Helping my Mom Handle This

Creatress

New member
I'm 25, a single mom, getting into my first real poly relationship. I love my boyfriend & girlfriend, who are married, and it's involving a move that puts me 1,800 miles away from my parents, instead of 600. My mom is devastated. She's convinced that they're going to take advantage of me, that my DD2 will be scarred for life, that this is a stupid decision. She's convinced that we're only going to see her once a year and DD won't know who she is. My loves are not very close with their families, so it's hard for them to understand, but I'm doing the moving because they have the bigger house and the job (but he's job-hunting) and they don't have the capital to move, right now. *sigh*

This really hurts. This hurts worse than when I came out as queer, worse than when I told her I was pregnant (and single). She's heartbroken. I miss being able to talk to her once or twice a week without feeling like a horrible person. How can I help her along through this?:(
 

River

Active member
Being Well - Doing Well

How can I help her along through this?:(

First, be well and do well.

If she loves you--and I'm sure she does--, deep down, fundamentally, she wants you to do well and be well. She may not understand that you can be well and do well in the circumstance you're entering into, but that doesn't mean that you can't or won't. She may fear that you can't or won't. (I don't know; I'm guessing.) But you can -- Or so I presume. (Sometimes being well and doing well requires us to move on from situations that don't do well by us, but that's just life.)

Comfort her with your own happiness, joy, love, peace, freedom, growth.... She does want this for you, doesn't she? (If she doesn't, fogive her and hope one day that she'll wake up.)

It's your life you must live, and not everyone -- and often not everyone close to you -- will understand, appreciate, or even accept your choices. But if you choose based on what you feel or know to be right for you at the given moment, while being open to hearing the expressions of others on the matter, you're doing the best you can for yourself. And anyone who disapproves of your choices when you're following your own path can be listened to without resulting in a loss of autonomy or personal peace and happiness. Tell Mom that you have to follow your own heart; but let her know that you intend to be well and do well. That you'll accept nothing less.
 

XYZ123

New member
It sounds as if your mother loves you and is concerned for you. But, ultimately, your life is your life. Let her know why you feel this is right for you and how happy this makes you. And then hope she comes to accept, if not understand. I wish you all the best.
 

aussielover

New member
I'm in a very similar situation to you. Although my loves are the ones with the children, not me, and I'm moving half way around the world. I WISH it were only 1800 miles.
I haven't told my parents yet. I plan to do so once it's been working for a few months. Good luck. You have to do what will make you happy. Hopefully once she sees how happy you and your daughter are, she will feel better and be happy for you.
 

Quath

New member
See it as concern and let her know that you are happy with it. The other worries are no different than if you were straight and moving to be with a heterosexual partner.

You can help put her mind at ease by letting her know that you are lucky to have two loves while many people just get one. Let her know that you are grown up and you are making grown up decisions. Sometimes she may disagree and sometimes she may be right. But ultimately, this is your life to live and not hers.
 

Sunshinegrl

New member
See it as concern and let her know that you are happy with it. The other worries are no different than if you were straight and moving to be with a heterosexual partner.

You can help put her mind at ease by letting her know that you are lucky to have two loves while many people just get one. Let her know that you are grown up and you are making grown up decisions. Sometimes she may disagree and sometimes she may be right. But ultimately, this is your life to live and not hers.


This.
 

Creatress

New member
*sigh*

All of what you've said makes sense. It's going to be hard convince her that I'm happy when I know those first few months are going to be tense--their third doesn't like me much, feels threatened, etc. And it's a big adjustment for me. Don't get me wrong, I am excited, and I'm in love. The thought of not seeing these two again is downright painful. But man, I am not looking forward to these next six months of conversations with my mom. We've been close my whole life, it's really hard to see her so sad.

What about her arguments that they could try to use DD against me down the line (if they were crazy, which they're not, but Mom is pretty convinced they must be). The other big fear, which is actually a bit more realistic, is that DD's dad's family will find out from facebook or something, and try to take DD away. We'll be living on the opposite side of their state. So she's worried about those worst-case scenarios, too. The second one, I can't make much headway on. I'm not super concerned about it because as far as I can tell, the relationship structure is legal in their state, they just can't call non-married spouses for what they are (bigamy laws). But it's generally a more progressive state, so hopefully the law would be on my side.

Aaaargh. *sigh* I want Mom to be happy for me. It won't happen soon, but geeze...this interim is going to be pretty intolerable.
 

River

Active member
... their third doesn't like me much, feels threatened, etc.

