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Old 12-06-2018, 01:07 AM
sabrina8 sabrina8 is offline
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Default I think I am causing everyone pain

Hey, people!
I am turning to this forum as somehow last resort. I am in pain and confusion.
I had a two year relationship with an incarcerated person, which drained me both physically and emotionally. It was full of gaslighting and emotional abuse that I recognized only much later. I had a suicide attempt - I was constantly feeling bad and not even being able to understand how and why. Still, after this attempt I was willing to stay with this person, marry him and wait for him outside. What changed and made me end it was that nothing was changing - I was feeling depressed and unhappy and did not feel loved. A person, who seemed to genuinely love me and see in me what I did not even see in myself in terms of personality and potential entered my life. I will call him A. He helped me recognize the abuse, claimed that he would be honored to be in my life in whatever way I decide. I have never felt so stripped emotionally with anyone to this day and shortly after I ended my previous relationship we got together. I was so happy and feeling like I have found my life partner. That all of the men in my life have hurt me so much and he was so precious, wise and sensitive, having experienced abuse - both physical and emotional, himself.
We agreed in the beginning of our relationship that we want an open one. He had to travel and work and legal purposes every couple of months. We did not talk so much about the format of the open relationship - and it was needless, we were so in love, having eyes only for each other. We got married because of legal purposes - this was the only way he could be in my country for more than 3 months legally and not having to go back to his country all the time. After we got married and before he got his visa, he went to his country to work for longer (and also get the visa) so he would not have to go back there soon. I, myself also went to travel and do a seasonal job abroad, which turned to a life changing experience.
During my travels, I met a guy that I had a mind blowing crush on, had sex with him numerous times and got confused. I will call him B. I knew I loved my partner A, yet I was so attracted to this guy. I crossed so many sexual boundaries with him that I never thought I would and I was feeling that he cares about how I feel, so he would never do something to hurt me. I basically was feeling that there is another decent man, who was not just a friend and I could be with. His character is sort of unlike mine - I overshare, I soak up people's emotions and he, he keeps it all to himself. I think he could feel something for me, I even caught him talking to a stranger about his feelings for me, while we were waiting for my bus and I went to the shop for a moment. He told a stranger things about me he would not tell me. I kind of appreciated that, I felt he did not want to confuse me, since I was confused enough - I had never hidden the fact that I was in a relationship and married from him. He is really dear to my heart.
After this happening, guilt was crushing me. My partner asked me to have a break on this open relationship thing until we both come back and meet at home. I wholeheartedly agreed.
At the seasonal job, I met another person, C. He was immediately drawn to me, I was reluctant to do anything with him at first. Then I could see how much he cares, I immediately told him my situation. Still, everything that he wanted to do was kiss me and hold me in my sleep. I was attracted to him, both sexually and as a person. I confessed my attraction to my partner and my willingness to act on it. My partner gave me, what I read as mixed signals then and from a distance and through talks and chatting it seemed to be one day ok, one day not. Like an emotional roller coaster. I guess I got selfish and acted spontaneously on my feelings and had sex with C. When we parted ways, we cried. To this day this remains one of the most emotional and dramatic moments in my life.
My partner A was broken by me being with C, breaking a promise and what he saw as, compromising our relationship to be with someone else.
I end up consumed by guilt, still feeling like I followed my heart in each case and still... consumed by guilt and as if I am hurting everyone. I talk to C with whom we are very close, realizing we want different things from life and a relationship is not possible. I feel like I need to let him go. I talk to my partner A that I am waiting to come after 5 months apart. Because I want to be clear about mine and his feelings, I am going to see B and talk about what happened, what he wants, how he feels about it etc. A is feeling bad about it.
And me, I feel worthless. I feel like I should have died, that whatever I touch, I destroy.
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  #2  
Old 12-06-2018, 11:04 PM
Vicki82 Vicki82 is offline
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Before I say anything else, I just wanted to say that it sounds like you're having a really difficult time right now and you could use some support that is more than just internet strangers on a message board. Have you talked to a doctor or a counsellor about your feelings? I think it would really help you to have some professional support. If you feel like you're having a crisis, I would definitely suggest you go to your local ER for help.
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Me: 36 yrs, poly pansexual Dominant woman.
My People:
Henry, 31yrs, my husband & collared submissive (4yrs), poly, pansexual, currently no other partners.
Charles, 26yrs, new boyfriend (Aug 2018), poly, heteroflexible, currently no other partners.
Jennifer, 43yrs, ex girlfriend but very close friend.
Mark/xH, my ex husband of ten years.
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  #3  
Old 12-06-2018, 11:31 PM
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kdt26417 kdt26417 is offline
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Hello sabrina8,

