Mono Husband trying to be understanding

BrokenArrow

Member
A little over 3 weeks ago my wife of 5 years told me that she had come to the realization she was poly. I am determined to stay with her and be there for her but I am not poly. I've been having a real hard time with it. I found a few posts on this site where other people seem to have gone through what I'm dealing with now. Some people had some very helpful things to say. Others seemed pretty biased one way or the other and unable/unwilling to detach from their own personal perspectives. I've been working through this with my wife, getting help from the Chaplain at work (I am not a Christian but it's nice to have a confidential conversation with someone holding a singular viewpoint) but I haven't really interacted with the community and so my support base is currently unbalanced. I figured I'd sign up here. Maybe make friends. Pick a few fights. Win some. Lose some. Grow as a person. So far I've been digging through forum threads, read articles, reading marriage enrichment books. If I'm being honest, right now I really just am hoping to speak to someone who's going/gone through what I'm experiencing. I'm pretty raw right now and I'm still unsure of who I am anymore. Not really a forum guy but everyday is something new. Yesterday I started journaling for the first time in over a decade. Who knows who I'll be tomorrow?
 

kdt26417

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

I sympathize with you, it is hard to be a mono husband when you have a poly wife. You feel like you wonder what you did wrong to make her want to change like that, you worry that she is just looking for someone else she can cling to when she leaves your marriage. These things may not be the case in reality, but you may feel like they are, you may wonder if they are. Here's some links that may help you:

You might actually want to start with the Poly Hell article. In any case, I hope one or more of the above links will be helpful. Sorry you are going through this very difficult transition, from mono/mono, to mono/poly. If you have any particular questions for me, or if there's any additional way I can help, let me know.

Sincerely,
Kevin T., "official greeter"

Notes:

There's a *lot* of good info in Golden Nuggets. Have a look!

Please read through the guidelines if you haven't already.

Note: You needn't read every reply to your posts, especially if someone posts in a disagreeable way. Given the size and scope of the site it's hard not to run into the occasional disagreeable person. Please contact the mods if you do (or if you see any spam), and you can block the person if you want.

If you have any questions about the board itself, please private-message a mod and they'll do their best to help.

Welcome aboard!
 

TXretired

Member
Welcome

Sorry to hear about the distress. If you look at my original intro, my wife as well as my partners husband went through this. He eventually vetoed the relationship. It has been very rough on all of us. My wife and I have a very strong marriage.

We are now both in relationships. She never imagined that she would be open to poly. She is enjoying it and I love seeing her do so.

This group is an amazing bunch of folks that care.
 

MeeraReed

Active member
How old are you and your wife? Do you have children?

Five years actually isn't much time to be married--I mean it is not the same as 20 years. If you really don't want to be poly, why not get divorced before you sink any more time into a marriage in which you and your wife are incompatible?
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
Welcome.

A little over 3 weeks ago my wife of 5 years told me that she had come to the realization she was poly. I am determined to stay with her and be there for her but I am not poly.

Well... Be open minded about what "being there for her" means. It doesn't have to mean you stay married. It's possible to "be there" for her as her friend. You also have to do what YOU need to take care of YOU.

I assume "but I am not poly" means you monoamorous and want to have only 1 sweetie. But what about relationship shape?

  • Are you monogamous? And only want to participate in 1:1 relationship shapes? where it's you and sweetie and that's it? No other people?
  • Are you relationship shape flexible? Like you can do monogamous arrangements. Or you could do polyships if you can be the "end point" person in a V or N or similar?

You may never have though about it actively before. Now you kinda have to.

If I'm being honest, right now I really just am hoping to speak to someone who's going/gone through what I'm experiencing.

Well, there's lots of people here coming from many POV.

I'm pretty raw right now and I'm still unsure of who I am anymore.

That's normal to feel.

It's a pretty big revelation if a spouse comes to you and says they think they are poly. Ideally they'd tell you all this while dating, before getting married, etc.

To come out with it after marriage kinda throws the marriage vows up in the air. And you for a loop because you had thought and planned your life to go one way and now here's THIS.

To me? The old marriage deal is over and dead. Because the spirit of the old vows has ended. That can be a stunner for people.

