Looking for posts about breakups due to metamour relations

BathedInSalt

New member
I’m having a hell of a time with Sir’s girlfriend Grace. I’ll spare you the details, but it’s to a point that I may have to end the relationship with Sir because of their unhealthy dynamic.
I wanted to read other people’s experiences to help me decide what my limits are, but was having difficulty using the search tool to find any.
 

rosephase

New member
So I'm not great as on searches on this site either.

But I have stayed out of relationships because of (what I thought) was an unhealthy dynamic between preexisting relationships. For me the line is abuse. It took me a long time to learn that. I can't be with someone who is in a abusive relationship, it's simply to hard for me.

I did want to say, shy of abuse it seems like most of the metamore issues that come up have a lot more to do with the how the hinge in handling the relationships. People tend to want to blame the meta instead of the partner. It's easier to get mad at the other instead of look at how your partner is treating you.

What are your issues with Grace?
 

FallenAngelina

Well-known member
Reverie covered this topic thoroughly in her blog here a few years back. She'd be able to give you more specific dates to read through.
 

BathedInSalt

New member
I've had luck with any other topic searching, but it was hard to pin this down to a searchable word or phrase.

My issues with Grace are that she doesn't care about me at all and the dynamic between Sir and her falls under the abusive umbrella.
Manipulation, control, acting out, threatening self harm....

I think I know what I need to do, I just don't want to do it.

I didn't think about how witnessing the abuse is difficult for me personally, until now. I've been in abusive relationships, my longest standing relationship prior to Dean was very abusive. Watching an abusive relationship unfold in front of me may be more than I can take, even if Sir is good at hinging.

I'm not even sure how I can be up front about my view on the situation because there's no way I can be 100% objective, although I know what I see and my intentions are pure.

I have avoided a relationship with a woman because she was involved with an unsafe partner. I will probably have to apply the same logic here.

My plan since a big incident Monday was to wait to see how things shake out, see how Sir handles things.

In the meantime I'm trying to pick apart what my limits are, what is Sir's responsibility and what is Grace's.

My other issue with Grace were the events leading up to a big dramatic acting out event where she was interrogating me via text, then just being aggressive and mean. I had to put my foot down with her and she didn't take it well, but she was asking me very personal questions, discounting me for my inexperience with polyamory, accusing me of not being transparent. It was very bad.

My issue with Sir is that he has let her ruin every relationship he's been in outside of theirs. I feel like while I'm sure he thought things would be different this time that his actions were careless with anyone he may get into a relationship with, careless with me.

There are patterns that Sir seems to be aware of and if they don't get broken than the two of them will stay broken and I can't get on that roller coaster.

If they do change (I don't have high hopes) then I have to decide what my limits are.

For her I hope she gets help and deals wither shit, for him I hope he can break his cycles too- this isn't the life he wants.

I don't know how Grace and I can build a civil relationship after the hurtful things she said to me and the clear disregard for me as a person. Sir wants kitchen table poly and that's not happening as long as Grace is involved.

All I can control is myself here, I get that.
I can see I'm rambling now, I'm gonna go read Reverie's blog.
 

Tinwen

Active member
I'm not even sure how I can be up front about my view on the situation because there's no way I can be 100% objective, although I know what I see and my intentions are pure.
Then, be 100% subjective. Upfront about feelings. "I don't feel good watching you being involved in this relationship. I think it's abusive and it reminds me of the abuse I've been through. I don't trust things will be different this time. I want to ___ (break up)."
 

Leetah

Member
Last edited:

BathedInSalt

New member
LizziE's experience sounds similar.

http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=74088

http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=74239&highlight=LizziE

She didn't know how abusive her metamour was to their partner until they all moved in together. She finally took a firm stand and eventually her partner was able to seperate from the abuser. It was touch and go for some time though.

Leetah

Those posts are very similar to what I’m navigating and honestly I had to stop reading them because all that drama was exhausting me.
 

icesong

Moderator
Staff member
You don't _have_ to have any relationship at all with Grace just because you're with Sir. You *can* do completely parallel poly. Might be rough on Sir, but that to some degree is his problem.
 

BathedInSalt

New member
You don't _have_ to have any relationship at all with Grace just because you're with Sir. You *can* do completely parallel poly. Might be rough on Sir, but that to some degree is his problem.

That’s what I’m looking at in this situation. I’m ok with it.
Had a long talk with Sir, heard some things I needed to and I’m not about to throw the baby out with the bath water.
 

breathemusic

Active member
I agree that it sounds like a good first step before just ending it, is to limit or end contact with your meta. And have your partner also stop sharing so much about his relationship with meta so that their relationship isn't spilling over onto yours so much.

If they're both able to respect that boundary, then maybe things can improve. Even if they don't improve with his relationship with meta.... it will be his problem to manage and no longer yours to worry about. Or if it still continues to spill over onto you and cause issues, then you'll know that you need to take additional steps and possibly just end the relationship.
 

