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  #11  
Old 07-23-2010, 01:25 PM
EugenePoet EugenePoet is offline
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You're choosing to re-affirm your marriage with a man you love, and put the needs of that relationship first. You've examined your life and are making conscious, self-aware decisions about how you want to live. I admire you. That's a very loving decision.

I'm not so wise. Recently new love and its possibilities took me by storm and overturned a bunch of things I thought I knew about myself. I believed I was getting what I needed, until I spent time with another woman and realized what a joy it could be and what I was aching for without knowing it. (The French have a great phrase for sudden love: coup de foudre, a strike of lightning.) After that I could not go back to the way it was before. Impossible.

Perhaps what I mean to write is, beware the coup de foudre! You have decided to sublimate a certain side of your personality by allowing yourself emotional closeness with another man but not sexual closeness. We all do that, none of us are complete hedonists who indulge every urge. So what you're doing is not intrinsically unhealthy. But if one builds up a gradual feeling of longing for what might have been, a sense of buried and denied desire, then it's possible that those things will surface suddenly and without warning.

I don't know how to avoid this except perhaps by searching out and acknowledging the buried and denied things, understanding them, and keeping them in mind. Hard work. It's something I'm working on, certainly.

Last edited by EugenePoet; 07-23-2010 at 01:28 PM.
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  #12  
Old 07-23-2010, 03:43 PM
AnotherConfused AnotherConfused is offline
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Quote:
beware the coup de foudre!
Thanks! It's a good point. Sublimated desire is probably how I got into this mess in the first place -as far as the kisses and the whispered fantasies go. I've been slowly (resisting) falling in love with him for at least 15 years. It has helped tremendously to examine my feelings here in this forum. I feel like I can make more conscious choices now. Before, I just knew that the traditional wisdom of mainstream society said I should not be feeling anything for this man, and it was too strong a feeling for me to set aside. Now I see that there is nothing strange or wrong with loving him; I am not guilty from the get-go, so now I can accept the love, and make honest choices about my actions.

It won't ever be going back to the way it was before. I can be monogamous, but know I understand my motive to do so.

*sigh of relief*
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  #13  
Old 07-23-2010, 06:38 PM
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redpepper redpepper is offline
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Thanks for writing what you did Eugene. It summed up what I have been thinking to, but as confused seemed to be on a good path for herself I thought it best to leave it. Still, I'm glad you said it.

Good luck confused. I'm so half you are doing what is right for you and keeping on top of your emotions and the goal at hand.
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  #14  
Old 07-24-2010, 03:24 PM
AnotherConfused AnotherConfused is offline
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Thumbs up An update

After so much thinking about all this, I actually broached the topic with my husband last night after all. Not to say I am in love with another or ask his blessing for extramarital sex, but just to say I'd come to understand things about myself, and why I'd cheated on boyfriends and found fidelity so difficult in the past. To let him know that I am able to be in love with more than one man at once.

Well, it went extremely well! He voiced his concerns and his views... Among them, that he sees this is something about me, and my need for love, and not any inadequacy on his part. (He made these statements himself; he wasn't just agreeing with things I was saying to him!)

His concerns lie in 2 camps -one, that my attention to other relationships could distract me from our family, the core of our lives. He is the sort of person who feels burdened by most relationships -extended family, networks of friends -and keeps his attention devoted to just those who are most central in his life; wife, kids, mother, siblings, my parents. He also sees that I am a social person and have always thrived on filling my life with people, so I think he knows I am not going to have trouble in this department.

And two, that allowing someone to become close to me gives them the power to hurt. Here, he seems less worried about my own personal heartbreak, although I think it's that too, but also about our family as a whole. He gave the example of a woman running for political office in the south whose campaign was derailed by several people claiming they'd had affairs with her (she was married; open marriage or not didn't matter to the voting public.) He wants us to always live a life that holds up to public scrutiny. He reads the news too much, I think, so worst case scenarios are never far from his mind.

I came away from the conversation with a few things. I knew he was not a jealous man, and this affirms that he does not feel threatened or lessened by my loving someone else. In fact, he recognized the energy that I bring back to the marriage bed from the happiness I get feeling love for another. He grinned at that. I don't have to feel guilty any more about this. I also know that in loving another, I need to be very careful, for my husband's sake, about where I put my trust, and how much I share of myself. This is fine; I don't feel that sentiment I see expressed so much among people here: "I am poly and this is the way I need to live to feel happiest." For me, it's just about these two men, my husband and the friend I love, so starting new relationships doesn't interest me. (I realize I might fall in love with someone else someday anyway, but I'll cross that bridge then.) I trust both of these men with my life, and all my secrets.

Anyway, I just wanted to share my news of this happy conversation. He's quite the stellar husband, isn't he?

I also wanted to comment on what a loving (that should come as no surprise!) group of people writes on this forum. Anonymous online conversations have a tendency to get unkind sometimes, but I have yet to read a post that wasn't supportive and affirming, even when there were differences of opinion. You all rock!
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  #15  
Old 07-24-2010, 04:26 PM
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Thanks for the compliment. We do our best, but really it is us that have created that (you included because you write here), it gets passed on from one person to the next that comes on here. I have been here for 18 months. Almost from conception (four months off), I have seen such love here that is why I stay and will stay unless it changes to be drastically otherwise.

