Kevin's Hetero MFM Poly-Fi V

kdt26417

Official Greeter
This'll be a "short" blog, :), assuming no one posts any thoughts/questions for me to respond to here, as I'm always willing to respond to thoughts and answer questions to my best knowledge. But, I am suggesting posting on this board to "someone in a success story," and thought it best that I practice what I preached. Who knows, hearing my story might help others, and I know I haven't posted much about my tale and situation elsewhere.

I was born in the heart of Mormon country in Utah in 1965, raised deep in the doctrines and activities of the church, and prided myself on being loyal to the church while questioning things at the same time. It turned out to be an uneasy truce between the church and I, but I learned a lot and was moved by much of what I heard from fellow members and what I read in the Scriptures (the Bible, King James Version, and the Book of Mormon and other Scriptures that said church presents in addition to the Bible).

As part and parcel of being raised in a very conservative community, I was made to understand that monogamy was the only suitable model for love and romance. I struggled a lot with my sexual urges as a teen and sorely chastized myself for having them. I went on three dates -- one being a bonafide romantic date -- and never knew a kiss in romance until I was 21.

When I was 19 the church sent me on a (just under) two-year mission (to convert non-members to the church -- this is something you just do as a faithful male member -- no questions asked) in the Southeast Michigan area, where I was stationed in various localities just outside of Detroit. I'd been out of State before but never so far away let alone for so long. Sometimes it was a trial by fire and for a brief time I considered running away to Colorado, where an ex-Mormon friend of mine and his open-minded folks had agreed to adopt me into their family. Fear kept me on the strait and narrow though; I turned down their offer.

I met a divorced lady in Michigan; I'll say her name is LV. She was much older than me and had kids my age, so it never occurred to me to think of her as anything but a platonic friend. But I ended up spending a lot of time in her company, and thought of her as quite a good friend. She had a daughter who lived in Utah and after my mission was done and I had returned to Utah, LV traveled to Utah to see her daughter, and stopped to see me at my folks' house along the way. It was just supposed to be one short visit, but somehow the visit lengthened into the late evening hours and then turned into as many visits as she could squeeze in before returning to Michigan. A romance had been born.

Well she and I were both rather freaked out about the age difference. But as the weeks and months rolled by, we started warming up to the idea, and next thing I knew I was proposing to her over the phone and she was saying yes.

She wanted to keep her house and home in Michigan and frankly I was glad for the excuse to leave Utah again. We married in the Washington D.C. temple (her favorite temple) in October of that year (1987). Her kids were not pleased, and made of themselves a long painful thorn in our sides from 1987 thru 2006 (and I hope I've seen the last of them).

After a couple of harrowing jobs over the next few years, I finally found my niche in piano teaching, and after a number of years was also hired at a Lutheran church to play organ every other Sunday and to accompany the choir. In the Mormon church I was made a choir director, and in and through these roles (I contrived to mix the company of the Mormon and Lutheran choirs, and had some success), LV and I met a newly-married couple in the Lutheran church, let's say their names are BH and LH. We got to know them as friends, but before very long they moved away, and honestly we didn't think we'd cross paths with them again.

But we did. The year was 2004 and I'd been hired as organist and choir director/accompanist for yet another Lutheran church, in another city. When LV and I first met with the church council there, lo and behold there were BH and LH. (He was actually president of the church council as I remember; she was head of worship.) We were elated to see them and happily renewed our friendship with them.

But BH and LH observed that things weren't going so well for LV and me. LV had started down the path of dementia (Alzheimer's probably), and was clinging to the familiar, while I had started rebelling against everything and had left the Mormon church (and become an atheist). We weren't functioning well; I had relied so much on LV in the past and now reacted with anger to her condition (given that her kids had labeled the condition poetic justice, their personal triumph over LV and me really), and struggled to hold our failing household together. (Trust me, the Mormon church didn't bother lifting a finger to help -- though LV had remained faithful to the church as long as her capacities would allow.)

I'll never know why, but like the Good Samaritan who had compassion on the man who'd been brutalized by thieves, BH and LH had compassion on LV and me, and essentially adopted us as family members. We ended up living with them in their home.

