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  #1  
Old 03-17-2011, 10:56 PM
notmyusual notmyusual is offline
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Unhappy Poly Housing Dilemma

Hi all,
I would really appreciate any advice anyone could give on my situation.

I'm dating a wonderful man who is also dating another very nice woman. This is all very above-board and open and the three of us have been getting along great for six months now. It's a fairly equal relationship and both me and the other woman are primaries to him.

This summer, several bedrooms in her house will become available. Our boyfriend is moving into one of them. I asked if I could move into (and pay rent on) one of the others.

While she hasn't said "absolutely not," she doesn't want me to. She's talking to various friends of ours about giving them the bedroom instead. (The boyfriend is sympathetic to me, but says it's ultimately her decision.)

I feel very hurt and shut out by this. It's an awkward situation since I don't feel right demanding that she let me live in her house... but I think she should. I'm scared of a situation where she has dinner with him and sleeps with him almost every night and I come over once or twice a week. It would make me feel like I was their "third," like I no longer had an equal relationship with our boyfriend.

I also feel like living in a poly house has the opportunity to just be awesome fun and I'd hate to miss out on that. They're great people and I think they'd be great to live with. (My current housing, while adequate, is no fun at all. It's a place to sleep.)

What should I do here? I'm worried that it's too pushy to say "you HAVE to give me that room," but that if I just let things go the way they're going I'll be literally shut out of my place in the relationship. How do I talk to them about this?
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:06 PM
PenguinDreams PenguinDreams is offline
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I don't have anything helpful to say but wanted to send sympathetic thoughts your way. That really sucks.

Can you talk to this woman and ask what her reasoning is? And what about your boyfriend, is he really okay with you being left out and not seeing you as often?
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:16 PM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Her actions seem cowgirl-ish.

I am curious - is HE moving into her room or into his own? Why did he say yes if you weren't asked? Did he talk to you about it before he accepted his offer? If not, why not? Can you move into his room with him if you wanted?

I think all the above and everything you wrote about in your post should be addressed in a conversation with all three of you present. You can emphasize that you are not insisting to move into her place (well, you know you can't really, anyway), but that you want to maintain your equality in your relationship to both of them and want to experience cohabiting in a poly house. Then I would point-blank ask her what her motive is in not including you. Ask her that when everyone is present, and see what she says. It sounds so much like she wants him to herself. And then ask why he didn't consider your feelings before accepting. I mean, I'd be like, "What the fuck is going on here, people?" if I was so left out of the loop in a situation like this where you are all equal. That's what I'd want to know.

Edit: Maybe it's nothing to do with the dynamics of the relationship and more to do with financial or more practical stuff... Can you afford it? Are you responsible and neat? Things like that, maybe.
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An excellent blog post on hierarchy in polyamory:
solopoly.net/2014/10/31/why-im-not-a-secondary-partner-the-short-version/

Last edited by nycindie; 03-17-2011 at 11:35 PM.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:29 PM
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SNeacail SNeacail is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notmyusual View Post
What should I do here? I'm worried that it's too pushy to say "you HAVE to give me that room,"
Sorry, but you have NO right to demand anyone rent you a room. You can and should ask her reasoning and let her and your b/f know how your feeling about the whole situation. Off hand, it sounds like she doesn't want to share any longer or at least wants to be his primary.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:33 PM
notmyusual notmyusual is offline
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PenguinDreams - I'm trying to organize a "family meeting" to talk this through.

Nycindie - I don't want to fling accusations, but yeah, I kinda do wonder if she's trying to have him all to herself.

He is moving into his own room, though, not hers; I totally agree that "one person per bedroom" is a good idea for our situation. (For clutter control as much as romantic/sexual purposes.)

SNeacail - I know I don't have the right to demand it! But I do have the right to ask for it.

