Polyamory.com Forum  

Go Back   Polyamory.com Forum > Polyamory > Poly Relationships Corner

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 11-22-2009, 04:19 PM
Hodge Hodge is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 4
Default Long distance girlfriend wants to go poly

First, thanks to all the contributors! I've already tried to read some threads about starting a poly relationship, and found some interesting and helpful comments already, especially by "Mono" (sp?) about living in a poly-relationship as the mono-person.

I still decided to start a new thread because my "question" is specifically about long-distance relationships: I've been in a long-distance relationship for 5 years. I'm the mono in the relationship who feels she's "the one"; she's felt the same way these last few years, but she had polyamorous inclinations before she met me and recently "rediscovered" them. (Edit: to clarify, she didn't mention this to me until the rediscovery, and I believe her that she genuinely felt "mono" during these 5 years, if that makes sense to say.) Since then, she's also become attracted to a male friend of hers. We agreed that she'll talk to him and tell him that she's still in love with me and wants to stay with me and that I've declared my willingness and openness to the idea of a polyamorous relationship (which I have, although that was preceded by pain and confusion) . Once she's talked to him, she and I will discuss how to proceed from there.

And this is where my question comes in: I'm going to see her at Christmas the earliest for about 10 days, and then again in February for a two weeks. We originally planned that I'd leave my country for good and give the relationship a "short-distance" shot in June. My question is whether it's better to agree that we should wait till Christmas, and discuss it face-to-face, and only then start seriously building a poly-relationship, or whether it's better to have her start dating her friend "right away" ... from my point of view, the second option seems "riskier" because we have so much physical distance between each other, but on the other hand this is the situation we're going to be in for most of the coming months, and I also don't know how I would feel if I was a poly person opening up to my boyfriend and he'd tell me not to date someone...

To summarise: I think I'm the typical mono confronted with the idea of a poly relationship, who loves the other person more than anything but is also freaked out and terrified (but excited, too, sometimes), _plus_ it's about a long-distance relationship.

I thank you all in advance for any kind of advice or anecdotes or experiences, and I wish you all the best in your own life adventures. Thanks for reading.

Last edited by Hodge; 11-22-2009 at 04:23 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 11-22-2009, 06:01 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Kansas City Metro
Posts: 2,186
Default

Oof! That's a rough one. My last paramour was long-distance, though only a four-hour drive away, so I could visit with reasonable frequency. That's not quite the same situation as living in a different country.

As for having the discussion about her dating someone else, well, I don't see any compelling reason to delay having that. You can discuss it on the phone just as well as in person.

Of course, if she begins to date him in between now and your visit, she'll likely be in the throes of NRE when you get there and your visit could feel just odd because of it. So it could be a good idea to ask her to wait.

I prefer to have all potential partners meet Curly before any serious dating begins. Were we living far apart, I don't think I'd insist on that sort of thing as it'd be really impractical. Hmm. That sort of distance seems to involve quite a bit that I'm not conversant with, so I'm not certain I can help much.
__________________
When speaking of various forms of non-monogamy...it ain't poly if you're just fucking around.

While polyamory, open relationships, and swinging are all distinctly different approaches to non-monogamy, they are not mutually exlusive. Folks can, and some do, engage in more than one of them at a time--and it's all good.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 11-23-2009, 04:54 AM
LovingRadiance's Avatar
LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Alaska
Posts: 5,440
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SeventhCrow View Post
Oof! That's a rough one. My last paramour was long-distance, though only a four-hour drive away, so I could visit with reasonable frequency. That's not quite the same situation as living in a different country.

As for having the discussion about her dating someone else, well, I don't see any compelling reason to delay having that. You can discuss it on the phone just as well as in person.

Of course, if she begins to date him in between now and your visit, she'll likely be in the throes of NRE when you get there and your visit could feel just odd because of it. So it could be a good idea to ask her to wait.

I prefer to have all potential partners meet Curly before any serious dating begins. Were we living far apart, I don't think I'd insist on that sort of thing as it'd be really impractical. Hmm. That sort of distance seems to involve quite a bit that I'm not conversant with, so I'm not certain I can help much.
Ditto the last sentence. I personally prefer that I meet any prospective new partners prior to them "coming into the fold" so to speak and I would insist that any of MY prospectives meet BOTH my men prior to me bringing them in...
But we all live together-so that's not a huge complicated undertaking. I'm not sure what the best advice is in a situation with such a huge distance!

I would honestly talk about it regardless-there may need to be MULTIPLE... no, there WILL need to be multiple discussions in order to iron out technicalities. Technicalities come up when things change even if it's NOT a "new partner" change. But they DEFINATELY come up with new partners. So start talking. The more you talk, the more you will find to talk about! And that will lead to having things MORE clarified when you get to "decision" making.

I wouldn't JUMP into "yeah go get a boyfriend". I would work towards that. But that's ME.

Good luck!! I hope you get more helpful replies!!
__________________
"Love As Thou Wilt"
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 11-23-2009, 06:47 AM
redpepper's Avatar
redpepper redpepper is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 7,639
Default

Personally I highly doubt I will have another long distant relationship. I don't find that I want to spend my time with people I don't see, touch, smell (VERY important to me), regularly. I know a lot of Poly people are into the whole LDR thing, but I just don't get it. There are so many people right in my city, why would I want to spend energy on someone far away unless I don't want the level of depth that can be had with someone close, or I like to have a busy life doing other things, or I just can't find anyone else.

