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Old 02-02-2014, 05:28 AM
poobah123 poobah123 is offline
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Default Help! Poly gone wrong :( My Seemingly unsolvable problem.

I come here looking for advice mostly because other people would not be so understanding of the pitfalls or complexities of attempting to be poly. It has been 3 years since my story started and we serve as a very good example of how not to enter into and experience a poly relationship.

I have reached a breaking point where I need to make decisions in my life that will most likely require the complete overhaul of my life as I know it today.

My wife and I have been involved with another couple for close to 4 years. At this moment we are all back to being friends. It started with me having an emotional affair then she got on board with poly and off we went. Many ups and downs. I have struggled quite a lot. I am now at the point where my wife is asking me to remove my OSO from my life. Yes, she is willing to remove her OSO from her life as well.

Why? My wife has a hatred for my OSO. Now the two of them are totally different women. One intro-verted (wife) the other an extrovert. So naturally there would be some friction. Mistakes were made on both their parts. However none which I would deem worthy of such a hatred. In fact she has admitted to me that she has pretty much faked being friendly to her for 3 years!

Being the one stuck in the middle I have become increasingly frustrated to the point I don't want either of them in my life. Being single or anything else is far better than this emotional turmoil (push/pull) I have been going through. The problem is we have 3 children. My OSO has become my best friend..rather my only friend (hard making friends as a parent). Heck even my mother likes her. I am not sure erasing her from my life is something I could even do even if I tried. It would literally also break her heart. To my OSO I am the guy she was always looking for. She settled for a "nice" guy but then this. I am fairly certain that if I were to disappear it would ultimately mean the end of her marriage as well. I just don't see them working anything out.

Also for me, this experience has shown me what it would have been like had a chosen a more compatible life partner. I was young (18, married at 24) and we were both insecure children to be honest. It exposed many of the things that were missing in my life. In addition, my wife's behavior the past 3 years has really pushed me emotionally further away.

So this sums it up without going into a book of history. I just started seeing a therapist to help me make whatever decision I need to make to be happy. I've just been so unhappy I don't deserve this. I am a good person and father. Good husband? Outside my emotional affair my wife agrees I have bent over backwards to be a good husband.

I am very sad it's come to this. I do not see any solution to my problem other than removing myself from it entirely (divorce, whatever is required). I have accepted the fact there is no "right" answer. Only poor, good or better ones.

I would be interested in hearing anyones suggestions if you read this far. If you did I wholeheartedly appreciate you reading this. If you reply, well, I will toast to you every new years till my end! If you don't do either, you should. You may learn something.

Thank You for listening.
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Old 02-02-2014, 06:14 AM
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LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is online now
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Hatred. Sounds familiar. Maca hated GG with a vengeance. He was ready to kill him-quite literally.
That was... 12 years ago.
Today he has a patience tolerance for him.
It is very unlikely they will ever be "close".

But-we live together and we have a happy family for the most part.

The biggest single thing that made a difference was HIS decision that he needed to let go of his animosity if HE wanted to be happy.
If that hadn't happened, I don't think we would have been able to create a happy dynamic.
It took... Until 2 years ago for him to make that choice.
In the meantime (10yrs) GG and I sucked it up.

No real advice. But I empathize.
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Old 02-02-2014, 06:14 AM
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I think at this point since you've been given an ultimatum you pretty much have to decide who do you want to be with more. If you leave your OSO because your wife demands it will your marriage survive? I know I'd have a hard time forgiving someone for causing me to make the choice, id be very bitter and resentful
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Old 02-02-2014, 07:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poobah123 View Post
... my wife is asking me to remove my OSO from my life. Yes, she is willing to remove her OSO from her life as well.
This attitude really annoys me. It focuses purely on the feelings of you and your wife and completely disregards the fact that she's asking you not only to do something that will negatively affect you and your OSO, but is offering to cause the same heartbreak to her OSO—who is completely uninvolved in the drama and has done nothing to deserve it—in some kind of arse-backwards attempt at fairness. It treats your OSOs as disposable things rather than as people.
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Old 02-02-2014, 07:38 AM
london london is offline
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It seems that your wife was never okay with you being poly and now she feels she has to do something extreme to make herself happy, similarly to you're considering now. Was this always above board or was there cheating at some point? If there was cheating, is completely reasonable and understandable why your wife wouldn't want the person you cheated with anywhere near your family and why she would feel rather hostile towards them. Only someone incredibly selfish and toxic wouldn't.

But anyway, it seems like she has reached the end of the road and you both have tough decisions to make. I would stay in situations that make me the happiest. It seems your OSO is the one who does that.
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:24 AM
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Woah, wait a sec....you wrote 'your wife is willing to let go of her OSO'? So she has not done it yet? Wait she doing, waiting for you to dump yours before she dumps hers? Is she still seeing him, talking to him, sleeping with him all the while waiting to drop him cold as soon as you drop yours?

She sounds like a cold hearted bi-atch sorry, is that the type of person you want to spend the rest of your life with? Someone so callous?

Yikes!
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Old 02-02-2014, 03:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natja View Post
Woah, wait a sec....you wrote 'your wife is willing to let go of her OSO'? So she has not done it yet? Wait she doing, waiting for you to dump yours before she dumps hers? Is she still seeing him, talking to him, sleeping with him all the while waiting to drop him cold as soon as you drop yours?

She sounds like a cold hearted bi-atch sorry, is that the type of person you want to spend the rest of your life with? Someone so callous?

