Help..is emotional intimacy considered an open relationship?

Royallover2008

New member
Sorry if this is overstating I posted my question to love column by dan savage but wanted a poly communities response for perspective..
thanks loves

Dear Dan
I'm in.. have been.. in a bit of a predicament.. My husband and I over the years have enjoyed having females over. Later on in our marriage, he told me something personal, it was shocking but it brought us closer. So we experimented with guys. I love my husband I was open to it, and it was fun. I wasn't comfortable with penetration, my husband is my first and our relationship was sacred to me in a cliche way. To where if women came over I was ok with everything besides kissing. (My husband was my first kiss.. again cliche)
It's not something we do all the time. Just to spice things up.. and I'm learning new things about myself and my husband. One thing I found is I need an emotional connection with a man to be attracted.. where as I could be sober to feel attraction to a woman. (sorry if that's shallow)
Real quick backstory, my husband was my "knight" in my late adolescent years. My childhood was a little rocky so in a way I attached myself to him at 15 and we got married at 19. When we played with other women I felt like I was treating my husband. And I got to explore and feel like I wasnt missing out on something sexually.
Fast forward 9 years of marriage and I lost my job working under my best friend at her company. I may (or may not) have bpd though clinically diagnosed. And my bright ass decides to "treat" my husband to a 3way.
Well after that event, my husband asks me if he can have her Snapchat. I was hurt.. but he said he deserved it.. I'm not even sure how he convinced me to give it to him.
But after I read one of his messages about how he'd "never met any one as sexy or smart" unquote. I enraged and haven't been cool for over 2 years now. I've read various inappropriate messages. He vents to her about me, lies to her and says he learned it from me cause of my bpd, gets irrate when I confront him about what I feel or know.
He brings up "bob" who in my discovery of my bpd I confessed to my husband I had kissed "bob" on the cheek after he charmed and bought me burger king 7 years ago. He put a password on his phone.. at one time he messaged her as "gumby," his friend and was all giddy face lying about it. He makes jokes about "bob".. when he won't even acknowledge my current boundaries. I'm not perfect. I've made jokes about him being a breadcrumber, or a cheatho, or even seriously that he just needs to say we're in a open marriage. But
That's when it goes south and it's me "making him wrong, me being a bitch," to "have you taken your meds today," or my fave "are you asking for it?"
I'm not the same person I was 2 years ago.. My daughter, unfortunately came out to say my dad had been inappropriate with her shortly after this. So that's been testing us too. So i have no family, no job, I'm mentally and emotionally on edge all the time! This covid isolation is nothing new to me. I have this annoying twitch in my feet and hands (possibly tardive dyskinesia) that started around the same time I read his messages to her.
He doesn't feel like it's emotional cheating/intimacy because he or we have already had sex with her. They have a novel of messages that go over 2 years he conveniently deleted, after he read what emotional cheating was. He says "what I don't know can't hurt me so I shouldn't look at his phone. He doesn't care what's on my phone," yet he won't give me the release of honesty by saying we're in a open relationship.
He says anything they talk about that's dirty includes me so it's not cheating. Also he told her he was talking to some other chick supposedly "to get her to come over" which worked I guess cause he went to help "Gumby" when his car overheated later and then came back with "Macy." ..it was fun but not worth 2 years of the 2 of hell I had in reality. And I'm crazy for being suspicious..After 2 years of me asking him to "not talk to her, hey your hurting me" "keep it clean" "at least make it a group chat" I'm asking too much apparently.
In the midst of telling Me and Macy he would do marriage counseling early on, I find out I never got my hormones checked. Sooo another wild card for my hubs! He thinks if I have abnormal hormone results, he's justified 2 years of him (in my eyes) being emotionally and physically abusive. Which he also hates talking about.. I have so much contempt and mistrust I literally could make myself.. crazier! I wish I didn't care.. yet I will still have sex with him!!
It's fucked!! We've talked about divorce but I can't do that to my girls even though I think he'd spend more time with them if we we separated.
Is this love and can it be saved or should it be saved? If my lab results come back abnormal does that mean I've overreacted this whole time?? How do I get the emotional intimacy I need to be attracted to my husband again?


Any Advice for this devasted hopeless romantic
 

GalaGirl

Active member
Wow. You have a lot going on. I hope you feel better airing that out. I am sorry this is happening.

I have trouble understanding when things are not in chronological order. Let me repeat back what I understand in my own words. I quote just ot block it off. You tell me if I get anything wrong.