If that is the case for you then I can understand. It just wouldn't be for me... In my mind, why settle for "good" when I can achieve "great."

I guess I basically think that as a mono person this will drive you crazy. I imagine that you will think you will lose her to someone else? You very well could... at the very least you will lose her a little because she has something real and tangible at home. You would become the secondary perhaps. Yup, I would be scared and would be preparing my heart for some hard times.... regardless of what happens at Christmas time or whether or not she dates before you get there...

Actually I would almost wonder if her dating before you even get there would be a better idea... that way you would get there and meet the guy, really feel what it is like to be in a poly relationship and can hash out boundaries etc. while you are in the thick of the feelings rather than brainstorming on what could happen. I think it may be better to get right at it. You've been together a long time so why not! She should put her money where her mouth is and show you how committed she is and have fun doing it.
__________________
Anyone want to be friends on Facebook?
Send me your name via PM
My blog
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 11-23-2009, 11:50 AM
Hodge Hodge is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 4
Default

Thank you all for taking the time to respond!

NRE *is* something I'm worried about and I told her so.

LovingRadiance's sentiment echoes my own: "I wouldn't JUMP into "yeah go get a boyfriend". I would work towards that. But that's ME." I try to be supportive, but I also try and be clear about the fact that I do not have an active inclination towards going poly myself. So I want to work towards it if she feels it's something without which she can't be happy, but at the same time I'm not cheering... well, I guess in a way I've been cheering a little, just because I want her to be happy and feel good. And as for myself, I feel very good about not feeling *bad* about the idea of being in a poly relationship, but at the same time I do not exactly feel super-enthusiastic about it. I'm curious and terrified at the same time. My motto right now is: the proof of the pudding lies in eating it.

I don't fancy long distance relationships, but the happiness of the past five years by far outweigh the sad and difficult moments (certainly in my case, and she says she experienced it similarly, although she's had a harder time of it than me). The question "Why?" a long distance relationhip is a bit of a no-brainer to me in this case. She's just an amazing woman, we have so much in common and yet we are not exactly the same; she's given me so much and she's made me feel as though I was able to give her something in return. I've never loved anyone as much as her, to me she's one of a kind. Her presence just makes me happy, whether she's with me in a room or whether she's thousands of miles away. And, of course, I was getting really, really, seriously excited about the prospect of leaving my country and giving this a shot "for real". But of course now our relationship has changed in ways that I (or she) cannot yet fathom.

And what you said, redpepper, that's something I'm very keen on, too. I wouldn't quite put it this way, "She should put her money where her mouth is", but I feel the same: I don't want a relationship break; I want to find out how and whether it can work... but it's hard to make such a decision without any experience. And there's the other _man_. Obviously, he and his attitude are an important part of this. I haven't quite figured out whether I need to (or can) claim primacy in the relationship in order for it to work for me. My gut reaction was that I *do* need some sort of primacy, but once again it's hard to decide that without any actual experience.

In any case, thanks so much for your input! More responses are, of course, most welcome.

Last edited by Hodge; 11-23-2009 at 11:56 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 11-23-2009, 03:32 PM
redpepper's Avatar
redpepper redpepper is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 7,639
Default

Ack, yes, "put your money where your mouth is" is not the best saying is it? Its all I could come up with at the time. She sounds like a very special woman, I hope all goes well for you all.
__________________
Anyone want to be friends on Facebook?
Send me your name via PM
My blog

Last edited by redpepper; 11-23-2009 at 03:35 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 11-23-2009, 03:36 PM
Hodge Hodge is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 4
Default

Thanks a lot, redpepper, much appreciated
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 11-23-2009, 03:40 PM
Ceoli Ceoli is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: London, UK
Posts: 900
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
In my mind, why settle for "good" when I can achieve "great."
If you happen to meet a wonderful amazing person with whom you connect deeply with, why settle for not having them in your life at all when you can have them in your life in some capacity, even if it's limited? How does having that connection prevent you from being able to achieve "great"?
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 11-23-2009, 03:43 PM
MonoVCPHG's Avatar
MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: In Redpepper's heart
Posts: 4,742
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceoli View Post
If you happen to meet a wonderful amazing person with whom you connect deeply with, why settle for not having them in your life at all when you can have them in your life in some capacity, even if it's limited? How does having that connection prevent you from being able to achieve "great"?
Great is determined by the individual. Based on my excpectations this could never create a "great" situation. It wouldn't be worth it for me..the pain pleasure balance would be too tilted.
__________________

Playing the Game of Life with Monopoly rules.
Monogamy might just be in my genes

Poly Events All Over
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 11-23-2009, 03:50 PM
Ceoli Ceoli is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: London, UK
Posts: 900
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG View Post
Great is determined by the individual. Based on my excpectations this could never create a "great" situation. It wouldn't be worth it for me..the pain pleasure balance would be too tilted.
I used to think that way. But I found the treasure of having a person in your life far outweighs any pain that the distance creates. Perhaps it's because I'm a person that has moved great distances in my life. Perhaps it's because my brother's now marriage started off as a long distance relationship for 3 years, with her living in Turkey and him living in the States. If I were monogamous, I would still weigh the connection over the distance and would probably have the goal of resolving that distance. But I also know that in my life, I won't be able to resolve such things with all of my connections, but I choose to keep the connections because it would hurt me more to lose that.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 05:31 PM.