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  #141  
Old 01-14-2012, 11:14 PM
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Sometimes I come across a concept which may not be relevant to me in any concrete way, but which I still want to analyse a bit and think about how it relates to my life. It is not rare to read an opinion stating how difficult mono/poly relationships are generally. Sometimes even that people can never find a comfortable place in a mono/poly relationship.

I have a hard time with generalisations. To generalise, generalisations never are true for everybody... And perhaps I see them as problematic, and maybe I am often an outlier among outliers, so that I often have an experience that doesn't fit the generalisation, even if it is one that I see as having some truth in it. For example, the mono/poly thing. I am pretty sure there can be additional challenges to that dynamic. I also do see that many people have much more trouble with transitioning to poly than I've had with Alec. And I can understand that well. I totally sympathise with those who have (had) a hard time with it.

So, I believe that it may well be true that in general mono/poly relationships are challenging. But the other statement, that people can't be satisfied in a mono/poly relationship... I do take issue with it. The claim that one party inevitably crosses their own boundaries in compromising. I feel that I am getting my needs met (and almost all I want, too), and I am completely satisfied. And from what he has communicated to me, and from what I see in him, Alec is getting his needs met (and much of what he wants), and is very satisfied. Now, as with everything else in life, things can change, so that satisfaction may not last forever, and we may need to change things. I'm not making any declarations about how things are and will be now and in the future. But I feel safe to say that so far, mono/poly dynamic has been no hindrance to our happy life together. I don't know, if I should counter with a opposing viewpoint then, when I read a generalising statement. On one hand, it feels like it may give too pessimistic a view to a couple new to poly when they are slammed with a statistical "fact" that mono/poly is unlikely to succeed. On the other, it feels like offering my own experience as an example of how mono/poly can work well is somehow...something. Puts pressure on me that in order to make that kind of statement I, and my relationships, would need to be "perfect" and follow all the "true poly rules" (not that I subscribe to that kind of thing in other contexts) and perhaps I should wait for some abstract time when I've been poly longer... So, I don't do it, but I come here in my own safe journal to ramble about it instead.
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  #142  
Old 01-15-2012, 12:08 AM
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I so hear you on those thoughts ... they crossed my mind often. There has been a discussion on when a relationship has to be regarded as 'successful'. Lasting for a lifetime? Mainly satisfying the needs of all involved for the time it lasted? I am more prone to go with the latter. As long as I get the feeling that my relationship(s) work according to that model, I will feel save to say: All is fine, that's how it works for us and it works great.

In mono/poly or what relationship model ever, each person is responsible to look after the 'needs-met-bit' on their own first. I (finally) trust in my partners to be able to do this for themselves. If they say that this is the case and everyone is happy, I won't accept the 'there is no comfortable place in mono/poly relationships' statement, because it seems so patronizing. For this to be true, one relationship model has to be inferior to the other, not able to make the person living it truly comfortable.

Each time I worried about Sward and Lin not being happy with the situation, I did something unfair to them. I realized that not right away, but Lin told me once: "Can't I be happy with the love I feel for you? It's all I need and enough for me to be content. I am not 'putting up' with something any more. Things are how they are and being with you makes me happy. That's all there is to it. What do I care if there is another? As far as I am concerned, I live a 'mono' relationship with you. You being poly doesn't change the way I feel and as things are at the moment, I am able to live that love." Why should I regard his relationship approach (being solely in love with me) as inferior to my own (being in love with both of them)?

The mono-exclusivity-part isn't love driven, it's ego driven. It feeds on our insecurities and all that can be found on our personal vanity fair. That's the thing that makes transitioning from mono-exclusivity to poly-freedom so hard (just a specific alignment of the words, no general statement intended for mono/poly in general). At least that's what we found to be true for us. And as I said, that's all I can talk about
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  #143  
Old 01-18-2012, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phy View Post
There has been a discussion on when a relationship has to be regarded as 'successful'. Lasting for a lifetime? Mainly satisfying the needs of all involved for the time it lasted?
I can't remember if I participated on that discussion, but yeah, all relationships end eventually. Is a relationships which started in your twenties and lasted till the day you (or they) died more of a success story than one that started in your fifties and lasted for the rest of your life, since the first example lasted three decades longer?

I can tell which relationships have had a positive, meaningful and big impact on my life, but there has to be some perspective. Ultimately I guess I'm trying to say that a relationship has to end before you can at least try to evaluate it. All relationships have an impact but I would call relationships a success if I have fond memories of the people involved.

I sometimes wonder if coming out on these boards and going "triads are SO hard!" is generalizing and condescending both to people in such configs and those who are looking for their mythical beast. Hey, maybe it's just me who has a hard time with this and that? If I can't make a three-person relationship work, should I come here and call any and all attempts doomed from the start?