I think your main sticking point here is that A is having second thoughts about the open relationship you and he agreed upon. I am thinking that he no longer wants an open relationship, but he is reluctant to say so, so he is asking for a break. You probably would have been better off saying, "No, thank you," to the break, but I guess at the time you didn't know you were going to meet C. I think that now you need to decide whether you can live monogamously and be happy, because that's probably what A wants you to do. If you can't, then you and A are probably not compatible. I'm sorry if it sounds like I am recommending a divorce, I hope it doesn't come to that. You can't have a relationship with C in any case so that part is a moot point. Also I get the impression you broke up with B, so maybe that is a moot point as well. You might as well repair your relationship with A, but be aware that it will probably be a closed relationship. Can you live with that?

You did agree to take a break and in that case, probably shouldn't have had sex with C. But maybe having sex with C was your subconscious way of realizing that monogamy is not for you, not even taking a break on things. I think you are being rather hard on yourself, you are caught in a complicated and confusing situation but that doesn't mean you are some kind of villain. You just need to figure out what you want in life, and realize that you and A may be on diverging paths. Maybe you need to break up with A, and look for a new partner who will want to have an open/poly relationship with you. And A could look for a new partner who will want to have a closed/mono relationship with him. This would probably mean you would have to be alone for awhile, but it might be the kindest thing to do to both you and A in the long run. Think carefully about whether or not you can stand to live faithfully monogamously going forward. What if you meet another C? Could that happen?

It seems that you are hurting very much inside. I'm very sorry about that, and hope you can get to feeling better about yourself. You are a worthy and worthwhile person, you deserve good things in life.

Sincerely,
Kevin T.
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:21 AM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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I'm sorry you struggle.

FWIW? I think the mistake was here.

Quote:
We agreed in the beginning of our relationship that we want an open one. He had to travel and work and legal purposes every couple of months. We did not talk so much about the format of the open relationship - and it was needless, we were so in love, having eyes only for each other.
Sounds like you are realizing that you DID need to talk about the format of the Open relationship so both are on the same page.

And maybe here.

Quote:
We got married because of legal purposes - this was the only way he could be in my country for more than 3 months legally and not having to go back to his country all the time.
There is more to marriage than just making Visa things easier.

Quote:
After this happening, guilt was crushing me. My partner asked me to have a break on this open relationship thing until we both come back and meet at home. I wholeheartedly agreed.
What crime did you do that you are guilty of? At that point you were in an Open relationship and able to see other people. You saw B. So... why the crushing thing?

I assume you mean your husband A asked to Close until you got home. Did you actually want to Close? Or did you actually want to leave it Open but agreed to Close from the guilt feelings?

If you wanted to leave it Open, you could have said "No. I do not agree. I prefer to leave it Open, and leave any renegotiation talk to when you are here."

Quote:
I was attracted to him, both sexually and as a person. I confessed my attraction to my partner and my willingness to act on it. My partner gave me, what I read as mixed signals then and from a distance and through talks and chatting it seemed to be one day ok, one day not. Like an emotional roller coaster. I guess I got selfish and acted spontaneously on my feelings and had sex with C. When we parted ways, we cried. To this day this remains one of the most emotional and dramatic moments in my life.
Well, there you tried to be honest about your attraction to C to your husband A. I'm not hearing anything firm though.

Like "I am getting mixed signals from you. I am telling you that I cannot keep this agreement to remain Closed. I want to be Open. I want to date C. I don't want to break agreements. I want to talk about renegotiating. If that is not possible, I want to talk about disbanding."

Quote:
My partner A was broken by me being with C, breaking a promise and what he saw as, compromising our relationship to be with someone else.
He had a share in the situation making by giving mixed messages. Sometimes ok sometimes not. It wasn't all you making the situation. You both had a share in it.

Quote:
I end up consumed by guilt, still feeling like I followed my heart in each case and still... consumed by guilt and as if I am hurting everyone.

People are adults here. The are responsible for their OWN well being. I think you could let them be. Rather than you trying to be responsible for the well being of everyone around you. That's too much load to carry. Each person taking care of themselves is fair. Then everyone has a person to look out for.

After that "basic" if you have extra energy to gift? THEN you can contribute "bonus" to other people's well being when they make rational and reasonable requests of you.

