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  #21  
Old 07-20-2010, 04:24 PM
inlovewith2 inlovewith2 is offline
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Originally Posted by rabbit View Post
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When I am with my fiance I am the most able to be vulnerable because I feel safe. It's kind of backwards from how I expected it would be, but I think since I know I am safe with him, I allow myself to feel fears/flashbacks etc around him.
Rabbit,

That's exactly how I felt. It took a long time for DW to understand that, and maybe he doesn't completely even now. It really makes sense to me now.

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There was of course all the NRE and accompanying excitement / anxiety that comes with a new partner and I think that can temporarily block out the tendency to have those negative feelings because you can only feel so many things at once.
That's an interesting theory about why the negative feelings don't occur at once. I'm not sure it fit for me. I think it was that I wouldn't "burden", or expect him to carry the "heavy stuff" until I felt safe that he was sticking around for a while. Also, I had a situation where my very obvious non-verbal discomfort was completely ignored, so until I felt safe with him, I wasn't going to trust him with the notion that sometimes I am not able to articulate my fears and/or needs.

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Unfortunately it does seem unfair to my fiance who has helped me get to the point where I am, but it is because I love and trust him so much, and trust that he will not hurt me when I am in a vulnerable state, that I can show that part of myself around him.
I know what you are saying, but I am trying really hard not to look at it as unfair. I spent years trying to minimize the effects of the abuse I endured on DW only to have that backfire in a huge way. What wasn't fair was the abuse and by committing to me, DW took that on as well whether either of us realized it. That sounds harsh, but really it is that I am trying to remind myself of this; that I am not being unfair or a burden, but that the experiences of my past are a part of our relationship.

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(It turned out that our girlfriend was very negative and unkind about the things I did open up about, but that's another story)
That's terrible, Rabbit!!! I'm really sorry to hear that.

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Anyway, it sounds like everyone involved is doing a great job communicating and I wish you all the best.
Thank you so much!!!! The same to you!!!!

Christie
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  #22  
Old 07-20-2010, 07:02 PM
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MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
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Default Side bar question

I know the title of this thread relates to the importance of sex. But what about the importance of sexual diversity? How much of a factor is desiring different sexual experiences in wanting multiple partners?

I love sexual diversity but it is not a driving force in my realtionships. My sexual highs come from conection as opposed to the nature of the act or a different body to experience. I'm bringing this up because a friend recently cheated on his partner. On the surface it seems like there was no connection there, but it was purely physically driven. He identifies as poly but was this really an act of a repressed poly nature, or a catalyst to creat change?

Just wondering if this is worth exploring
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  #23  
Old 07-20-2010, 08:38 PM
jkelly jkelly is offline
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what about the importance of sexual diversity? How much of a factor is desiring different sexual experiences in wanting multiple partners?

...

Just wondering if this is worth exploring
Yeah, I totally think that this is an interesting question. I'm finding it really hard to answer, though.

I suppose that I would be sad if I were to somehow know for certain that I would never be with someone new again for the rest of my life. There's something really... powerful or rewarding or something about that experience. But I think that part of that experience is the, um, promise of an intimacy in the future; a new connection or relationship.

So what I'm trying to say, I guess, is that I wouldn't be really any more interested in a classic open relationship where one-night stands were allowed (but no emotional relationships) than I would be with monogamy.
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  #24  
Old 07-20-2010, 09:57 PM
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MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
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So what I'm trying to say, I guess, is that I wouldn't be really any more interested in a classic open relationship where one-night stands were allowed (but no emotional relationships) than I would be with monogamy.
Thanks for that insight. There's absolutely nothing wrong with wanting diversity in people to experience. I just struggle with the idea that sometimes the motivation is misunderstood.
Thanks again
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  #25  
Old 07-21-2010, 03:02 PM
DavidWebb DavidWebb is offline
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Egads! So many responses to reply to it feels overwhelming! How do y'all find the time?? (and I only have one relationship to focus on

Hopefully I'll figure out this quote thing and be able to respond that way...