I think there's a fine line between "So many people have been frustrated out of their minds with poly/unicorn hunt/monopoly that if you want to tap into that experience of this community, read and proceed with caution: this is what you might expect" and "Poly/unicorn hunt/monopoly does not and will not work, because I've never had much luck with it".
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  #144  
Old 01-21-2012, 07:44 PM
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I'm feeling a bit blue.. I'm missing Mya a lot. It's not painful, but right now it's there in the back of my mind constantly.

I don't usually want to dwell on it, but at the moment I feel that...it sucks that she's not closer. It sucks that it takes such amounts of time and effort and money to see each other. I'm really looking forward to 8 months from now when Mya and JJ will be moving to Dream City. We'll be in the same country then; still 300 miles away, but there will be a choice between a ridicilously cheap 9-hour-bus and a relatively cheap direct flight. We'll be able to meet more often, maybe twice a month, and more spontaneously as well.

We are growing closer, and I feel like I'd like to move forwards, to create more together. For the first time I'm beginning to feel like that ability is seriously limited by our physical distance. It's a different push than the hunger for intimacy that NRE creates. I just feel like I want to build more of a connection with Mya.

Ok, that's the end of this whine now. Btw, this rant shouldn't be misinterpreted in any way to signify that I would regret us being in an LDR. LDR is all that's possible for us at the moment, and I can't describe how significantly our relationship enhances my life. I'm just looking forward to being able to decrease the distance.

Just wanted to write down these feelings. Don't really feel like doing lots of pondering about stuff, thus sorry that I won't write more thoughtful responses to you Phy and BU, but I do appreciate you posting and enjoyed reading your views.
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  #145  
Old 01-23-2012, 07:22 PM
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Quote:
I'd like to move forwards, to create more together.
I know the feeling! Glad to hear of the upcoming shift... Definitely will make the ground more fertile for you all xx
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  #146  
Old 02-01-2012, 11:27 AM
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^Thanks, I think so too!

I've identified earlier that my NRE with Mya is over. Now I'm noticing that my NRE with poly is over. Both of these things are good and healthy: I'm not obsessing but living. The effects on poly journal are that I don't need/want to analyse everything to death all the time. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it while it lasted, all the learning about poly and coming to understand and reflecting on the concepts. But I'm glad that I can concentrate on other things again, as well. There's more to life than poly - who knew?

I'm throughoutly enjoying my life at the moment. I'm studying my ass off, and all the courses I have are really interesting (though challenging). Mya is coming here next week, I'm so looking forward to that. Need to try and finish my first essay before then, so I'll have more flexibility time-wise.

I am currently looking into possibilities of work for the Summer. Though it looks like I'll be staying home (yay) and doing customer service or something like that (boo), there is a small possibility of getting an internship in my own field. That means I couldn't stay home, but I would spend the Summer in some other country either in Europe or Asia. It would be also first LDR for me and Alec. I have been stunned by how supportive he has been about the whole thing. Not that I would expect him to try to persuade me to not go for his benefit, or something like that. Still, seeing his selflessness really makes me appreciate him. Also, I don't know if poly has been a coincidence, a trigger, or a cause, but I see such an increase in his independence and confidence. There has been a shift in our dynamic, which is partly changes in me but it seems that he is changing to the same direction. I am primarily happy for him, and also happy for us. I think it is a good direction.
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  #147  
Old 02-11-2012, 01:36 PM
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I'm now at rory's. I've been here for 5 days and I'm leaving today. It's been great, just awesome. We've both had a lot to do, rory's been studying and I've been working, life has been.. normal. I'm unbelievably happy that our situation is so stable right now. All the relationships are doing great and I'm not feeling any insecurity at the moment. I think it's very possible that we (I mean all three couples) will stay together for a long time. Obviously anything can happen, but I think we've come a long way to be where we are now and if we can maintain this stability, I believe we have a good chance of making it.

Alec has been very thoughtful during this visit. Well he is usually like that, but this time even more so. Originally we had the plan that rory sleeps next to him every 3rd night. This time I'm here only for 4 nights (arrived in the morning, leaving in the evening), so he suggested that rory sleeps next to me all the nights. So we did that and it was really nice. Also, he decided to spend the entire Friday night at a friend's house, so he went there straight from work and came back on Saturday morning. So me and rory got the whole Friday to ourselves! First we worked/studied a bit and then watched a couple of movies, made dinner, had deep conversations, laughed a lot, had great sex without having to worry about noises (that's mainly me, I'm having a hard time being quiet ) and went to bed all happy and tired. Perfection. <3

I'm really enjoying my developing friendship with Alec, too. I think we're becoming more and more relaxed with each other and I feel at home when I'm at their place. There's no weirdness around anything. I feel like we've already established a comfortable place where we don't have to try anything anymore. We can just be, hang out, and if the friendship grows, that's great but if it doesn't, that's still good.

