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Old 06-09-2010, 03:43 PM
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Honestheart Honestheart is offline
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Question Going at too slow a pace damaging?

I've heard it said that in poly you can try to "move at the speed of the one who is struggling the most" as a way to help all relationships involved grow healthy and steady.
but tell me this, when moving slow becomes standing still and holding... is that a good thing or a bad thing when that holding still means you've put your dreams and hopes for a relationship's future on hold...indefinitely?
Is there such a thing as going too slow so that you are hindering emotional growth and consequently the growth of all relationships ?
and if you find yourself at such a point, what do you do? keep holding or take a step forward and deal with the emotional aftermath?
and on another kind of related note... consider the following....
if for some reason the relationship you were in ended badly
and you find yourself being asked to wait or doing it of your own accord, holding so to speak, to find out is there was a possibility the relationship could be mended either in friendship only or romantically in a poly relationship ... would you? or would you let go, walk away, cut off all ties, and never look back?
and if you did decide to wait or "hold" how do you know when "holding" or waiting is more damaging then good? how long is too long to wait for an answer? when is it time to say enough, and just walk away?
the same question applies to when you are in a relationship, when is it time to say we need to take a step ahead because we are going so slow it is hindering the emotional growth of all of the relationships.

i just want everybody's feedback... and when i searched i couldn't really find something that hit these exact points on the forum

Thanks for indulging me, i appreciate any answers you give, it will be a HUGE help.
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Last edited by NeonKaos; 06-09-2010 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 06-09-2010, 03:57 PM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
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Originally Posted by Honestheart View Post
but tell me this, when moving slow becomes standing still and holding... is that a good thing or a bad thing when that holding still means you've put your dreams and hopes for a relationship's future on hold...indefinitely?
I would place this on the side of bad things. If things aren't progressing then they may be putting a stop to something you want to see happen. Keep in mind they may not know just how slow they are going. My wife and I, in life, move at different paces. I am a sprinter and she is a turtle. In our world we need to meet in the middle to get to the same crossroads of life at the same time, otherwise we leave each other behind.

Pengrah did not realize her pace was crippling any movement forward. We ended up having to discuss this and she made a couple of big jumps. One thing that also came from the discussion was our difference in processing. She had been intellectually figuring things out on her own. What I saw as 0 movement she had actually made incredible leaps forward. It just wasn't obvious to me

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and if you find yourself at such a point, what do you do? keep holding or take a step forward and deal with the emotional aftermath?
Consider your steps. The aftermath may be less of a shock than you think. Talk about your steps forward and move forward a bit. Baby step it.

I made a mistake one day and ask pengrah about kissing other women. While she was away. Now, with her there, I pretty much have full reign, but I had never broached this topic as something to do without her. Apparently I had jumped 4 steps...it was a night of discussion, 2 weeks of thought and I found out she had moved those 4 steps

Quote:
and on another kind of related note... consider the following....
if for some reason the relationship you were in ended badly
and you find yourself waiting, holding so to speak, to find out is there was a possibility the relationship could be mended whether with friendship only or romantically in a poly relationship ... would you? or would you let go, walk away, cut off all ties, and never look back?
I did...it didn't. I had to move on. I don't have great advice here as I do tend to hold on longer than I likely should have. Its my way of achieving closure knowing its actually over. This occurs for me when the actual closure was minimal to non existent.
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Old 06-09-2010, 04:18 PM
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I did...it didn't. I had to move on. I don't have great advice here as I do tend to hold on longer than I likely should have. Its my way of achieving closure knowing its actually over. This occurs for me when the actual closure was minimal to non existent.
Thats how i work too. I have very little experience dating nd being in relationships but from what i understand, i hold on so as to obtain that closure too. like you said, till i know it is absolutely done. but i'm wondering, if that is more damaging then it is worth if the waiting is too long...i mean, how do you know if you are waiting too long? you know?
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Old 06-09-2010, 04:39 PM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
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Thats how i work too. I have very little experience dating nd being in relationships but from what i understand, i hold on so as to obtain that closure too. like you said, till i know it is absolutely done. but i'm wondering, if that is more damaging then it is worth if the waiting is too long...i mean, how do you know if you are waiting too long? you know?
In practical sense, I can intellectualize my need to move on

my heart won't let it happen until my heart is ready. Its, unfortunately or fortunately, the way I work
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Old 06-09-2010, 05:54 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
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Originally Posted by Honestheart View Post
Is there such a thing as going too slow so that you are hindering emotional growth and consequently the growth of all relationships ?
Yes. Relationships have to be nurtured. If there's no nurturing happening, they die.

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and if you find yourself at such a point, what do you do? keep holding or take a step forward and deal with the emotional aftermath?
If that involves anything that you expect would harm somebody else and relationships in which they are involved, thenno--if you want to operate ethically. I'm thinking that whole ethical behavior thing is one of the key elements in poly being a healthy, functional relationship approach.

