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  #11  
Old 06-23-2018, 04:13 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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Thank you for more info. English not being her first language and that you married a foreigner. You might have to use simpler words, but I still think you two have to talk.

If your wife is a narcissist, that's a whole other kind of problem. Is that your impression? Has she been diagnosed?

Quote:
My wife has admitted that these relationships have become somewhat sexual, but says she hasn't had intercourse with them. She claims she would like me to have a 'good friend' like she does, so I told her about a friend that I have, which is remote (not physical).
Would you call that her cheating on the marriage agreements? What ARE the current marriage agreements?

The whole "special friend" thing sounds Open relationship to me. That's not strict monogamy to me.

You have to talk to find out if she's only wanting to share physical things (kissing, hugging, sex, etc) or she wants to share love. You also have to ask if she sees this for both of you truly -- this ability to have a "special friend." Or if she's just saying it to ameliorate her guilt about her having hers but not really expecting you to take her up on it? Is that why she got upset when you revealed you have a special-ish friend too?
Quote:
She claims she would like me to have a 'good friend' like she does,
I wouldn't go leaping into anything, but I assume she doesn't say things without meaning them. If she DOES... that's another problem and the way to solve that is to talk and figure it out.

Quote:
My concern is that my wife is putting boundaries on her relationships with the other guys because she feels it’s wrong to be polyamorous, she feels like they can’t be equal with me and she also feels jealousy or implied criticism if I have someone else as a ‘special friend’.
That's kinda her problem, not yours. If you want to have the ability to have a "special friend" -- she's already said you could.

If she feels jealousy and whatnot... well, those are her emotions to manage.

I'm not saying to be heartless or cold. Or start dating other people willy nilly without updating the current marriage agreements or talking about HOW you two want to practice Open.

I'm saying that YOU don't have to "premanage" her feelings for her. (Is this part of the naricissism thing? You tip toe so she doesn't blow up?)

Quote:
I want her to understand the concepts of polyamory an ideally come to the conclusion herself that it’s preferable to trying to maintain a kind of 2-speed relationship model where the main relationship is considered monogamous!
Or she's totally fine with that, doesn't want to understand the concepts or come to any conclusion you wish she would come to.

If your main need is to stop the double standard? Either way I think you have to talk to her.
  • Either you both are Closed, and all "special friends" stop.
  • Or you talk about actually being in an Open marriage properly and what that entails.

Either way stops the double standard.


You have several layers going on there. If you were to list the problems in order of importance, what would you list? I'm not sure about the order but so far I'm seeing these sorts of things emerging as you write.

HER:
  • English not first language
  • narcissistic / does not take feedback well
  • might be cheating on current marriage agreements
  • doesn't mean what she says

YOU:
  • Not willing to speak directly
  • not happy about "double standard"
  • might be "pre-managing" her / walking on eggshells

If there's bigger problems to solve first, you might shelve this whole "special friend" thing for later.

Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 06-23-2018 at 04:24 PM.
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  #12  
Old 06-23-2018, 09:26 PM
mj7877 mj7877 is offline
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First, thanks for the detailed reply and the thought you've put in. It's much appreciated!
Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
Would you call that her cheating on the marriage agreements? What ARE the current marriage agreements?

The whole "special friend" thing sounds Open relationship to me. That's not strict monogamy to me.
She's always been quite honest about the relationships with the other guys, but the sexual aspect I knew after the fact, not before. From my perspective i encouraged her to maintain the friendship, meeting him (call him R) while i was away on business. He even stayed at our house while i was gone. I would have been naive to think NOTHING happened, but I was happy if she was happy. I've always given her permission to have male friends and have 'dates', but the sexual aspect hasn't been discussed. You should also know that I have had 'dates' over the years too, though significantly less and nothing remotely sexual until S

Quote:
You have to talk to find out if she's only wanting to share physical things (kissing, hugging, sex, etc) or she wants to share love. You also have to ask if she sees this for both of you truly -- this ability to have a "special friend." Or if she's just saying it to ameliorate her guilt about her having hers but not really expecting you to take her up on it? Is that why she got upset when you revealed you have a special-ish friend too?
I think you nailed it there, i.e. i think she didn't really expect me to take her up on it, even though she always says that she would be ok with it. She also drops it into conversation with friends, that I have a 'special' friend, which i find slightly inappropriate. Also, I had not really considered the physical-only aspect. I don't think that's what she wants and it's definitely not what R & T want.