What great news for you. I bet you are riding high and confident today. I'm so happy for you. What a relief to get some stuff off your chest, eh (I'm canadian, sorry :P)?

What next then? Where will you go from here? What is the next baby step?

My husband sounds similar. Social anything is more of a chore sometimes than anything. He is not awkward or anxious, he just prefers to hermit. Eventually I need to boot him out to have the house to myself. I am not happy unless I am in a group of people. I am able to carry out my relationships quite naturally. I was born to I think. I don't seem to have any trouble. Nerdist on the other hand struggles every step of the way and I have to be patient, as I usually bare the brunt of his unability to focus on more than one person at a time.

If your husband appreciates you for who you are, do you think there is a chance he will feel comfortable with you and your friend?

I have a family too and at the beginning of seeing Mono there was a lot of adjusting. I neglected my family for sure. That's what happens when a relationship is added. Now the benefits are temendous; as I lie here next to Nerdist sleeping while our boy had a sleep over at Mono's. Ya! Not bad! My boy adores him. He is his "best buddy" he is an uncle/brother figure to him. This afternoon they are building a guinea pig hutch together. Its really BETTER with Mono.

On the other hand our coming out story to my parents was a disaster. They felt neglected for 6 months while I went through NRE and then at the end of it I told them about Mono, expecting them to have an "oooo, oh well then, that's okay" moment, they blew up instead. Long story of which there is a thead if you are interested.
Yes all very tricky, it is important to negotiate what it all will look like ahead of time. But remember that things change. I had no idea I would be where we are now. I dreamed for it, but didn't think it possible or feasable and here it is. Our boundaries were very tightly pulled in at first and we let them out slowly and when it felt right.

As to getting hurt? Well, that's just the luck of the draw. I can tell you that if you get hurt, it will make the bond and connection to your husband stronger. He gets to be the white knight and soooth you. Not such a bad deal as long as he can compose himself and let you run your own relationships. Swooping in to give someone hell is not going to be respectful or appropriate.

It sounds like your male friend is married also no? This is my big worry. Having intimate moments with him is cheating to most monogamous women. In my opinion there should be no more of that, or anything until she has been told, consulted, considered and respected.

It sounds like you are in a good place, regardless as its a better place than your first post I'm happy for you.
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  #16  
Old 07-24-2010, 07:48 PM
swfltriad swfltriad is offline
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Smile Honesty

I am happy that you and your husband talked, but you did not come fully clean with him. I believe that you should tell him everything to keep him informed to make his own decisions with all possible information.
I hope that you two stay happy with you becoming poly and he is comfortable with your choices of people you have relations with.
Also, not all men think that contact is cheating, people can cheat in their minds and hearts, thus guilt is felt. People need to communicate openly and honestly.
But, what do I know; I am new at this too. Good Luck
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  #17  
Old 07-24-2010, 08:01 PM
AnotherConfused AnotherConfused is offline
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Quote:
What next then? Where will you go from here? What is the next baby step?
I think now I'm just content with the way things are. My friend lives 2 hours away; I don't see him often. We have started having weekly phone calls, and we've emailed every few days or so for the past year. Now when I do see him, I won't have to feel like it betrays my husband to be so in love. I don't need to add sex to the picture. In fact, sometimes I feel more special to this man because we don't have sex; his life (he's nearly 3 decades older than me) is full of ex-girlfriends, former flings, and 2 ex-wives. I don't ever want to be one of those to him. He's yearning for someone to be a dedicated, live-in partner or wife -a big reason his current live-out girlfriend is not working out for him -and I don't want to hamper that, nor could I fill that role. So we will go on as we are, and that is fine.

Quote:
If your husband appreciates you for who you are, do you think there is a chance he will feel comfortable with you and your friend?
Meaning if my friend became a lover or boyfriend? I think my husband would not be comfortable with that. But with me loving him, sure.

One thing that my husband notably didn't ask me in our conversation last night was whether I am currently in love with anyone outside our marriage. He did not ask who I may have been in love with in our dozen years together. I'm sure he figured I'd tell him if I wanted him to know, but otherwise it's my private business. I don't think he's even particularly curious. In fact, his attitude about our whole conversation was that I was telling him all this to get it off my chest, not because he had any particular right or need to know. It amazes me how he can be so devoted to me, and at the same time, not try to own me, which has been an element of other relationships I've been in. God I love him!

I don't feel comfortable telling my husband who it is I've fallen for, partly in case it did make my husband want me to see less of him, and partly because I don't want to make things difficult for my friend -he's got to sort things out with his girlfriend, so it's not my place to publicize our connection. Still, I think I left it fairly obvious that there is someone right now, and if he chose to give it some thought, he could probably figure it out based on our recently having spent time together. Seems like he already knows we are close -he made some comment once about not knowing whether the 2 of us had ever had sex before he met me. And again, it wasn't a question, just an offhand remark, but clearly he sees the attraction that has always been there.

