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  #11  
Old 05-04-2012, 10:24 PM
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Along with the therapy/counseling, you may want to check out the book, "The Five Love Languages" by Chapman. It's been referenced here in lots of threads, and I'm sure it's in our Book Recommendations sticky. I thought of it when you mentioned having taken her for granted and not connecting the way you had. maybe you both have different needs around expression of love and feelings, so if you know what each of your dominant love "language" is, it might help.
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An excellent blog post on hierarchy in polyamory:
solopoly.net/2014/10/31/why-im-not-a-secondary-partner-the-short-version/
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  #12  
Old 05-05-2012, 04:37 AM
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Hello and welcome to the site! you will find a lot of good feedback here. I'm sure some of the of the mono people here will not like what I have to say, but oh well, here it is.

I was also a mono for 50 years.....or you could say 30 years because I wasn't that sexual for the first 20 years. I was very set in my mono ideas. I stood firmly in the mono world and couldn't be swayed from it.

All the while, I'm noticing and acknowledging that monogomy doesn't really work any more and it doesn't really make sense either.

When I decided to give polyamory a try- two years ago, all of my relationships improved.....just sayin'....you're young and you're hanging on to monogamy which is simply not that sacred. Do you even know why you are hanging on to it so tightly??

Good luck!!
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  #13  
Old 05-05-2012, 10:14 AM
mobetterblues mobetterblues is offline
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Thanks for the words people.

NYCindie - thanks for the reading tips. I've had a look at a summary of the book you mention and already find relevance, I think you are correct in that the language of individual's love can differ greatly. I'm going to look into this in more detail, as there are most definitely areas (and not that difficult to identify) where we haven't been 'servicing' each other's emotional and physical requirements, neglecting those things that make us both feel loved and satisfied.

Idealist - I appreciate that airing my problems on this site will inevitably lead to poly advocates urging me to open my mind on this subject, and it's something I was prepared for. I have considered my position long and hard and am certainly not a person who's rigid in my approach to life, and relationships. As per my original post, we talked a while back about introducing a 3rd person into our sex life, and have discussed recently how far I would be prepared to go on this. Conclusion - I would consider swinging, but no more than this. I definitely wouldn't be comfortable with my partner dating / having sex with others without my involvement, and I can say with some assurance that this will continue to be the case. I'm young at 39 (thanks!) , but old enough to know myself and what my reaction would be to certain situations. I can certainly see, from browsing this site that polyamory really works for some people, whether they feel it is part of their genetic make-up, or whether it is a lifestyle choice for them. I want my gf to be happy, but as with any balanced relationship, this shouldn't come at the expense of the other's unhappiness. I don't feel like I'm clinging to monogamy, it's just what I want from life, and don't feel I should ever be pressured to go down a different route. As with someone who chooses to hit the gym rather than lunch out on the sofa eating KFC, or someone who prefers to ski rather than go on sunny holidays, or a veggie who doesn't eat meat, or someone who doesn't want kids and prefers dogs - I wouldn't expect any of these people to be pressured into skiing, eating meat, having kids etc, so see this issue no differently. I'm aware, more than ever, that alternative lifestyles exist. I want to impress that I haven't got a 'traditionalist' approach to life, in any aspect of my life, so I'm not choosing the path that society deems acceptable - just the one that suits me best and that I'm most comfortable with.

I feel that SNeacail nails the issue, when commenting that now is probably the wrong time to explore poly issues, and that we should fix what's broken. My original point was that I feel these issues are intertwined, linked in essence. I guess the roadmap should be - do we want to be together? And from there we find a way to make things work. Counselling and a greater appreciation of each other's 'love languages' will no doubt help. We both have decisions to make. There will be sacrifices and concessions on both sides, as with any relationship.
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  #14  
Old 05-05-2012, 10:47 AM
mobetterblues mobetterblues is offline
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Just to add, Idealist - I'm not 'hanging on' to anything - just being true to myself which is what I feel we all have a right to do, whether mono, poly, or whatever. Being open minded works both ways. I appreciate that I didn't post on a 'Mono' site so should expect a slightly biased viewpoint sometimes. Glad you eventually found out who you are, and indeed mono doesn't make sense - FOR YOU , clearly. But you cannot say 'it doesn't make sense'. That's an insult to any free thinking person that chooses a mono lifestyle.
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  #15  
Old 05-06-2012, 02:32 AM
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If your GF is truly Poly, you will not make her happy by forcing her to be in a monogamous relationship. Forcing a non-monogamous person to lead a monogamous lifestyle is incredibly insensitive and selfish. It is like putting a salt water fish in fresh water. It is not an elephant, it is who she is. If she had to go find someone else, it is because you weren't giving her what she needs. If she felt like she had to find what she needs elsewhere, that is not her fault. If you truly loved your partner, you would do what is best for her or let her go. Love is when you help your partner be who they are and become who they want to be. Are you willing to do that? Remember, you can be in love with someone who is not your best choice as a life partner. It sounds to me like this might be the case here.
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  #16  
Old 05-06-2012, 03:49 AM
dingedheart dingedheart is offline
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The elephant in the room is the expression to describe the un-talked about disconnect of monogamous verses poly or open. I thought he stated he was willing to let her and the relationship go so she can be authentic to herself.
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  #17  
Old 05-06-2012, 12:00 PM
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I could have mis-read it. Sounded like he really wants a monogamous relationship.
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  #18  
Old 05-06-2012, 12:21 PM
mobetterblues mobetterblues is offline
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Thanks for your reply Snowdancer.. I think..