Hmm. I had the impression from your initial post that you were entering a dyad and making it a triad. This new bit of info is a bit disappointing -- as she wasn't mentioned before ... and this suggests there may be a greater problem than you may want to acknowledge. If their "third" doesn't like you and feels threatened, things could end up being more than tense. They could explode in your face. Emphasis on the word "could" here.

Are you sure you want to enter into a situation like that?

How will this serious problem be addressed? Will the two others (the first you mentioned) help resolve this, or will leave it to you and the "third"?
I ask because I'd not want to be abandoned by my partners in that way. I'd want them to insist that they'll give serious help to me in dealing with this "third".

Are you on open speaking terms with the Third?

Again..., are you SURE you want to be in the middle of that?
 

Creatress

New member
Regarding the third, Q, originally she was on her way out. She saw how good things were when I was there, and wanted in on it, basically. She had previously checked out of the relationship, and is now working on it again, and because A & R (my significant others) love her, they're willing to let her work things out.

Q won't really talk to me about anything serious, which is why I'm of the mind that if she doesn't want to talk about it, it doesn't get to be my problem. A & R have said before that if Q gave them an ultimatum or something, they'd pick me, because I contribute more to the family emotionally, sexually, financially, intellectually, and practically. To clarify, they definitely love Q, but she's young, she doesn't have as much earning power, isn't as educated, and has a lot of emotional issues she's working out. Not the best communicator, either. So there's baggage. They love her, but life in the triad is rough, mainly because whoever isn't between the sheets at a given time feels left out, which would be somewhat resolved with the quad since they'd have someone else to go be with. There are also some financial and time resource issues happening, since Q doesn't drive. The three of them share one vehicle, and Q has to get a ride, meaning someone else's time, etc.

Also clarifying, I don't see myself as the rescuer, here. I'm not assuming it's going to be near-bliss. It will be rough at times. But I want to give it six months or so and see if we can make it work, because if we can, it will be wonderful. I think Q will likely feel better once I'm there for a while--she had this problem before I went to visit, as well, and I think she's letting her fears and worst-case scenarios percolate in her mind, making me out to be more intimidating than I am. :p
 

NeonKaos

Custodian
I hate to rain on someone's parade, but this "Q" sounds more like a codependent child than an equal adult in this cozy arrangement. You say she's "young". You're 25. THAT's "young". For someone your age to refer to someone else as "young", implies that "Q" is like what, 18-ish? "Issues", lack of transportation, lack of earning power, etc... As an outsider, it appears to me as though "Q" has/had a good barter system going with these folks and decided to get back in line before the gravy train leaves the station.

And the part about the quad "solving" the problem of who gets "left out"... I'm not sure what to make of that. While I take your word for it that this couple are fine people, reading between the lines of your posts suggests to me that they have some issues between the two of them that need to be worked on.

If it were me, I'd probably wait until my kid was grown before I hitched my star to that particular galaxy.
 
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Creatress

New member
Q's 20, and yeah, I kind of think of her as a freeloader. I feel like she's hurt R & A more than she's helped, but they definitely don't see it that way. It's their relationship, so not really my problem.

No situation is perfect. Yeah, R doesn't have much to do when Q & A are together aside from feel bored & lonely. She's a VERY extraverted person, so when Q & A are having some alone time, she's ALONE, which she doesn't like. That's alleviated considerably if there's someone else there. Catch me?
 

NeonKaos

Custodian
I get what you are saying, but i personally believe that one must be comfortable and secure with being alone before being able to fully be part of a relationship, and that would seem to be even more so, the more complicated the relationship is (i.e. the more people that are involved).

However, there is a whole other thread about that on this forum somewhere, and it should come as no surprise that it was started by non other than yours truly!

( http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=593 )
 

Barry

New member
*
This really hurts. This hurts worse than when I came out as queer, worse than when I told her I was pregnant (and single). She's heartbroken. I miss being able to talk to her once or twice a week without feeling like a horrible person. How can I help her along through this?:(

I may be way off the mark here, but the issue that seemed to jump out at me in reading your posts are the conflicts you are feeling over trading a significant friendship and relationship with your Mom for lesser relationships based on adventure. It's situations like this that almost demand reigning it in and thinking on it awhile instead of acting on it. Just my thoughts. Wishing the best for you.

Barry
 

Creatress

New member
I'm feeling a bit disrespected, here. That's probably my own "fault" for not providing all of the information, but there's SO MUCH information, that it's hard to know what's pertinent and what isn't.