PEOPLE
  • You
  • Two Daughters
  • Husband, call him Apple
  • Banana, your former best friend, now his cheating affair partner
  • Macy, another cheating partner of his
PAST
  • You had a rocky childhood and attached yourself to Apple. You were 15 when you got together and 19 when you got married.
  • Somewhere around here you kissed a guy named Bob after he charmed you and got you some Burger King.
  • Somewhere around here you are clinically diagnosed with BPD.
  • Somewhere around here you were up for threesomes with women. You thought it was you treating your husband and a way for your to explore and not feel like you were missing out on anything.
  • Somewhere around there you also started doing threesomes with guys since your husband was attracted to guys. You were shocked at first, but went with it so long as the guys didn't penetrate each other.
  • Somewhere in there came the birth of two daughters.

PRESENT PROBLEMS (LAST 2 YEARS)

At 24 yrs old, you used to work under your former best friend. Call her Banana. You lost that job with her company.

You suggested a threesome. After that, Apple wanted Banana's snapchat. From peeking in his phone, you figured out he continued to see her behind your back. So it's a cheating affair now. Going on two years of it.

Since he started his affair with Banana, you have new health symptoms. Possibly tardive dyskinesia.

He doesn't think it's cheating because you both already had sex with her.

You do consider it cheating because a one time consent to do a threesome with her is not blanket continuing consent forever.

https://www.boredpanda.com/consent-...oogle&utm_medium=organic&utm_campaign=organic

When you bring this cheating behavior up, he flips it around on you and gets mad.

  • Says he learned to lie from you with your BPD.
  • Brings up the Bob cheek kiss from years ago to justify his own poor behavior today.
  • He's put password on his phone so you cannot peek in it any more.
  • He dings you by making "jokes" about "bob"
  • He won't even acknowledge your current boundaries. (what does that mean?)
  • calls you crazy for being suspicious
You ding him back calling him names like
  • a breadcrumber
  • or a cheatho
He dings you back with more name calling like
  • saying you are making him be wrong
  • you are being a bitch
  • have you taken your meds today
  • are you asking for it? (physical abuse -- he hits you)
He's also hooking up with Banana and Macy in other threesomes that do not involve you.

You want him to agree to call it an Open Marriage. Then nobody is cheating on the closed marriage agreements. He won't call it open marriage. (He wants open for him but not for you??)

NEW PROBLEMS

One of your daughters says Dad has been inappropriate with her. (verbal abuse? hitting her? Molesting her?)

You have no family, no job, and mentally and emotionally on edge all the time.

You have a lot of contempt and mistrust for him. You are no longer attracted to him. You wish you didn't care what he was doing.

You have sex with him. (Consenting or not?)

You tell him to stop and that his cheating and other (?) behaviors hurt you. He keeps on doing it.

POSSIBLE SOLUTION

You have talked about divorce but "don't want to do that to your girls."
  • You don't want to model how an adult leaves abuse so the girls know what to do if it happens to them when they are grown ups because... you would have to accept that the first love of your life ended up like this?
  • You don't want to get the possibly molested daughter away from him because... ?
  • You are not ready to break down leaving into steps and then execute the leaving plan?

Is that the summary? More or less? If so? I think you could ignore the cheating affair and forget about practicing open marriage with him. There's bigger safety concerns here.

When there's been abuse of you, deep mistrust, and now also possible harm to a child? I think you could focus on getting all of you away from abuse. Have that be your top priority.

Is this love and can it be saved or should it be saved?

NO. I do not think this is love. It is abuse. And you do your own share of it with the name calling. I get why you call him names too. He's hurting you. But that is now how a healthy adult relationship goes. And the kids having to watch all this because they are stuck there? How will they learn healthy relationships?

You may not be ready to name the abuse ABUSE. Maybe because you have soft feelings from the past, and maybe because the idea of starting over when you don't have family or job and you have health issues is really daunting.

I don't think keeping you and the children in a volatile abusive sounding home is good.

Whatever man he was from the past that he used to be that you used to love? He's gone. Have fond feeling for the past him if you must.

But the man here TODAY? You have contempt and mistrust for him and he's hurting you.

Sometimes the body has to leave in order for the mind and heart to catch a break and actually get to heal. Otherwise it's enduring more hail storm every moment and you never catch a break. But because the mind and heart are hurting so bad, it's hard to make big decisions like leaving.

I'm very sorry this is happening. I encourage you to seek out help for getting out of there. Call up local domestic violence offices to see what's available to you. Maybe shelters. Maybe help getting back on your feet since you have no family. Make a safety plan if needed.


Read some things at https://speakoutloud.net/

Just because you have BPD and other health issues? That does not make it ok to talk to you mean, hit you, or whatever other abuse is going on. Using your illness to make you think you are "over reacting" so he doesn't have to own his poor behavior? That's gas lighting.