In the meantime, LH and I had ended up spending a lot of time together, working out a song schedule for the choir, and trying to figure out what to do about a couple of choirmembers who were real problems. At first LH and I exchanged some work-related emails, but the emails got longer, more frequent, and more personal, til finally she and I were confessing to each other that we had fallen in love.

Oh shit. Now what?

[continued below]
 
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kdt26417

Official Greeter
Kevin's Hetero MFM Poly-Fi V (Part 2)

[continued from above]

We had never heard of polyamory before, but LH was a web researcher and a problem-solver, and she soon found out about polyamory, and about polyfidelity which particularly interested her. Soon the plan became to forge a polyfidelitous N -- LV, me, LH, and BH. But first we had to try to present the idea to LV and BH, and wait until they were okay with the idea -- if they'd ever be okay with it.

Well LV said "We'll see," then "Okay," then "No," then "What was the question" as her mind got snipped apart by the dementia. BH, LH, and I eventually saw and agreed that we were just tormenting LV by presenting her with this confusing concept. We had all transitioned into the roles of caregivers towards her anyway and she was really operating from the perspective of a child, so we kind of just dropped the subject, removed any poly scenes from her sight and mind, and let whatever she saw and experienced become her reality.

In the meantime, BH was troubled by the prospect of polyamory, and LH approached the subject with him carefully and not too often. All told, they had a conversation about it that lasted about a year. Finally he started warming up to the idea, even coming to think of polyamory as a high ideal that he wished to support. So he agreed to try.

Our four-person family decided that we needed to move. I was down and depressed and the so-often overcast skies of Michigan (with its hot humid Summers and harsh icy Winters) were getting to me. BH's Catholic family was overbearing and BH and LH both needed to get away from that. So LH plunged into a new research project: deciding what State would suit us best. We picked a place near -- but not too near -- Utah. A place with a good economy and a low cost of living. A place that's flooded with Sunshine under a cloudless sky for most of the year. The place was New Mexico.

We lived in New Mexico for almost eight years, early 2006 thru late 2013. LV went downhill rapidly and soon overwhelmed our ability to keep up with her, so, in August of 2006, we took her to a nursing home, and started visiting her there as often as we could. This actually improved my relationship with her. She and I began to enjoy the warmth we once had, though sadly the import of that was of course lost on LV.

Meantime BH and LH -- you may call them Brother-Husband and Lady Hinge -- had joined me in a three-person V configuration. Brother-Husband and I remained platonic friends but shared the most profound thing two men can share: the woman we loved. The arrangement meant much to all three of us, but I won't pretend that it was a bed of roses. We had terrible dramatic upsets in our first few years together. I was undersexed and paranoid as well that Brother-Husband would get fed up with me and essentially veto me out of the operation. He in turn I think was concerned that the "new and shiny" (me) would replace him in Lady Hinge's eyes. And Lady Hinge, of course, felt torn between the two men that she loved among other things.

Well the short-term solution turned out to be getting me a domicile of my own for a few years. A cave if you will. A place I could retreat to when the going got tough. It took some time to make that happen, but once I had a little place of my own, things slowly started to improve. Mind you there were many more storms and upsets at first, but after a year or two, I began to realize that I was starting to feel a peace about things, and that Brother-Husband and I were growing increasingly comfortable in each other's presence. In time, I moved back in with my two V companions, and this time we found that we knew how to live together gladly and serenely.

In June of last year, LV passed away. It was a blessing. She had lost all ability to talk, hear, see, and recognize those who loved her. She was lonely and lost in a state of forever waiting, for what she could not know. She was probably waiting for me to "pick her up" and sweep her away, back into the paradisaical life she had once remembered with me. I could still visit her, but no longer could she see me, and if she could hear me I couldn't tell. It broke my heart. Losing her to the hand of Death broke my heart as well, but now I was just being selfish. I needed to let her go. She needed to be free of her sufferings.

