Polyamory.com Forum  

Go Back   Polyamory.com Forum > Polyamory > Poly Relationships Corner

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 07-25-2013, 10:29 PM
Effie Effie is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Default I could use another perspective, please.

Going to try and give the nutshell version of the background here.

I am in a poly relationship, my SO and I have known each other for almost 5 years. In the beginning we were romantically involved, then not, then friends, then friends who knew we loved each other and wanted a life together. During that time he had become involved with someone else. All of us are long distance. I am in Western NY, she is in Cali, and he is in the Pacific Northwest. When it became apparent that we could no longer remain just friends, he broached the notion of Poly with her, so that he could pursue his love with me.

Of course it was a rocky start. It wasn't the relationship she had signed up for. Still, she was game to give it a try, since she loved him and did not want to deny him what would make him happy. Also she is open minded and knew love was not a zero sum game.

The rough beginning that we all had, trying to adjust to this, brought to the fore some of the issues she had been having with their long distance relationship. basically, the earliest they could be living under the same roof was aprox 5 years, and would mean one of them making a large sacrifice. She realized that wasn't something she wanted, so about 2 or so months in she ended their romantic relationship.

They are now friends, with benefits. For me, I was all ... so tell me what has actually changed? Because from my perspective it didn't seem like much had. Well. Not true. His priorities changed. Instead of giving us some sort of equal status in regards to decisions, etc. I am now the priority. They are still intimate via phone and skype, and there are still plans for her to come visit again.

I learned last night that there had been talk of her coming during his next vacation, but he told her I was coming out then. So there is tentative plans for this autumn. She will still be staying at his house, still interacting with his family and friends (he shares a house with friends) in the same way that she always has. She even mentioned to me in an email that it will be easier for her and I to be friends without the pressure of the relationship surrounding it.

Is it just me, or does this seem like she is getting all the benefits of being in a relationship with him, without having to put in the work of a relationship with him and myself?

Last edited by Effie; 07-25-2013 at 11:20 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 07-25-2013, 11:38 PM
Marcus's Avatar
Marcus Marcus is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 1,502
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Effie View Post
Is it just me, or does this seem like she is getting all the benefits of being in a relationship with him, without having to put in the work of a relationship with him and myself?
What work are you putting in to "the relationship" that she isn't? Do you think she is getting away with something she shouldn't be? It sounds like you guys have found yourselves in a perfect dynamic; what is the problem?

Personal relationships should always function this way. No pressure, no rules, no bullshit... just offer each other what comes naturally and accept the things that we enjoy from them. I don't know what work people are doing to be able to love their romantic partners but I would take that as a bad sign.
__________________
Me: male, 43, straight, non-hierarchical, independent
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 07-25-2013, 11:52 PM
opalescent opalescent is offline
Spaminator
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: US
Posts: 1,949
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Effie View Post
... The rough beginning that we all had, trying to adjust to this, brought to the fore some of the issues she had been having with their long distance relationship. basically, the earliest they could be living under the same roof was aprox 5 years, and would mean one of them making a large sacrifice. She realized that wasn't something she wanted, so about 2 or so months in she ended their romantic relationship.

They are now friends, with benefits. For me, I was all ... so tell me what has actually changed? Because from my perspective it didn't seem like much had. Well. Not true. His priorities changed. Instead of giving us some sort of equal status in regards to decisions, etc. I am now the priority. They are still intimate via phone and skype, and there are still plans for her to come visit again.

I learned last night that there had been talk of her coming during his next vacation, but he told her I was coming out then. So there is tentative plans for this autumn. She will still be staying at his house, still interacting with his family and friends (he shares a house with friends) in the same way that she always has. She even mentioned to me in an email that it will be easier for her and I to be friends without the pressure of the relationship surrounding it.

Is it just me, or does this seem like she is getting all the benefits of being in a relationship with him, without having to put in the work of a relationship with him and myself?
They broke up because the relationship was too much sacrifice. That happens and it is healthier to recognize that. The break up does not seem related to you or poly. It seems their relationship reached the end of its life span.

So now they are friends who fuck when they visit. And friends do visit and interact with other friends and family while there. That is a friend thing to do.

Do you really want to date the man who has no further interactions with former lovers once the relationship is over? What did you expect? No contact ever? He put your schedule ahead of her in setting up visits. He is acting like you are his romantic priority just as he said he would.