I think I'm one of the few around here who didn't have this problem because I told my spouse way back when we were dating that I just wasn't into monogamy. We got married with him knowing what he was getting into ahead of time.

I sympathize with people coming to realizations after marriage. It can be painful on both sides. :(

You have to reflect and do some deep soul searching. If this discovery means you have to go your separate ways in romance? Try to be good exes and friends.

Or... you can try to move forward a different way. Decide if you want to rewrite the vows and make new agreements. And carry on still married but as mono-poly or poly on both sides. Or maybe divorced but still romantically involved. Every couple who arrives here has to figure it out for themselves.

What I don't suggest is just sticking together to "save the marriage" at the expense of the well being of the the people inside it.

Like you are just bending into pretzels to keep hanging on to spouse. Doing stuff you really don't want to be doing. Going against your own grain. Like extended grief stages of "denial" or "bargaining." I don't think that's healthy for people.

So I suggest taking a time out to reflect and be SUPER HONEST with yourself about how you feel, what you think, what you believe about relationships and what YOU most want out of life. Life isn't a dress rehearsal. You only get the one.

You might decide poly is fine for other people, but it isn't for you. So you tell spouse..
  • No, thanks. I don't even want to go there. Not willing. Not able. Best we part ways clean and respectful. Then you are free TO pursue poly things clean. I am free FROM poly things I do not want.

You might decide you are willing to try a mono-poly arrangement (or poly on both sides).

  • You might be WILLING to try it and find out yes, it works out. You are ABLE.
  • You might try and find you were WILLING but not actually ABLE. It doesn't work out.

Or some other experience.

So go slow, but go with eyes open and with some forethought.

Regardless of how it turns out, you are going to go through some grief.

Grief for the old marriage you thought you had, and grief for the old plans for a future that might now be totally changed.

Go gentle and easy on you.

hugs
Galagirl
 

vinsanity0

Active member
You're living the dream. You've met a partner and the two of you pledge your love to each other, and only each other, forever. Then suddenly, BOOM!, your partner announces they are no longer monogamous. We call that "dropping the poly bomb". It can be quite the shock.

It's also a touchy subject. On one hand, you entered into a monogamous contract. On the other hand, your partner has discovered something about themselves that doesn't fit in with that contract.

Your wife had a couple options. She could have decided to repress her feelings and live with monogamy. What she decided to do was come to you and try to negotiate a new contract.

You have a couple options. You can decline to accept. You can try it out. It sounds like you are electing to try it out, or at least learn about it before making a decision.

What you have to ask yourself is why you are making that decision. You say you are determined to stay with her. How important is monogamy to you? Is it a religion thing? A philosophical thing? Just something you thought was expected? Your answer to that should play a big role in your decision.

I had the exact opposite experience as you. When I first met my wife we were both poly (though neither of us had ever heard the term yet). When we became nesting partners she dropped the "mono bomb" on me...lol
 

BrokenArrow

Member
How old are you and your wife? Do you have children?

Five years actually isn't much time to be married--I mean it is not the same as 20 years. If you really don't want to be poly, why not get divorced before you sink any more time into a marriage in which you and your wife are incompatible?

I am 34 and my wife is 31. Five years is not that long a time, I understand. In my eyes divorce is not an option. Firstly, I am very much still in love with my wife and, even though right now I'm in terrible pain I very much want to be married to her. We have 2 children. One is my stepdaughter and the other my biological. If we divorce I lose my stepdaughter and will likely rarely ever see my other daughter. To clarify, I am in the military and move around a lot. Even at the highest child support percentage my wife would be unable to make enough money at her job to provide the children with the quality of life that we want them to have. I am unwilling to sacrifice my children's happiness for mine. So even if I can't make this work I cannot divorce my wife. That terrifies me. From what I've read on this and other sites, it sounds as though the best I can hope for is a deeper and better relationship with my wife to counter balance the pain and loneliness that's destined to by my occasional second partner for the rest of my life. That scares the shit out of me too. I realize I'm just scratching the surface of this situation and how I feel about it. I'm trying to be open in my communication with my wife but I'm paralyzed with the fear that I'll say something in anger today that I won't feel tomorrow but I can never take back. I keep cycling through the stages of grief and every time the wheel spins to anger I'm afraid I'm going to lash out and destroy any hope I have of making it to the other side of this this... Might have gotten a little carried away with this reply. Sorry about that. I'm in a weird place right now.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Hi Broken,