A few months later Hinge Lady and I traveled to the sleepy little mountain town in Eastern Oregon where LV had been born and spent her early childhood years. We couldn't inter her ashes next to her Mom's grave (near San Francisco) as we'd hoped, but we got special permission from two of her old relatives to place her next to her very favorite (my favorite as well) aunt (in Oregon). She got a lovely little marker, with two small cats embracing. Appropriate since LV had kept at least one cat near her for most of her life. Her relatives place flowers on her aunt's grave every Memorial Day, and promised they'd now do so for LV too. Someday we'll return, one Memorial Day, and see that in person. But thus closes that chapter of our lives.

We then made the arrangements to move to the Seattle, Washington area, within easy reach of my favorite older brother, his wife, her daughter, and her daughter's boyfriend. By the time 2013 came to a close, we'd found a lovely little place to live in, and here we'll stay. Filled with New Mexican Sunshine, I now love the rainy days and believe it or not, Seattle does get a fair helping of Sunshine too. Temperatures are mild, and we're really happy to be here.

We've been handfasted as a V since August of 2009. We're open to the idea of growing into an N or an M or what have you, but we're not looking and we feel just fine with what we have. We limit sex to our three-person circle and won't date without keeping one another in the loop about what's up. We spend most of our evenings happily watching stuff like Dexter, Sons of Anarchy, the Walking Dead, Breaking Bad, Weeds, and the Following together. Our cat and dog share this charming life with us. I've been essentially retired for quite a few years. My companions take good care of me.

This tells you the bulk of my story, but I'll gladly field any further thoughts and/or questions. I suppose my main point in posting here is to let you know that yes, polyamorous relationships can and do have happy endings. Not every time, but in this case and time for sure.
 
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YouAreHere

Active member
Thanks for sharing your story, Kevin. :)

I've seen first-hand the stress caregivers are under when taking care of someone with dementia, especially during those early times when they occasionally have lucid moments, and the days are filled with arguing, confusion, and heartbreak. I'm glad your wife, and you, are at peace now.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Thanks YouAreHere. Yeah it was really tough, and to be honest was one of the things that put such a strain on our newly-formed V. The move to a nursing home was a sad but necessary decision.

LV wasn't at all argumentative (alas that was my vice), but she was sure sad and confused. And she got into a lot of inadvertent mischief, which was possibly the biggest problem. Stuff like leaving the microwave door open when cats were around, then closing it without looking inside and using it as a "timer." Or the time she tried to put a fork away in a plug socket. Stuff like that. She really had to be watched constantly. And then of course when she gets stressed out she starts having "stomach trouble," so soon the incontinence started. That was really, really hard to handle. Especially since she'd try to clean up her own mess rather than get some help. She didn't want to trouble other people with her problems, ya know? I just can't express how tragic it all was.

Her stress levels eased way back down once she was in the nursing home, paradoxically. For years she was free of the incontinence stuff. And as I said, having her "at arm's length" like that actually helped me to rediscover my old relationship with her. But the sadness in me deepened again, as over the years, she slowly slipped away.

I miss her a lot. I hear things like her old favorite Carpenters and John Denver songs and it pulls my heart strings all over again. Had I a genie and three wishes I'd wish her back again (with her whole mind restored). But I do take comfort (even as an atheist) in knowing that she's not in that sad awful state anymore.
 

YouAreHere

Active member
Hugs...

My ex's grandmother went through a similar time... his mom was home to take care of her (she went to eldercare during the day) and it just grew more and more difficult - leaving burners on the gas stove turned on, that type of thing. Sadly, but fortunately, when she had a stroke, she had to move into a nursing home, which helped alleviate the stress on my MIL. It was extremely tough on her, but I saw the same thing happen to her afterward - their relationship improved up until she didn't recognize anyone anymore. My ex and I were "the nice people who brought children in to see me".

But I'm glad we could make her happy by bringing our daughter, and explaining (repeatedly, but nicely) that they have the same name. That really brightened her up, even when she didn't understand the significance anymore. :)
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Yeah, I think getting dementia rather forces one to more and more treasure the little things ... as the big things simply become too vast for one's mind to envelop. The little pleasures of visiting a child, or sharing a name with someone. These are largely the only pleasures a dementia victim has left.

