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Old 04-05-2015, 04:41 AM
Silentsaturn Silentsaturn is offline
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Unhappy A lack of consulting others

In my 5 years of being poly, I have run into this same problem over and over again and It has left me at my wits end. I want to know if there are others who have had this same problem as myself and how did they go about solving it.

My problem is this: in almost every polyamorus relationship I have been involved in, I keep running into poly people who don't consult a partner or potential partner if they have a problem with them or a problem with something that has happened and instead of sitting down with those people and talking it out, trying to find a way to fix the problem , they instead choose to make rash decisions such as terminating the relationship with out consulting the person in question.

There have been countless times where there have been minor problems that have cropped up between myself and a partner/potential partner and they never sat down and talked to me about it and did something rash instead. These are things that could have been easily talked about and solved in an evening of discussion but more times than not, the relationship was terminated with out talking about it and I have been notified about it via text message one time too many.

Apologies if this sounds ranty but I am so sick and tired of my voice being cut off from speaking and not getting back any respect. To show respect for people, weather it's a poly relationship or a customer at work, I always make myself available and open to talk to, I listen, I'm supportive, and I always tell people that if there is a problem or they have a problem with me that they can come to me and tell me directly because I want to work with them to solve the problem so things can go back to normal but I never get any of this in return. It's really passive aggressive and it hurts A LOT. It's also extremely disheartening and has made finding new partners to be almost impossible and I honestly don't know what to do.

Any insight or advice or anything anyone has would be very helpful.
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Old 04-05-2015, 05:46 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Hi Silentsaturn,
Sorry things have been so rough for you in your poly journey. Break-ups via text messages really suck!

One insight I can offer is this: whenever I see a problematic or unpleasant pattern that crops up in most of my relationships, I look at the common denominator -- me.

I don't look at myself as a victim, nor as the one to blame. Rather, I see relationships as a catalyst for learning something about myself, and the people with whom I am involved are all my teachers, in many ways. It is also important to realize that relationships are not 50-50, but 100-100. In other words, we are all 100% responsible for our parts in the dynamic. So, when I am frequently disappointed or treated in ways that feel hurtful or disrespectful over numerous relationships, what is it about me that puts me in these kinds of situations?

So, I ask myself questions such as:
  • Am I usually attracted to a certain kind of person who isn't a fit for me, or isn't capable of being the kind of partner I long for? If so, why is that? What am I looking for? Can I change something inside myself to broaden the kinds of people I am attracted to or find someone who is a fit?

  • Am I blinding myself to finding partners who would treat me well, as a way to deprive myself of the kinds of relationships I want but feel deep down that I don't really deserve?

  • Do these patterns seem familiar, like a dynamic with a parent, teacher, or something else from my childhood? If so, is there a way I can resolve whatever issue keeps coming up so that I don't have to keep playing it out with people in my life today?

  • Do I truly believe that I deserve fulfilling, satisfying, loving relationships or is there some part of me that believes that is for other people, not me?

  • In the beginning stages of a relationship, do I overlook and let certain transgressions or offenses slide, due to things like NRE, not wanting to come across as difficult, or hoping things will just get better on their own -- thereby sending the message that I am okay with such treatment?

  • Am I paying attention to whether or not words and actions of both myself and my partners match up?

  • Have I participated and given in my relationships as much as I expect my partners to participate and give?

  • Am I missing or denying obvious signs that things are going wrong until it's too far gone? Should I speak up more often?

  • Do I send the message that I am the kind of person who can be overlooked or brushed aside easily? What am I doing that sends that message?

  • Is there any feedback I get from partners that seems similar to what other partners have told me? If so, what can I learn from that?
Obviously, the kind of self-examination and resolving of issues that come out of questioning oneself in this way won't happen in an afternoon, but maybe some of these questions will help you in the process of figuring things out.
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Last edited by nycindie; 04-05-2015 at 02:51 PM.
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Old 04-05-2015, 09:29 AM
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FallenAngelina FallenAngelina is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silentsaturn View Post
These are things that could have been easily talked about and solved in an evening of discussion but more times than not, the relationship was terminated with out talking about it and I have been notified about it via text message one time too many.
Often people hang their hat on one "reason" for a breakup, when in truth they have a lot of reasons for a parting that's been a long time coming, but don't want to be overly hurtful. When it comes to opting out of a relationship, there is usually much more going on than one tiny problem that could have been solved in an evening of discussion. Nycindie's excellent list of self-reflective questions is a great place to start if you're looking to make changes in your relationship patterns.
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Old 04-05-2015, 10:37 AM
MightyMax MightyMax is offline
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My first thought was that I often cite the smaller, non-offensive reasons for terminating a relationship, especially one in the early stages. Also, if there are too many small things, it makes the relationship seem like it will be a lot of hard work.
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Old 04-05-2015, 04:36 PM
Invi Invi is offline
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Do you feel like you are approachable about problems?
I ask, because I have previously been told that I am not. That people worry about how I will respond, and would rather avoid it altogether. They don't want confrontation, sometimes to the point that they'd rather cut ties than talk about.. whatever it was.
While I may not understand exactly how they feel that way about me in particular (I consider myself pretty level-headed, not prone to emotional outbursts, I don't yell at people, and so on), I understand the sentiment because I am the same way with some other people. I have a hard time telling my partner when something is wrong, for example, much in a similar way that I have trouble communicating with my father.
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Old 04-05-2015, 04:43 PM
Silentsaturn Silentsaturn is offline
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I agree, letting the small things build up is a very bad thing. That's why I try to regularly check with both myself and my partners/potential partners to see if there has been any kind of build up of the small things and if there has been some build up we sit down, talk it out, and come up with ways to manage and/or stop that build up from happening.

