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  #31  
Old 01-30-2013, 01:22 PM
learninginTN learninginTN is offline
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Well, we had our first MC session last night. It was via Skype, and we had some technical difficulties and couldn't get the video to start from our end (MC couldn't see us), but I think it was a good start. We both told MC we were committed to making this polyamorous situation work. We covered our back history, and covered some practical things we were wrestling with. We saved for later sessions W's affair, her discontent with the children, her bi-polar issues, and my communication issues. During the session I was very clear with the counsellor we had to get to a point where my emotional and sexual needs are getting met, so we'll see if we can make some progress in that area.

After session was over W headed to see her guy, I asked her not to stay too long, as she had to be at work at 7:30am. She gets back at about 4:00am, telling me they talked and talked about guy's mother's dementia for hours, etc. I was a little miffed that she is sacrificing her sleep to be with guy, and is something we'll definitely go over soon.

But she reached out and held my hand as we fell asleep, which is the first kind of contact like that she's initiated in weeks. It made me feel nice. When she left this morning she said she and guy are going to work on scheduling so we can figure out how to make this work.
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  #32  
Old 01-30-2013, 05:18 PM
learninginTN learninginTN is offline
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And just now I called her up to ask her to have lunch with me, and she's in guy's town having "lunch" with him. This is about 9 hours after she left him at around 3:00 this morning. She apologized profusely. Never said anything to me about these plans.

So now, after promising me she was only going to spend two nights with him this week after last week's "every other night sleepover" with him and their weekend 24-hour jaunt, she has seen him every day this week so far.

Something has to change soon, and I expect tonight we're going to have a heart-to-heart about this NRE fog she's in. I know it's unavoidable, but she can change her behavior if she wants to. She's going to have to step up VERY soon and honor her promise to me to work on us and redirect some of that energy back to me or I'm going to hit the brakes on polyamory.

Last edited by learninginTN; 01-30-2013 at 07:05 PM.
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  #33  
Old 01-31-2013, 01:28 AM
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kdt26417 kdt26417 is offline
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It sounds like you guys are going through some ups and downs as far as making progress is concerned. Try to keep in mind the good things that she does (e.g. holding your hand in bed), and give her verbal appreciation for stuff like that, even if it is hard to do when you are thinking about the times when she slipped up.

There's no need to excuse her out of her bad behavior, but be as sympathetic as you can about the NRE. It really is hard to keep things in perspective when you're in that NRE fog. She's going to make some decisions that aren't very smart. You can help with that by stepping up the number of verbal reminders, and she may need a wake-up call now and then. But you'll have to walk a fine line here, as you don't want to ruin the marriage (or throw it away) if you can help it.

Try to keep the communication process going as a negotiation, and try to give the marriage counselling some more opportunity to help out. I think you and your wife are both in a fragile headspace right now, in your respective ways. The decisions you make today could have an enormous effect on the direction of the future, so make all those decisions with care.

Regards,
Kevin T.
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  #34  
Old 01-31-2013, 04:13 PM
learninginTN learninginTN is offline
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We had a first attempt at creating a schedule last night. It was a good start, but I can't really say it went well. She wants WAY too much time with him, in my opinion. Basically spending the night with him four nights/week (overnight), on week 1, then three nights/week (but not overnight) with him on week 2. Then repeat this pattern. I know this will be too much for me to handle. I'd rather her see him no more than two nights/week. This NRE fog is going to make it difficult to make a realistic schedule.

W: This is what I want. (And then she tells me the above).
Me: This is definitely a good starting point to making this schedule.
W: So you're saying no?

Not a good compromising attitude from her, in my opinion. I know she'll never go for what I want, either, so we'll have to hash it out and meet somewhere in the middle. That's the way negotiations work. Both parties give a little, and the end product is something where both parties get some of what they want.
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  #35  
Old 02-01-2013, 12:27 AM
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Re:
Quote:
"I know she'll never go for what I want, either, so we'll have to hash it out and meet somewhere in the middle. That's the way negotiations work. Both parties give a little, and the end product is something where both parties get some of what they want."
Yeah, that's pretty much my take on it.

Re:
Quote:
"I'd rather her see him no more than two nights/week."
I would almost tell her that verbatim. Perhaps slightly modified: "I know this probably wouldn't be doable for you, but if it were just up to me, I'd probably ask you to see him no more than two nights/week." Something like that.

The point is, I guess, to let her know that neither of you is going to really get exactly what you want, and that you'll both need to compromise.