So sorry to hear about your ex's grandmother, and what your MIL went through trying to keep up with caregiving. LV's mother also had dementia, probably the same type -- at about the same age -- so I think it was genetic. Wasn't much of a comfort to think so, though.
 

Oldpolyman

New member
I'm so glad you got to spend time with her before she passed, one of my last jobs I had before I retired was a personal care attendant. One of my last charges was a lovely 92 year old lady who had a host of problems, but who's children stopped coming to see her when her dementia and incontinence problems became too great for them to handle. I looked forward to visiting with her and helping her with simple tasks and personal hygiene, during her more lucid moments she would relate stories of her childhood, time that I came to treasure. Eventually she stopped eating (she believed she was saving money), and had to be placed in a nursing facility. Even though I'm not her caregiver any longer, I still stop in to see her from time to time, share a story or a simple joke, or simply hold her hand. :)
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
That's awesome, Oldpolyman. It amazes me, sometimes, the people who step up to help, when one's own family has decided you're not worth their bother anymore.

"When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'"
-- Fred "Mr." Rogers

Regards,
Kevin T.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
LH (a.k.a. Lady Hinge) Gets a New Handle

Henceforth Lady Hinge shall hereby be called Snowbunny. :D

Though not a registered member, she did recently use that handle when advising another member thru my account.

Sayz me,
Kevin T.
 
Thanks for sharing your story, and welcome to Seattle! :)
 

FullofLove1052

New member
I am thrilled that you decided to start a blog. Even if it is a short one. It is nice to get the full picture and learn more about you and how you got to where you are today. I look forward to reading more from you when you do update. xo

Ry
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Heh. Update. Funny.

"Snowbunny and I watched another episode of Law & Order: CI today. Oh and Brother-Husband and I watched another episode of the Following.

And in the weather news, lots of rain and wind today, with some breaks of Sun from time to time. Lunch was Amy's Mattar Paneer, with the last of the Bolthouse Mocha Peppermint, and leftover pasta is forecast for dinner. With salad. And a banana for dessert maybe.

This week's highlight: Snowbunny and I tried out a Mexican restaurant yesterday, the Mayan. Pretty decent and glad I got to try it, but not so OMG-gotta-have it that I'd ask for the tedious drive across town to get to it. Still have some closer places to try. The Thai places have been great so far. Outstanding chicken massaman every one."

Hmmm. Can't think of a lot besides all that ... Mind-blowing vanilla sex on Monday as is the tradition every Monday ... Does that count? :)

Srsly, our life'd bore just about anyone to tears, and it barely changes if any from week to week, month to month ... even year to year usually sees minor changes tops. I could just about copy/paste one update into the next update, ya know? But, the thing is, boring is great. It's awesome. I happily type away at my computer most of the day, and my Polyamory.com posts probably describe the most excitement I usually have around here. Life's short, and I enjoy the little things. Waking up with the cat snuggled next to me. Is a Heavenly delight. The trees and rain and sheltered skies out my window. Even archiving old emails has a certain charm to it. What, why's everyone looking at me so strange? :cool:

We might eventually try out some local poly groups around here. Not in a big hurry though. Now and then we see our closeby relatives, which is great. And I sure do love the "apartment" (breathes more like a brand spanking new house or condo) we live in. Just sayin'.

Ah Ry, 'f only my blog was as cool as yours has been -- and as replete with heavy-duty moments and insights. Mine is just a brief summary -- no special lessons to be drawn from it. My past is more exciting than my present, so maybe I'll talk more about my past as time goes by. But by no means does that mean I don't like the present. The past is the building blocks that made this moment possible.

@ RainyGrlJenny ... thanks; I'm glad to be here.

Oh, forgot to mention in my main narrative. Since the inception of our V, we've always all three been primary to one another. No secondaries in this group. Although, if we started dating (no sex unless and until the new person was totally integrated into "The Inner Circle"), would the person we dated be a secondary? Hmmm. Technically I guess. Although I'd be more inclined to describe them as "just a date."