And just because something isn't my "right" doesn't mean it can't be really hurtful not to get it. I have no RIGHT to have a boyfriend at all, but I'm still pretty wounded feeling like he's being maneuvered away from me.
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:24 AM
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MrFarFromRight MrFarFromRight is offline
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What can I add that hasn't been said already - and that you didn't already know to start with? Mostly I'm writing this to express my support and send you some warm fuzzies. (And I hope that that isn't some code term for sexual practices I know nothing about, because I didn't mean it that way!)

Recap (with comments):

1) She's a "very nice woman. This is all very above-board and open and the three of us have been getting along great for six months now. It's a fairly equal relationship and both me and the other woman are primaries to him." (How "very nice"? How "fairly equal"? And if she's "very nice", is that your calm, rational, understanding appraisal of her? Or do you actively like her? Does she actively like you? Are you friends independently of the man-in-the-middle?)

2) You can't insist on moving in. You can't insist that he doesn't. And even asking energetically might put you "in the wrong". (Please notice speech marks! Does not signify my opinion but their possible reaction.)

3) She might be trying to manoeuvre you into secondary status (especially if you haven't got that friendship I asked about in 1). But don't assume so. You haven't given us enough facts to judge this. (Not a criticism: we wouldn't be able to judge fairly without actually knowing all 3 of you.) I - for example - would be happy for a very good friend (who smokes) to live next door, eat together every meal, etc. etc. But I don't allow anybody to smoke in my house. Even the best of friends. Even a hypothetical smoking lover. And I would be doubtful of a smoker (even a best friend) swearing that (s)he could move in and live there without ever lighting up indoors.

4) However, even if she isn't trying to downgrade you, the proposed situation definitely puts you at a disadvantage, and frankly I don't hold out much hope for a continuation of a "fairly equal relationship and both me and the other woman are primaries to him." I do think - as you do - that this needs to be addressed, and he certainly should be told clearly that if he wants to continue having 2 primary relationships, he's putting that in jeopardy by moving in with her with you on the outside. After that, it's his decision.

But you already knew all that, didn't you (except for the warm fuzzies)?

Best of luck. Be fair but be clear.
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:42 PM
notmyusual notmyusual is offline
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Thanks very much for your advice.

And I suspect the answer is what I thought it always would be: talk to them. In particular, talk to them together. Tough, and maybe it won't go my way, but necessary I guess.

I hope I can at least sleep over a lot.
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:52 PM
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MrFarFromRight MrFarFromRight is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notmyusual View Post
I hope I can at least sleep over a lot.
Hey:here's an idea! (Don't take this one seriously, I got less than 3 hours sleep last night, then been on Internet for nearly 7 hours... and my brain's into its facetious mode.) Build a super-duper tree house and invite him into it, but tell her that she's not allowed, nyah nyah nyah!
__________________
If I can't dance, I want no part in your Revolution.
- Emma Goldman Anarchist and Polyamorous par excellence
The person who says something is impossible should not interrupt the person who is doing it.
- old Chinese proverb
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
~ Anais Nin
I'd rather have a broken heart / Than have a heart of stone.
- from "Boundless Love (A Polyamory Song)" by Jimmy Hollis i Dickson
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Old 03-18-2011, 04:19 PM
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RfromRMC RfromRMC is offline
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Definitely sounds like she's trying to get into primary status with him.

Before C moved in with M and me, he often felt like a "third"...or M's secondary. It was only when he moved in with us that he felt more like an equal part of the triad.

Currently with the three of you each having your own place, it's pretty equal. But your guy moving in with her, but leaving you still on your own, could skew things in her favor I'm afraid.
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Old 03-18-2011, 04:35 PM
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SourGirl SourGirl is offline
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A couple of thoughts....

- While it`s likely that she is trying for a upperhold on the situation, if you didn`t see any signs of poaching beforehand, I`m not sure that is the true reason. It might be as simple, as the fact, she likes you, but you aren`t the kind of person she feels she could handle living with.

- No, you can`t make her accept you. Your 'rights' to a boyfriend, are coming from the fact, nobody owns anyone. Your lack of rights regarding living there, come from the fact she OWNS her house.

Good luck to you. I hope she is willing to at least provide some answers in a straight-forward manner.
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