Here's a bit of information about me. I'm a very intelligent, self-aware person, which means I can never do anything without doubting myself; I'm always wondering if a decision I'm making now stems from some emotional injury in my past or personality flaw. I'm not risk-averse, but I'm still pretty conservative with my choices, weighing my options carefully and providing at least two back-up plans for myself. If you're a MBTI person, I'm a strong INTJ, always thinking, always figuring out how various bits of information fit in together, always planning, always thinking, always running hypothetical scenarios out, and always, always thinking.

Yes, that means this choice has been ridiculously scary for me. So would any choice involving me moving. But shortly after I lost my job in April, I resumed a friendship with A & R, and it cultivated into love. I wouldn't have been able to do that had I not lost my job just when I did, because they're 2 hours earlier than I, and it requires me to stay up later to chat with them. The timing just seems too right to not be manipulated by the Universe to bring A & R back into my life, and what reason would that be for aside from giving me this chance?

I feel like my mom is holding me emotionally hostage in some ways. I'm supposed to stay here, nine hours away from her, taking care of myself and my daughter, being lonely as hell because no one wants to handle a poly, queer, activist, vegetarian single mother. So I find love in a really practically supportive environment with other people sharing the burdens of housework, childcare, and financial support, and she wants me to just walk away from all of the potential that that brings?

Anyway. I guess I'm just feeling like people are disregarding me, considering me young and foolish without fully accounting for the fact that if this choice pans out well, it will be amazing, and if it doesn't, I have a fallback plan that will put me no worse for wear aside from some moving expenses and a broken heart. It's worth the risk, for me.
 

NeonKaos

Custodian
We are just concerned about you going from the frying pan into the fire.

From what you just shared, I would now wonder if this couple A&R has a pattern of "taking in" single women who are in a "transitional period" (and the implications that come with that).

But realizing that your mother is 9 hours away... that's FAR, and shouldn't be considered that you're "leaving" her. However, when you have a kid, your life is no longer yours alone, and I'm just skeptical about jerking another individual who has no choice in the matter in and out of living situations that depend on factors beyond your own control.

Having said all that, it's your life and this (the US?) is still somewhat of a free country, so do whatever it is YOU want, not what strangers on a message board tell you to do. Just remember that when you come on a message board asking for advice, you may get other answers besides the ones you were looking for. In other words, if you were looking for affirmation only, you may get some input that makes you "feel disrespected".
 
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Quath

New member
A common joy/problem in polyamory is NRE (new relationship energy). It can lead you to take bigger risks than you should. The rough rule of thumb is not to move in with a new lover, move away with someone or quit a job over someone until NRE has worn down a little. There are many bad stories of people getting in very deep into a relationship that works at first because everyone is in NRE. But as NRE wears off, things are not so good.

So there is some concern over that. However, this is just a rule of thumb to give the intellect time to catch up to the emotional. If you can lay it all down and have an exit plan, then I think you are doing well. It sounds like you are thinking this out very well, so I have a lot of hope for you finding a lot of happiness.

The only thing that sticks out is that you may feel that the univserse is setting up this arrangement for you. I think we just learn to take advantage of the changing circumstances in our lives. If you believe in the universe setting relationships up, I think you just also need to believe that it can teach you lessons through bad relationships. (I just worry that you may stick with something bad because you feel like the universe wants it to be so.)

I am sorry if any of this sounds disrepecting. It is not meant to be so. It is just concern. Once we know you better, we will understand your individualism much better and not make sweeping generalizations based on limited information.
 

River

Active member
As a general rule, I'm not a giver of advice. And I don't see this forum as primarily a place of giving and receiving advice. Rather, I see this forum as a place to help each other think through (and feel through) questions and issues in a generally supportive atmosphere -- and a place for the less experienced in polyamory to benefit from the wisdom of the more experienced.

... So some of my responses aren't so much advice, per se, as nudges to think about a situation in another light, with the hope that doing so might provide insight that will aide in making one's own decisions. That's why I ask questions like, "Are you sure you want to get in the middle when X doesn't like you?" [paraphrase]. The question isn't rhetorical! It isn't a bit of advice.

I think it is much better to support and encourage people in making their own informed and well-thought-through decisions in this forum, rather than to offer up something you might find in a newspaper advice collumn.

[added on edit]:

My "general rule" about advice-giving isn't inflexible, but typically I prefer to "advise" people to empower their own decision-making process, by saying things like "I'd recommend that you learn to improve your communication skills -- together, as a couple (or trupple (tripple?), as the case may be). None of us are able to place ourselves in another's shoes, exactly, so the best we can do is help and encourage and support each other in our efforts to grow, evolve, ... flower.
 
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