You're truly stuck between a rock and a hard place. Poly is not something you want, but divorce is not something you want either. You will have to find a way to adapt to the new circumstances, and I don't know how to do that. Perhaps you'll end up remaining legally, and to all appearances, married, but in private you'll be emotionally separated but hopefully still friends. That's just one of the many outcomes for this. I do recommend you continue to learn all you can about poly, and that you continue to read and post on this forum. Hopefully we can come up with ideas for you, as the situation evolves. I think you'll find that poly is a Pandora's box: Once you open it, you cannot close it. Your wife has opened the box.

Sympathetically,
Kevin T.
 

Magdlyn

Well-known member
I'm sorry you're scared and in pain. It's truly a rollercoaster of emotions.

May I just say that you won't be lonely and in pain for the rest of your life? You're reeling right now. But people do get through this. Al99 is one male member here whose wife decided to take up with an old flame. She came to him as soon as she realized her feelings were building.

Al did tons of research, and after about 6-12 months, if I recall, was able to not just support his wife in her early dates with the other guy, but even to befriend him, and eventually ended up with a local and a long distance gf of his own. As I recall, his wife broke up with the guy, but now she's got another one, and Al is friendly with him as well. And he's still married to his wife.

You could search his name and look for his posts.

The best books to get started with are Opening Up, and Sex at Dawn.
 

BrokenArrow

Member
Thank you all for the information and support. I apologize that I only had time to reply to one message before but I was just checking the site quickly during my lunch. I'll see if I can answer the rest of the questions posed in one post.

TXretired:
Thank you. I have in fact been reviewing some of your posts. I envy your strong marriage. I'm afraid the polybomb did some serious damage to the foundations of our marriage. I'm currently working with my wife to shore those up and begin repairs. One of the good bits of info that I've gleaned from this site is that we need to get our own relationship to a place of strength before we move into whatever the next phase may be. My wife is in a pretty good place. For her this was a freeing revelation and motivated her husband to put work into researching how to enrich our marriage. For me it's been a slog through uncontrollable waves of emotions that I did not know I was capable of.
This site does seem like it has some amazing, insightful and helpful people on it. Thanks.

GalaGirl:
I'm trying to be as open minded as possible. I keep checking in every now and then to ask what she needs and what she's feeling. Mostly she's just worried about me right now. As I said before, for her this is great. She loves the shit out of me, though and I can tell it's killing her that I'm feeling this bad. I've kept the majority of it to myself because hurting her feelings will only make me hurt worse but I need to be open and honest with her. I am monogamous. To me, my wife made me whole. She filled a void I'd carried all my life. As far as I can see, she is the only one for me. I really do not want to share her. I can respect that that's what she needs, though and I want her to feel fulfilled. As far as being relationship flexible... at this moment I feel that I am not. That being said, life has taught me that I can adapt to pretty much anything if I work at it.
I really do appreciate all the POVs. Every situation is multi-faceted. To face this as though it were 2 dimensional would be to set myself up for failure.
I instantly recognized that the old marriage was over. Who I was a month ago is dead and no longer exists. I'm in a period of change. I recognize that this pain is a chrysalis or a crucible. I'm trying to direct the change towards something positive. Still hurts like nothing I've ever felt before. I am for sure "stunned" right now. Neither one of us can stand the thought of living without each other. We're determined to make this work. I just need to find a way to come to terms with it all. On the average I am super honest with myself. I've spent a lot of time in my life attempting to view my own feelings without bias. I'm certainly not perfect at it. Thanks you for the kind words.

vinsanity0:
Yes. Shock is a good word. Discombobulation also fits. And it's fun to say. I feel like I'm walking a razor's edge right now between what I want and what my wife wants. I feel like her repressing her feelings was never an acceptable option. She brings it up sometimes out of guilt when we talk but I would never want her to not be who she is. We are both bi-sexual and have had more than our fair share of repressing who we are. I could never want that for her.
As for the why of it all... it seems impossible to get at my feelings with surgical precision for any real analysis. At least not while my emotions keep knocking me around like blunt instruments. I'm hoping with time I'll get myself figured out a bit more.

