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  #31  
Old 05-23-2012, 12:31 PM
opalescent opalescent is offline
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Originally Posted by PassionFlower View Post
As far as being on my own, it seems to me there are very few people who actually want and plan to live life without partners or lovers. I know I can be on my own, and I will be okay. I know that if I leave I have to acknowledge that this may be my life. But if I knew for sure I would be alone for the rest of my life would I choose to leave? No. What we have is better than not being with anyone. If I knew for sure that I would find someone(s) to love and care for who could also love and care for me, in the context of having multiple lovers, then I would definitely leave. But what I have is the unknown.
I was struck by this statement. Others have commented that really, all we have is the unknown.

PassionFlower, have you ever been alone - as in single, living on your own (or with kids) as an adult? I ask because I've seen this pattern of not wanting to be alone - single or living alone or both - from many women who got married young, never lived by themselves or with roommates, who were often raised in traditional Christian families and communities. They fear being alone over all else. You note that you know you will be ok if you were on your own. I believe you. I do wonder though if you deep down know and believe that about yourself.

This just seems like such a sad statement that you would rather stay in a bad situation, a bad relationship rather than live on your own, see what's out there, what you can make out of life. And this is regardless of if you end up embracing polyamory or not. It's deeper than your preferred relationship style.

You are clearly willing to take risks and experiment - you've been testing out various ways to get what you need outside of your marriage. Being willing to be alone is different from wanting to be alone. You are correct that most people do want some connections from partners in life. But I've found that unless one is willing to be alone, and like it, embrace it and learn its lessons, then I am not fully authentic and geniune. I can't be because I am hobbled by fear. I'm not saying you are not authentic - this is my experience. Maybe it speaks to you, maybe not.
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  #32  
Old 05-23-2012, 06:14 PM
ThatGirlInGray ThatGirlInGray is offline
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Why "and like it"? I agreed with most of what you posted, opalescent, but what does liking being alone have to do with not fearing it? I don't like being alone. I can be alone, but I don't like it. And I don't think it's necessary to like being alone to be able to embrace being alone.

I agree that being alone is better than being in a bad relationship and isn't something to be feared, but I can completely understand trying to find other alternatives first!

ETA: Also, I consider myself pretty authentic and genuine. I don't avoid being alone so much that I feel the need to be fake in order to be accepted. Perhaps you and I just learned different lessons about ourselves.
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  #33  
Old 05-23-2012, 09:30 PM
opalescent opalescent is offline
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Originally Posted by ThatGirlInGray View Post
Why "and like it"? I agreed with most of what you posted, opalescent, but what does liking being alone have to do with not fearing it? I don't like being alone. I can be alone, but I don't like it. And I don't think it's necessary to like being alone to be able to embrace being alone.

I agree that being alone is better than being in a bad relationship and isn't something to be feared, but I can completely understand trying to find other alternatives first!

ETA: Also, I consider myself pretty authentic and genuine. I don't avoid being alone so much that I feel the need to be fake in order to be accepted. Perhaps you and I just learned different lessons about ourselves.
I find it is generally easier to not fear something if you like that something.

TGIG, are you an extrovert? My extrovert peeps often find being alone really taxing and difficult. I'm an introvert and so I require alone time to function.

Your point is well taken. Learning to like being alone would be more pleasant but not required.

It's just that I consider learning to be alone to be a prime skill of adulthood. It's so important that I personally consider people who can't be alone (not just don't like it but actually can't stand their own company and do anything to not spend time by themselves) not to be complete adults. Yes, that is a value judgment on my part.
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  #34  
Old 05-23-2012, 10:08 PM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Maybe wording the goal as "finding satisfaction and comfort" in being alone is more accurate than "liking" it. I think it is hugely beneficial to be able to find that satisfaction in aloneness; otherwise we are always looking for someone or something to fill that place instead of just being comfortable alone with ourselves.

This video has been been shared in these forums before, but I think it's appropriate now: How To Be Alone

Bu I want to point out a distinction to the OP. Passionflower, when someone suggested you live on your own and said that it is important that we learn to be happy with ourselves, you responded with: "As far as being on my own, it seems to me there are very few people who actually want and plan to live life without partners or lovers. I know I can be on my own, and I will be okay. I know that if I leave I have to acknowledge that this may be my life. But if I knew for sure I would be alone for the rest of my life would I choose to leave? No. What we have is better than not being with anyone. "

That struck me as a very all-or-nothing viewpoint. If someone said to me that I should learn to be on my own, I don't interpret being on my own as being alone and without partners or lovers. No one is saying to go off the grid and live like a hermit in a cabin deep in the woods. It is just that your marriage does not seem to be a nurturing thing for you and you would rather be with people or in situations that aren't good for you just to stave off loneliness, rather than to leave and discover how to create a satisfying life for yourself -- and then have people in your life who add to it in uplifting, healing ways and support you in being who you are.

