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  #161  
Old 04-23-2013, 07:11 PM
FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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I know Matt is angry at me, too. I created this mess, so I have to clean it up.

It is not hate. When you hate someone, they cross your mind at some point. He just does not want her in his life at all, but I do not know why he is so resentful of her. I have tried to find out what he honestly thinks of her, but it is not working. That avenue is closed right now. I think she is a really good person. I have never had any reason to think otherwise. I could be blind because I still love her and just not see what he sees. Things happened the way they did because I allowed them to happen. I was wrapped up in myself and what I wanted to think about another soul. Could he be angry at himself? I suppose, but he did what he was supposed to do. Realise that Matt opens up to me in a small pieces and shuts back down. I do not have all the answers right now. That is why we are in therapy. Something new is revealed every time. We urge people to go to their partners and metamours and say what they need. How do you react when you get ignored?

My life is fairly simple, too. We have a nanny because our careers are not always 9-5, and placing that burden upon family and friends is not an option. My parents live about a hour away. Matt's parents live in Australia. Si's parents do not live right down the street either. The grandparents were automatically eliminated.

I have siblings. My youngest two brothers are under 18 and still live at home. My older brother lives in the States right now but is relocating and will be even further away. My sister has a significant other, three children, and her schedule is crazy as ours. She generally works overnight. Who does that leave? Friends? They are all over the United Kingdom, have children, and the world as a whole. Who was left?

Hiring a nanny was not my first choice, but after talking to their doctor, he succeeded in talking me out of putting them in a nursery school. I know about all the various illnesses in nurseries. I chose not to expose my children to that if I did not have to. I know it builds their immunity, but I did not feel comfortable exposing them to everything and then some. Granted, he was probably biased. His wife was stay-at-home mum of an army of children. Even still, the nursery would have only covered a portion of the time, and the nurseries here are expensive. I have encountered universities with cheaper tuition rates than some of these preschool facilities. The cheaper alternative was to have a full-time, live-in nanny. The plan was to always have one until our children started attending school. The first child is going to school in a few months, and I am looking at nurseries now. I am willing to try one.

I have a social life. My entire life cannot revolve around my children, so if I slip out for a few hours while they are sleeping, no harm done. Yes, I do go to the gym. Yes, I do take Zumba and yoga classes. I suddenly have all this time that used to belong to Si, and now, it has fallen in my lap. I did not have the time to do these things before, so I am filling those empty spaces with that time. My children were not up at 5:30 this morning. I was back in time to eat breakfast with them and spend time with them before I left for work.

With the constant state of chaos, I have to have an out and time away from it. If I sit at home and let the stress eat away at me, I would be depressed. I went through that phase and slapped myself out of it. According to everyone, I am wrong for not crying over my relationship ending. If I dare to step out of the home, I am wrong for not spending every waking hour at home. I am wrong for having a life and not letting the hell of it all kill me.

Dinner parties, baking, and cooking are part of my way of relaxing. I popped open the cookbook and went on a baking frenzy. I had to unload everything I baked. These days I have limited control over much of anything, so if my ways of relaxing and maintaining sanity are different, that is just fine. It was just for family and close friends, and it had been planned for several weeks. Even before all of this fell apart. It was not a spur of the moment thing. Could I have bowed out gracefully? Yes. It was our turn to host it, and I wanted to keep it. I needed something to channel these feelings and all this negative energy towards. I worked my bum off for that party, and I felt great after because every single time I found myself thinking about this situation, I would put in more work and work even harder than before. I had a new outlet, and I needed it. For the time that our family and friends were there, it was the one time I was not worried about me or all that is going wrong in my life. I was able to devote all of my energy towards it and being the best hostess ever.

My niece and nephews were there. My godchildren were there. My children were there, too. It was not an adults only type of deal. We have Sunday dinners just like other families all over the world. Ours are just on a larger scale because I have a large circle of people I love and care about. The list was my grandparents (2), my parents, my younger brothers and the oldest's girlfriend (5), my sister, her significant other, their three children (5), my two closest friends and their husbands (4), Matt's best friend, his wife, and their child (3). 19 people.

:et's see what my life consists of and why I feel the need to get away from it all from time to time.

The positives. I have two beautiful children who mean everything to me. I spend every day wondering what I can do to make their lives better, and I achieve it. I am in control of my daily schedule, so I adjust it according to them. She wants to take ballet classes that start 5? Done. I adjust my schedule and go into work earlier on those days, so we can go to the class and grab ice cream after. She wants to paint? We are enrolled in a mummy and me painting class on Sunday's. My children love anything related to Disney, so I am taking them to the Lion King. My daughter asks me to snuggle with her and watch her favourite movie? I stop whatever I am doing and do it with a smile on my face.