Quote:
and on another kind of related note... consider the following....
if for some reason the relationship you were in ended badly
and you find yourself being asked to wait or doing it of your own accord, holding so to speak, to find out is there was a possibility the relationship could be mended either in friendship only or romantically in a poly relationship ... would you? or would you let go, walk away, cut off all ties, and never look back?
Let go and walk away, certainly. Cut all ties? No. There's a chance things could work differently in the future, so there's no call to raze the farm and salt the fields on leaving.

As for waiting on people in general, if your life progresses in such a fashion that you're not moved to get involved with anybody else for any of the host of reasons that don't involve waiting on a specific person, then "waiting" in that sense is fine. Waiting for a specific person is usually not a good idea.

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the same question applies to when you are in a relationship, when is it time to say we need to take a step ahead because we are going so slow it is hindering the emotional growth of all of the relationships.
Whenever you find that things aren't progressing in a fashion that works for you. Seriously. This is part of the constant communication required for relationships, the dance of intimacy.
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Old 06-09-2010, 05:58 PM
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rolypoly rolypoly is offline
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I'm personally loving going slow these days (as someone who's crashed and burned in the past).

But, I can see how being at a standstill pace could be crippling. I guess it's a problem if either the person holding back is doing so manipulatively... or if it's hindering growth for either person. I'd say it needs addressing if the person is avoiding something by holding back...


Quote:
and you find yourself being asked to wait or doing it of your own accord, holding so to speak, to find out is there was a possibility the relationship could be mended either in friendship only or romantically in a poly relationship ... would you? or would you let go, walk away, cut off all ties, and never look back?
I think this is something only you can answer. If there is something in it for you, then it's worth mending. If you feel uncomfortable waiting, or if the waiting seems like a hindrance or a sacrifice you're not willing to make, then you have another decision to make.

Good luck.
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Old 06-09-2010, 07:35 PM
jkelly jkelly is offline
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Smile Too slow?

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Originally Posted by Honestheart View Post
I've heard it said that in poly you can try to "move at the speed of the one who is struggling the most" as a way to help all relationships involved grow healthy and steady.
Sometimes that makes sense, but I personally would almost never give that advice.

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Originally Posted by Honestheart View Post
Is there such a thing as going too slow so that you are hindering emotional growth and consequently the growth of all relationships?
Well, yes, but that is precisely the point! Going slowly (whether for yourself or for the sake of someone else) is an attempt to keep the relationship from growing as fast as it would naturally. One consequence of that is that whatever personal growth the people involved would experience is, at best, delayed.

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Originally Posted by Honestheart View Post
and if you find yourself at such a point, what do you do? keep holding or take a step forward and deal with the emotional aftermath?
My first impulse is to say "take the step", but... infatuation can sometimes give us a false sense of urgency. This is why checking in with friends and other partners is so valuable. They'll often be able to separate out misguided feelings of urgency from an appropriate deepening of a new relationship. If a partner is only saying "Go slow! Go slower!", they're kind of falling down on that job, and you'll have to rely on your own good judgement.

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Originally Posted by Honestheart View Post
the relationship you were in ended badly
and you find yourself being asked to wait or doing it of your own accord... to find out is there was a possibility the relationship could be mended either in friendship only or romantically in a poly relationship ... would you?
No, and I hope that someone would help me get further along in the grieving process if I did. The point of ending a relationship is to get out of a dynamic that isn't working. One of the benefits of being poly- is that ex-s can come back into our lives in more ways when things have changed, but that will be a new and different relationship. Take the time you need to grieve that relationship, but go on with your life.

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Originally Posted by Honestheart View Post
when you are in a relationship, when is it time to say we need to take a step ahead because we are going so slow it is hindering the emotional growth of all of the relationships.
I am not sure that I understand exactly what you're asking here. Relationships, you know, grow and develop. If you want to see more of someone, ask to see more of them. If you want to hear some commitments, offer some and ask for some. If you want to become more physically intimate, make a move. Not every relationship is going to go at the pace we'd like, and we need to just let them happen. Just don't put the brakes on, and then do some clear thinking about whether or not your expectations and needs are getting met, and communicate regularly.
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Old 06-09-2010, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Honestheart View Post
when moving slow becomes standing still and holding... is that a good thing or a bad thing when that holding still means you've put your dreams and hopes for a relationship's future on hold...indefinitely?
For me, the good thing about polyamory is that even though I may have placed some hopes and dreams on a particular relationship that is not moving forward due to another person or persons either being unable or unwilling to move forward....I have the freedom to put some new hopes and dreams into new relationships that may be able to move forward in a more timely manner. Life seems to be able to provide a constant supply of potential new relationships....if you are open to it!!