Quote:
I'm saying that YOU don't have to "premanage" her feelings for her. (Is this part of the naricissism thing? You tip toe so she doesn't blow up?)
Yes, again, very perceptive, I do tend to walk on eggshells!
She's definitely not fine with it, as i can read her feelings of guilt, but as you say, I think i really do need to talk to her about what she wants from them (R & T) and what she expects from me? When she was talking with me about any friends i might have she did say she would want a OVP (if I got the terminology right?). Anyway, I feel she's not being completely honest about her feelings there and she would get upset if I told her I was having oral with someone else!
However...
Quote:
If your main need is to stop the double standard?
I don't think I'm so worried about the double standard as the whole concept of OPP/OVP. I just don't think it's practical - either you allow sexual relationships or you don't! If you don't then personally, my boundary would be anything more than a hug and a peck on the lips; if you do allow, then anything goes (that you would allow with the main partner)

Quote:
You have several layers going on there. If you were to list the problems in order of importance, what would you list? I'm not sure about the order but so far I'm seeing these sorts of things emerging as you write.
I think the main thing for me to get past is to be able to talk completely freely with her, not 'pre-managing' as you said.
Secondly, I want her to decide if she wants to have an Open marriage or not (and that I don't think an OPP/OVP is practical) and thirdly to realize that if she does, then it cuts both ways.

If I can achieve the first one, then the others should be simple!

There's more I could say here, but I don't want to write a novel! 2-3 hours on a psychologists chair might be a start!

Once again, thanks for your thoughts on this!

Thought I'd try and explain the dynamic, like other posters do:
P, Male, 50's (me)
F, female, 40's (wife of P for 16 years, LDR last 3 years)
R, Male, 40's (ex-BF of F, FWB of F, LDR)
T, Male, 60's (new BF of F, 2 years, LDR)
S, Female, 20's (new interest of P, LDR, 1 year)
All relationships known by all, except extent of sexual nature
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  #13  
Old 06-24-2018, 01:36 PM
MsEmotional MsEmotional is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mj7877 View Post
Thought I'd try and explain the dynamic, like other posters do:
P, Male, 50's (me)
F, female, 40's (wife of P for 16 years, LDR last 3 years)
R, Male, 40's (ex-BF of F, FWB of F, LDR)
T, Male, 60's (new BF of F, 2 years, LDR)
S, Female, 20's (new interest of P, LDR, 1 year)
All relationships known by all, except extent of sexual nature
I just wanted to throw in something else to think about when I read the brief version of your situation at he bottom here....

Have you considered that perhaps your wife feels threatened by the younger age of your new interest? Perhaps she encouraged you to find a “special friend” when she figured it would be someone in her 40s-60s, like her own “special friends” and felt taken aback when your special friend turned out to be so much younger?

I am not saying there’s anything wrong with you dating a younger woman, but there are definitely additional feelings of envy/jealousy that come about when a metamour has desirable characteristics that we worry we lack. It may be that your wife needs some additional reassurance that you are not bored with her and looking to “trade up” for a more youthful mate. That may explain why she is getting nostalgic about old wedding photos, etc.

Just something to consider.
__________________
Me: 34, F, Bicurious

Amours
Glasses: my husband of 8 years --> 35, M, Queer
Ponytail: my first-poly-date-turned-boyfriend --> 35, M, Pansexual
Laptop: my (not-so-platonic?) poly friend --> 31, M, Straight

Metamours and Others
Ginger: Glasses' partner --> 30ish, Transgender (FTM)
MsPolitical: Glasses' ex and potential new romantic interest --> 35ish, F
LadyLaptop: Laptop's wife --> 30ish, F
Giraffe: Laptop's FWB --> 30ish, F
Glitzy: Ponytail's interest --> 35, F
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