BathedInSalt

New member
I agree that it sounds like a good first step before just ending it, is to limit or end contact with your meta. And have your partner also stop sharing so much about his relationship with meta so that their relationship isn't spilling over onto yours so much.

If they're both able to respect that boundary, then maybe things can improve. Even if they don't improve with his relationship with meta.... it will be his problem to manage and no longer yours to worry about. Or if it still continues to spill over onto you and cause issues, then you'll know that you need to take additional steps and possibly just end the relationship.

This is essentially where I'm at. I've ended communication with Grace, parallel polyamory it is for now.

In order to continue the relationship with Sir I needed to know he was developing his own boundaries and limits with her behavior.
I mentioned that while I'm happy helping with relationship stuff in general that we needed to stop talking specifically about Grace. He agreed and trusting that is part of me letting him be a good hinge.
I also need to decide how much spillage I'm willing to deal with.

I'm purposely leaving out details because I need to update my blog anyways. that's next.
 

BathedInSalt

New member
I literally just went through this exact thing. And this week everything went up in smoke because of said dynamic.

I’m really sorry to hear that.

On my end things are optimistic. Grace started seeing a therapist, Sir decided and as far as I can tell is maintaining his boundaries. I received a heartfelt long apology from Grace. I decided due to circumstances I would consider things a blank slate.

I’m still functioning in the parallel polyamory model for the time being. I’m not forcing any kind of relationship with Grace. I have new boundaries.

Time will tell.
 

SchrodingersCat

Active member
You don't _have_ to have any relationship at all with Grace just because you're with Sir. You *can* do completely parallel poly. Might be rough on Sir, but that to some degree is his problem.

Maybe yes, maybe no. If you're in a relationship with someone who's being abused by their other partner, it's virtually impossible for it not to bleed through. An abused person is an abused person even when they're not in the presence of their abuser.

My concern is that the only way to isolate Salt from Grace is by forcing Sir not to talk about Grace. But then Salt is just another person controlling Sir, which is the last thing he needs right now. He needs to be empowered to make his own choices, not to be put under more control.

Then there's the element that if Salt refers to him as Sir, I'm assuming there's a D/s component. Personally, I would never feel comfortable submitting to someone who was being abused. Your Dominant needs to be healthy and whole in order to be capable of the responsibility of being a Dominant. Present abuse victims need not apply (abuse survivors, sure! They got out and got their shit together, that's different).
 

Marvelgirl

New member
I've had to end a relationship because of his primary relationship before. My husband and I were dating a couple.

My husband's relationship with the wife ended. I was close friends with her. It was not pleasant but that relationship needed to end. It wasn't healthy. If they had a disagreement she would literally cut herself and send him pictures of the wounds with a message, "look what you made me do." He tried to get her help. She refused.

I tried to maintain my friendship with her and my relationship with her husband. It didn't work. She started making threats, publicly attacked me on facebook and it got really ugly. I had to completely cut her off. I think she has serious mental illness issues and I feel for her but I couldn't just take the abuse.

Her husband defended her actions and told me I'd just have to deal with it. So I ended things with him. It hurt a lot. We had a really great relationship. I missed him terribly for years.

But sometimes it just can't work. Being with him wasn't worth enduring her abuse.

I hope everything works out for you. I know how much it sucks when a relationship has to end because of someone outside of the relationship. It's very unfair.
 
I would be willing to tell you what happened with my situation, if you're interested (any of you, really), but I would rather do it over PM, as I don't really feel safe posting my experience on here just yet.

Just PM me if you're interested.
 

anamikanon

New member
Watching an abusive relationship unfold in front of me may be more than I can take, even if Sir is good at hinging.

...

My issue with Sir is that he has let her ruin every relationship he's been in outside of theirs.

The two sentences seem incompatible. Or perhaps you are saying Sir is usually good at hinging, but this toxic mess is overflowing.

Others have pointed out that you don't have to have a relationship with Grace. And you have said that you have stopped it. Now your issue seems to be that you can't watch an abusive relationship unfold and do nothing. Part of the dilemma is that the relationship is between them.

Equally clear is that even if the relationship is between them, it is adversely impacting your well being.

One possibility is the very inferior either/or. Either end that relationship or we are over - which is where your mind is at. Of course, you are thinking it the politically correct way that you end it because you can't handle them. But not like if he offered to end that, you'd end it anyway.... so let us be clear what your mental process is, even if your handling of it is elegant.

An alternative that occurs to me is that you are troubled because you care about Sir and you don't like feeling helpless to do anything while he is being abused (in your perception). You aren't exactly going to be happy to lose him.

Have you considered that by merely existing in Sir's life, you're reducing the percentage of abuse in his relationships? Even doing nothing, you are actually preventing Grace from making abuse a greater share of his relationships. It is actually more than you'd achieve by going missing from the scene - if Sir being abused is the issue.