"If your GF is truly Poly, you will not make her happy by forcing her to be in a monogamous relationship"

To that I would say, if my girlfriend is truly Poly why did she wait until 4 years into a relationship to raise the issue. A bit misleading don't you think? I'm not sure she is truly poly.
Also, noone is forcing anyone. So please don't bring emotive words like that into the equation. It just makes you sounds like a Poly-Fascist.

"Forcing a non-monogamous person to lead a monogamous lifestyle is incredibly insensitive and selfish"

There you go again. I think I've demonstrated throughout my post that I am not insensitive and selfish. However you obviously know me better than I know myself, and are best placed for this sweeping judgement.

" It is like putting a salt water fish in fresh water."

Not really, they die instantly.

"It is not an elephant, it is who she is"

"Elephant in the room" Is a commonly used expression which means a significant subject which is being ignored, that people are continuing as though it doesn't exist.

"If she felt like she had to find what she needs elsewhere, that is not her fault."

She didn't HAVE to do find what she needs elsewhere. She chose to, and has since stated that it is the single worst mistake/choice of her life. Also, I have acknowledged that I had neglected her in many ways, both emotionally and physically, so , alas, this is no breakthrough you're onto here..

" If you truly loved your partner, you would do what is best for her or let her go"

I'm trying to do what's best for me, her, and us, whether that's together or apart. Have you read all of this thread or are you just latching onto certain parts you feel you can launch your catch-all judgements at?

" Love is when you help your partner be who they are and become who they want to be"

Thanks. Love is many things, and differtent things to everyone. However I'll run my life by your code from now on, since it's pretty simplistic and therefore easy to understand, even for an emotionally stunted, neanderthal, unenlightened soul like me.

" Are you willing to do that?"

Again, read the full thread. I think it's clear I am prepared to lose this woman if it becomes clear we have different attitudes to very important aspects of relationships, although patently it is not my preference.

"Remember, you can be in love with someone who is not your best choice as a life partner"

Thanks, I'll try not to forget that nugget of wisdom, as that's a thought that has never occured to me, in 39 years. Amazing.

Whilst all opinions, suggestions, and angles of approach are fully appreciated, some seem to hit the nail much more than others.
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  #19  
Old 05-06-2012, 12:41 PM
strixish strixish is offline
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Here is a note on my experience, and you can take it for whatever it's worth.

I'm happiest when the person I love does not expect monogamy from me. The poly structure really suits me. (I don't really see poly as an underlying essential identity, and may be rare in that-- it's what I do, not what I am. What I am, is bad at monogamy.)

I have cheated on monogamous relationships in the past. Sometimes after 1 year, 2 years, or 7 years. Sometimes this was because the relationship really needed to end, and sometimes not.

I can't quote the studies, but if you go to Dan Savage, he can, but most people cheat. Men and women both. It's common, and you can decide whether it's worth ending the relationship because of it.

But my point is this-- in poly, I'm not going to lose a relationship because of the "ooh, new shiny!" impulse. I'm also not going to be able use cheating (mine or theirs) as an easy way to express "this relationship is broken" like I used to. I deal with a relationship strictly on the terms of it's own health, how well it's working for us, how it fulfills us, without the expectation that it be my all-and-everything, forever and ever amen. It feels more stable.

If she's talking about poly, she may be trying to change your relationship to something that she thinks will be more sturdy. It doesn't sound like that's an option with you, so make sure she knows.
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  #20  
Old 05-06-2012, 02:38 PM
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BlackMagicBlonde BlackMagicBlonde is offline
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"What I am, is bad at monogamy....
I have cheated on monogamous relationships in the past. Sometimes after 1 year, 2 years, or 7 years. Sometimes this was because the relationship really needed to end, and sometimes not."

me too, Strixish.

for what yet another opinion/perspective is worth, MoBetter: i applaud the fact that the question you're (both) asking is "do we really want to be together?" and also that you recognize and acknowledge that neither of you wants yourselves or the other to feel suppressed or censored for simply being who you are - which may mean that you need to split in order to be fully yourselves, if you are mostly mono and she is truly poly (which is still up in the air).

what if you both agreed on a split for, say, a month or two? could you agree to spend this time apart, with no ill will or prejudgments, maybe decide to keep in contact (whether by phone/email or in person, and maybe on a schedule) simply as friends with the intention of giving yourselves enough room to breathe and think clearly (especially her)? then she might be able to distinguish between "i'm poly, and it's just who i am; i need more than one person in my life" and "i'm mono because i want to be" vs "i'm mono (unspoken: because i really need you in my life and that's the way it has to be if we're going to be together)."

just a path i might take, if i found myself and a partner in that situation. for what it's worth.

best of luck to you both!
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