As for family... my mom has been nervous about this, and she doesn't know the half of it! She was terribly concerned when I said I was going out to dinner with my friend, when my husband wasn't in town with me. I assured her it was really ok for a married woman to eat at a restaurant with someone other than her husband, but still, she tried to cover up where I was when my husband talked to her that evening! I had already told my husband what I was doing, so that was just weird. Makes me think my mom must have poly leanings too, or she wouldn't have been so suspicious. She knows I adore my husband! Well anyway, I don't see any need for a "coming out" since I'm not likely to end up with a situation like yours, redpepper. Heavenly as it sounds! Great for your son, too! (I think my friend is more like a grandpa-figure to my kids, given our age difference, but it is still a joy to see.)

Oh yes, compared to my original post, I feel worlds better! Thank you for this support and education!
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  #18  
Old 07-25-2010, 04:11 PM
Confused Confused is offline
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Personally, I wouldn't be comfortable keeping those things to myself.

I would be very unhappy if my husband was keeping similar things from me and I don't see how wanting complete honesty from your partner is wanting to own them. I'm a huge believer in radical honesty in committed relationships.

I think its great that you've taken the steps to discuss with him as much as you have but you say yourself that one of your reasons for not telling more is that you want to continue to see him. Thats taking a choice away from your husband. Thinking you've made something obvious doesn't mean he really knows.
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  #19  
Old 07-25-2010, 07:05 PM
AnotherConfused AnotherConfused is offline
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I would be very unhappy if my husband was keeping similar things from me and I don't see how wanting complete honesty from your partner is wanting to own them.
Thanks for your 2 cents, confused. Another illustration of how we are all different -my husband is not unhappy at all about not knowing whether, and who, I am in love with. He didn't ask. He doesn't find it relevant. Based on our 12 years together he definitely knows I would tell him if he asked. I would also tell him if it ever seems like he is unhappy not knowing. It's similar to how he feels about men in my past. I've asked him whether he would like to know who I've been with, and details about my past relationships, and his answer is just -if I feel like I need to tell him, but otherwise, probably not. He's a Be Here Now kind of guy.

Of course wanting complete honesty isn't wanting to own someone -sorry if I implied that. I see a difference between honesty (telling the truth, not trying to deceive) and loss of privacy. For example, if I choose not to share a fantasy about say, a grocery clerk who flirted with me, I'm not being dishonest. If I were to act on that fantasy, of course it would be dishonest to keep that to myself (but not dishonest to keep it from, say, my mother or my employees). So I suppose it all comes down to whether someone has the need or the right to know. My husband has the right to know who I love, but he doesn't apparently have the need, so unless he expresses that need (asking me or just seeming bothered), I don't feel dishonest in keeping that private.

As for those moments when my friend and I went a little beyond the boundaries of my marriage -I do feel bad not having told my husband yet. I think I will work my way towards that conversation. All the reading and writing I've done on this forum have helped me see the whole situation with much more clarity, so I think that I am getting closer to being able to know what to say, and how. Meanwhile, everyone here will just have to accept me as less than perfect, but striving in the right direction.
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  #20  
Old 07-25-2010, 07:20 PM
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redpepper redpepper is offline
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I don't understand how you could not commit to being honest. There seems to be some missed info here. If I am feeling that way then no doubt your husband and this man are. First of all you say this man is saying sexy fantasies in your ear, now you are saying it won't be sexual; then you say you had a good talk with your husband and started to be honest and now you have decided to keep him in the dark.

If you aren't going to be honest, if you aren't going to start being open and fess up, then what does the future hold? More deciept more cheating behaviour, not only on your husband but on the man's girlfriend too.

Come on! Seriously! You and he have decided to gloss over what is going on for you in order to protect it. You aren't as far as I'm concerned. You are setting yourself and everyone up for a world of suffering, hurt, disrespect, dishonesty, deception, and possibly break ups.

Nope, you are too far in it now it seems my friend. Ask for what you want. If you want to be able to hang with this guy and it not be sexual then what do you have to lose asking for that? My bet is that you DO want more and that you think you can't have it.

This man is dangerous I think. Both of you are dangerous to each other. There is no way in hell that if things go underground that they won't turn sexual. It is so easy to slide into that with little effort. Cheating has easy beginnings and really difficult disastrous results. If you put the work in now and tell your husband what is going on he could help you. You need his support in telling this guy that although you think he is the bees knees, he has a girlfriend and you have a husband to consider and that they come first.

If you really think your role is better as friendship then get your husband to help. Tell your husband, "look sweetheart, I fell in love with our friend with the girlfriend and we just want to be friends but I am struggling with the boundaries. I don't want to hurt you, or the girlfriend or what we all have, I need help to do what is right because my emotions are getting away on me and I am beginning to feel out of control. I know this because my instinct is to protect my love for this man by lying about it."

This is what I am understanding by what you post. Obviously I could be wrong, I feel a bit short of info, so I could be. Does any of this ring true?
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