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  #11  
Old 06-04-2013, 03:53 AM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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Oh yeah, now i remember this one. I thought it sounded familiar.

Lady, grow some balls and tell your brother to fly a kite.
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  #12  
Old 06-04-2013, 03:54 AM
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PhilosophicallyLost PhilosophicallyLost is offline
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"Your brother checked himself into a psychiatric hospital because you are non-monogamous?

BoringGuy: It's not that simple. My brother, due to a combination of events, felt I was abandoning him. He felt very threatened when I first started dating my husband six years ago, and I suspected it could be a problem when I started poly. It was. E and I asked my brother to abide by a curfew because he was coming to our apartment playing video games at God awful hours of the night, and E and I admittedly wanted some alone time. I tried really hard to be diplomatic about it, but my brother took it as us gleefully shoving him out. Also, he said he felt E betrayed my husband by agreeing to poly and wanted nothing to do with him anymore. I got defensive on E's behalf, and told my brother I wish he would give people the benefit of the doubt more. He took this as an attack on his character when he already had poor self esteem. My husband later talked with him to try to help, and apparently relayed a thought I had about my brother being a hypochondriac. My husband isn't the greatest with relaying information; I felt my brother overly fretted with concerns of losing his hair and one other health issue he obsessed about. Anyway, I asked my brother if he wanted to talk because he was very cold to me on the phone after talking with my husband (whom actually told me my brother seemed okay to him) My brother said no to talking it out, and he was admitted to the mental hospital the next day. He took my husband's relaying of me calling my brother a hypochondriac as basically invalidating his feelings. So yeah, this monster of a problem includes poly but it sure as hell is not limited to it. He did blow up at me later, very wroth that I did not follow his instructions to "do the right thing" and stop poly, which is where my old posts stem from. Some of the information provided above was not revealed to me until I talked with our eldest brother, who helped calm our brother the hell down.

My brother lives on SSI. He now is attempting to start a small business, but no, he has never been in a romantic relationship.

Cleo: I have tried to pursue the ethical route as much as possible. I'm pretty sure if I hadn't I wouldn't have a marriage anymore. My husband does recognize that I try my best to give him lots of love and reassurance. Logically I think I'm doing the best with the cards that have been dealt to me. I haven't resolved in my mind if it's okay to continue a poly setting with my husband knowing there will always be those bad days. Yet, I do think there are a lot of good ones, so I'm trying to determine if it's appropriate to take the bad with the good in this scenario. Is the bad seriously detrimental or not....? That's what I am unsure of. All relationships have some harm in them, and I'm trying to figure out if this is an appropriate amount of harm to tolerate for the sake of the good or not.

Anneintherain: My husband and I have considered therapy, but we actually communicate with each other in a civil and adult way, so we haven't felt the need to. My brother and I do not, thus why we feel help is needed to bridge the communication problem.

In the months after I started poly, I felt that this was a lifestyle that resonated with me better. I felt, and do still feel, I am just the type of person that loves someone because of who they are, and I am not the type that likes to repress such feelings completely. Even though I cannot have sex with E I am infinitely happier in that I get to *express* my love. That alone has made me so much happier. I just have my bad days too because of ideological differences between my husband and I. I'm pretty sensitive to what other people think and I'm trying to work on having more confidence in my right to make adult choices regardless of what the popular opinion is.

Magdlyn: I think I clarified my situation with my brother a bit in my response up top. It is not easy, but we did have a very close relationship before this and I care about him a lot. I want us to work on our communication issues.

I have written on the issue before, and since we agreed that E needed his own living space my husband has been significantly happier. We feel this may be the route to make this work.

FullofLove: I do appreciate your understanding on wanting therapy with my brother M. My brother got the poly bomb about a year ago, and it finally started calming down around the end of July 2012. It's been a long process to even just be okay with hanging out and enjoying ourselves together again. He has had support from our eldest brother P, and comparatively he took the news much better and has been a good support for my brother M.

I would like to break from the social conditioning some. I think more than anything that's what ails me, though circumstances with my husband and my brother add to it. For the most part our friends who know are not endorsers of the lifestyle, but for the most part they seem to infinitely fault E's actions more than they ever do mine. I am just in the better habit of being considerate of people's needs and I think that has helped to garner respect. Still, it's not fun to watch others look at E as a wife-stealing snake. He kinda brings that one upon himself because he hovers so much around me and is oblivious to how he comes off to people.

Marcus: My husband Y just feels that his values are too strong to feel differently about polyamory. I'm not sure that he feels insecure or not. He just seems to just not like having me to himself, for lack of a better way of putting it. Not in a possession sort of way, but he wishes he had more of my time in his life. His love language is definitely quality time, and poly has a way of dipping into that quite a bit.