Like what SHOULD your reaction be when he keeps on cheating on you, hits you, etc? All smiles? Nope. I think it's reasonable to feel angry, upset, and like you are well past your limit of tolerance. Get out.

Pandemic doesn't make any of this easier. But please take care of you and the children. You have value, worth, and dignity. Remember that.

Galagirl
 
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Magdlyn

Well-known member
Over the years, my husband and I have enjoyed having females over. We (have also) experimented with guys. My husband was my first (relationship) and it was sacred to me. If women came over, I was OK with everything besides kissing. (My husband was my first kiss.)

I found I need an emotional connection with a man to be attracted, whereas I could be sober to feel attraction to a woman.

Where does being sober come into it? Are you attracted to men when you're drunk and attracted to women drunk or sober?

My husband was my "knight," attached myself to him at 15 and we got married at 19.

When we played with other women, I felt like I was treating my husband. And I got to explore and feel like I wasn't missing out on something sexually.

So you'd always been bisexual, it seems. So far, so good. 3way sex seemed to be a "treat" for both of you, as long as it was "only" sex.

Fast forward 9 years of marriage. I lost my job working under my best friend at her company. I may (or may not) have BPD though (I have been) clinically diagnosed (with it).

My bright ass decides to "treat" my husband to a 3way (with my friend).

You lost your job. You've been diagnosed with BPD. Is that borderline personality disorder or bipolar disorder?

Why was it a treat to have a 3way with your friend? You'd already been doing 3ways, and they were a treat to you as well, since you're bi. Why did you decide to have sex with the friend who had just let you go from her company?

My husband asked me if he could have her Snapchat. I was hurt. But he said he deserved it. I'm not even sure how he convinced me to give it to him.

Well, if you have a mental illness, you might have had a weak moment. So, somehow despite having one 3way with your friend, you didn't want your husband to talk to her ever again, but you let him do it anyway.

I read one of his messages about how he'd "never met any one as sexy or smart" as her. I was enraged and haven't been cool for over 2 years now.

You spied on his phone 2 years ago, and found out unpleasant things. Had he continued to have dates/sex with her without your knowledge too? Or just chat? Was she your friend while she was "cheating" with your h?

I've read various inappropriate messages. He vents to her about me, lies to her and says he learned it from me because of my BPD, gets irate when I confront him.

Well, I'd be mad if someone spied on my phone. He cheated and you snuck around. It seems you spied on his phone for a pretty long time, but he finally figured it out when you confronted him at some point.

He brings up "Bob." In my discovery of my BPD, I confessed to my husband I had kissed Bob on the cheek after he charmed me and bought me Burger King 7 years ago.

Is this one of the 3way guys? You broke your own rule about "no kissing?" But a peck on the cheek is just a friendly thing, it's not like making out... So anyway, somehow fucking or just talking on the phone for 2 years is being thrown back in your face as the same as one peck on the cheek as a thank you for fast food?

Husband put a password on his phone. He messaged the woman as "Gumby," his friend, and was all giddy, lying about it.

He called the woman Gumby, which is really the name of a male friend of his?

He makes jokes about Bob, when he won't even acknowledge my current boundaries. I've made jokes about him being a bread-crumber, or a cheat-ho.

So, you call him names because you're angry because he has been having a cyber or real life sexual relationship with your friend.

(I think) he just needs to say we're in a open marriage.

It seems it's either Open, or he is cheating, but either way, just labeling it won't do much to heal your marriage. You can't force people to see things your way.

(He says I am) "making him wrong,' and "being a bitch," asks me, "Have you taken your meds today?" or my fave, "Are you asking for it?"

Asking for what? A beating??

I'm not the same person I was 2 years ago. My daughter, unfortunately, came out to say my dad had been inappropriate with her shortly after this.

Your father molested your daughter? Is that what he did to you too, to make your childhood so "rocky"?

(GalaGirl- it was the daughter's grandfather that was "inappropriate," not her own father.)

So now I have no family, no job, and I'm mentally and emotionally on edge all the time.

It seems you have had no family of origin since you were 15 because you were abused. You do have a family though, 2 daughters(?) and a cheating husband. Somehow though, you have not had a job since you lost the one at your friend's company 2 years ago? Is this because of your BPD? Have you tried to get a job?

(I have this annoying twitch in my feet and hands (possibly tardive dyskinesia) that started around the same time I read his messages to her.)

