to point out that this is a very mono way of looking at it and not bad, but just "a" way of looking at it. Some might argue that she is selfish and controlling and some might see that she is making attempts to get through the loss she feels of a relationship that doesn't exist as she once knew it. It takes time and adjustment. You need to give her all the time she needs I think if you want this man in your life and a possible friendship with her. To me that is respectful, considerate and builds trust and integrity.

I would suggest doing activities with her as you did before so you have a venue for talking and expressing yourself. She could also benefit from being able to share some of her fears with you as well. Metamour relationships make or break poly relationship dynamics in my experience. Working on them is as important if not more in some instances, than working on ones partnership.
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