I will refer you to my response to Cleo up above. You definitely seem to be of the mindset that this is too much unhappiness to justify staying together. I don't feel terribly miserable on my end, save for reacting to how Y feels. Otherwise, my compromises may have taken getting used to but I am able to see some of the positive still handily available. As much as I love E having him move out isn't all negative. The man is frankly a slob with his possessions and I am looking forward to having a clean house and home. I may arguably be happier in the long run dating him in his own separate living space. I am not sure if Y is able to see the positive to his side of things other that he got another chance with me to make the marriage work. It may be a matter of that I am okay with the compromise, but maybe Y isn't. I challenged him last night, asking him, "Are you sure you can't find someone else that you could be happier with?" He responded that maybe he could find a monogamous gal, but he told me that outside of this one issue, he felt that we were very compatible and are a good balance for each other. Maybe even for him the good outweighs the bad enough for him to stick with it. He sure didn't lead the conversation towards the divorce question when I asked for his honesty. This is why I feel it's not that terribly clear cut.

Nycindie: In rereading those posts, I definitely perceived that poly drove my brother to a mental institution at the time, and some of it remains true. However, as I detailed in my very first response above, there were other issues in addition that led up to the hospitalization.

I am not looking forward to dredging up painful memories, but I still see plenty of opportunity for my brother and I to work on things. I could skirt around poly completely and still see ways to improve things with him. This was his idea as far as his therapist is concerned, but the idea of working with a third party was my idea from a year ago. I want this as well. Our eldest brother was supposed to help counsel us, but he's going through financial hardship and doesn't have a phone anymore. Being long distance, that kinda shot that out of the water.

Besides, last I heard from a mutual friend, my brother is a bit better ideologically on the poly thing. He's more concerned with working on our issues. I hope this helps to clear up the concerns posters had, as I really intended the focus to be on the subject of the original post.
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  #13  
Old 06-04-2013, 03:56 AM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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Like i said, i remember this now. Thanks to the link provided by nycindie. See my post right before this one at the top of the page.
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  #14  
Old 06-04-2013, 04:03 AM
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I hate to break this to you, but it seems clear to me that your brother had some kind of mental illness way before you embraced polyamory, and way before you got married. I have mental illness in my family; so I say this with a certain empathy and recognition. I understand your having compassion and wanting to help him, but it is obvious you will never have a normal friendship with your brother. You just won't. At some point, you're going to have to let go of wanting to fix things and realize that his problems are better left to professionals. You shouldn't let his psychosis, hallucinations, or delusions determine how you live our life with your husband and partners!
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  #15  
Old 06-04-2013, 04:17 AM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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It sounds like the OP's entire family is wrapped around the one member's psychiatric medical issues. That's too bad. It's hard to stay involved with one's family without getting sucked into that vortex, and practically impossible to avoid getting sucked into the vortex without avoiding the family entirely. My aunt is like this. In fact, my mother was her surrogate parent and when she met my father then had me, that sent my aunt off the deep end. Now that both my aunt's parents (my grandparents) and my mother are deceased, i seem to have become the parental "figure" in this 55 year old adolescent's life. You just have to let them go and don't take everything that happens to them as a sign that something is wrong with you and you need to "work on it" with them. That's THEM bringing YOU into THEIR disease process.
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  #16  
Old 06-04-2013, 04:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilosophicallyLost View Post
You definitely seem to be of the mindset that this is too much unhappiness to justify staying together. I don't feel terribly miserable on my end, save for reacting to how Y feels
Me personally? Oh I absolutely and without a moments hesitation consider that WAY too much unhappiness to justify staying together! I generally find the concept of compromise to be an ill suited approach to apply to inter-personal relationships. It's a great approach to business dealings but I don't know how it ended up being used by people in their love lives.

However, I was not advising that it was too much misery for you to endure. People can endure vast amounts of misery for all manner of misguided sacrificial causes. I was simply stating your options...

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilosophicallyLost View Post
As much as I love E having him move out isn't all negative. The man is frankly a slob with his possessions and I am looking forward to having a clean house and home.
So I guess that's some silver lining?
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  #17  
Old 06-05-2013, 06:49 AM
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PhilosophicallyLost PhilosophicallyLost is offline
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Nycindie and BoringGuy: I understand you are trying to speak from experience in an effort to help, and I appreciate the words of caution. There is way more to the whole thing with my brother than meets the eye. I just feel that there's not enough evidence in my forty-some posts here for anyone to declare enough knowledge on whether my brother is a lost cause or not in terms of repairing my friendship with him. As it is, the details I have given about my concerns with E and Y are no replacement for actually experiencing the various issues that have arisen. Language can help to bridge this gap, but it is not my goal to lay down my life's history just to defend my decision regarding my brother. All I can say is I feel I have due cause to believe there is a net positive to be gained by trying to repair my friendship with my brother and I will pursue it.