Thanks for your posts and input everyone; always glad to have company here.
Sincerely,
Kevin T.
 

FullofLove1052

New member
It sounds like moving did a world of good for you. I am happy that you all are settling in, exploring your new city, and enjoying being close to relatives. Change can be a good thing.

I have learned that boredom is a great thing. I would not consider your life boring. Personally, I need and crave structure, and consistency (boredom) has provided that. It keeps me in line and out of trouble. My blog was only interesting because of all the madness and flip flopping of 2013. I matured, and I grew out of my own glaring interests in my happiness and what I wanted/thought I needed. We have calmed down, settled into our new normal, and our lives are nothing like that now. I will take boredom any day over the period from March-December. :)

I love Law and Order: CI. I will watch a marathon in a heartbeat. I am pretty keen on all of the L&Os.

It is always refreshing to get an update from you, and I hope your Sunday is just as relaxed and easygoing as the rest of your week! xo

Ry
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
I'm a huge L&O fan. My younger brother has a law degree and tells me that L&O is the most realistic dramatic portrayal he's seen on TV of how the legal system works. Every episode is interesting and enjoyable, the acting is always great, the layout is superb. And there's the occasional episode that's just a mind-blower. We're working on CI for now, but will eventually get to SVU and the original L&O series as well.

We actually did have some excitement last night: a series of power outages due to rains and high winds (gusts up to 50 m.p.h.). A lot of tree limbs were snapped off and a substation and several relay points went down. Luckily we live right next to a hospital, which means getting the power back up in our area would be a priority. Snowbunny had a battery-operated laptop, but the internet service went down too when the power went down.

Today'll still be windy and rainy but not like yesterday, so I think we'll get to keep our power up for the duration of this storm system. There's a flood watch but no flood warning.

The move itself from New Mexico to Washington involved a harrowing two-day drive, with both pets in a packed car with us. My pdoc suggested small doses of my Xanax script for the pets, which did help them during the trip, but the poor cat really came down hard off the Xanax, I think. That and honestly, having a tiny bit of a litter box in the car stressed her out and I think she ended up blocking herself up.

So there we were in a little extended stay place at the end of the trip, trying to sleep after 15 straight hours on the road, and Rainee started pacing (actually wobbling) back and forth, crying her eyes out. Given that she's not a vocal cat, she must have been scared to death and/or in pain. I soon rolled back out of bed and started crawling around with her -- which helped. Eventually she found her way to the windowsill where she could look outside. That helped. Later she found her way under my bed, which helped.

Several hours later Brother-Husband and Snowbunny got up and went to purchase some supplies. They returned with a big roomy litter box for Rainee, and that helped to no end. From that moment on her morale and physical condition started to improve dramatically. Several days later when we arrived at the roomy place we now live in, Rainee was greatly pleased and has been in Seventh Heaven since then.

It took all of us a few weeks to acclimatize to the local microbes and new atmosphere, but things are truly great by now and we are all really happy. For a time we had talked about moving to Utah, but I don't think that would have been a good place for us. Better to live in a State now, that, among other things, was one of the very first States to implement same-sex marriage by a popular vote (no court intervention necessary). It's more progressive, and more in line with our ideals.

Anywayz, so now we're settling into our boring routine and basking in it. I expect lots of the same-ol', same-ol', and perhaps some occasion for reflection.

Sometimes one must go through a crucible before figuring out the best way to do things. But it sure seems worth it, now that we're at the other end of the tunnel.
 
Kevin, just wanted to drop a note and say that your 'boring' life is one of the most pleasant reads on a poly forum site I've encountered. I've been reading your posts since Poly Percs back in 2008 or so (and whatever happened to that site?) and you've been a wonderful voice of reason throughout the years. It's a pleasure to read about your daily grind, and frankly interesting since I've wondered in the past how things with your Vee function.

A smooth poly life is never truly boring. The world needs to see more examples like this. Not just the dysfunctional ones. :)
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Amen, brother.

