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Old 04-06-2010, 10:53 PM
dagypsy dagypsy is offline
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New word for me. Boyfriend claimed to be polyamorous 4 years ago when we entered into a monogamous relationship. For 4 years. Has had ongoing online/phone relationship with woman number 2 since before I met him. I am facing my first weekend with him away to spend 3 days with her. I don't understand. He claims to love me, that nothing has changed, we are still 'together'. Help me see this as something other than a case of he wants his cake and eat it too. Isn't this just self-centered? How do I learn to live with this? How do polyamorous relationships work?
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Old 04-07-2010, 01:59 AM
Quath Quath is offline
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It is a little of having cake and eating it too. But is there something wrong with that? How many people want to have cake but never eat it?

But there is a deeper answer. Love is not limited. If you love someone new, that does not decrease your love for anyone else. What is limited is the time people can spend together.

One way to imagine this is to think about a parent having a new child. They don't love their first child any less. What is important is making sure tha the first child still feels love and time is still spent with him or her.

So one way to deal with this is to realize that his feelings for her are independent of his feelings for you. While he is out with this woman then that is a good time for you to do something fun for yourself. Go out with friends or pamper yourself at the spa or watch some favorite movies. Have a night out with some friends or go on a date yourself with someone else. Keep yourself occupied so you don't dwell on it.

The most important thing is to communicate what you are feeling. If you feel jealous, it iss ok to say so. That doesn't mean he has to fix it. The best way to deal with jealousy from what I have seen is to find the root cause of it like envy or insecurity and deal with that.

I wish you well.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:53 AM
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Breathesgirl Breathesgirl is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dagypsy View Post
New word for me. Boyfriend claimed to be polyamorous 4 years ago when we entered into a monogamous relationship. For 4 years. Has had ongoing online/phone relationship with woman number 2 since before I met him. I am facing my first weekend with him away to spend 3 days with her. I don't understand. He claims to love me, that nothing has changed, we are still 'together'. Help me see this as something other than a case of he wants his cake and eat it too. Isn't this just self-centered? How do I learn to live with this? How do polyamorous relationships work?
Boyfriend and I have been together nearly five years and most of it has LOOKED monogamous. It looked it, at least to me, because neither of us had another most of the time. In our heads and hearts though we weren't monogamous. At worst it was us taking a break to work on US so that when there is/was another we would have a stronger foundation to work from.

I highly recommend www.xeromag.com. Especially http://www.xeromag.com/fvpolyjealousy.html, http://www.xeromag.com/fvpolyrefrigerator.html and http://www.xeromag.com/fvpolycommunication.html. The first two deal with jealousy specifically. The last deals with how to communicate effectively.

Communication is THE cornerstone of a good relationship. IMO, and this IS JMO, you don't have much of a relationship if you can't communicate effectively.

I just reread what you wrote and something struck me:
Quote:
4 years ago when we entered into a monogamous relationship.
Did he SAY the two of you were going to be monogamous or did you assume the two of you were going to be?

Last edited by Breathesgirl; 04-07-2010 at 09:54 AM. Reason: change a word for clarity
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Old 04-07-2010, 03:00 PM
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MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
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Did he SAY the two of you were going to be monogamous or did you assume the two of you were going to be?
Most people wouldn't even think to ask if they are entering a monogamous relationship. It's so vastly the majority it would be like asking you're new partner if they were planning on getting a gender reasignment in a couple of years. Non-monogamy is not that widely known about as an option; it only apears to be because we are in it.

Until non-monogamy becomes more widely known as an option for committed relationships, I feel the responsibility falls on the non-monogamous person to make sure thier way of loving is clear. Of course, if you discover you are non-monogamous later in a relationship that is a different story.
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Old 04-07-2010, 04:17 PM
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" New word for me. Boyfriend claimed to be polyamorous 4 years ago when we entered into a monogamous relationship."


I took the above statement to mean that he did make sure he told her he was polyamorous.