Now for the grown-up hell I wake up to every day. My husband has a strong dislike for my ex and voices it every time he is asked. So much so that he resents having to share time with her. He resents her so much that she is not allowed to step foot in our home, and if he could, he would break the relationships that she has established with our children. Oh, but wait. He is working on that. My ex is bitching to me because of his actions. I am tired of being the messenger between these two.

Meanwhile, we are in weekly counselling sessions. He shuts me out after opening up. He does not trust me and questions me even when I say I am doing fine. We did not have sex for a month. It was hot and cold. I just finally started getting intimacy from him again. He would not touch me, and if he did, it was cold. Rubbing against a block of ice would have been more of a turn on. I could not even get a hug out of him. He was so mad at at me that he left for 13 days and was ready to ask me for a divorce. 13 days of limited communication. He talked to our children every day. I could not even get a good morning out of that man for the first week and a half. 13 days of sleeping alone. 13 days of depression because a piece of me was missing. 13 days of Si not talking to me, ignoring my text messages, and ignoring my child's requests. 13 days of answering questions from my child. Yet, I had to keep calm and carry on. 13 long damn days. Am I mad? Damn right.

Oh and speaking of Si, we are trying to rebuild a friendship. It is a struggle because when you still love someone, it is the hardest thing to be friends. I am not pushing it and letting it happen naturally.

I do not think people realise just how hard this is. Day in and day out. It is my life. I have to accept new boundaries, limits, all the changes, and all this other stuff every single day. I am handling things the way I see fit and the way I need to. So if I need to take a spin class, dance at Zumba, work my butt off at the gym, treat myself to a manicure, change my hair colour, get a massage, go for a jog, spend an insane amount on clothing I will never wear, or anything else...I am doing it because I have to take care of myself and my overall well-being. Minimising stress is part of that. If I am in the hospital because of hypertension or a stroke, I am of no use to my children.

Do I see any benefits of poly in my life? No. All I see is the destruction and heartbreak my decisions caused. Nope, it was still not worth it because the aftermath is more painful than anything that happened during.
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  #162  
Old 04-23-2013, 08:51 PM
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Magdlyn Magdlyn is online now
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Well, it's great to take care of yourself. You're lucky to have financial resources to pay for all the pampering!

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Originally Posted by FullofLove1052 View Post

Do I see any benefits of poly in my life? No. All I see is the destruction and heartbreak my decisions caused. Nope, it was still not worth it because the aftermath is more painful than anything that happened during.
You know... the more you call your former arrangement poly, the more I am thinking, it wasn't really poly. Since your communication with Matt was pretty much non-existent, it's like he was never on board, or tolerating, much less enjoying compersion for you. Polyamory assumes all parties are on board and being brought joy by being poly, or being a mono partnered with a poly person. If needs were never clearly expressed, or heard, or met, by all 3 parties... it's not poly. Or not healthy poly, at least.

He is now treating you almost exactly like you were, in fact, cheating on him for 12 years.
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  #163  
Old 04-23-2013, 09:03 PM
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AnnabelMore AnnabelMore is offline
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For the record, FoL, I dont think you have to justify your life or your time. Sure, it looks different in some ways than mine, whatever, a LOT of other people have lives that don't look like mine and it's not relevant to what you're going through. Whether you were super poor or super rich, had all the free time in the world or none, you'd still be faced with what you're faced with and it'd still be agonizing. I'm glad you can the time to relax and get away. Moms get so much judgment for every move they make... it's ok.
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  #164  
Old 04-23-2013, 09:53 PM
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SNeacail SNeacail is offline
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I don't think Mags wasn't condemning what you do, just voicing that she didn't get the lifestyle. For those of us that didn't/don't have those kinds of funds, find it hard to see where anyone would have the energy to do so much with 2 little ones at home. I never had any energy and frequently found myself folding laundry at midnight, dishes still not done and so tired I couldn't see straight. So, being able to hire help to watch the kids, clean the bathrooms, etc. does make a definite difference in how much energy or time is available for other activities. I have friends at all ends of the financial spectrum and have noticed the differences. If you ever want to give a gift to a stay at home mom, offer to baby sit for 3-4 hours so she can run errands without the kids in tow. Here in the states, at least in Southern CA, a non-live in nanny is generally 4 times as much as most licensed daycare/nursery schools.