Kevin:
I appreciate all your help. Pandora's box is an excellent analogy. You keep jumping in with great things to add. You are an excellent greeter! I've been on this site for a day and you pop up like Virgil to guide me through my own personal Inferno. Thank you.

Magdlyn:
Thank you for the kind words. I'll have to take the time to look at some of Al99's posts. Currently, my wife is only talking to other polys she's found on dating apps. Mostly she's just curious about how they work their relationships and what advice they can give. I ask her to tell me about them. It hurts but I feel like I would see it as a betrayal if it was happening behind my back. I don't even know the guys and I want to break all their teeth at the same time that I want to be their friend. Probably not a healthy position but I'm trying to work through it. Thank you again.

That seems to be it. Thank you all! Typing all this out has been very therapeutic. I've been going through a lot of anger today and this helped ebb the rage and indignation. A few moments of calm means a great deal these days. Who would have thought it would be so beneficial talking to faceless strangers?
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
That seems to be it. Thank you all! Typing all this out has been very therapeutic. I've been going through a lot of anger today and this helped ebb the rage and indignation.

I hope you feel a bit better airing out. Anger can be part of the grief process.

I've kept the majority of it to myself because hurting her feelings will only make me hurt worse but I need to be open and honest with her.

Glad that you see you have to be more open and honest with spouse.

I am monogamous. To me, my wife made me whole. She filled a void I'd carried all my life.

So... why is it your wife's job to "fix" your void rather than you fixing it your own self?

It isn't like two people get married and "become one."

You are still two individuals. While at a the same time, a couple.

If you come into the marriage all messed up? Well, you are still messed up after the marriage til you do your personal repair work.

I have a friend who took a LONG time to repair herself. She would get all into her relationships, subsuming herself to them, letting her identity be "so-and-so's GF or wife." She was kinda using it to "run away" from figuring out her OWN self and her own stuff. Whatever the partner was into, she was into. Whatever they liked to eat, she liked to eat. That kind of thing.

She was terrified to be alone and dreaded break ups. Because then she'd be on her own and she would kinda HAVE to do the personal work on herself. So to avoid she'd fling herself into the next relationship.

She didn't find a solid relationship until she worked on herself FIRST, raised the bar, and stopped going off with whoever came along.

So again, I ask you... why's it wife's job to "fix" you? Where did you learn this "void" stuff? If you carried it your whole life even before wife was around, was it from family of origin? What's your plan to self repair?

You may want to considering doing that before you even get going with the work of considering participating in a polyship of some kind with your wife poly dating.

I really do not want to share her.

I just need to find a way to come to terms with it all.

So... what's your plan to change your core beliefs about relationships?

Where you go from "I don't want to share my partner" to "I am willing to and ok with sharing my partner's time and attention?"

It's ok that she's reading about poly things too on her side. I hope she isn't jumping right into dating though. Jumping in underprepared is a pitfall.

Some couples take a while to prepare and assess.

Some reading links.

http://www.practicalpolyamory.com/downloadabledocuments.html

http://www.kathylabriola.com/articles

https://www.morethantwo.com/

If you want worksheets, you might start here to help you articulate your beliefs about intimacy and relationships.

https://openingup.net/resources/free-downloads-from-opening-up/


YMMV.

Galagirl
 

BrokenArrow

Member
GalaGirl:
Thank you. I do feel much better. I'd like to try my best to answer some of your questions. I don't quite have the hang of the quotes system on this site so I'll have to make do with copy and paste.

"So... why is it your wife's job to "fix" your void rather than you fixing it your own self?

It isn't like two people get married and "become one."

You are still two individuals. While at a the same time, a couple."

The simple answer is. It's not. Digging a little deeper, I'm confused at your use of the "fix". That would imply I was broken. Certainly there was something missing in my life but I wouldn't say I was broken. What I needed was a partner. I needed someone who could understand me for who I was. Someone who could keep up with me and who could provide a whole different perspective on things. My life was missing someone I could trust with my most intimate thoughts and ridiculous fantasies. I'm thinking when you saw the word void you'd interpreted it as I'd absorbed her like a black hole. She is very much not one to be absorbed into someone else.