The next time I'm seeing rory is next month when I'm coming here again, but in April me and rory are going to Paris together to celebrate our first anniversary! I'm looking forward to it. We're flying there from our respective countries (so you can rule out France from the list of places where we could live ) and will meet there. We got the flights synchronized amazingly well, one of us will only have to wait at the airport for like 20 minutes or so in both directions.

Me and JJ are in the process of selling our house. This is something we would've probably done even if we hadn't decided to move to Wonderland. We've both just gotten tired of all the things that have to do with owning a house. I'm not a very outdoorsy person so I haven't planted any flowers or a garden of any sort. The only good thing about having a house is that you can make noise without disturbing the neighbours and the other way around, you don't have to listen to neighbours making noises. But I want to move to a place where things happen. In our little village nothing ever happens. So when the house is sold, we're moving to a nearby city which is still a very small city compared to Dream City, but at least there's something happening there. So we'll probably live there for about 3-6 months (depending on how fast we can sell the house) before we move out of the country. Better make the most of it even in the meantime, right?
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  #148  
Old 02-11-2012, 07:00 PM
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Oo, news! JJ told me today that he slept with a friend of his yesterday. They went to a bar together and after that it happened. I actually had a feeling yesterday that something might be going on and I was right. I'm glad it's finally done. I mean he has done stuff before but not the sex part. So this is new. I know the person it happened with and I know she's a nice and rational woman. Definitely not a drama queen. I'm glad he chose her.

I'm also glad about how I'm reacting to this. I'm not feeling jealous or anything like that. This reaffirms my belief about myself as a non-jealous person. It was just all the possible drama that freaked me out a little bit some time ago. I was worried that JJ would end up hurting some people, and with that hurting me as well. That was the thing I was upset/worried about, not the fact that he would actually have sex with someone else. I like my life peaceful. So here we are, as long as I can keep that, I'm good.

Also, I like the fact that I was with rory when this happened for the first time. It's still some kind of a big deal even if it's not hurting me. I didn't have to be home alone wondering what's happening and waiting anxiously for the news or the text message about not coming home that night. Before this I was a bit nervous about when and how it would happen, in what circumstances. Now I know and that's good.
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  #149  
Old 02-13-2012, 02:33 PM
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Mya wrote a lot of what has been on my mind as well about her visit. I love how peaceful, stable, and comfortable our poly-life feels. Mya being here with me and Alec has just normalised, sort of. I can sense both of them being at ease, and I am actually able to let go of all the stress of being the hinge that I've talked about here.

One thing I still haven't managed to do is take time for myself while she's here. But I think I got to the bottom of it when I talked with Mya about it. It's not only because I really want to see her that I ignore the need for alone time. That plays a part, but it has been such a pressing need at times that I would've done it. But it isn't so simple. It's the whole long distance thing. When Mya is here I obviously want to spend a lot of time with her, and I'm also constantly aware about the fact that she is here to see me. It doesn't matter how supportive she would be about my need for time and space, the situation still is what it is. Because, concretely, what I need when I need time and space for myself, is having an "endless" period of time when nobody expects anything from me.

[Obviously, nobody has an actually endless amount of time with no obligations. But I have organised my life in a way that allows me to take really long periods of time and just be (in fact, that is my plan for today and maybe tomorrow). Probably number one reason I don't want kids, btw.]

Anyway, that kind of feeling of having to do absolutely nothing.. it isn't really feasible to have that when Mya is here, for obvious reasons. Yet, having two full-time partners with me, one of whom I have just spent and will soon again be spending a month apart with, is more intense than my regular everyday life. So, I'd need more time for myself to balance it out. Fortunately we've now managed to make the visits as peaceful and comfortable as they can be. I think that is all we can do. I will no longer have the aim of taking more time for myself while Mya's here because it just won't work in that situation as it usually does. However, we agreed that week is maybe the longest time we'll be planning for in the future. I've also noticed that weekends tend to be the most draining in terms of energy, so maybe we'll aim for as many weekdays as possible, but of course that depends on the flight schedules and all that.

I really hate to always be writing about this because it totally over-emphasises the issue. Seriously, I so completely enjoy the time Mya is here. It is always so wonderful to reconnect with her. (Also, TMI, but I have totally the greatest sex life when both of my partners are available for me.. ) It's just that I do have a limited amount of energy, and to be able to enjoy and be totally present in the time with my partners (and to retain my ability to take care of other commitments), I do need that time for myself.
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Last edited by rory; 02-13-2012 at 02:41 PM.
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  #150  
Old 02-13-2012, 05:16 PM
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Congrats to JJ! Well, congrats to everyone, really, things are going so swimmingly, it's great to see.

Gia and I had to work around the issue of her feeling very happy whenever she saw me, but also a little stressed at times for just the reasons you've described, Rory. It helped when I started bringing a book with me whenever I came over so that I could chill out and do my own thing while relaxing in her space and she, in turn, could relax and do what she needed to do for herself without worrying about keeping me entertained.
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