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I popped open the cookbook and went on a baking frenzy. I had to unload everything I baked.
Throwing a dinner party to unload a baking frenzy - wish I would have thought of that 50lbs ago, what a great idea.

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Meanwhile, we are in weekly counselling sessions. He shuts me out after opening up. He does not trust me and questions me even when I say I am doing fine. We did not have sex for a month. It was hot and cold. I just finally started getting intimacy from him again.
Yeah, I remember this stage.

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I do not think people realise just how hard this is.
Actually, I think a lot of people on this board do realize how hard this is. Which is why they speak up. Many of us have gone through similar (obviously not exactly the same) situations. There is some experience here and sometimes it's easier for outsiders to see some of the grey areas that could be making your situation more complicated. It's usually not cut and dry, sometimes small changes to every aspect of our lives can make a bigger difference than one or two big drastic changes. It's hard to see that when your in the middle of it and everything is closing in and suffocating you.
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  #165  
Old 04-23-2013, 10:05 PM
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I feel that everyone's situation is unique, is different, there is no "normal template," and everyone has to do the best with whatever they have to cope with stress and hold it all together at home. People wouldn't understand me either if they knew the details of my life, I have it far from normal, and far easier than most people, even while knowing what enormous emotional stress is like. Sometimes I wish I could just sleep forever, other times I hate sleep and those detestable dreams and wonder why can't I just be happy with all the good things I have, like everyone else?

But everyone else is not happy. Everyone hides a great deal of fear and pain, even when they seem to "bare all" on a public forum. I don't think it's possible to understand what anyone else's life is really like. You'd have to do more than just wear that person's shoes, you'd have to be that person.

I do agree with kkxvlv that Matt should not repeat the patterns of the past and say, "I don't like this," while not putting his foot down. That has already been tried, and didn't work. He needs to go further; he needs to say: "Stop this. I don't consent to this anymore. I don't ever want Si to see my children again." If that's how he really feels, and he feels that strongly about it, then he ought to put it in those words.

Nonetheless, since Matt is instead repeating the pattern of the past of saying, "I don't like this, but I'll go along with it," the onus then falls on Ry's head to figure out how much anger really lurks behind these words, and stop a disaster before it can happen.

Of course one wonders, "Why can't things be held in stasis until the big move to Australia? Si will be effectively removed from the children's lives at that time anyway." Of course that's assuming that Si doesn't decide to move also at the last minute.

The only middle ground I see here is reducing Si's amount of time with the kids little by little. This way, some sort of steam valve is released on the pressure cooker.

Ry, I am supporting you no matter what.
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  #166  
Old 04-23-2013, 10:23 PM
FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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I only have the resources because I worked hard and pursued my dreams. That is the magical secret. Could I quit today and stay at home with my children? Yes, but I would feel incomplete. I have an identity outside of being their mother and his wife. I love that because I am independent and could stand on my own two feet if my my marriage falls apart.

If I was off gallavanting all over the world and pushing my children off on friends, so that I could chase after a lover or follow my favourite band while they were on tour, then something could be said. Under normal circumstances, I always in London or right outside. Four months out of almost five years of being a mother that required me to travel, and everyone is caught up on that. I am always within reach. I know what being absent does to a child, and I vowed to never be the type of mother who was so hands off that her children chose to run to the nanny on Christmas morning instead of her. I refuse to ship my children off to boarding school either. I will be an active parent and give my children my all. My life is different than most.

He never experienced compersion. It was not cheating. There were no lies told. No deception. She was not a secret. What can we call it? Unhealthy ethical non-monogamy. I have the pleasure of listening to everything I did wrong week after week. I have admitted to every wrong and apologised countless times.

I was complacent. I put my relationship before my marriage. I stopped listening to my husband. I blended the marriage and relationship into one big one, when they should have been separate. I did what I wanted and did not consult with my spouse regarding our children. The list goes on and on. Repeating all that I did wrong is not going to make this any better.

I am sure I did something right at some point. Probably before there were children involved . I did things wrong from that point forward. Perhaps I should have ended my relationship then and focused on there being two parents instead of three. Then, I could have started again after they reached a certain age.
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  #167  
Old 04-23-2013, 10:44 PM
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SNeacail SNeacail is offline
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I am sure I did something right at some point. Probably before there were children involved . I did things wrong from that point forward.
I don't fully believe that. We ALL screw up more than we could ever imagine once we have kids. Not only are we making more mistakes, the mistakes have a greater impact and matter more. It's much easier to blow off the mistakes when kids aren't in the middle of it. Your kids are still babies, you have lots of time, at least until they become teenagers...

