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  #1  
Old 10-03-2012, 01:09 AM
nondy nondy is offline
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Default Need advice on whether to be poly

Hi,

I haven't spoken directly with too many poly people. I wanted to join the conversation and possibly get advice.

I've been married for 12 years and had an open relationship for 2 1/2. We opened up when i met a man who I wanted to date. That was turmoultous and ended after a year or so. In any case, my husband met a woman a few months ago. She usually dates poly men. I do not harbor any jealousy. I am actually happy for him!

However, he desires to be full on poly and make his lover part of our household (we have two children) not to move-in but to hang out with all of us. I am not interested in doing this. I prefer to keep our love lives separate. We also (the two of us) have stopping having sex, which I am fine with (we sleep in separate rooms).

I am dating someone but not having sex because the person is in a mono relationship. I know this is breaking a code, and I feel terrible, but he''s truly unhappy in his relationship and I have a hard time connecting with people.

All this has made me think - am I truly poly? Do I need to be single so that I can form another relationship that can go "all the way?" How do I come to terms with my primaries desire to bring his secondary more into our lives? If you don't sleep with your primary is that even a poly relationship?

I love my partner dearly and don't want to lose him, but I think I'm naturally mono and just interested in house holding with him more than being in a love/sexual relationship -- but that seems to limit what relationships I have outside the primary one.
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  #2  
Old 10-03-2012, 11:39 AM
nondy2 nondy2 is offline
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Hi,

I changed my name. I had to reregister. So, I think what I am struggling with is finding out the difference between what is poly and what is just an unhappy marriage (or a marriage that isn't working)> I'm not judging anyone - I'm just trying to figure it out for myself.

I'm not a big fan of marriage. It seems impossible to sustain. So, I think people either a. get divorces or b. cheat. But my husband and I decided to try c. take lovers and be honest about it. I think he IS truly a poly person. He seems happy sleeping with both of us and having us be friends and including her in our family. I however do not think I'm actually poly. I think I'm missing something in the marriage (romance, passion) that I'm looking for outside.

I guess I'm asking why people become poly? Is it because so meting is lacking in the primary relationship? Or are some people just wired to need more sex and more affection? I'm so confused!

Am I doing something wrong here (in the post?) haven't gotten any feed back. Maybe there is a siimuliar thread someone could point me to.

Thnanks!

Anne
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  #3  
Old 10-03-2012, 12:30 PM
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CielDuMatin CielDuMatin is offline
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Welcome to the forum both of you! LOL

You are most definitely not the first person who has had to ask themselves whether they are poly or just looking for others because their relationship is bad.

The concept of "full on poly" is not one that will achieve a lot of resonance on here - poly is what you each want it to be - there is no certification program, no universal ideal for a poly configuration. If you don't want someone to be a part of your family, then that's absolutely your right, and everyone involved needs to respect that. If he wants someone to be part of your family, then everyone needs to respect that too.

We each have our needs, wants and likes for our relationship life. The challenge is to try to get to a point where everyone gets at least their needs met. If they can get a goodly number of "wants" met, then that's good too.

If you and he have very different bottom-lines, then you are not going to be able to make it work.

Another poly adage that's out there is that you shouldn't fall into the "relationship broken, add more people" trap - it rarely, if ever works, and usually just adds drama and more tension to an already bad situation. You have to get the current relationships stable before adding folks. That's the fairest to you, but also to the people coming in. Otherwise the other people can become punching bags or negotiating chips - and nobody really wants to be that.

Your question "Why become poly" - ever since I was a teenager I didn't see why I had to love only one person - why everyone else that I cared about had to disappear (at least form me heart) as soon as I got into a relationship. Conversely, I stayed friends with all of my exes, and couldn't understand why, because our relationship wasn't working, I had to suddenly "hate" this person when they hadn't done anything wrong. When I spoke with other folks about this idea, it seemed utterly foreign to them, while it seemed completely natural to me. I think that was my first clue that I had stuff in me that was "not normal". The rest is a long and painful story that I have written about quite a few times. For me, while sex is a part of a relationship, it's not about needing more sex, or different sex. For me it's about love and romance with multiple people, not just a way to balance differing sex drives.
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Old 10-03-2012, 01:30 PM
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The10thDoctor The10thDoctor is offline
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Hi nondy2!

