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  #11  
Old 04-11-2014, 03:04 AM
nllswing nllswing is offline
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Thank you for the thoughtful post, Kevin. Just for the record, divorce is not even on the table. We have reached too far together to give it up so easily. Of course, everything is possible, but our marriage has to take a lot more until it reaches the breaking point.

As for 2.B, I posted it more for the sake of the argument, trying to play being my own advocate (wink, wink). The thing is, all A, B, and C can be looked as unfair of immoral from at least one point of view. Choice A for not letting me be me and forcing me into suffering and eventually leading to even more grief, Choice B is already addressed, and Choice C for dumping one's spouse, regardless of who initiates, and harming a whole bunch of people.

SchrodingersCat, you raise a very good point regarding having to face jealousy head-on. Maybe this is at least a part of the issue, which I suspect is a bit more complex and is a combination of a number of factors. We do talk and we don't have a history for acting against each others will. Will see what happens.

As for her not being poly, I am not so sure. There have been times where she would share about whom she would love to have as a boyfriend and whom - as a playmate. She would say such things on her own, not necessarily when we were about to do something. Thus, I have a reason to believe that if everything got easier, such as no risk of being outed, having more spare time and energy, and having gorgeous intelligent men asking her out, this would be different.

It was a long day for her today. We had dinner and spent the evening grooming ourselves in preparation for the trip. We are going to talk a lot during the trip. The fact that she brought all this so suddenly, made me think about a whole new bunch of issues (some of them are complete thought experiments) on which I want to hear her opinion.
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  #12  
Old 04-11-2014, 03:35 AM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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I don't like words like "immoral" because they imply an absolute truth, blind to the feelings and needs of the people involved. Life is not so black-and-white that a specific behaviour is always right or wrong.

It's not healthy to sacrifice your own needs in order to meet another's. Both people lose in that case. You lose, obviously, because your needs aren't getting met. In this case, "poly" isn't a need. What is a need is self-expression and autonomy. Being told that you're not allowed to do something tramples all over those needs. She loses because you'll harbor resentment for feeling forced into an arrangement you didn't actually agree on.

Ah yes, that "agree" word. You guys agreed to go non-monogamous. Thus, going back to monogamous also requires an agreement. It's not her decision to make all by herself, you have an equal say in it. She can voice her preference, she can tell you how she plans to behave, and she can tell you how she plans to react to your behaviours. But she can't choose for you.

I don't see it as anyone's "responsibility" to meet the needs of others. It's something we do because it brings us joy and fulfillment to see another person be happy and have their needs met as a result of something we did.

But meeting someone else's needs at the expense of your own does not bring joy and fulfillment. It brings resentment. The last thing I ever want is for someone to do something for me that they don't want to do. I would rather figure out a different way to get my needs met than to see them met at the expense of someone else's.

So all that basically means... If you choose 2a, you need to do it because it's what you choose to do, not because you feel coerced into it. It's better to do 2b and be true to yourself, while you support her as she learns to accept that you can't sacrifice your own needs for hers. Better still is to choose 2a while you help her become comfortable with you being non-monogamous, and then to do 2d which is "I see others with her blessing."
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  #13  
Old 04-11-2014, 04:11 AM
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Marcus Marcus is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nllswing View Post
The thing is, all A, B, and C can be looked as unfair of immoral from at least one point of view. Choice A for not letting me be me and forcing me into suffering and eventually leading to even more grief,
You will find quite a few supporters on this forum to this idea that a choice represents being "forced" to do one thing or another. This is one way to look at choice... but it's not a constructive way to look at choice.

She's choosing to no longer be in a poly relationship. She has told you as much. Is she "not letting" you be you? No... she is simply stating that if "you" requires that she be in a poly relationship that she is not interested.

You are choosing to be in a poly relationship. Your current partner has told you that they are not only monogamous, but not poly-friendly. If you decide that being poly is something you won't budge on are you not letting her be who she is?

None of these are constructive ways to look at choice. Choice is choice... she gets to make hers just like you get to make yours. If they are compatible then GREAT... if they aren't then BUMMER

Quote:
Originally Posted by nllswing View Post
Choice C for dumping one's spouse, regardless of who initiates, and harming a whole bunch of people.
How many people are you married to? A "whole bunch" I presume? Who is this "whole bunch" you would "harm" by moving on with your life?

If you've made life long agreements (like marriage) which you intend on following through on then this is all moot. The choices are, stay with you spouse and:

1. She gives you what you want and you are happy but she is miserable
2. You give her what she wants and she is happy but you are miserable

Until one of you dies.
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  #14  
Old 04-11-2014, 08:52 AM
InfinitePossibility InfinitePossibility is offline
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Really good news that you guys are going to have the time and space of a holiday to give you time to chat through your feelings and choices at this time.

I very much agree with Marcus. This isn't about either of you forcing choices on each other. It is nobody's fault if each of you want a lifestyle that is incompatible. You guys need to decide what you're going to do about that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nllswing View Post
Choice C for dumping one's spouse, regardless of who initiates, and harming a whole bunch of people.
I always think that's a bad way of looking at the shifting of relationships. It's up to you guys how much harm it causes. It doesn't have to cause any. In fact, if handled well, ending the romantic element of a relationship can result in a lot of good happening.