Yikes!
I agree... If my husband Butch came at me with this ultimatium he would be the one being dumped.
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Murf my monogamous second husband has been with me since May of 2012.
In a V relationship with an average 60/40 split of time. Only due to Murf's and Butch's crappy work schedules.
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Old 02-02-2014, 07:23 PM
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(as a rule of thumb, anyone who gives me a "them or me" ultimatum, whether they are family, friend, lover or employer-is the one I write off.)
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Old 02-02-2014, 07:54 PM
wildflowers wildflowers is offline
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What do you want? Not simply within the framework of one vs the other; if you had freedom to choose how you moved forward, what would it be? You said maybe neither, but most of your answer didn't mesh with that.

I know sometimes you're stuck with 2 bad choices and have to pick one; however, I wonder if you have to be the one to make a choice here. At any rate, if you actually want to maintain relationships with both women, I question that you're obligated to pick. They may not have a friendship, but that's not essential to your having two relationships.

Working with a therapist sounds like a very positive step for figuring out what is best for you. Good luck!
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Old 02-03-2014, 04:37 AM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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I am sorry you are struggling.

I am glad you have secured a counselor for yourself to give you extra support and help at this difficult time.

I don't know if it could help you, but here's how I see it. I could be wrong, but here's my simple summary:

Quote:
I need to make decisions in my life that will most likely require the complete overhaul of my life as I know it today.
Ok. This is what it is for you right now. Whatever path you choose, your life will change significantly. Fair enough. It is what it is.

Quote:
my wife is asking me to remove my OSO from my life. Yes, she is willing to remove her OSO from her life as well.
Fair enough. Your wife is allowed to ask things of you.

You are free to answer with
  • Yes, I am willing to do that.
  • No, I am not willing to do that.


THOUGHT PROCESS

Right now? This is a question of participation.

Polyship:

Previous polyship shape has ended.
  • Wife is no longer willing to participate in it. She cannot be forced to continue to participate.
  • It could continue in a new shape minus wife. New polyship shape TBD with whoever remains on board. Could tap general willingness now, but details of new shape could be done at a later time. So I grey it out.

Marriage:
  • Wife is willing to continue to participate in marriage if you leave the polyship as well.
  • You do not sound willing to continue to participate in the marriage. Why?
    • Wife lied/faked behavior for 3 years. This behavior of hers created emotional distance between you.
    • Experience brought to light that you are not actually compatible any more.
    • Experience brought to light that there are things missing in your marriage.
    • You want to be with your OSO and have no desire to leave polyship


Where is you willingness to continue to participate in polyship?
  • You do not seem to want to leave the polyship. You seem to want to be with the OSO.

Where is your willingness to continue to participate in marriage?
  • You do not seem to want to continue the marriage.
    • This not a "joyous yes!" sounding response to the question of "Do I want to continue to participate in my marriage?" Call it what it is -- a no. You are sad about it, but it stills sounds like "no, not willing to participate."


The OSO leaving the picture does not resolve the things between you and wife like her lying behavior over 3 years. Only she changes that behavior. And there is no mention of the wife being willing to change her behaviors in your post.

So at this time with data to hand? The answer seems to be:
  • I want to continue to help provide well for the children. That does not change no matter what.
  • I'm sorry you are leaving the polyship. I will not be leaving it.
  • I'm sorry you cannot participate in marriage with me if I continue in polyship. Painful as it is, we must disband the marriage. Apart from polyshipping, there are reasons I have for not wanting to continue my participation in the marriage.
    • Your behavior for the last 3 years causing emotional distance. You have been less than honest to me for a long time. That hurts.
    • We are no longer compatible.
    • We have things missing in the marriage.

Right now?
  • You want to be free of "push-pull stuck in the middle"
  • wife's behavior the past 3 years has really pushed you emotionally further away.
  • this experience has shown you what it would have been like had a chosen a more compatible life partner.
  • This experience exposed many of the things that were missing in your life.

Ending the marriage
  • solves your need to be free of "in the middle" stuff. You make a decision for yourself and there. No more push-pull.
  • frees you from experiencing wife's behaviors that put you off
  • frees you to be with the more compatible OSO or seek other partners who are compatible
  • frees you to seek and enjoy whatever was missing in your life.
  • Ending the marraige does NOT stop you from taking care of the children.

So... that's the way it looks to me. Your emotions need time to settle and catch up. But the path to one possible solution is there.

I do not know if you and wife have listed what it would take/cost to stay together:
  • You would have to stop polyshipping with these people. (this is given.)
  • Do you have to stop polyshipping completely?
  • Is wife willing to change her less than honest behavior and apologized? Are you willing to forgive and give her a chance to make amends?
  • Are both willing to work to change compatibility in the marriage?
  • Are both willing to work on bringing what is missing into the marriage?

So could spent some time articulating the rest with your counselor. So you can make a final decision with all the path options and their pros/cons laid out properly so you can run down the list and check your (willing & able) against each one and whether or not the path meets your needs.

Then you pick the best path that is the best decision for YOU. But right now you seem to incline toward these to me:
  • (ending your participation in the marriage) and (keeping your participation in the polyship)
  • (ending your participation in the marriage) and (ending your participation in the polyship.)

Either way, both point to (ending your participation in the marriage). So could deal with one thing at a time there. End the marriage participation first at this time. Process the loss of the previous polyship shape, the loss of the marriage. Sort legalities, give you time to grieve etc while seeing your counselor in the transition time.

If you do not know if your polyship partners want to continue to polyship during a divorcing time? ASK. Something like
"OSO, I am planning a divorce. It will take time, effort and energy. Are you willing to remain in polyship during this transition? Or would you rather disband and then see if we can resume once it is over? I would like to continue through the transition. I need to know where YOUR willingness lies."
Hang in there. Breathe, and take it one thing at a time.

Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 02-03-2014 at 03:46 PM.
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