Who knows what happened to Poly Percs. Last I checked in New Mexico it was up and running. Then when I arrived in Washington, it was gone! Tried to email Fire God about it, but as his email addy was Ppercs based I was coincidentally unable to reach him. I knew the site was due for some maintainance, but had no clue it was just gonna disappear. D'oh!

Yes, this drama-free life you've been hearing about is a real thing; it really happens. My companions eye me strangely sometimes and wonder why I bother with poly forum activity. What do I get out of it? they wonder. Since they're content with our life together, they feel no compulsion to seek out other poly peeps for advice and support. I can only assure them that I desire to type out tons and tons of text. :) And get accolades for it too -- now that's what really keeps me coming back. :D

Anyway, always good to see an old friend around here. Thanks for your kind post.
Kevin.
 

opalescent

Active member
^^^^accolades kdt^^^

I'm glad you started a blog Kevin. I find it interesting. As someone who is seeing someone much younger, I am also fascinated by your life. I have no idea if Whip and I will stay together for decades but the implications of that have crossed my mind.

I'm always intrigued by folks who are in good poly situations and do not have any need to reach out or interact with other poly folks. It's a perfectly legit way of doing things, obviously.

I just like to know what's out there. I seek out forums like this, or local groups, or books, or whatever. My natural default is research so I 'know all the things!' (or think I do :D). I have trouble even imagining the opposite. What would *that* be like?

Anyhoo, I look forward to hearing about your current L&O watching!
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Haha, we are almost done with CI; not sure what the plan is next as Snowbunny's a bit disillusioned with various things about Netflix so we may end up starting CVU or the original L&O thru some other streaming service or whatnot.

I like Goren and Eames (and the fact that they're still here after all these seasons), but I've enjoyed all the other detectives and characters as well. My only complaint is that the "newfangled arrangement" of the theme song is way overdone in this last bit of the series. TBH? I like the arrangement in the original L&O series the best. Guess I'm a fogey ...

There is much about people and relationships that fascinates me, but perhaps polyamory (and the cloud of issues surrounding it) particularly tweaks my curiosity. How do people manage to juggle multiple romances? What are the pitfalls? Are we all natually non-monogamous? (My current theory is that what Homo sapiens really is, is a very, very diverse species. Sexuality ranges from gay to straight, kink to vanilla -- why not polyamorous to monogamous as well? The only problem is that cultural conditioning skews the would-be mono-to-poly ratio.) Even, how do people define poly words, how strongly do they feel about it, and how does that relate to their philosophies and life choices? etc. ...

Course I'm interested in a lot of things, and frequently find the Fireplace board to be a fun playground. But I like to talk about relationships and I like the fact that on Polyamory.com I can talk about them more freely than I could elsewhere on the web. It's this site's specialty. I like the fact that it's such a central gathering place. It tends to show up at or near the top of any poly google search. I feel that by plugging myself in on this site, I plug myself into the latest news on what polyamorists far and wide are thinking and doing. I like being a part of it, and I manage to help people sometimes which is a great bonus.

I'm on Facebook but it's pretty light and doesn't get far into what makes people tick. I'm on Fetlife as well but it still tends to be rather light and the layout makes it harder to ferret out the most interesting conversations. I like the journalesque feel of Polyamory.com, if that makes any sense. I can usually run into heavy-duty stuff here without looking too far. I like stuff that really challenges my cognition and imagination.

I think Facebook is so popular because so many people are comfortable with keeping it light. And I get in that mood myself. I like joking around and socializing with people. But most of my (well, what I think is) profound thinking (and writing) comes out of what I read and write on Pcom.

Eh, this ain't my most brick solid prose and perhaps misses the heart of what I'm doing here. Could it be that I simply like the greater amount of structure (unlike Facebook and Fetlife where you can just go all over the place, and never find a good stopping place)? Who knows ...

Ahhh, nice tasty accolades. :)
 

Atlantis

New member
More accolades from this department too!
Very nice to read how poly is working out for your triad.
Keep on typing large blocks of text, I enjoy reading them.:D
 
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