-DW
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  #26  
Old 07-21-2010, 04:52 PM
DavidWebb DavidWebb is offline
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Ok… focusing on page 1 here… other pages to follow…

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Originally Posted by Ariakas View Post
This seems to be a lot to do with his trust in your telling him he is who you want to be with and that you are satisfied in your sexual connection with him.
Honestly, he has to trust you in this fact. You can't convince him of it, he has to believe it. Either by time and build trust, or...just give over to the love he feels for you and you feel for him
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Originally Posted by inlovewith2 View Post
Yes, I think this is true. I do think it has another dimension though in him not understanding why I need more than what he can provide. And it's not that I do, necessarily; I view it as an expression of my feelings for the other men in my life.
Thanks!
Christie
Ariakas. I admit I originally glossed over your reply initially, but upon reading it found it simply well put... “you are satisfied in your sexual connection with him”… I believe that we do have an awesome connection. But what I find difficult believing is that it is completely “satisfying” to her. Because if it was, why the need for others? I feel I have done whatever she has asked of me and yet I have a sense it leaves her wanting more (even though Christie counters this by saying “And it's not that I do, necessarily”). For me, there’s a loss of pride there that I can’t “satisfy” her (kind of ‘all of a sudden’ – see next paragraph).

I think our history matters here. It feels like… 13 years of marriage and never a mention of this. Then Christie falls in love and has sex with R and realizes “I need more love and sex than my husband can give me”. (metaphor alert) I ran into a wall when I was a teenager (literally – had both wrists in casts) and this has a similar taste as that. Ooh, let’s keep the metaphor going… the docs patched me up, I healed, and I learned not to run into that wall again cuz damn it hurt like hell and took a long time to recover from. I do view this poly transition the same way. I feel like I've been smacked into a wall, but I can heal and figure out ways to deal with it. On the bright side, as opposed to the actual running into the wall incident, at least with poly, I can still wipe my own @ss.

Another of my issues (and I know it is *my* issue) is that I still cringe when I see “other men in my life” staring at me on the screen. I’m still getting used to that. And then the “view it (sex) as an expression of my feelings”… ugh. double cringe.


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Originally Posted by SayYes View Post
In order to really, truly have a relationship with my boyfriend, I need to be free to express how I feel in a way that feels natural and organic, not laden with rules and specifications. Even if that turns out to rarely mean sex, were the option not there, it wouldn't feel like I was *really* free to have a relationship with him. That's the best I can do at explaining why it matters.
I can appreciate this line of thinking and it is helpful for me to get this perspective. Christie has mentioned that she and R don’t always have sex when they get together for various reasons, many of which you pointed out. But she would prefer to have the option open. I certainly get that! If I was in her position I would feel the same way.
But my mono mindset kicks in and wonders truly how the relationship would be different. Would you really not be able to become close to this other person and love this person if you couldn’t have sex with them? For me, I feel I could. There have been plenty of dry spells in our marriage (see OP for reasons) and I never felt like my relationship was no longer “natural and organic”. There are many ways to be intimate. I prefer to reserve the ultimate forms of it for Christie. Just a different mindset I suppose.

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Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG View Post
I would prefer the idea of "most men" would flee, but in essence I agree. Your man is amazing
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Originally Posted by EugenePoet View Post
Yeah -- what Mono said. Treasure that guy.
Thanks for the kind words.
I feel the same about Christie – she is amazing and I treasure her.

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Originally Posted by EugenePoet View Post
For me, what happens during sex is apparent in what happens afterwards: pillow-talk is, for me, an order of magnitude more intimate and loving than any other communication with a human being. Trusting another person with my body creates a connection that nothing else rivals.

It's like two people learn to play all sorts of relationship music together. Light conversations and fun little tunes, serious discussion music, deeply emotional pieces. One way I think about lovemaking is that it's a particularly deep and satisfying music to make. If you get a lover who feels that way about it then they will want to learn that part of the repertoire with you. Not because they need to get their rocks off but because they want that deep emotional music.
To the first paragraph: Boy, did that hit home. I’m going to have to save this one. That is one part of it that really scares me. That Christie is going to be so vulnerable and so intimate with another man in a way that up to now she and I have only been. I certainly feel an ‘ownership’ of that. That Is Ours. Elmo and Barney won't be happy, but I don’t want to share that!! I cannot imagine ever wanting to be that intimate with someone else. And so it adds to the hurt that Christie does.

To the second paragraph: I don’t mind her making music, I just want it to be with my instrument. Sorry, that seemed too easy of a setup to pass up. In all seriousness though, I get the metaphor. And whenever it does get to that point, I do prefer any OSO’s to want the deep emotional music vs. just the need to get their rocks off.

