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  #81  
Old 01-10-2018, 06:53 PM
breathemusic breathemusic is offline
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Backing up your feelings on the whole veto thing and that I think it's yucky for someone to ask a partner to stop seeing someone else just because they're uncomfortable.

It's completely acceptable for Ponytail to have a boundary that he can't date you if you're going to date Laptop, because that's his boundary about what he's going to do. And then it becomes your choice if you're willing to keep seeing Laptop. But like you said, if there's not a specific reason for the issue, then this could be anyone, not just Laptop. Which also means that the whole situation is super hypocritical since Ponytail started seeing someone new but isn't ok with you seeing someone new? Bleh.

I deal with similar insecurities with Sudo in that his fear of losing me makes it REALLY hard for him to experience me dating other people even if he's enjoying dating his own people. But he knows damn well that he should never ask me to stop seeing someone.

I hope Ponytail is able to get out of his own head, since he's creating a self fulfilling prophecy of worrying so much that he'll lose you that he's driving you away.
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Me: 32, female, nesting partner and Domme of Sudo, dating Echo
Sudo: 36, male, lives w/ me, no other current partners
Echo: 34, male, Dom, dating me, married w/ 2 kids

RCT (or Ty): 32, male, mono, current roommate/friend, dad to Lizzy
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  #82  
Old 01-11-2018, 05:03 AM
Ravenscroft Ravenscroft is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by breathemusic View Post
I think it's yucky for someone to ask a partner to stop seeing someone else just because they're uncomfortable.
IMO, it's perfectly okay to ask.

It goes bad when one expects.
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  #83  
Old 01-13-2018, 01:34 AM
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Refusnik Refusnik is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MsEmotional View Post

We are on the mend now, but yesterday things got super intense. Ponytail called me in the morning as I was getting ready for work, told me that this situation was too intense
You're much more understanding than I am- calling me right before work to unpack something like this would be a big red flag for me for a lot of reasons. Not the least of which is that it's generally a terrible time to discuss this sort of thing. Also because some of the things I do at work can kill me if I'm not paying attention. Even if that's not the case, it's kind of selfish time to bring this sort of thing up.




Quote:
Now, let's be clear. I am not in love with Laptop. I am in no way "choosing" Laptop over Ponytail. But Laptop is my only poly friend and I don't want to just make rash decisions about that relationship. I don't feel comfortable with the idea of Ponytail controlling my friendships and relationships and threatening to leave anytime that he feels insecure.
What you are doing by saying no to this demand is choosing yourself over Ponytail's insecurity, anxiety, and inability to respect your agency. You're absolutely right in your thinking that if you acquiesced this time, you'd just be kicking the can down the road, only making it easier for him to not work on himself and whatever issues he has. He has to take responsibility for himself and his feelings at some point, might as well be now.

Quote:
I really love Ponytail. But as many folks on here have said, this relationship has been full of drama from the very beginning. We both value having calm, compassionate relationships . . . why is it that we are constantly letting our emotions get in the way of that?
Do you think you're actually letting your emotions get in the way of that? Or do you think you're trying to stand up for what you want and he's having a big sad about it?
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  #84  
Old 01-17-2018, 04:20 AM
MsEmotional MsEmotional is offline
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Default If only I could hold onto this feeling . . .

I am feeling fantastic right now. I am happy for Glasses and Ginger. I am happy in my relationship with Ponytail. I am happy (albeit confused) about whatever is going on between myself and Laptop. I'm just happy.

Ponytail is feeling good and secure right now too. I called him this evening because I wanted to do some processing while we were both happy. I asked what we could do proactively to keep ourselves feeling content and good. He acknowledged that the pattern seems to be related to his mental health and that when he is in an insecure/depressed state, he has a hard time coping and ends up really stressed and panicky. I asked if there were patterns to his mental health cycles that we could be aware of and check in on. Are there days of the week, for example, that tend to be particularly stressful? He didn't know of anything, but it was a good conversation regardless. I'm hoping that we can continue the "brainstorming-while-not-currently-upset" communication.

My time with Laptop yesterday was delightful too. Like....really, really nice. I still have no idea what is going on. Our interactions now seem to have a similar flow to them:

1. I come over to his house and we give each other a hug.

2. He offers me tea or other beverages and we sit down to watch old episodes of a shared favorite show on Netflix.

3. He inches closer to me and starts rubbing my knee or rests his head on my shoulder.

4. We get to the end of an episode and one of us says, "Should we watch the next one?" and the other one says, "No, I want to make out now."

5. We fool around.

6. We end up partially dressed, cuddling, and watching one more episode. I play with his hair and he closes his eyes and smiles contentedly while he strokes my arm. Then I put my clothes back on and start to leave.