Marcus: Your ideology on compromise....is interesting. I just can't say I align with it, but I do find it interesting to note that E is huge on compromise on issues where I am just happy to say it's impossible to find the happy medium. Yet I just don't see any relationship, friendship, or any interpersonal relationship surviving without some degree of compromise. It's just picking what you are willing to compromise on and what not to. I'm more of a "net-positive versus net-negative" kind of gal. If compromise gets me more net-positive, then I will go for it. If it doesn't, then I won't.


Well, talked with the hubby last night, so I could get a feel for his state of mind. Here's what he told me:

If things stayed the same with E remaining to live with us, he would not be able to handle it anymore. Me going to see a romantic partner at a separate living residence is far easier for him to deal with. In that case, it's like I'm "going to a friend's house to hang out," he said. In other words, if he doesn't have to see it, it's much easier.

E is supposed to move out at the end of this summer. Y is still not sure if his issues with poly are because of poly itself or because of how E handles poly. Having E moved out would provide Y the clarity of thought he needs.

E is a very outwardly affectionate guy. You know how you can tell someone is in love by the way they just simply talk to them and they light up like Christmas lights? Even when E is trying to respect no-touch boundaries when Y is around, he seems unable to keep himself from talking to me a lot. And this pisses Y off when I'm supposed to be spending the day with Y. We have talked this issue to death and E and Y can't come to a happy medium on it. I am even bothered by how outwardly expressive E is, because all his friends pretty much suspect how he feels about me even though we haven't told them we are dating. He is not covert, at all. Having Y and I move our separate ways from E seems to be the way to force the issue from not being there anymore. E can be himself in his own living space with me when I can visit, and Y gets the space he needs from having to see E be himself with me.

I told Y that it's important there's more net positive than negative for both of us in this. He at least seemed open that once we move into another home that maybe there would be enough positive. I just don't think he knows enough about himself until he removes the "E" factor long enough to clear his mind. Still, the points I mentioned earlier in this post I think are still valid concerns still. I guess time will tell.
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  #18  
Old 06-05-2013, 07:31 AM
BoringGuy BoringGuy is offline
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i don't think you shouldn't try to repair your relationship with your brother. I do think you shouldn't let his mental illness interfere with your personal life and happiness where it has nothing to do with him.
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  #19  
Old 06-05-2013, 01:44 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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I'm so sorry.

I can't comment on the brother situation but I am concerned that you sound rough in your wellness.

On your own wellness dimensions... you seem like you are taking hit points in emotional health, mental health, social health, spiritual health. You are moving and hopefully that will improve some of your environmental health. But that's still a lot of buckets taking hit points for this polyship to continue in a less than happy way for all players. E isn't thrilled with the move, DH is accepting but not happy, you are not happy.

Is the price of admission to polyship under these conditions still worth it to you?

You list these ughs:
  • I will always wish to some extent that Y was on board with the poly thing and was okay with it.
  • Emotionally I just feel that I'm just causing him misery for developing feelings for someone else and that I'm the one who made things worse for everyone.
  • I have struggled even before poly with hating the fact I developed feelings for someone else.
  • I had a horrible fight with my brother where he accused me of being cruel and immoral for subjecting my husband to this, and the words still haunt me.
  • I have conservative friends, and even though they support us as friends they don't agree with the practice either.
  • I feel very isolated sometimes.
  • I don't want to forgive myself for wanting to love others, even though I would forgive all other beings for wanting the same for themselves.
  • the stigma that comes with it just makes me feel like I'm more horrible than I actually am.
  • I just don't know if I'm being too hard on myself or not.

Quote:
My husband still thinks it's clearly worth sticking with the marriage despite his issues with poly, and that's his decision to make, but I sometimes wonder if he'd be happier elsewhere. I told him as much and that's when he said he felt we were pretty compatible otherwise...but is it worth it? I guess it is for him, otherwise he'd be trying to leave me. And it wouldn't be fair for me to force a separation on him if he thinks he can still more or less work with it
.

You do not cover the thought of "Could YOU would be happier elsewhere and separating so YOU can be happier?"

If you accept that neither you or DH will be fully happy, would breaking up with one of them (E or DH) help reduce some of the other UGH you have in your life? So while not entirely happy, it's at least less sucky for you overall?

Or do you prefer to stay where you are and keep on taking hit points to those health buckets above?

I have no answers -- just pointing out that on this one it might not be a "win or lose" kind of thing but a "which of my options stinks the least?" thing.

Maybe at this stage just working on listing out all the questions you COULD consider is enough? Worry about actually sitting with them to consider and answering them later?

But for now just "get the lay of the land" so to speak? Not choose anything just yet but lay out the options?
  • If I do this -- the pros and cons are A. I will likely feel X in the short term than Y in the long term.
  • If I do that, then the pros and cons are B. I will likely feel X in the short term than Y in the long term.

Maybe that could help?

Galagirl
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