Welcome aboard. I am pretty new here myself.

As for why I decided to be poly, I had never heard of it until fairly recently. A friend I made was poly and she turned me on to the idea. I have always been a big proponent of honesty and openness. Through my life I found it easy to form little crushes on people. In a couple cases this blossomed into actual feelings for them. I was usually in a monogamous relationship when this would happen and I would feel ashamed about how I felt. I didn't know at the time that it was just natural and normal. When I heard about polyamory I looked back on those parts of my life and saw I didn't have to be ashamed. It was possible for me to explore these feelings. It just made so much sense and I wanted to make it a part of my life.
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Old 10-03-2012, 02:24 PM
almondgrrl almondgrrl is offline
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Hi Anne -
First of all, I am really sorry to hear how troubled you are. But you are really asking about two very separate situations, the only common element between them being you.

Yes, I do think it is okay for you to negotiate not inviting your husbands lover into your home as a limit, especially where there are children involved. Hopefully the two of you will come to some kind of mutually satisfying agreement/compromise on that. And good for you for standing up for your feelings.

As far as the man you are dating, you mentioned that you and your husband are "taking lovers and being honest about it", but unless I am reading your words incorrectly, it sounds like the man you are dating is being dishonest with his wife - is he completely open with her about his relationship with you? If he is being dishonest, by extension, so are you. I am a big believer in honesty, and feel that a man who would lie to his wife is a man who would also lie to you. I don't think you should take part in that dynamic.

Otherwise, you just sound a little confused about what you are looking for. Good luck to you in exploring your feelings, I hope things work out for the best for you.
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  #6  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:38 PM
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Vixtoria Vixtoria is offline
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I'll answer your question first. Why become poly? Well for many people it's just the way they are. They 'become' poly when they learn how to handle the multiple relationships with honesty and communication. Though there are those that enjoy more relationships because of a kink factor, one partner is into a kink that the other is not, typically adding another partner to make up for a lack in your (main)relationship is not the idea. Sure you may have different interests that not all partners share but, for example, I don't date BF because he likes to write out fan fiction with me that hubby won't.

Ciel is right in the fact that everyone has their own way of being poly, it's about deciding on what works for you. That changes and gets renegotiated as time goes on and other people join your circle.

As for the rest, if you feel your marriage is missing something, then that's something to discuss with your husband. Personally I don't think just adding more people will help that. It didn't help us, it actually made things more complicated and difficult. We, my husband and I, had to work on our relationship, strengthen it, work on communication, discovering what we want and need from each other and being able to ask for it. Now that we are doing that, poly is easier for us both. Hubby is mono so me being poly when our relationship wasn't good, was harder.
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  #7  
Old 10-03-2012, 05:55 PM
nondy2 nondy2 is offline
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Default Thank you

Thank you everyone!

The situation is sticky. Since being poly (2 1/2 yrs) my relationship with my husband has greatly improved. We communicate better and are more peaceful.

However, the situation still feels different than others. The reason I am happier is that he has a sexual/romantic partner and I don't feel pressure to have sex or be romantic with him. Now that this pressure is lifted, I feel much closer to him. I always felt like I was forcing myself into feelings I don't have and I dreaded sex, rather than looked forward to it.

Is anyone else in this situation? Is everyone here sexual and romantic with their primary partner? It's a hard situation. I want all the wonderful things we have -we raise our kids and work well together, but romance isn't there for me. But I don't even know if marriage can be based on romance!
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Old 10-03-2012, 06:18 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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Quote:
All this has made me think - am I truly poly?
"Polyamorous" to me is the ability to love more than one person.

Polyamorous relationship configuration is the shape/style of the "polyship" to me.

Ethical or unethical -- is self explanatory.

Quote:
Do I need to be single so that I can form another relationship that can go "all the way?"
All the way to WHAT? Sex? Loving? Ethics? Living together? Shared finances? Making children together?