7. We have an awkward goodbye. (WHY is he so awkward when it comes to the goodbye? Why does that content and happy glow that he had in step 6 just disappear when he walks me to the door? Why doesn't he just kiss me and tell me he had a nice time and he's looking forward to seeing me again? He always seems so cavalier about it -- like, "Oh, you need to go now? Well, see ya later." Am I just too used to guys who are begging me to stay longer and I'm not familiar with what a normal goodbye is supposed to be like?)

8. I am in my car driving home and I'm like, "What just happened?"

I have SUCH a difficult time reading him. Steps 1 and 2 feel like regular friendship -- no romance/sexual tension whatsoever. Steps 3 and 4 feel like middle school all over again. Step 5 is like pure lust. Step 6 feels like the afterglow -- even though neither of us had an orgasm -- like, it feels intimate and sweet like we're in a relationship. Step 7 feels like he's back at the regular friendship stage and I'm experiencing whiplash because we were just all snuggly and half-naked a moment ago.

Step 8 is a little concerning to me -- is it okay that my primary post-date reaction is confusion? Is it okay that each date feels like three totally different relationships? Platonic Friendship/Fuck-Buddy/Romantic Relationship? If the transitions between activities were smoother, I would just call the whole thing "Friends with Benefits" -- but it literally doesn't feel like the same relationship from one hour to the next.

Whatever. I enjoy the friendship and I enjoy rolling around on the floor half-naked with him. I am going to assume that he feels the same way (and not read into what else he might be thinking) unless he clearly communicates otherwise. I talked to my therapist about my confusion and she told me that it is perhaps a good learning experience for me to just not categorize this thing whatsoever -- to be okay with saying, "I don't know what this is, but I'm enjoying myself," and having that be the end of the story.

I want to hold onto these feelings. These feelings of being satisfied and yet open to what the future may bring. This feeling of contentment and living in the moment.

Huh. Maybe that's the feeling that Laptop has when he's snuggled on my lap?
__________________
Me: 34, F, Bicurious

Amours
Glasses: my husband of 9 years --> 35, M, Queer
Ponytail: my first-poly-date-turned-boyfriend --> 35, M, Pansexual
Whiskers: potential (guy I am dating) —> 42, M, Queer

Metamours
Ginger: Glasses' partner --> 30ish, Transgender (FTM), LDR

Kids
Bug: my daughter with Glasses --> 3 years old
Pearl: my daughter with Glasses --> 5 years old
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  #85  
Old 01-17-2018, 12:58 PM
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FallenAngelina FallenAngelina is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MsEmotional View Post
I enjoy the friendship and I enjoy rolling around on the floor half-naked with him. I am going to assume that he feels the same way (and not read into what else he might be thinking) unless he clearly communicates otherwise.
Do you text in between visits? Texting is a great way to talk with each other about respective experiences of the date. I always exchange texts with my BF after a date and we gush to each other about what in particular we loved, upon reflection. You can initiate such mutual feedback - perhaps not gushing, but sharing particular moments that you especially liked/loved. That's an invitation for him to do the same and then you have more ongoing information about each other without having to have a serious pow-wow each time. The texting can be really fun and enhance that lovely afterglow, as well as give you clear information about what he is experiencing.
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Last edited by FallenAngelina; 01-17-2018 at 01:01 PM.
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  #86  
Old 01-21-2018, 04:16 AM
MsEmotional MsEmotional is offline
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Default Feeling Alone

So this evening I am feeling sad and alone. The kids are asleep. Ponytail is with a friend and hasn't answered any of my texts this evening. Glasses is staying the night with Ginger.

So I am trying to use this time productively to process -- but not fixate -- on what happened today.

Laptop and I decided (at my suggestion) to get the safe sex talk out of the way via text so that we wouldn't waste our (limited) time together on it. It started out normal, explaining when we were last tested, etc. But then, as I was clarifying something he had said about his use of condoms with folks other than his wife, he said that he thought it would be good to give me "the big picture" and explain some things.

Well, "the big picture" turned out to be an explanation of why he wasn't going to have PIV sex with me. He told me not to be mad, that he was thinking about this from a practical standpoint, not playing favorites. Essentially, the is really interested in this other woman (let's call her......SoulMate) and she's not comfortable being with anyone who has a big poly network (from a safe sex standpoint). So he decided not to have sex with me in order to keep his sex network (slightly) smaller.

After we finished up the rest of the safe sex discussion, I confessed to him that I didn't feel great about being told that he is foregoing sex with me in order to keep his options open with this other woman (who doesn't even know me, but has decided that I am the straw that breaks the camel's back when it comes to how risky she perceives him to be). I explained that it made me feel unsexy and uncomfortable.