I was in a monogamous relationship for 10 years. We owned a house together and had planned on being together for life. Things didn't work out that way and when we did go our separate ways, we handled that between us. We treated each other with respect and care and friendship.

When my ex met somebody new a few months after our decision, I was delighted for him. He had long wanted to be married and have a traditional family. He has all of that now. He's married to a woman who wants those things too and he is much happier. They have a child together and their lives are focused on family.

I also am much happier because I no longer feel the pressure to conform to a lifestyle that wasn't suited to me. I've been free to spend the decade since we split up building a life that is good for me. I have tons of friends, interests, professional ventures and now a partner who understands and encourages me in these explorations.

Things would not be good for either of us if my ex and I had chosen to stay together.

There is no reason for a divorce to cause harm unless one or both of the people getting divorced decide to be malicious toward each other.

I don't tend to plan for relationships lasting a lifetime - it seems to me that sort of expectation leads to people limiting each other. There are things that I absolutely wouldn't be okay with my partner doing. If he went through some sort of mid life crisis and decided that he needed to be doing these things then his doing so would be fine with me - but I probably wouldn't want to remain his romantic partner while he did so. I'd be happy being friends but would seek to limit his involvement in my life.

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  #15  
Old 04-11-2014, 01:51 PM
nllswing nllswing is offline
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Marcus, just FYI and for clarity I am adding a link to my wife's thread on this board from a while ago when we began seriously discussing our plan to have some sort of an open relationship.

http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2038

By the way, I plan to show her my recent thread once we find a spare couple of hours to do so.
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  #16  
Old 04-11-2014, 02:53 PM
opalescent opalescent is offline
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Originally Posted by Tiberius View Post
This. No person has the right to tell others how to have relationships. She can be mono if she wants, but she has no right to demand it of you.
She does have the right to ask for what she wants. She may not get it. But one can always ask for what one wants or needs.

Ok, this just happened! Posters, let's not jump ahead to utterly incompatible and they should just divorce. Yes, that may be the best thing for both at some point. However, way too early to determine that.

It's possible with time and effort she might be agreeable to some sort of a mono-poly/open relationship. (OP, you didn't mention how those discussions with your partner about mono-poly went.) Or he might be able to agree to be mono, without resentment.

It's good you two are going on a vacation now, as weird and awkward as that is. Use the time to talk with each other. It will private and there will be time. Make sure to just be with each other too - don't forget vacations are supposed to be fun!
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  #17  
Old 04-12-2014, 02:44 AM
nllswing nllswing is offline
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Tonight we talked more, both before and during cuddling. She told me that she was at the verge of exhaustion from work and work-related stress. As a result, she needed all the support I can provide. This one I can relate to and believe to be true. Her last three months have been brutal, and there comes a point that no amount of fun or time together can compensate for continuously long hours and lack of enough sleep.

I hope that the vacation will be sufficient to recharge batteries and then see if things are back to where they were, or we need to renegotiate.

"(OP, you didn't mention how those [mono-poly/open relationship] discussions with your partner about mono-poly went.)" - the mono-poly setup was never a big issue for us because at the moment she would feel comfortable with her being mono and me - poly, she would also be comfortable with me being poly and she - also poly, but not actively seeking at the moment.

We are leaving tomorrow and will be beck in two weeks. I hope that things will be back to normal by then. Best wishes to all.
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  #18  
Old 04-12-2014, 08:46 AM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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Originally Posted by nllswing View Post
I hope that the vacation will be sufficient to recharge batteries and then see if things are back to where they were, or we need to renegotiate.

We are leaving tomorrow and will be beck in two weeks. I hope that things will be back to normal by then. Best wishes to all.
Ugh. Going on vacation is so draining. Whenever I go away, I need time off work just to recover from my vacation. But then I'm a homebody and an introvert, so that's part & parcel.
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  #19  
Old 04-12-2014, 01:59 PM
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Magdlyn Magdlyn is offline
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Aha, maybe she no longer found the efforts to be non-mono rewarding just because of her overwhelming work stressors?

I don't know what "soft swap" is, but it sounds like some kind of swingers term. Can anyone tell me what it is?

OP, it sounds like you were exploring not just polyamory (a gf for you, a bf for her) but also casual sex, swinging and kink. Now maybe Wife is worn out from all the experiences, all the people, all the changes, and adding in job stress, she's just burnt out.

Since you (singular) have had 5 years to experiment, do you know where your tastes have landed or coalesced? Maybe if there is some sort of structure, Wife will know more what to expect and develop appropriate coping skills.
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  #20  
Old 04-12-2014, 02:43 PM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
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Originally Posted by Magdlyn View Post
A
I don't know what "soft swap" is, but it sounds like some kind of swingers term. Can anyone tell me what it is?
.
Non-penetrative sexual exchange between non married partners...

Yes swinging term but sometimes been used for poly depending on the background. Its like going on a date with making out and promising not to have sex on the first (or potentially any) go round.
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