Quote:
How do I come to terms with my primaries desire to bring his secondary more into our lives?
You tell him YOUR preferences and limits and you come to compromise if you BOTH want to go there. If one of you does not want to go there, the other respects that limit.

Quote:
However, he desires to be full on poly and make his lover part of our household (we have two children) not to move-in but to hang out with all of us. I am not interested in doing this. I prefer to keep our love lives separate. We also (the two of us) have stopping having sex, which I am fine with (we sleep in separate rooms).
To me this means you share companionate love with your husband. You also share a household. You also share a known, consenting polyship that is currently in a "V" shape with him as the hinge person. This relationship shape has you as the live in wife as one of his "V" arms. The GF is not live-in but is one of his "V" arms.

You are her metamour. You prefer to keep it at the polite but not tight place.

What he NEEDS to understand is that he can express his feelings and wishes but YOU and the GF determine how the (you <--> GF ) tier of this polymath tier plays out. NOT HIM.

So if you don't want to go there, you don't want to go there. Period.

If he pushes you to do something against your preference, your will, your limit? He is being fresh and not respecting your preference, your limit or YOU. Period.

Quote:
If you don't sleep with your primary is that even a poly relationship?
Yes. Polyamory is about loving people. It is not about sex. Sex is a part of marriage. Marriage is not only sexing up each other.

There is more than one kind of love -- I subscribe to love theory.

You sound like you share companionate love with your husband at this point. You share finances, a home, mind intimacy, and emotional intimacy. Just not body imtimacy.

Quote:
I am dating someone but not having sex because the person is in a mono relationship. I know this is breaking a code, and I feel terrible, but he''s truly unhappy in his relationship and I have a hard time connecting with people.
So you are in a cheating affair because his spouse does not know you are his GF on the side? You know this is wrong and feel bad about it? And your explanation of the unethical behaviour is:
  • It is ok for him to lie to the spouse because he is unhappy. (Versus ethically telling the spouse of his unhappy and working it out in appropriate ways)
  • It is ok for you to lie to the spouse as an accessory to the fact because... you have a hard time making connections to other people? (versus telling your BF to deal with his relationship with the wife -- come clean and get her consent or break up. But resolve THAT before stating a new thing with you -- a CLEAN new thing.)

Your explanation does not shine with ethics or honesty. I would not do this in my own life. But this is not my life.

If this is how you wish to behave in your life, that is your business. You are a grown up person.

If this is not how you wish to behave because it makes you feel terrible, why you do that behavior? Change your behavior. See how you feel.

Quote:
I love my partner dearly and don't want to lose him, but I think I'm naturally mono and just interested in house holding with him more than being in a love/sexual relationship -- but that seems to limit what relationships I have outside the primary one.
Limits you HOW exactly? What freedom do you want that you do not already get? Please list in detail -- not to me but for YOURSELF.

If that list shows you that you are not cut out for polyshipping and have no interest? Then you just aren't and don't. That means you need to have a talk with husband. You have EVERY right to live your life how you want to. There is NOTHING wrong with monoships -- just have them be ethical ones so that you can feel good about the ones you are in.

Marriage is based on whatever the two married people want it to be for themselves.
Quote:
The reason I am happier is that he has a sexual/romantic partner and I don't feel pressure to have sex or be romantic with him. Now that this pressure is lifted, I feel much closer to him. I always felt like I was forcing myself into feelings I don't have and I dreaded sex, rather than looked forward to it. I want all the wonderful things we have -we raise our kids and work well together, but romance isn't there for me.
So you are basically happy there? All your wants, needs, and limits being better met? What's the problem then? With the guilt thing of not ALSO having romance layer on there?

That's about it. Hope that feedback helps you.

Peace,
GG

Last edited by GalaGirl; 10-03-2012 at 07:07 PM.
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  #9  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:30 PM
nondy2 nondy2 is offline
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Default Married guy

Thank you so much.

Part One of you advice is incredibly helpful.

Part Two is interesting. To me, my primary issue at this point is whether to stay married. And how to make that work.

As far as seeing someone who is cheating, I have a slightly different feeling than most poly people might. Yes. I agree it it unethical. Yes. I agree that it is unwise and I probably will get out.