So why are you getting bent out of shape by this? You would be much better off figuring why and addressing it internally than worrying about this non-issue.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 07-25-2013, 11:56 PM
LovingRadiance's Avatar
LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 5,510
Default

It actually sounds to me like they identified the limits and boundaries of what they felt was reasonable for their relationship.

My question would be-what is it that you are bothered by
AND
does it REALLY have anything to do with you?
__________________
"Love As Thou Wilt"
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 07-25-2013, 11:56 PM
Vixtoria's Avatar
Vixtoria Vixtoria is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 306
Default

It sounds like on one hand you are right, she is still in a relationship with him. They just changed what kind of priority they gave each other and what they wanted from the relationship. If it works for them then good on them! Relationships can change. We are used to being told they either deepen or die, but that's not the only options. So I would just shrug and move on myself. (not from the relationship, from worrying over theirs.) It is their relationship, they are defining what works for them, being honest with you and up front. What more can they do?

As for her not putting in the work, that was part of the change int heir relationship. They decided how much work they wanted to put into it, how much enjoyment, their boundaries. THEIRS. If it's not the same as what you and he have, well no offense but, duh! It's not going to be the same.

The only part that stood out to me is that she isnt' putting in the work with YOU. I'm wondering what you were expecting? Did you think at some point it would be the three of you? Not all metamours have to 'put in work' with each other. They don't have to be friends, they don't have to get along, hell they don't even have to talk if they don't want to!
__________________
Me: 40 pansexual poly.
DH: My husband of 21 yrs and father of 3 teen girls.
DC: LDR of +9 years/former
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 07-26-2013, 12:19 AM
WhatHappened WhatHappened is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 864
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Effie View Post

Is it just me, or does this seem like she is getting all the benefits of being in a relationship with him, without having to put in the work of a relationship with him and myself?
Like Marcus, I'm curious what sort of work it is you want her to be putting in?
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 07-26-2013, 12:39 AM
Effie Effie is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Default

I think you are misunderstanding me. *laughs* likely I didn't explain it very well. My problem is not her, or that they see each other. I am trying to wrap my own head around how SHE ended the relationship. But yet they interact in all the same ways as they did prior. She ended it because poly isn't for her in the long run, or this relationship. Yet she is, in effect, still in a poly relationship. Without labeling it a relationship so no, she isn't having to put any work into it on the same level. There are no relationship wide decisions and so on. It was her choice. Maybe what i should be saying is she ended the commitment portion, though she does word it as relationship.

I do not expect (nor want) her to go away. Not at all. They have a very good and loving connection. She is an amazing person, and I know that his life is better for her being in it.

I don't feel like she is "getting away" with something. I asked for some perspective and if I was looking at it wrong. Which apparently I was so thank you for pointing that out in no uncertain terms.

We were a V, we did not have plans of becoming a triad, but it was hoped that we would all become friends, and would one day all be living under the same roof. It was the end goal. I cannot say if we ever would have been a triad or not.

And yes, because of the boundaries we have set in the relationship, our other relationships do have something to do with each other. No, we do not wish to dictate the terms of each others relationships, but we do realize the impact that other relationships could have on our own.

And Marcus, relationships do require work. Work in the way of good communication to grow together. Work in the way or defining mutual goals within our relationship and building toward them. Not work like a 9 - 5 job of toiling with low pay.

LovingRadiance thank you for your response. After reading all of this and going back and thinking about it for a bit, I realized what is bothering me. By deciding not to pursue a relationship with him any longer, but by still having this particular relationship, what happened was I got cut out. We are not a V any longer, but a couple here, and their friendship there. So i guess I need to work on my feelings of exclusion. (no, not jealousy, so please do not everyone go and decide that I MUST be jealous simply because this is a learning and growing process for me).

opalescent ... I am not bent out of shape. But thanks. I never even intimated that I thought they should not have contact. I am friends with every single one of my exes. They are all people I have loved, or still love. My SO is the same way. I would not want him not speaking with her, as I have said, I know how close they are with each other and that is a non-issue for me.

Honestly, I was a bit shocked to come and find judgemental responses. I was looking for insight. if I wanted judgement I could have walked into the nearest Baptist Church.

Still, there was some good stuff in between all the judgement. Things that did just what I asked for ... gave me some insight into why I was feeling unsettled. And it is simply because I am feeling the breakup for what it means to me. I had a future in mind that included the three of us under one roof, of being a family. I feel like I am mourning losing that a bit.