He apologized, but also said that he was upset that I had jumped to the exact conclusion that he had been trying to avoid -- that I was jumping to the conclusion that he was shutting me out in order to preserve the possibility of something happening with SoulMate. I was like, "Uh....yes? Isn't that exactly what you are saying?"

He reiterated what he had been trying to convey and...yeah, it sounded exactly the same to me.

So he said he didn't know what else to add and I said ok and then we stopped texting for a few minutes.

Then he asked me if it bothered me that SoulMate and I are both important to him and that he cares about both of us.

I said no, that I had always interpreted that he was kind of in love with SoulMate and that it hadn't bothered me, but that I hadn't expected his relationship with her to impact what he and I did together.

He was confused and said that he didn't know where I had gotten the impression that he was in love with her or that his feelings for her were at all stronger than his feelings for me. I explained that he has been very clear that he wants a relationship with SoulMate, but he has not been clear that that's what he wants with me, so it seemed pretty obvious that he had stronger feelings for her than for me. He said that wasn't true at all, explained that he just doesn't know what's going on with me.

He basically said that he knows that he wants a relationship with her. Something is already happening with us and so he doesn't frame it as "I want a relationship with you" -- he doesn't understand what's going on between us and he's been okay with that because it is developing slowly. But that doesn't mean he doesn't want a relationship with me too.



Anyway, I felt a little better after he told me that he was excited about what was going on between us.....but then the more I thought about it, the more and more upset I felt again.

The way I see it, if SoulMate views Laptop as too much of a risk to have sex with, then wouldn't Laptop respect that boundary and just not have sex with SoulMate? Why bring sex with me (or lack thereof) into the boundaries between SoulMate and Laptop?

So I have pretty much decided that I no longer want to be intimate with Laptop. I don't feel comfortable with the way that he or his partners make decisions.

I guess the question now is, "What's next?" We had gotten into this thing with the understanding that we both value the friendship and don't want to fuck up the friendship. So do we stay friends? Do we part ways for a month or so and then reconnect as friends after we've had some physical distance?
__________________
Me: 34, F, Bicurious

Amours
Glasses: my husband of 9 years --> 35, M, Queer
Ponytail: my first-poly-date-turned-boyfriend --> 35, M, Pansexual
Whiskers: potential (guy I am dating) —> 42, M, Queer

Metamours
Ginger: Glasses' partner --> 30ish, Transgender (FTM), LDR

Kids
Bug: my daughter with Glasses --> 3 years old
Pearl: my daughter with Glasses --> 5 years old
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  #87  
Old 01-21-2018, 01:33 PM
MsEmotional MsEmotional is offline
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I texted Laptop and told him I thought we should cancel our plans for tomorrow, that I didn’t think our in-person conversation would go better than our texting had gone. He said he was disappointed but that he felt like he was “getting what was coming to him.” I told him I’d be up late if he wanted to check in after he got home (he was at a party with friends).

So we did. He said this was important to him, and asked me what I was feeling.

I said that my feeling is that we should put the friendship cap back on the relationship. He seemed disappointed but said he wasn’t going to try to talk me out of it and that he appreciated that I wanted to still salvage the friendship. So we are actually still getting together today. Which will be weird, but is probably the best way to still be friends. (I read in an article that one of the key characteristics of former FWB who stay friends is that they actively choose to maintain the friendship and don’t just get awkward and drift apart. Yeah, I know, technically we weren’t FWB in his mind, but that’s kind of the category that this falls into for me.)

I am nervous, and still a little hurt, but I think this is the right decision.
__________________
Me: 34, F, Bicurious

Amours
Glasses: my husband of 9 years --> 35, M, Queer
Ponytail: my first-poly-date-turned-boyfriend --> 35, M, Pansexual
Whiskers: potential (guy I am dating) —> 42, M, Queer

Metamours
Ginger: Glasses' partner --> 30ish, Transgender (FTM), LDR

Kids
Bug: my daughter with Glasses --> 3 years old
Pearl: my daughter with Glasses --> 5 years old
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  #88  
Old 01-22-2018, 02:48 AM
MsEmotional MsEmotional is offline
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Default Yay me!

We had a good conversation and I heard him out on his reasoning, but I stood my ground and explained to him that I was still putting the breaks on any relationship between us. I was firm in my explanation of why I felt like his decision-making process was unacceptable and disrespectful to me, even though I understood that he had given it a lot of thought and felt he was going the “fair” thing for everyone involved. I reminded him that when Ponytail had asked to place similar restrictions on my relationship with Laptop, I had handled it responsibly — between me and Ponytail — and not expected Laptop to be okay with such relationship intrusion from a metamour he’s never met.