However, I do have sympathy for people who are unhappily married and CAN'T be poly - and don't want to get divorced. I am not saying it is right. I am saying I have empathy - because I am somewhat in that situation too - except (luckily my husband is open minded). What does someone do if they are unhappily married but can't get divorced either- ?

It seems to take a lover was the common thing for centuries. I guess in my mind our polyamoury was the honest version of take a lover instead of being add more love.

I know that people tend to judge people who date mono people - PLEASE don't judge me. The internet is a scary place and I truly am just looking for support.
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Old 10-03-2012, 06:40 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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I am trying to support you. But I perceive you are tangling up many issues together. Take them ONE at a time.

You and your husband have Opened Up with consent. So -- that was your solution to a companionate love marriage so you both can get your sexual needs met. Fair enough. On that side you are fine.

However the lover that you took on? Is not the best choice in lover there -- it's a messy situation, IMHO. I am not judging YOU. You asked for feedback on YOUR SITUATION.

My feedback on your situation of choosing your first poly lover to be a married guy with marriage issues? I would not pick that for myself. Too much messy potential. First poly lover and the odds a cheater will treat YOU well is what? Shaky ground at best.

I do not like drama in my life -- it is my preference/limit to not add to my anxiety issues where I can help it. I cannot help when it rains. I CAN help who I pick to date. *shrug*

So no -- I will not be dating a married person where I do not get the verify from the spouse that they are aware of my existence and they do consent to open/poly relationship and their spouse is free to date me. I can like them a lot, I can crush on them, I can sympathize with their situation and I can say to them "Aw... that stinks! I really like you a lot. So... Look me up when you are drama free. Will hope for the best in your situation as you get it resolved."

Quote:
What does someone do if they are unhappily married but can't get divorced either- ?
Are you talking about your married lover that will not tell the spouse? If so? How about he be honest and up front about it?

"Hey -- I am not happy married to you. We cannot get divorced at this time because we cannot afford the paperwork costs, have to wait to sell the house, ...whatever it is that is the obstacle. We must wait. So we're having to be this way right now til we get to a place where we can split well.

Let's call some kind of truce til we can untangle ourselves here. But we are honest and know where we stand right now, at this Time, and at this Place. We are not ever getting back together. I am sorry. I intend to start dating at some point. Know this. I will want to start moving my life forward in the places in CAN move, even if in the legal places it's slower. You are free to do same."
There. Done.

You and your own spouse were able to be honest -- what's his deal? He can't be honest? Lies of omission are still lies. Why you wanna date a liar then? When do you wonder what lies of omission he does to you? That can get really messy and dramatic!

If you report feeling terrible about it -- well, my suggestion is to stop doing the thing that makes you feel terrible then. Maybe it will alleviate your feeling terrible? Maybe not. It is STILL your life to run. Your choices are yours.
Quote:
I know that people tend to judge people who date mono people
Not at all. Once upon a time I was the hinge with two monoamorous BFs. I don't judge you dating a monoamorous person at all. A monoamorous and a polyamorous can find ways to co-exist in harmony.

What you are dating here is a married cheating person, not a free single monoamorous person without baggage.

He may be monoamorous. And he may no longer love his spouse and love only you.

However he is dating without terminating his previous MONOGAMOUS contract and dissolving his legal marriage before pressing his suit on new people. He does not tell his wife. So you know he breaks promises and he does lies of omission. This makes him a good poly lover choice because...? Choosing to date him is you looking out for your own well being by....?

You deserve to be treated with respect, love, and kindness, right? Treat YOURSELF right then. And tell him "great! Look me up when you are free!"

Or you want some crazy wife with a gun to come after you? Talk about dramatic! Ugh.

Date all the monoamorous people you want to date -- but non-messy monoamorous people without drama baggage. That is my suggestion.

I am sorry you are hurting right now. I know hurt can make things hard to see clear. But I commend you for trying. Keep going! Don't stop thinking it out for yourself. Hang in there.

HTH!
GG

Last edited by GalaGirl; 10-03-2012 at 07:34 PM.
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