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Is there such a thing as going too slow so that you are hindering emotional growth and consequently the growth of all relationships ?
I wouldn't delay or hinder my own growth just because the person or people I'm involved with aren't able or willing to continue to grow. I would continue to move forward with my own growth. If that means leaving the relationship(s) I would do that, but if I am able to continue to grow personally without leaving the relationship(s) I would that.


Quote:
would you? or would you let go, walk away, cut off all ties, and never look back?
For me, there is usually a mix of letting go, walking away, cutting some ties, moving forward, looking back, re-connecting, talking more, listening, processing, developing new ties with other people, taking care of myself, moving forward some more etc.


Good luck !!!
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Old 06-10-2010, 02:11 AM
saudade saudade is offline
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Default Short answer is: been there, done that, hated it. Read on for a long answer...

Quote:
I've heard it said that in poly you can try to "move at the speed of the one who is struggling the most" as a way to help all relationships involved grow healthy and steady.
but tell me this, when moving slow becomes standing still and holding... is that a good thing or a bad thing when that holding still means you've put your dreams and hopes for a relationship's future on hold...indefinitely?
Is there such a thing as going too slow so that you are hindering emotional growth and consequently the growth of all relationships ?
I had been in a monogamous relationship for almost two years. We'd been talking for a year about some kind of open relationship, and my boyfriend had been extremely reluctant and uncomfortable. I started college, making our relationship long distance, and basically told him that I felt poly by nature and wanted to try it. He freaked out, cried, and offered to try it... That should have been my first clue.

I started dating another guy a few months later. We started out with what seemed like a reasonable moratorium on physical affection-- nothing more than kissing with the new bf... Two and a half years later, it wasn't reasonable anymore, and I got myself single. (You can only imagine the awful, horrible drama in between.)

Quote:
and if you find yourself at such a point, what do you do? keep holding or take a step forward and deal with the emotional aftermath?
For two and a half years, because I was in love with both of them, I kept trying and I kept giving. Once in awhile I'd snap, and threaten to leave the boyfriend with seniority because it was all so ridiculous, and then he'd cry, and I'd cry, and he'd beg for another chance and promise he'd really try to make it work, and I'd believe him... Finally, things crashed to the point where I thought I didn't love either of them anymore, and I walked away.

Happy ending: five years later, the second guy and I are finally rebuilding our friendship, and looking to see where it leads without all the insanity standing between us anymore.

I can't tell you when to hold or when to retreat. If you're not ready to retreat, and nothing abusive is happening, that's okay. Sometimes we need to work through things that way, and be sure...

Quote:
and on another kind of related note... consider the following....
if for some reason the relationship you were in ended badly
and you find yourself being asked to wait or doing it of your own accord, holding so to speak, to find out is there was a possibility the relationship could be mended either in friendship only or romantically in a poly relationship ... would you? or would you let go, walk away, cut off all ties, and never look back?
I tried the first way a bunch of times, and then I 'let go'. Honestly, after all that hurting, it felt good-- but mine was an extreme case.

Quote:
and if you did decide to wait or "hold" how do you know when "holding" or waiting is more damaging then good? how long is too long to wait for an answer? when is it time to say enough, and just walk away?
the same question applies to when you are in a relationship, when is it time to say we need to take a step ahead because we are going so slow it is hindering the emotional growth of all of the relationships.
Here's the rule I use these days, after walking through that shitstorm once and never wanting to do so again:

Quote:
It's actually my policy not to move at the pace of the slowest person even in an 'existing relationship with an issue' situation, wherein the 'issue' is the involvement of a third person. The rule of thumb I go by instead is: what's reasonable in this situation for the parties directly involved?

For example: one of my partners, Z, has had trouble adjusting to me taking on a friend with benefits. There are parts of my having a friend with benefits in which Z is an involved party: who I sleep with at night; how much time this friend spends with both of us (he's actually friends with the whole constellation, not just me); who I sit next to when they both are in the living room; PDAs in front of Z; the degree to which a new love brings everyone an STD risk; etc. In those issues, Z is directly affected, and how he's doing with the thought of sharing me with this friend in this particular way is a major part of any decision on the topic. However, there are other parts of my relationship with this friend that have nothing to do with Z (like whether we talk online, what we do sexually --once we've agreed on STD issues--, and how we celebrate his birthday), and so we're not going to move at Z's pace on those issues, even if he's the one struggling the most in our constellation with the whole thing.
http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showt...?t=2858&page=2

I hope all of that helps!

In cahoots,
~S
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Old 06-10-2010, 04:00 AM
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Honestheart Honestheart is offline
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and once again, this forum is helping me... thanks guy.
LOL, relationships themselves can sometimes be complicated, throw in multiple loves and boys can it ever get even more complicated. but i like to think... all the complications are worth it in the end.

I can see where holding still can be damaging...
and when holding out hope can be too...
and i see that to a certain degree, both are beneficial...

keep the replies a comin' i appreciate them.... they are helping
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Last edited by Honestheart; 06-10-2010 at 04:04 AM.
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