There are many ways to intervene in abuse. An important one is to provide a clear contrast, so the person being abused doesn't lose him/herself to thinking that is "normal". You are providing that by simply existing in Sir's life and now that you know this is a method of intervention, you can do it with explicit intention.

It provides Sir a space to use to exit abuse if he needs to. If nothing, it provides a useful benchmark for how a non-toxic relationship can be, so that he can choose what he wants for himself.

Of course, if your relationship with Sir isn't all that major a part of your life, it may be simpler to simply end it and move on. Given that your problem is not with Sir, but with Grace, for something like this, I'd decide based on what would hurt me least. Losing Sir or knowing Sir is with Grace?
 

BathedInSalt

New member
I appreciate all the responses. Here's where I'm at.

Yes, I did consider breaking up with Sir because of this situation he has with Grace. We've only been dating for 3 months now, bonded for sure, but not in so deep that I couldn't see ending things if it were better for me to do so. Or pausing things for a time. A pause is pretty ambiguous, but doable. Days following the Monday incident I fretted about possible breakup. It hurt and was going to hurt a lot more.
Anamikanon- I do mean that Sir is usually good at hinging. I don't have a lot of experience in poly yet and even though Grace and him have been practicing poly for their whole relationship I don't think they have a lot of experience either. I'm still figuring that out and so far am consistently surprised by the situations they haven't navigated. All that to say I'm choosing to trust in Sir's skills as a hinge. During our long conversation following the incident he provided examples that satisfied me enough to continue trusting in those skills.
I tend to be optimistic about everything and just wasn't feeling great about repeat patterns. I've been in unhealthy relationships and had a hell of a time leaving them. Breaking cycles is hard.
Two friends I was talking this out with mentioned that being with Sir would provide contrast to what he has with Grace. Similar to what Anamikanon mentioned. I won't, however suffer on his behalf.

I alleviated some of my concerns by trusting Sir and basically starting over with Grace. I can't completely blank slate things with her, because trust was broken. I had freely given it and now I feel like it needs to be earned or I need to feel safe again with her in order to build a friendship. Right now I think she just needs to focus on her internal struggles and not worry much about me, that can come later and I'm ok with that. I think baby steps is where I'm at with this anyways.

Even without the incident I'm learning how to be a metamour. It's easier to accept a lover's existing partner, especially if the two of us never interact. It's not what I have in mind for the future, but that's where we are now.

I also have a pretty clear idea of how much spillage I'm willing to deal with.
Spillage includes Grace directly coming at me with aggression, taking actions that attempt to control my relationship with Sir, abusive acts towards Sir, and Sir being unable to manage his relationship with her in a way that doesn't give her control over his relationship with me.

From what I am hearing from Grace and Sir is that what has happened so far is not what either of them want for the future.
I'm happy Grace is seeking therapy, that Sir is taking a step back, creating his own healthier boundaries.
Now, time will tell.

The muddy part is what are Sir and I allowed to speak about when it comes to his relationship with Grace. I do not like the idea that we can't speak about it at all, because I think friends and lovers should be granted the benefit of one another's experiences. The line is so blurry and it feels like it's up to me to make.
I was with him Sunday and he started talking about Grace, at one point I redirected the conversation. I want to help, but I'm not trying to fix them. My fixing days are over. I have also told him that he does need someone else to discuss this stuff with, a friend who can point out when things are bonkers. I also suggested he go to therapy, something he said he was already considering. What he's navigating with Grace is heavy and I couldn't do it alone.

I don't want him to have to end things with Grace. They love one another, they've been growing up alongside one another for the last 7 years. That's not nothing. I want good things for them. As long as they take positive steps I can support that.

I wish that their relationship was healthier. I think I can act in a way that isn't controlling of Sir and his relationship with Grace.
 

BathedInSalt

New member
I can't recall the timeline, but there was another event where I was seriously considering ending things with Sir bc of Grace and I didn't then either.
I stayed the course, adjusting interactions with Grace and trusting Sir.
About a year after the original incident Sir broke up with Grace. That was this past June and she's only popped onto my radar twice since then and never directly.
The day He told me about the breakup I was going to tell Him that I was 100% done playing nice with Grace and that there would be no group dates, or even friendly chat. Absolutely no communication.
The good news is that my support and trust allowed Sir to come to the decision on His own, allowed Him to see that He needed to end the abuse.
He even told me that our relationship "showed Him a better way".
I had hoped all long that, that would be the case, but I was hoping it would rub off on both of them and they'd make it through together. I was very sorry that it ended in a breakup. I still am, even though I am also very happy she is no longer part of my life.

I also ended a toxic relationship I had carried on for years with SoulSister.

I believe Sir and I gave each other the strength to do these difficult things.

I know, for me, I have a peace in my life that I have not known. Sometimes it feels boring, because I'm not on any roller coasters, but boring is OK. It feels good. Solidly good.
 
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