The part of : "when we entered into a monogamous relationship" is the part that I find confusing. Did he agree to not be polyamorous ? Or, was there a assumption he wouldn`t be polyamorous, because time went by, and nothing 'real' had happened ?
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Old 04-07-2010, 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by dagypsy View Post
New word for me. Boyfriend claimed to be polyamorous 4 years ago when we entered into a monogamous relationship. For 4 years. Has had ongoing online/phone relationship with woman number 2 since before I met him. I am facing my first weekend with him away to spend 3 days with her. I don't understand. He claims to love me, that nothing has changed, we are still 'together'. Help me see this as something other than a case of he wants his cake and eat it too. Isn't this just self-centered? How do I learn to live with this? How do polyamorous relationships work?
Lets start with "boyfriend claimed to be poly 4 years ago when you entered a mono relationship." I have to agree with the question that Breathesgirl asked, you went into a relationship with someone who had put out to you honestly that he is poly. Did he say that you two would be mono or did you assume it? Did you ask about what poly was, was it discussed at all before getting into this relationship?

"Has had an ongoing online/phone relationship with a woman since BEFORE you met him." And I assume that this online/phone relationship went on during your 4 years together. How did that make you feel? Were you alright with him having this relationship with the "other woman" all this time? Did either of you try to talk about it or just let it slide figuring nothing will come of it? In essence if not in physical fact, he has had a relationship with this woman all this time.

I'm sorry if I am making it sound like you are the one to blame, that is not my intent. I see possible blame on both sides but that is because I do not have all of the details. There is not much here to go on.

It is possible that you are, by nature, mono. If that is the case, you may never understand or even want to understand as it causes you so much pain. If that is the case then yes, if you stay in this relationship you would be the woman who sits at home and pines away jealous and alone.

One of the biggest missing details in your original post is communication. What has been talked about? Was the subject dropped right after he said he was poly? Did he offer to answer questions, did you ask any? Did either of you discuss the "other woman" issue before it got to this point or did he just up and say, "Hey babe, remember 4 years ago I said I was poly, well I'm using that to go meet the woman I've been talking to for longer than I've known you. See you in 3 days!"

Poly relationships basically work the way any good healthy mono relationship works...COMMUNICATION IS KEY. From your post one assumes that nothing was ever talked about. If that was the case then this is not a good healthy relationship of any kind. Poly people and the people they love, whether mono or poly, understand or learn to understand that LOVE is not limited, TIME is the limiting factor.

How much of how you are feeling have you talked to your SO about? The time has long past of the woman having "no power" and "no voice" in a relationship. Speak up and tell him how you feel, tell him you are not comfortable, that you hate that he is going. If you have already done this, what was his reply? Does he try to be understanding? Is he open to discussing the situation? Does he get defensive and say you are crazy?

Devil's Advocate is sprouting her horns now. How about the other woman? How do you think she gets on every day knowing that the man she loves? is however many miles away living? with another woman he met after they started their relationship? Is she sitting at home pinning away or feeling trod on? Is she happy that he has found more love with you? Have you ever talked to or met this woman?

I ask a lot of questions, some of which need to be asked between you and your SO.

I am not saying that you should just clam up and accept what he is doing, but I am also not saying that you should demand he never sees her or speak to her again. Neither are the answer. Those two options will only cause more pain and suffering.

I really do wish you luck. This is not an easy road to be on, for some it is worth the journey, for others it is not.
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  #7  
Old 04-07-2010, 05:36 PM
CFstasha CFstasha is offline
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It is about having cake and eating too, but as far as I'm concerned, I have two pieces of cake, and it's VERY important to me to make sure both my husband and my boyfriend know they are adored, so that my husband especially (since we're new to polyamory) never feels like you do.

You asked how poly relationships work; well, here's how mine does:

I love my husband. Nothing with that changed when I met my boyfriend. That's how I knew I wanted a polyamorous situation, that I didn't want to sacrifice my amazing marriage, but I felt very strongly that I needed to explore this connection I had with the man who is now my boyfriend. Because I was familiar through poly friends, the notion that I could love more than one person completely was not new to me, and I communicated with my husband openly from the beginning when feelings started happening. But my husband's been an active participant in this process and in the decision to open up our marriage.

It's okay to not be comfortable with this arrangement. A lot of people aren't. It's okay to be monogamous with a polyamorous partner, but you need to be honest with yourself about what you want and need. It sounds like this is no surprise, but the fact that it's still hurting you after four years is a problem in your relationship that you and your boyfriend need to address, and if you're not alright with him being poly, you need to be honest about that and let him go.

But I will tell you that I am more in love with my husband now, after 7 years, than I've ever been, and my new relationship with my boyfriend doesn't diminish that. You need to trust your boyfriend to not just tell you he loves you, but to make you feel loved. If that's not happening, this will never work. And if you can't be with someone who's poly, that's okay, but you need to be honest about that, for both your sakes.

Good luck to you.
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