To be fair, this is not your decision ALONE! Don't let Matt get away with saying "I don't like it, but I'll go along with it" only to resent you later, because he made it your decision. You BOTH have to agree to it. If he says he agrees to it, it was his decision also (have him put it in writing if you have to). That's not to say that a week later, he may find it too much and you have to re-arrange things again - that's OK as long as you guys are working as a team on this.

A trick I found helpful. Is to say "I'm fretting over this and that. Will you find a solution to one?" Amazingly, my stress level decreased enormously and my husband didn't feel like I was trying to control everything.

Last edited by SNeacail; 04-23-2013 at 10:47 PM.
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  #168  
Old 04-23-2013, 11:01 PM
FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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I have a friend who pays 250 per week for her child to go to a nursery. That is on the cheaper end. Childcare here is expensive. In our case, we would still have to have an as needed type of person on top of paying that fee. Matt's still at work right now. If I were to have an emergency or get called in to work right now, I would have to find a babysitter who could stay put until one of us could get back. We weighed all the pros and the cons. I am doing things differently after we move. Our son will be in nursery, if we find one that we like. We will still need someone else, though. By then, he will be one, so I am willing to give it a try.

I reached my breaking point today. Matt did not have to say no to her wanting to see them. I said no and left it be. I am calling the shots. I am tired of being in the middle. I am tired of trying to keep the peace. I am tired of the back and forth. I spent the evening with my children. They are sleeping peacefully now.

I bake when I am upset. I do my best cooking and overall work when someone ticks me off. I was so mad one time that I cleaned like crazy. I cleaned in between the tiles on the bathroom floors with a tooth brush. That alleviated my stress. Meditating is not strong enough. I have popped a stress ball. Last week, I sought comfort in food. This week I am working out like crazy.

These two are driving me crazy. I appreciate all the advice. I would hurt either or if I had no outlet. They are better off hating each other than even trying to get along for the sake of our children.
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  #169  
Old 04-23-2013, 11:01 PM
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I agree with Ry and SNeacail both.

Ry, when I look at it, I see mistakes, but not big, terrible mistakes. Just little misunderstandings that built up over time. Not many people have as good of communication as they preach. Language is not an exact science anyway, it is too vague and complicated. It's not like we're speaking in math proofs and every word has an exact definition.

I think Matt and Si made mistakes too, I don't think they can act like it was all on you. That is how it looks from my perspective. Matt could have been more firm and direct, and more often. Si could have made more efforts to ask Matt directly if things were okay with him. I see (or think I see) why these things didn't happen. All the mistakes made were well within the realm of human fallibility that everyone I know is subject to.

I have to be careful not to think too much about the mistakes I've made in my life, because I've made some doozers, and it would depress me all the time if that's all I thought about. As it is, I still can't stave those thoughts off and I struggle. I think it's exhaustion and insomnia that get me down, but then I think maybe it's guilt and longing for a past I can't change or get to.

I think the past is useful to the extent that it helps us know what landmines to avoid in the future. Beyond that, it just makes us feel bad about ourselves. And the irony is, we probably did do a lot of good things in the past, but so often we are our own harshest critics.

Right now, I think you just need to concentrate on holding the present together. You cannot control the actions of Matt and Si, so you are forced to be the diplomat and figure out what their true boundaries are. You do not have super-powers, so you are still likely to make mistakes. However, you can do the best you can with the here and now.

I don't personally see anything wrong with the way you're handling things, but I realize that's just one man's perspective. I emphatically don't think you're a bad parent.
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Last edited by kdt26417; 04-23-2013 at 11:05 PM.
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  #170  
Old 04-23-2013, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by FullofLove1052 View Post
I have a friend who pays 250 per week for her child to go to a nursery. That is on the cheaper end.
WOW! This a few years ago now (so I'm sure it's more now), but nursery/daycare was $125+/week (90+) and a non-live in nanny was $400-500/week (260-330) plus employer taxes. I didn't ever price out a live-in nanny. The price difference definitely explains why nannies are much more popular in the UK than they are over here. Frankly I'd prefer a nanny to a nursery any day of the week.

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I bake when I am upset. I do my best cooking and overall work when someone ticks me off. I was so mad one time that I cleaned like crazy. I cleaned in between the tiles on the bathroom floors with a tooth brush.
LOL! I bake when I feel good, but I clean when I'm pissed or worried. Husband goes to the ER for Kidney Stones and while I wait for someone to come watch the kids, I'm cleaning like mad. I tend to vent while doing dishes - had to tell the husband to just let me vent and bang shit around, because when I'm finished I'll feel better.
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