Long post about hardships in trying to make (first time) non-monogamy work

GalaGirl

Well-known member
Or alternatively that it's pointless to make any kinds of agreements with him as he doesn't seem to be able to act according to them anyways.

You could make the agreement with YOU. That you just don't have bareback sex period. With him or others.

Then whatever else they are doing with other people? You know with you at least, there's a condom on and you know because you can see it/help buy them, etc.

He's let you down plenty of times on that. For me it would have been a dealbreaker. But if you carry on with him? Maybe condoms on?

My friends tell me I should just leave Chad. Mandy tells me I should just leave Chad. Yet I feel there is still a lot of love between us, regardless. Barring the things I've written here, pretty much all other parts of our lives and values are very compatible, and we support each other in many aspects and keep learning to better communicate with each other, and be both feel like we're getting more out of our relationship than what it's taking from us.

So... y'all can't break up and dial it back to friends? Maybe that kind of relationship fits better. And is less disappointing for you.

Or just don't deal with him any more. Up to you.

Could stop bending into pretzels trying to keep a romantic relationship shape going if that no longer fits. Save the people instead.

I do also acknowledge that part of me is just so tired of this constant roller coaster surrounding this one issue, that I don't have much energy to actually leave and so I keep hoping things will get better and trying to work through stuff to make it better at least on my account.

IME, sometimes one must physically leave first. Then after that one can "leave" emotionally and mentally. So if you are waiting to be emotionally and mentally ready to leave first? You might not get there because of physical proximity. Always on the roller coaster. Up and down and up and down... stimulated and never just CALM.

Like... you can't heal your hand if you keep it on the hot burner. You have to take it off. Then it will heal.

But if you keep sticking around here even with broken agreements over and over rather than just saying up front "No, I'm done?"

What ARE the dealbreakers then? You are still sticking around. Keep buying more tickets for another ride.

Chad and I own a house together and I absolutely love the house and would hate to leave it. I cannot afford to buy him out, though, so most likely breaking up would mean we'd have to sell the house. Trying to find a new place to live, let alone the whole ordeal of moving feels completely overwhelmingly too much for me now.

Understandable. Even when not in pandemic, getting a flat, packing up to move out, and selling a house is a big job.

At the same time? "Too tired to sell my house" is not a reason to keep riding a roller coaster ride you dislike with a person who lets you down a lot.

I do think I may be afraid of not being good and desirable enough for anyone to actually want to be with me (Chad included), though. Me being somewhat socially awkward and anxious, the prospect of having to get to know someone new also feels like too much at the moment. So if we were to break up I wouldn't be seeking anyone new for the foreseeable future, or at least until I'd gotten myself back to a healthier mental place where I like to be with myself, and maybe not even then. As an asexual I don't feel sexual attraction to people, which I find makes dating harder as well, as in order to have sex with someone I'd have to know them pretty well. I do enjoy having sex, and sometimes crave for being the target of sexual desire myself. It's just the sexual attraction to other people that I don't have at all.
What are you saying here? That you don't like yourself much, and even though you don't like this roller coaster and kinda feel like this relationship is at the end of the line you are in this space of ennui about it and won't take action til he does first? Cuz thinking about dating new people is a drag?

Could not date new people right now. And still get off the rollercoaster.

A friend of mine was going through divorce and he was in this paralysis place. The struggle to find two flats, sell the house, pack up to move, etc. Plus the relationship roller coaster they were on.

I reminded him his STBX could deal with finding her own flat. And he didn't have to pack up her stuff. He could just find his flat and pack his stuff. Selling the house they kinda had to do together. But he could detangle and not deal with her stuff.

Living in the same house with her was causing him a lot of emotional and mental pain. Once he got to his own flat, and he could have some CALM, the difference started showing. He wasn't ready to date right then, but he could enjoy having a calm home to himself.

Chad keeps on insisting that he wants to be with me, wants to make this work, wants to build a life together, wants me as his life long partner, and says that no-one's ever been this much on the same wave-length with him as I am. At the same time he's recently brought up more frequently if it would be easier for me if we weren't nesting partners, though I get the feeling it's not really me he thinks about, just that it'd be easier for him, not having to constantly deal and process and talk and soul-search etc. but when I ask him if that's what he wants he doesn't really know how to answer.

So is this like... Chad wants to be a free agent? And do whatever he wants whenever?

But still have you around to access the services you provide? Like he's not gonna take personal responsibility or do counseling so things get any better for YOU on your side of the deal. But he likes what he gets out of you on his side of the deal?

If so... Kinda sounds like keeping you in the string. Which might be great for him, but not so great for you.