Maybe next time someone asks for advice or insight you could not rush to conclusions and make assumptions.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 07-26-2013, 12:52 AM
Marcus's Avatar
Marcus Marcus is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 1,502
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Effie View Post
She is an amazing person, and I know that his life is better for her being in it. I had a future in mind that included the three of us under one roof, of being a family. I feel like I am mourning losing that a bit.
It can be tough when the picture of how we would like our lives to turn out doesn't end up being the way we imagined; life throws a lot of curve balls so expecting people to fit into those plans is an act of frustration. Trying to make life long plans with someone has a tendency to break down because people are not static creatures. I get making plans with people, but I find that if it is something other than relatively short term agreements that it applies unnecessary pressure to the relationship and the longer term the agreements the more likely they will get adjusted before they are completed.

It sounds like she is enjoying her dating and isn't putting long term restrictions on her current actions - which is awesome.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Effie View Post
And Marcus, relationships do require work. Work in the way of good communication to grow together. Work in the way or defining mutual goals within our relationship and building toward them. Not work like a 9 - 5 job of toiling with low pay.
My current relationship does not require work. I don't consider being honest and good communication to be "work", it's just being an adult.

Further, I don't view life as a team sport so I don't really connect with the idea of making "growing together" or "mutual goals" as something inherent in a romantic relationship. I know there are many people who view relationships this way but I find that approaching life as an individual endeavor is more constructive in the long term.
__________________
Me: male, 43, straight, non-hierarchical, independent

Last edited by Marcus; 07-26-2013 at 02:43 AM. Reason: Submitted on accident
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 07-26-2013, 02:27 AM
LovingRadiance's Avatar
LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 5,510
Default

Ah-yes that makes sense to me.

I feel disappointment over Maca's girlfriend leaving (she moved away). We weren't dating-but it was still disappointing to me.

I think maybe you are feeling the disappointment and angst (for lack of a better word) that comes with unknown and change. You knew what the joint plan was. But that has changed-and yet you aren't sure what the real "plan" is because the behaviors haven't changed.


There isn't much to do about any of that-except acknowledge your feelings and then accept the situation.

Our situation is very much closer entwined then some on here-if something significant changes in my relationship with one guy-it DEFINITELY affects the other-because we all live together and while we are NOT a triad romantically or sexually-we are financially and in our parental duties.

I think I would find it helpful if I were in your shoes to acknowledge and accept that for her it may have simply been a terminology issue.

Example:
For me-there are responsibilities that come with being my boyfriend that aren't there for a "fuck buddy" or "friend with benefits". My current boyfriend was my friend with benefits for YEARS and when we decided to change what we call our relationship-my expectations changed.
It may be that her expectations for being gf/bf weren't being met in the poly or the long distance respect. But that those expectations are lessened if they identify as friends with benefits.
If that is the case-then functionally nothing changed-including what "work" she is doing in their relationship. Only the terminology.

It seems silly in some ways-but words can hold a lot of power.

In our life-a fwb or a fb doesn't have a responsibility to the children. But a SO does. It's OUR definition for OUR family and it's not the same definition and expectation other people have. But it is for us and so if someone was in all ways a gf/bf but wanted nothing to do with the kids-we would reduce the privilege level of relationship to our definition of fwb/fb. (I'm not including our full definitions because that's irrelevant. Just giving you an idea of how other people may see things for your perusal of the situation you are in).
__________________
"Love As Thou Wilt"
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 07-26-2013, 03:15 AM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 5,454
Default

Quote:
I had a future in mind that included the three of us under one roof, of being a family. I feel like I am mourning losing that a bit.
Yep. The "ripple effect" going across the polymath of this particular grouping.

When you are a polyship, it's like being in a waterbed with your polypartners. Someone jumps on it, or rolls over or whatever it is they do... everyone else feels the wobble somewhere to varying degrees.

The only way not to feel ANY WOBBLE AT ALL, is to not be in the polyship.

So things changed between them, and you have to digest the ripple effect too. Comes with the territory.

You are disappointed on some level. So it is normal to want to mourn an idea that now will no longer come to be. This idea that one day all of you would live under one roof as family with the two GFs.

You could give yourself time to accept it has become a new shape here -- one where it is a "V" with him as the hinge with a FWB and a GF, rather than a "V" with a GF and a GF.

You can keep participating in the polyship or not. Up to you where your willingness lies.

Hang in there,
GG

Last edited by GalaGirl; 07-26-2013 at 04:14 AM.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 03:47 AM.