He doesn't feel like it's emotional cheating/intimacy because we have already had sex with her. They have a novel of messages that go over 2 years that he conveniently deleted, after he read about emotional cheating. He says,"What I don't know can't hurt me, so I shouldn't look at his phone. He doesn't care what's on my phone," yet he won't give me the release of honesty by saying we're in a open relationship.

In polyamory, we know that having sex with someone very often leads to romantic feelings and emotional closeness. But your agreement was for "sex only," 2 years ago. So your h has had your friend as a romantic phone partner. Somehow you suspected he was having a phone relationship with her, or maybe seeing her in person? He denied it, so you snuck looks on his phone.

He says anything they talk about that's dirty includes me, so it's not cheating. Also, he told her he was talking to some other chick, supposedly to get her to come over, which worked, I guess. Because he went to help "Gumby," (but) came back with "Macy." It was fun...

He said he was going to help a guy friend, but somehow found this woman Macy, and somehow you hopped in the sack with her?

... but not worth 2 years of of hell. And (he says) I'm crazy for being suspicious. After 2 years of me asking him to "Not talk to her," saying, "You're hurting me," "Keep it clean," "At least make it a group chat," I'm asking too much, apparently.

So, for 2 years, you knew he was talking/texting with your friend (and Macy?). What did your "friend" tell you about this? Or did she stop being "your friend" at some point? It sounds like you wanted to make this a "triad," a 3way sexual/romantic thing. But "Friend" and husband left you out of it... just chatted on the phone one-on-one And somehow this went on for 2 years and you spied on his phone frequently, and finally he decided to come clean. In those 2 years, you fell out of love with your husband, and yet somehow still have sex with him sometimes.

In the midst of telling me and Macy he would do marriage counseling early on...

Wait, he told Macy, who came over for a 3way once, about marriage counseling? This is a different person than your "Friend"? He said on his phone, "early on," a while ago, before you had the 3way with her, and you saw it when you snuck a look at it.

I never (had) my hormones checked. Another wild card for my hubs! He thinks if I have abnormal hormone results, he's justified in being emotionally and physically abusive.

So, did you get those labs done? Did you get results back yet?

So, he is physically abusing you, and he's gaslighting you, telling you you're so crazy, either from BPD or out-of-whack hormones, that you deserve the beatings.

I have so much contempt and mistrust I literally could make myself crazier! I wish I didn't care, yet I will still have sex with him! It's fucked!! We've talked about divorce, but I can't do that to my girls, even though I think he'd spend more time with them if we we separated.

So here, you know that it would be best to separate/divorce. I'd say you're correct. You're being abused and things are a mess.

If my lab results come back abnormal, does that mean I've overreacted this whole time?

No one deserves emotional or physical abuse. And it seems your husband has a deep emotional attachment to another woman (or two). If you'd agreed that was OK, as in polyamory, it would not be a problem. But if your agreement was "sex only" with others, and now he's got an emotional attachment to both "Friend" and Macy, he broke your agreement, and he should have come clean and renegotiated the agreement. If he won't, you could decide to leave him. That's your choice.

How do I get the emotional intimacy I need to be attracted to my husband again?

It would take a commitment to marriage counseling from both of you, and a lot of work.
 
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GalaGirl

Active member
Ah, the grandfather. Thanks, Mag. I was struggling to keep up with so much going on.

But still... this isn't sounding like a healthy situation/environment for a lot of reasons.

Royallover2008, I hope you consider taking steps to protect you and the kids.You don't deserve to be abused. Again, I'm very sorry you are experiencing all this.

Galagirl
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Greetings Royallover2008,
Welcome to our forum. Please feel free to lurk, browse, etc.

Re:
"How do I get the emotional intimacy I need to be attracted to my husband again?"

I suppose you could somehow make peace with the idea that you've overreacted this whole time. Sure your husband has crossed into some gray areas, but that doesn't mean he was a cheatho or a breadcrumber. Maybe he was just lonely, like his marriage with you wasn't satisfying him anymore.

On the other hand, he has been rather rude to you, and I'm not sure that adds up to a good marriage. Sure there's your girls to consider, but on the other hand, do you want your girls to learn that it's okay for a husband to act crappy towards a wife? What happens when one of your girls gets into an abusive relationship? Do you want her to think that she must not extricate herself, after all Mom didn't when she was in the same situation?

I can't tell (from what you've posted so far) whether your husband actually hit you, or if he was just being verbally rude to you. You might want to post some more, and give some more details on what has been happening, and who has been involved. As it currently stands, based on what you have so far said, I am thinking it would be best if you divorced him.

I hope I'm wrong.
Sincerely,
Kevin T., "official greeter"

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