-DW

Last edited by DavidWebb; 07-21-2010 at 08:08 PM.
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  #27  
Old 07-21-2010, 11:53 PM
inlovewith2 inlovewith2 is offline
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[QUOTE=MonoVCPHG;36842]. But what about the importance of sexual diversity? How much of a factor is desiring different sexual experiences in wanting multiple partners?

This is an interesting question to ponder, Mono, and I think it is related.

Quote:
I love sexual diversity but it is not a driving force in my realtionships. My sexual highs come from conection as opposed to the nature of the act or a different body to experience.
I

My thoughts aren't fully formed on this, but I'd say nearly the same re: highs from connection vs the act. For me, it's always about connection, but I've discovered that connecting with others sexually is a possible positive in my life, something I had never thought possible (and there it is, a reason).
Quote:

Just wondering if this is worth exploring
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  #28  
Old 07-22-2010, 07:15 PM
SayYes SayYes is offline
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Originally Posted by DavidWebb View Post
I can appreciate this line of thinking and it is helpful for me to get this perspective. Christie has mentioned that she and R don’t always have sex when they get together for various reasons, many of which you pointed out. But she would prefer to have the option open. I certainly get that! If I was in her position I would feel the same way.
But my mono mindset kicks in and wonders truly how the relationship would be different. Would you really not be able to become close to this other person and love this person if you couldn’t have sex with them? For me, I feel I could. There have been plenty of dry spells in our marriage (see OP for reasons) and I never felt like my relationship was no longer “natural and organic”. There are many ways to be intimate. I prefer to reserve the ultimate forms of it for Christie. Just a different mindset I suppose.
Again, I think the difference is that those dry spells you have experienced were due to the feelings/needs of that partner. It wasn't someone external to that relationship telling you and Christie that you weren't allowed to be intimate. For me, that's where the no longer natural and organic part comes in.

I love my boyfriend; our relationship is built much more on an emotional and intellectual connection than it is on sex. But I could have had an emotional and intellectual connection (and have, with many friends) with him before my marriage was poly. Even though sex is not a large part of our relationship, if it were off limits because those were the terms of my marriage, I wouldn't consider him my boyfriend. I wouldn't consider it a romantic relationship. I would consider it a very close friendship, and I would be longing for it to be more. It feels difficult to articulate, but for me, that sexual freedom is what draws the line between truly being poly, and having a mono situation where your partner doesn't mind you having close, emotional friendships but wouldn't want those friendships to be physically intimate. For me, truly being poly matters. And if it doesn't include the freedom to have sex, I can't really say I'm available for more than friendship.
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  #29  
Old 07-23-2010, 12:55 AM
DavidWebb DavidWebb is offline
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SayYes,
Thank you for having to patience to post basically the same response three times. After reading all three in succession just now, I think I am starting to understand it. I think Christie feels similar to how you have put it. In my mind, your responses are answering the implied question of her original thread title. (not that others haven't been helpful too!)

We just have our differences at the moment. Christie wants the "truly poly" you described. And I want the "mono situation where your partner doesn't mind you having close, emotional friendships but wouldn't want those friendships to be physically intimate". She has been kind enough to allow my desire to be how things are for now until I feel I can process it all.

As for our own dry spells, I do view those as externally imposed by the @ssholes who thought they could have their way with a young girl/woman. If it weren't for them, likely Christie would not have associated all the negative feelings with sex. Whenever those would become too much is when we typically had to stop for a while.

-DW
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  #30  
Old 07-25-2010, 11:56 PM
DavidWebb DavidWebb is offline
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Originally Posted by jkelly View Post

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Originally Posted by DavidWebb View Post
- we struggle with intimacy our entire 15+ year relationship (due to the reasons in the op), but now it feels like it's all 'hey I am poly'... so some guy can come along, woo you for a couple months and now you're locking lips with him.

Franklin of xeromag discusses this here: http://tacit.livejournal.com/291799.html. I found it useful to read when I was thinking along the lines above.
Thanks for the link! And it was an interesting read. Maybe I'm just stubborn or not ready to be open to that train of thought right now, but I still disagree. I do agree that all of the effort poured into my marriage was never out of some expectation of great return, but my love for Christie. But at the same time, I never felt like it was going to be for another guy's benefit. When I met with a secondary and he said "Well, I am glad to have the 2010 model of Christie..." I wanted to smack him.

Just in general, I have always thought that the Little Red Hen was the only one who should be able to eat the bread.

-DW
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