Re:
Quote:
"This NRE fog is going to make it difficult to make a realistic schedule."
Yes, it's true, it will make it difficult. It will probably test your patience. But keep stubbornly negotiating for that compromise, as much as you can.

Regards,
Kevin T.
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  #36  
Old 02-01-2013, 04:36 PM
learninginTN learninginTN is offline
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Well, we settled on a schedule I think I can live with for now. I studied it carefully and I'm getting more face-time than her guy, and the children are getting more face-time, so we're going to try it for a while. I agreed to try it with a couple of HUGE caveats: If it becomes too much for me to handle emotionally, we can modify to reduce guy's face-time, and we begin to work hard on our own relationship so that I can get my needs met as well. We purposely built-in at least one date night/week with me alone (getting a babysitter).

Things seemed to go pretty well in counselling. We're going to continue that for a while. W was nice in bed last night, coming over to my side and grabbing my hand.
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  #37  
Old 02-01-2013, 08:10 PM
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Glad to hear things have moved a bit more in the positive direction. I'm thinking they'll continue to do so, with progress being more noticeable after considerable lengths of time.

Keep us posted in any case,
With respects and regards,
Kevin T.
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  #38  
Old 02-01-2013, 09:25 PM
learninginTN learninginTN is offline
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The W and I had a discussion today at lunch where we disagreed on how much we tell our 5 year-old girls about her relationship with her guy. Now that we've agreed on a schedule, W is going to be going to her guy's house 4 times every two weeks. She'll be leaving before the girls go to bed and not coming back home until she gets off work the following day. She told me she has told the girls a few times in the past she has been going to see "guy".

I told her I am NOT OK with this. I do not want our girls under any circumstances to think W has a boyfriend or that W is spending the night with a guy. Wife tried to convince me I shouldn't feel this way (again discrediting my feelings). I am going to start telling the girls that mommy is going to see some friends, or going to a party, or something similarly vague. I'd rather not lie to them, but I do not want them knowing the real truth. I feel they are too young and impressionable and could start thinking mommy is getting a new husband or they are getting a new father, and I am NOT OK with any of that. I don't want them to EVER think she is spending the night with a guy.

I'm OK if guy sees the girls occassionally, but I'd rather it not be too much. It's OK with me if they see him as a friend that's no different than our other friends we might have dinner with as a family once per week or play games with every week. I am NOT OK with them ever thinking mommy has someone who is a romantic interest.

I'm not going to bend to her on this. I've given her so much (more than probably 99% of husbands on this planet would), but she's going to have to do what I want in this regard. I'm prepared to pull the plug on this polyamory experiment if I ever hear one of my girls say something like "Why does mommy spend the night at "guy"'s house, or "Why does mommy go to see "guy" so much?"
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  #39  
Old 02-02-2013, 02:32 AM
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Anneintherain Anneintherain is offline
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I am surprised I've never seen this thread until today...
I think your wife has asked for way too much too many times, and I think you will regret that you've always caved to what she wants, that might be a good issue to work on in counseling too - why you aren't comfortable saying no when you mean no.

I'd sure change my password again too, and let her no in clear language that she does not have the right to try to remove my support system from me, and that if she was behaving in a right manner, she wouldn't be worried about you were saying said about her to your friend. I imagine she wouldn't "allow you" to have any privacy in communication with girlfriends either?

I foresee a big problem when you find a relationship of your own, because lets say she is willing to actually stay at home so you have time to go spend with your partner, if you decide for parity you want to spend the same amount of time as she does out of the house, then your relationship is pretty much down to roommates who pass in the night. I find it irresponsible that she will spend so much time from home when you have young children, and I wonder if it's not a bit irresponsible of you to agree to it happening too. Do you consider her to be a good parent?
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  #40  
Old 02-02-2013, 06:58 AM
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BreatheDeeply BreatheDeeply is offline
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I hope your relationship continues to improve. Based on everything that you've said here, you've been a saint to stay with your spouse! I hope you're able to stay strong while she gets better; it sounds like you want to save your marriage and after 15 years if commitment I can understand why. I cheated on my spouse too. She discovered what I was doing and confronted me about it (and I confessed), but it took a long time and a lot of sacrificing on both our parts to fix what I broke. But your situation sounds more taxing - you have to contend with her bipolar situation and her dishonesty (which can often accompany bipolar disorders). I have a lot of respect for what you're doing and wish you all the best.

.
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