Of course I'm seeing if there will be any changes due to my own detangling, and him obviously being more transparent and at ease with me. I've browsed the forums and this thread and gotten a lot of things to think about, and I'm very well keeping in mind the past and track record I've had with Chad, as well as the present moment as I'm evaluating where I want to go from here should the changes take a turn I'm not willing to have in my life.

Good that you are figuring out where you stand, what your personal standards/expectation of a partner are, and you figure out if Chad still makes the cut or not.

Galagirl
 
Last edited:

Melibird

New member
Glutton for punishment might actually be on the right track in a way. After my initial post I came to the realization that most of my connection with my boyfriend, and apparently his connection with me when I talked about this with him, comes from the emotional intensity of him acting up, me confronting him, and then us sorting through it and feeling relieved and connected. Then the connection starts waning as we don't really have a proper model of maintaining our connection in other ways, and in we go again to the pattern we've slipped into so many times before so it feels familiar, and thus probably safe in some twisted way despite everything. After the realization about this, I quite explicitly told him that this is not the way I want to keep creating a connection between us, as it's not a healthy and sustainable way to do it, and it is causing harm to both of us, and also any people we introduce into our lives. He agreed and seemed quite as taken aback from the realization as I was, and analyzed that maybe subconsciously for him getting to sort out the messes, the high and low emotional spikes of it all, the thrill of keeping secrets, and the huge sensation of terror and then the relief after being found out and reconnecting, is very addicting.

I also hear your point about him not changing his ways despite so many times agreeing to doing better, and not showing any growth, and I think I do need to take a harder look on how I am viewing this as well. To me it has looked like he's grown, as he has learned to communicate better, he's engaged in self awareness work and usually catches himself when he's about to slip into some other harmful habits. We've participated in programs for healing from infidelity and re-establishing emotional closeness, and to me it does look that he has genuinely and willingly tried, and has wanted to do things the right way. Yet as you pointed out the lying and cheating does keep happening again and again, and maybe I just keep finding excuses and reasons why it'll be different next time, when so far it never has been. So, thank you. I will need to observe myself in regards to this and whether I'm just refusing to take into account the facts.




This is a good question, and not one I actually have another answer than gut feeling for now. Which in light of past experiences has been my reason for hope before as well, and that hasn't worked out. After my initial post we've discussed with my boyfriend about the things I mentioned in my reply to breathemusic as well as what would be the concrete actions that would be needed, as like you said, we've been discussing and discussing and processing things for three years, and while some actions regarding self awareness and personal growth have happened, other concrete actions or decisions have been quite absent.



This is a thought that I've entertained. Like, it shouldn't come as a surprise to me any more that he does this, and like you said, if I decide to stick with him, then most likely I'd need to accept and come to terms that this is what he does, and this is what I'm most likely to get no matter what we agree upon, and I need to decide if it's something I'm willing to live with, or if receiving honesty is something that I absolutely need from this relationship. My boyfriends and I are very compatible in many areas of our lives; I do trust that he loves me and wants good things for me, as I do for him, and I trust him pretty much in all other areas except the issue on hand. We have explored sides of us with each other we haven't really revealed to anyone else before, and found that we want to nurture and support each other despite and due to those inner revelations. We also do give meaning to each other, and have a deep companionship despite all our difficulties surrounding the lying and cheating. Yet that doesn't mean that we should try to force our relationship into a specific mold, and some other kind of a relationship, like e.g. platonic/romantic/non-sexual life partners/friends, might actually suit us better. I'll have to think about this and recognize what I'm really looking for and if I'm trying to get some needs fulfilled with this person when it just might not be possible with him, or if I'm trying to build this into a type of relationship that won't work. Since clearly I find it hard to let go of him totally as I keep putting up with this issue even though it makes me feel miserable when it happens.

Thank you Galagirl for all your insight. You have given me plenty of things to think about and seeds to view the situation from new angles. I truly appreciate it.
It's so great that you were able to recognize the conditioned response you were stuck in! That's truly the way to freedom, being able to choose how we react outside of old patterns. Feeling stuck in loops can be like two people's issues aligning to keep replaying the injuries over and over. Sometimes when past trauma is involved, what we perceive as comfortable or "right" as a gut feeling actually feels comfortable because it's familiar- it matches the pattern of replaying the injury. Uncovering those hurt parts of yourself takes some serious healing work, and redeveloping a secure attachment with those past disruptions is a dedicated effort. It sounds like you've taken such good care of your partner, listening, negotiating, making space. I hope you are able to give give yourself at least as much consideration as you would give anyone else, since you are the only one responsible for representing your interests. I would say if you choose to remain in the relationship, it might be the simplest and least wrenching option is to accept that what you see is what you get, and the relationship will continue as it has gone in the past. That way, the constant anxiety and stress is gone and you can focus on your own self-fulfillment around the enjoyment that is available to you in the relationship. It reminds me of that movie Chicago, where she walks in on her monogamous partner in a bed with two women, and he says to her, "Well, are you going to believe what you see or what I tell ya?" Much love. It's a tough space. I hope you hold yourself in it gently and well.
 