We ended up hanging out after the conversation and spent about 5 hours together in total. It was actually (mostly) easy to go back to friendship. I mean,- little awkward of course, but this was still really recent and so it wasn’t all that difficult to backpedal.

When I got home he sent me a long text saying that he really appreciated me and how much he is learning from his relationship/friendship with me. That he appreciates being able to stay friends with me and that I was honest with him about my feelings, and that I called him on his shit and told him how he could do better.

That felt good. I feel the same way. I appreciate our friendship and I am happy to be able to maintain it.
__________________
Me: 34, F, Bicurious

Amours
Glasses: my husband of 9 years --> 35, M, Queer
Ponytail: my first-poly-date-turned-boyfriend --> 35, M, Pansexual
Whiskers: potential (guy I am dating) —> 42, M, Queer

Metamours
Ginger: Glasses' partner --> 30ish, Transgender (FTM), LDR

Kids
Bug: my daughter with Glasses --> 3 years old
Pearl: my daughter with Glasses --> 5 years old
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  #89  
Old 01-22-2018, 04:10 AM
Leetah Leetah is offline
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Yeah! Yay you!

He really was being cluless at best saying "I want to get with you but not until I find out if I can get with this other person I met."


Leetah
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  #90  
Old 01-23-2018, 03:43 PM
MsEmotional MsEmotional is offline
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Default It wasn't wrapped up in as tidy of a package as I had thought . . .

Well, after how well things went on Sunday, I felt like I was walking on air. I felt confident, proud of myself even. The whole situation with Laptop seemed to be tied off with a nice little bow and back to a lovely, mutually-agreed-upon friendship.

In that spirit, I sent him a few suggestions for ways that he could work with SoulMate around safer sex options that wouldn't impact outside partners. I didn't mean to pressure him or to be all "I told you so" about it or anything, I just wanted to help him avoid the same mistakes by recognizing other options and the importance of discussing those things before making promises to someone.

He sent me a message asking me if it was safe to assume that I wanted him to renegotiate with SoulMate. I said no, not at all, I was just wanting to give him some options that might solve the safe sex problem for her....that he should do whatever makes sense for him.

He said that he definitely planned to reevaluate this situation with her in the future, and he wanted to be forthcoming with me about this. I wasn't sure what he meant by being forthcoming with me, but I'd had a drink by that point so I kind of just ignored it and said that I agreed he shouldn't expect to never be allowed any new partners -- unless he wanted polyfidelity, which might work for him, of course.

He said that lots of relationship structures might work for him....monogamy, polyfidelity, etc. But that the situation he's in includes me and wanting to make that work with me someday. That he wants me.

I kind of panicked. Had I given him the impression that I was putting the brakes on this relationship, but not actually putting the parking brake on it? Like, that I was saying, "No, not now because you hurt me....but maybe later...."?

I explained that I thought we didn't have a strong chance of being sustainable anyway -- that he has a lot of rules with LadyLaptop and that therefore it was likely I would have chafed under one of those rules eventually.

This led to a whole discussion about ideology when it comes to polyamory -- hierarchical vs non-hierarchical relationship structures.....willingness to impose certain restrictions on some relationships in order to make other relationships successful, etc. I opened up about just how much it had hurt me to have him prioritize sex with SoulMate over me. He opened up about how difficult of a time he has with not pleasing someone when they open up to him in the hopes that he will bend to their will.

It was a good conversation, and I am glad that I am helping him identify some potentially-unhealthy patterns in his relationships. But it makes me feel even more close to him and emotionally vulnerable.

Ironic that Laptop was the one who helped me figure out how to set boundaries with Ponytail. I told him that and he found it ironic too, explaining that he was able to see that situation from a more objective perspective....that logically he knows the importance of healthy boundaries but that he has a hard time when it comes to his own relationships.

In a way, we would kind of be perfect for each other. We both struggle with bending to the will of our partners and prioritizing their mental health needs above our own -- but we don't put those same restrictions on other people, so we'd be great in a relationship with each other. But in our current situations, there are too many other people involved to make that work.
__________________
Me: 34, F, Bicurious

Amours
Glasses: my husband of 9 years --> 35, M, Queer
Ponytail: my first-poly-date-turned-boyfriend --> 35, M, Pansexual
Whiskers: potential (guy I am dating) —> 42, M, Queer

Metamours
Ginger: Glasses' partner --> 30ish, Transgender (FTM), LDR

Kids
Bug: my daughter with Glasses --> 3 years old
Pearl: my daughter with Glasses --> 5 years old
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