So, I just wanted to point that out because your view about having to be alone and with nobody in your life is such a stark contrast with what I think of as being on your own.
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Last edited by nycindie; 05-23-2012 at 10:10 PM.
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  #35  
Old 05-25-2012, 10:27 PM
noob noob is offline
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Originally Posted by blytheandbonny View Post

I had difficulty processing the rest of PassionFlower's story after reading about the secret infidelity at the start of it. Seems to me that cheating and being poly have nothing at all in common.
They have non-monogamy in common. One is ethical, one is not. Some poly folks start out cheaters because they don't know another way. It's not defensible, but it's somewhat understandable IMO.

Quote:
I should have left, sought counseling, found another solution waaaay before I did. He rained down abuse on me for years that I tolerated, rationalized, and honestly, invited. Recovering from the damage he inflicted might take me a lifetime.
He didn't do this stuff because you cheated--he did this because he was a jerk. Cheaters don't deserve abuse; no one does. I'm sorry this happened to you.

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He still didn't deserve that, though, and I do believe it made me a monster.
Well, I guess that's why you tolerated his abuse, then.
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  #36  
Old 05-26-2012, 04:57 AM
Tonberry Tonberry is offline
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Really, my opinion is, if you leave your marriage and find out you're mono... so what? There are plenty of mono people, and you wouldn't be thinking of leaving your marriage if it was perfect.

But my opinion on relationships is, the default is not to be in one. If I am in one, to stay in it I need to want it so much that I can't believe my luck to be in it. That I can't imagine my life without this person, no matter how many other people I have a chance to be with instead. That I would give years off of my life to be able to spend the remainder with this person.

That's how I deal with all my relationships. If it changes to "meh, it's alright" then the relationship is in danger. And if it can't be fixed, I'd rather be without that person (regardless of whether it means being alone or not).

But you seem to think of it in different terms. For me, if a relationship is neutral instead of good, it's not worth it. For you, it seems, if a relationship is neutral but not bad, or bad but only a little bit, it's still better than nothing.

I don't think so. Nothing is neutral. Neutral is the same as neutral, and a little bit bad is worse than neutral. And if that nothing has a chance to become something else, as it always does, then it becomes a positive, and therefore better than a neutral relationship.

And I'm of the opinion that there are tons of people you could be happy with. And I think there is no reason to prioritize someone just because they happen to be right here, as opposed to making you happy for instance.

I think in your case, I would probably break up even if I was sure I'd never meet someone else. But I can't be certain about that, because the idea of never meeting someone else seems incredibly ridiculous. I meet people pretty much every day.

Bottom line, in my opinion, is that you're in a relationship when you're not free to be yourself, to discover who "yourself" is. That's not a good relationship. Whether you are mono or poly, you need a relationship where you're on the same page with your partner(s) for things that important.
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  #37  
Old 05-20-2014, 07:37 PM
ajokey ajokey is offline
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Default Poly - Leaving the Marriage

Did you stay or go? How are things now?
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  #38  
Old 05-21-2014, 03:35 AM
graviton graviton is offline
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wow two year old post resurrection from the dead
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  #39  
Old 05-21-2014, 08:12 PM
ClockworkDragon ClockworkDragon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
There is a saying that "once a cheater, always a cheater." Its kind of along the lines of "once and alcoholic, always an alcoholic." This saying doesn't mean that a person can't sort themselves out and achieve integrity, honesty and empathy in their lives, it means that there are some behaviours that never are completely out of someone's character even if they move on to a way of being that works for them better and those they have relationships with.
I detest that phrase. I once cheated on my husband; that does not mean I am a cheater. The idea is that once you've screwed up, you can never ever not be screwed up in the future is sad and offensive.

I will never cheat again.

And as someone who lives with an alcoholic husband, comparing the two is simply just beyond the pale. It's not an addiction. A serial cheater may indeed have an addiction, but just because someone has cheated does not mean they are destined to repeat the past, if they ever expose themselves.

I had moments alone with my ex, that I desperately wanted to be with him, and be damned the consequences. But I didn't, because that would have caused untold pain to everyone involved.

Addiction is not a character flaw. It's a disease.
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