Sometimes it doesn't even get to that point. I've had it where pretty much right off the bat things go from great one day, to "I don't think this is going to work" the next and every time it has left my head spinning. What drives me even more nuts is when I ask those people "why didn't you tell me about this sooner?" They kinda look all innocent, twiddling their thumbs going 'doopie doo' then run away.

As for your questions nycindie, thank you very much for sharing those with me. They have certainly given me some pause to think.

A thought that has been rattling around my head as I write this is: why do so many people think that the easier way is to just run away from problems instead of trying to solve them? I actually enjoy problem solving. It allows people a glimpse into some insight of themselves and allows the creative juices to flow.

I know that some people get scared of problem solving and may not be used to doing it etc... But they don't have to do it all alone.

In a nut shell I want partners who are not afraid to sit down and work on solutions for problems that crop up in their relationships that benefit not only the relationship(s) these problems affect, but I want partners who will encourage others to problem solve as well. To me, that shows that they value and cherish what they have and that they want to take care of it so it can grow and thrive.
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Old 04-05-2015, 04:50 PM
Silentsaturn Silentsaturn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Invi View Post
Do you feel like you are approachable about problems?
I ask, because I have previously been told that I am not. That people worry about how I will respond, and would rather avoid it altogether. They don't want confrontation, sometimes to the point that they'd rather cut ties than talk about.. whatever it was.
While I may not understand exactly how they feel that way about me in particular (I consider myself pretty level-headed, not prone to emotional outbursts, I don't yell at people, and so on), I understand the sentiment because I am the same way with some other people. I have a hard time telling my partner when something is wrong, for example, much in a similar way that I have trouble communicating with my father.
I've heard that one too many times and it makes me want to beat my head on a wall. It doesn't matter how many times I not only tell people that I have the emotional maturity and intelligence to handle hearing some criticisms, but show them that I can, they still think that I'm going to get hurt or offended! By running away no not talking about it, they are guaranteeing the one thing they didn't want to happen.

Apologies if I seem a bit intense and flabbergasted but that's exactly how I feel while writing this.

Funny thing is, usually more times than not, after I sit down with the person and confront them about running away and why, and show them that I'm not upset, that's when they usually open up. Seriously what's up with that?
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Old 04-05-2015, 04:51 PM
GreenAcres GreenAcres is offline
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In addition to all of the good observations and advice given here, how long are these relationships gone on, or how many dates into the "perspective" relationship are you?

I ask because, if I go on a date or two with someone and it's just clear to me that something isn't working out or that I am simply not attracted to them, I don't feel the need to sit down and have an in-depth discussion with them about it (and I don't consider it "running away" in the early stages). People aren't always a fit, which doesn't make anyone a bad person, it's just how it is; but, I don't see the need to make a huge fuss over it with someone who is just a "perspective partner." I probably wouldn't tell them via text, but I also wouldn't really see the need to make myself available for a long chat over it, either. And, I wouldn't necessarily feel the need to explain things, aside from "I am not interested in pursuing a further relationship with you, but wish you well." I am not particularly interested in someone arguing to change my mind because my decision deserves respect. And, someone being really peeved or annoyed, or trying to get me to have a long conversation about something like that in the earliest stages of acquainting with one another, wouldn't exactly make me reconsider--it would probably creep me out and come across as clingy.

Relationships of any kind aren't democracies, one party can choose to end them, and the other party needn't necessarily agree. In longer relationships with a history, one may choose to try and work those differences out with a partner rather than end it, of course; but, there is no rule that one person must consult the other if they don't want to continue dating.

If this is happening in longer-term relationships, then that is different; but, since you'd said "potential partners," I wondered if this was often just in the getting-to-know-each-other phase.
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Last edited by GreenAcres; 04-05-2015 at 04:54 PM.
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Old 04-05-2015, 05:33 PM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Maybe it is a matter of improving your vetting process.

There is nothing wrong with stating up front: "I want partners who are not afraid to sit down and work on solutions for problems that crop up in their relationships that benefit not only the relationship(s) these problems affect, but I want partners who will encourage others to problem solve as well. To me, that shows that they value and cherish what they have and that they want to take care of it so it can grow and thrive."
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"Oh, oh, can't you see? Love is the drug for me." ~Bryan Ferry
"Love and the self are one . . ." ~Leo Buscaglia

Click here for a Solo Poly view on hierarchical relationships
Click here to find out why the Polyamorous Misanthrope is feeling disgusted.
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Old 04-05-2015, 06:40 PM
Inyourendo Inyourendo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HappilyFallenAngel View Post
Often people hang their hat on one "reason" for a breakup, when in truth they have a lot of reasons for a parting that's been a long time coming, but don't want to be overly hurtful. When it comes to opt of a relationship, there is usually much more going on than one tiny problem that could have been solved in an evening of discussion. Nycindie's excellent list of self-reflective questions is a great place to start if you're looking to make changes in your relationship patterns.
I agree with this, seems like if they wanted to make it work they would. I've made some pretty lame excuses to break up with people in the past. Seems like once the NRE is over when I first start dating someone i realize i dont really like the person enough to continue. Could be I don't like their habits, the way they smell, any number of superficial reasons really
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