Captain's Log


Thank you @HisPet and @LittleWords (and everyone else who sometimes responds) it is very nice to know I'm not trying to navigate this all alone.

The day before Valentine's day I got a message from a woman I once loved. We haven't talked in 25 years beyond an occasional comment on each other's stuff on social media.

This was our polycule in the early 90's: It started when I was 20, in Manhattan. I was dating Jimmy when we both met Sonya through another girl, who I was sleeping with also. A triad quickly formed between Me, Jimmy and Sonya, we became inseparable. Eventually, I fell in love with Sonya, Sonya fell in love with Jimmy and he fell in love back. Sonya and I also slept with Jimmy's twin brother, and I slept with the twin's girlfriend too. This lasted close to 3 years? I left Sonya and Jimmy just before they got engaged. It was a heartbreaking decision, but whereas we started out as a fairly "even" triad, I was very unhappy as a secondary to their primary relationship.

Of course, we didn't have a language for what we were doing back then, before forums, before everybody had read Ethical Slut. We didn't have a name for it.

Anyway, Sonya wanted to send me pics of us she'd scanned, and that she wanted to tell me that even though I was only in their lives a couple of years, she and Jimmy have so many wonderful memories of me that they cherished and she wanted to thank me. I responded with honest regret that I'd cut them out of my lives so quickly and thoroughly at the time.

It was intense, and the pictures....god, we were all so young and gorgeous. I was easily able to summon up the memories.

Sonya was my first grown-up, deeply sexual love affair, and that relationship colored so much about how I feel about love, polyamory, and my own sexuality. Watching her fall in love with a man, in a way she simply could not love me, while I was literally in the bed with the was a kind of pain and pleasure hard to describe. I was, what 23? One day, I instinctively went "no contact" (before it was a thing) in an effort to preserve my sanity.

It took me years to stop ruminating about Sonya, and oh boy, did I personalize that "rejection." Back then, I didn't know to talk back to negative thoughts like that, and I let them have me. The years following that triad were some of the darkest of my life.

But in the present, I'm middle-aged and in love again. Valentine's day with Sunny was perfect, I'm all hearts and flowers and fluttery butterflies about it right now. It feels easy. How much of my unease with poly is because I fear I'll be the one left out of love? Again?


The day or so before my period, I'm always over-sensitive, easily triggered, emotional, and irritable. Anything wrong in my relationship with Sunny surfaces. We repeat a discussion (is it an argument if voices aren't raised?) going in circles...feelings get hurt. It's easy to forget that we go weeks at a time without discord. We do nothing but have fun and make love and talk deep for days straight.

I haven't heard from Braun in a minute, I'm losing interest, I just can't maintain a connection on Snapchat and videocalls. Letting it go for now. Talking to a nice-looking guy in an open relationship here on vacation without his partner. It's exactly the sort of thing Sunny and I decided was allowed. I'm thinking of meeting him for a drink (outside dining) and seeing if there's sparks. If there were, would I go back to his hotel room? I'm terrified to pull the trigger for many reasons. Covid. STI. Violence.

And will something between Sunny and I change if my sex is no longer just for him? Will it change his feeling for me? Will it change mine for him?? Won't it pull me away from him for at least a minute? And why am I so scared of that? If I say, "Hey, I'm going on a date with this guy. Maybe more if I feel it. Mainly, I'm doing it to to see how I feel about doing it. I'm also doing it so you see how you feel about me doing it. So I won't be able to see you tonight, Sunny," does Sunny get to say the same thing to me one day? How will I feel when he says "I'm not coming over tonight because I have a date with a chick just here for the weekend?" Wouldn't I rather be with Sunny than guy on vacation? Would Sunny rather be with me than weekend chick? Should I take it personally that he might choose variety, something new, over another night with me knowing he will have many more nights with me? But this is what we've agreed to. Take it for a ride, LoveBunny, or don't.

When I was home for the summer after freshman year of college, a young man who lived next door to my parents caught lust for me. He'd been a senior when I was a freshman in high school, we didn't know each other then. But I'd come back from the city with an edgy new look, and suddenly he was in front of my house talking to me. One night (then many nights after) he climbed up onto our roof then sneaked into my window at night. I barely knew him, but he was a great looking guy, very popular in our high school. He crawled into my window and into bed with me as if I'd invited him. We'd barely ever spoke a word.

This is weird and I don't know how to say this. I felt frozen. Not with fear, but like I did not think I had any right to say no. I can't say if I wanted him or not. He wasn't my first (maybe third or fourth?) I just, like, let it happen. I was attracted to him physically, yes, and my body responded to him, my first O with a partner, in fact. He wasn't rough. He just didn't seek consent, and I only gave it by not fighting. I remember thinking about my parents asleep downstairs, feeling in some way as if they failed to protect me. Of course, I was technically a grown woman by then (18? 19?) And it's not as if he hurt me.

I'm struggling with that same feeling of not being protected in polyamory. It's not logical. Sunny isn't making me sleep with other men. I am a grown woman and Sunny isn't truly my Daddy. I seem to remember reading that women need to bypass their reptilian fear response with strange men before they have any chance of getting off. It's easier for men to get off during a one-off because they're less likely to think they're in physical danger. I know it's ok to just meet a man in a public place and flirt I don't have to do anything with him after. I'm not as shy about saying no as I was at 19. As I said, not logical. I just wanted to try to name the icky feeling, thank you for listening polyworld.


A moment of profound loneliness yesterday. I was waiting for Sunny to come over, and he butt-dialed me. I knew he was at his exwife's house for his teenaged son's birthday, and I picked up the phone and caught a bit of Sunny interacting with ex and his little girl (I didn't hear the boy but assume he was there too.) They were laughing and teasing him about something. I felt very outside looking in, and even worse when I asked later who was at the party, and Sunny said "Just the family, me, my daughter and my wife....oops, I mean, ex-wife."

He has a happy family. I'm not and probably never will be a part of it. Not even sure I'd want to be. I don't have an affinity for kids and his ex sounds like a handful. But I felt very lonely and excluded sitting there all by myself, making my dinner for one because Sunny was eating with his family. Not that I belonged there in any way, I've only met the kids once. It just hit me, again, how few close connections I have of my own.

Sunny and I talked a bit about the stuff that was on my mind in the last post. He seems not too keen on one-on-one encounters, doesn't plan on taking time away from me to make them happen. He's more interested in us doing stuff together with other couples. He said no need to even tell each other about one-offs unless a condom breaks or something. He said I could bring him along as a bodyguard if it would make me feel safer, but of course, I can't do that. I figure I'll meet the vacationing guy for a drink if scheduling allows, but it's not something I'm going to go out of my way to make happen.