Last edited:

Janro

New member
So, Chad and I broke up, as he chose to leave me in order to pursue his relationship with Mandy, and told me he didn't want me limiting him in any way. Turns out Mandy's been pushing him to do it as well, or so he tells me. It could be that he just can't take the responsibility of the decision and tries to shift the blame onto her. I don't know. He also insists that he wants to be completely alone for a while, as he's been in a relationship ever since he's been 14 or 15, and now wants to discover himself for who he is, and find out what he wants. Yet somehow being alone apparently doesn't mean being without Mandy. I do know this is none of my concern, yet it still hurts and feels like one more lie.

We're separating as soon as we can get a place for either of us and in the meanwhile he's going to be away from our house as much as possible.

Chad says he still thinks of me as the most important person in his life, and wants me as a close friend, and wants to spend time with me, sleep next to me, cuddle, etc. He just "doesn't want me policing his other relationships", which I never wanted to do anyway, while that's what he said I was doing every time I told him I was uncomfortable with something.

I've told him that no thanks, I don't want to be friends with him. I don't think he believed me. But I know for my own sake I need to cut contact with him once we've dealt with all the practicalities of moving and separating our combined property.

I'm feeling sad, resentful, angry, relieved, confused, and again a myriad of other things I can't even name. I'm grieving all the things I'm losing and all the things that are changing, and finding it hard to think about finally being rid of all the lies and difficulties and being taken for granted, or being grateful for that.

I do know time (and the therapy I'm in) will help with this, even though at the moment everything feels quite devastating.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Staff member
I'm sorry to hear about the breakup ... even though I feel it will be for the best in the long run. It sounds strange for me to say it, but breaking up with you is probably the first honest thing Chad's done. Finally he admits that he doesn't like the "policing," and that he wants total freedom to do whatever he wants. Of course, he had to throw another lie in there, an obvious lie, and claim he wanted to be by himself for awhile. Well, hopefully that is the last time you will have to be insulted by him in that way. I hope you can find a new place to live soon, so that you can get a clean and complete break from his presence. Again, though, I do feel bad for you that this breakup has happened, I know it's not what you want.
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
While I'm sorry to hear Chad broke up with you, I think in this case it is for the best. He isn't the partner you wanted him to be. And you were having trouble doing the break up yourself.

He also insists that he wants to be completely alone for a while, as he's been in a relationship ever since he's been 14 or 15, and now wants to discover himself for who he is, and find out what he wants. Yet somehow being alone apparently doesn't mean being without Mandy. I do know this is none of my concern, yet it still hurts and feels like one more lie.

So... best broken up. Because you can't keep doing this circus.

Maybe next time you bump into something like this in a partner you will be quicker to make the call and end it yourself.

But for now... I wish you peace and healing over time.

Chad says he still thinks of me as the most important person in his life, and wants me as a close friend, and wants to spend time with me, sleep next to me, cuddle, etc.

Um... no. How FRESH is this dude? He can't keep agreements, you are breaking up, and he is still putting out feelers to see what he can still get from you?

I've told him that no thanks, I don't want to be friends with him. I don't think he believed me. But I know for my own sake I need to cut contact with him once we've dealt with all the practicalities of moving and separating our combined property.

Good for you! Some people can become "good exes and friends" but I think you are right in just letting this one be "just ex." You've dealt with enough already.

I'm feeling sad, resentful, angry, relieved, confused, and again a myriad of other things I can't even name. I'm grieving all the things I'm losing and all the things that are changing, and finding it hard to think about finally being rid of all the lies and difficulties and being taken for granted, or being grateful for that. I do know time (and the therapy I'm in) will help with this, even though at the moment everything feels quite devastating.

Understandable.

In time though, I think you might feel like burdens lightened. This relationship sounded really draining. Even now in the break up it sounds mentally exhausting.

Disband quickly, and then take a time out to heal. Work with your therapist and linger in the healing time if you are going to be lingering anywhere. Don't linger in the parting time and drag the break up out.

I hope things get better for you over time.

Galagirl
 
Last edited:
Top