Quote:
I talk to C with whom we are very close, realizing we want different things from life and a relationship is not possible. I feel like I need to let him go.
Then let him go.

Quote:
I talk to my partner A that I am waiting to come after 5 months apart.
Then wait to see each other in person before you decide anything else.

Quote:
Because I want to be clear about mine and his feelings, I am going to see B and talk about what happened, what he wants, how he feels about it etc.
Fair enough. But you haven't promised B exclusivity.

Quote:
A is feeling bad about it.
Fair enough. It is reasonable to feel a bit yucky when something happens.

Mistakes happen in life. Not the end of the world. People can learn from mistakes, heal, and then feel better.

Quote:
And me, I feel worthless. I feel like I should have died, that whatever I touch, I destroy.
These are pretty strong words. Have you gotten professional care for the previous suicide attempt and this depression sounding stuff?

Some people having conflict is not the end of the world. Not FUN, but neither is it total doom and destruction where you need to die.

All you can do at this time is apologize to A. Say you don't want to be a person that breaks agreements. And want to renegotiate agreements so they are actually keepable when he comes home.

Then while waiting the 5 mos to see each other? Seek a counselor to help you get your thoughts in order and provide you with some support.

When he returns? Talk it out.

If he wants Closed? And you want Open? Then you may have become incompatible. You may have to part ways.

I think being up front and honest with each other would be better than bending selves into NEW pretzels, so be prepared when you talk to be super duper honest about what it is you want from life.

I encourage you to line up a counselor though to aid you in this difficult time. And perhaps talk about what healthy relationships are and are not. You sound like you carry too much and are over-responsible It's not ALL on you when things happen in a relationship.

Sometimes things just happen.

GL!
Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 12-07-2018 at 03:28 AM.
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  #5  
Old 12-07-2018, 03:24 AM
WhatHappened WhatHappened is offline
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I'm more in agreement with Vicki. You have a poor track record, in my opinion, in choosing men and who you fall for. You cheated on your husband when you had agreed to take a break.

I strongly suggest you exercise self discipline and spend a minimum of six months, preferably a year, getting some counseling and getting at some of the roots of why you choose as you do, why you cheat and tell yourself you somehow couldn't help it, and more.
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  #6  
Old 12-11-2018, 02:12 AM
MayDecember MayDecember is offline
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Hi Sabrina.

I would take the Adverse Childhood Experiences test (ACE). You can google it and it is a score out of ten things.

Your choices demonstrate your score is going to be even higher than mine. The decisions you've made will be rooted in imprinting on bad relationship behavior when you were a child. Repeating bad patterns.

Your score will be strong evidence you should get professional help. I did it through a lot of reading, correspondence, and the least productive was actually the counseling from people with very little experience in childhood abuse and manipulative behavior.

Warm regards...
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Old Yesterday, 01:15 AM
sabrina8 sabrina8 is offline
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Thank you so much for all the advice and especially for the kind words. I really needed it all and it helped me order things in my head a bit.
To the people who are advising me to see a therapist or turn to professional help - I abstain from this in this case because in my country things, including therapy are very conservative. I cannot imagine finding understanding and non-judgement by a therapist here. There are not so many poly people or resources on the subject and this is generally unheard of.
I can see many results in myself of child emotional neglect, abuse etc. Thank you so much to the person, who suggested the test, my score is 7. Would you mind sharing more resources and experience? Sometimes I am really not certain if my sexual behavior is "normal" or a result of trauma, meaning this need for touch, love and companionship I really do have. Still, I do stand behind my feelings for people, I have had just sex with no attachment and I know the difference. It just happened that I met two new human beings I was really fascinated by. So I don't understand myself, I don't know what I am or how to continue my life. I cry a lot, I am anxious and afraid of the future...
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Old Yesterday, 05:51 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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Quote:
So I don't understand myself, I don't know what I am or how to continue my life. I cry a lot, I am anxious and afraid of the future...
I'm sorry to hear that.

I don't know if it helps you any... but maybe rather than "one stop shopping" you think about it more like "reducing my sads, one little step at a time?"

Maybe you could be willing to see a local counselor about just the childhood stuff or just the anxiety or just the suicide stuff so you have a suicide management plan. There are templates online you could print and take the counselor to help you fill out.

When ready? Maybe Skype or call a poly friendly for the poly stuff so it's not limited to local people?

Like one thing at a time. Rather than all at once? In case it helps...

LINKS

http://polyfriendly.org/index.php

https://www.counseling.org/docs/defa...plications.pdf

Galagirl
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