"If you come into the marriage all messed up? Well, you are still messed up after the marriage til you do your personal repair work. "

Well I wouldn't say we came into the marriage all messed up. Of course we're not some perfect beings but our marriage came from a very strong friendship that blossomed into a romance. Granted, we have our own faults and shortcomings. I would say not enough to label us as "messed up".

"Where did you learn this "void" stuff? If you carried it your whole life even before wife was around, was it from family of origin? What's your plan to self repair?

So... what's your plan to change your core beliefs about relationships?

Where you go from "I don't want to share my partner" to "I am willing to and ok with sharing my partner's time and attention?""

Well my need for a meaningful relationship could be something I picked up from my family of origin but I believe it could be argued that it comes from biological inheritance. I think that most people look for fulfillment in relationships. Otherwise we'd just be self sufficient and live alone with zero partners. Maybe get a room mate to divide expenses. As to my current plan for self repair... you're looking at it. Reach out, learn and grow. This is a totally new experience for me. Thankfully everyone here has given me a heap of resources to pour through. I'm going to be reading for months. I imagine by that time I might be in a better position to flesh out a more substantial plan.

Thanks for your questions and the research material! It's helpful!
 

FallenAngelina

Active member
As to my current plan for self repair... you're looking at it. Reach out, learn and grow. This is a totally new experience for me. Thankfully everyone here has given me a heap of resources to pour through. I'm going to be reading for months. I imagine by that time I might be in a better position to flesh out a more substantial plan.
For what my impression is worth, you are well on your way to a promising life with all of this. Contrary to your fear that you're doomed to a life of pain, your dominant attitude is one of willingness to learn and courage to be honest. Both of those attributes are huge contributors to happiness. You seem like an intelligent, sensitive, self-aware and compassionate man, which will serve you well as you continue on this path. People who are self-reflective and willing to learn navigate through poly waters far better than most, so that bodes well for you.

I know that we might seem like a bunch of faceless strangers, but we're actually a community here - each with a different story and circumstance, but all open to the concept that deep love and commitment are not necessarily demonstrated by exclusivity. I hope you do indeed stick around and avail yourself of the wealth of experience and intellect here. You'll fit right in.
 

Tinwen

Active member
I'm not sure if this was discussed already, but the overall situation and reasons why she wants to be poly (now) are quite significant to how you can deal with this. Is there someone else already, or is it just a "I want to pursue more diverse kind of experience" type of reasoning?

From what I've read on this and other sites, it sounds as though the best I can hope for is a deeper and better relationship with my wife to counter balance the pain and loneliness that's destined to by my occasional second partner for the rest of my life.
I disagree ... the best you can hope for is a significant paradigm and value shift. You may well find yourself in a place where you appreciate a new level of inter-dependence with other people in your life and would never go back to a purely monogamous arrangement.
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
To quote, you can copy and paste the text and then put (quote) at the start and (/quote) at the end of the quote. But you have to use the square [ ] brackets and not ( ) parenthesis. Or you can highlight the quote text and click on the "cartoon talking bubble" icon that is 4th from the end in the row of icons above the typing area. It will tag the text for you.

Thank you for clarification. It helps.

Certainly there was something missing in my life but I wouldn't say I was broken. What I needed was a partner. I needed someone who could understand me for who I was. Someone who could keep up with me and who could provide a whole different perspective on things. My life was missing someone I could trust with my most intimate thoughts and ridiculous fantasies.

You don't also have close friends you can share things with? :confused:

Well my need for a meaningful relationship could be something I picked up from my family of origin but I believe it could be argued that it comes from biological inheritance. I think that most people look for fulfillment in relationships.

There's nothing wrong with wanting a romantic partner. I think that a person also needs a social network to help them though. Can't pile it ALL on the spouse. You do need other kinds of relationships that are also fulfilling. YKWIM?

You mentioned your support base being unbalanced. How come? Where are your close friends? Do you have any IRL? Because talking to internet people can help you air out some, but they can't bring you soup, or help walk the dog and help lighten your load in more personal ways.

I hope things get better for you.

Galagirl
 

Magdlyn

Well-known member
I have a dissenting opinion. It's OK to develop close intimate friendships online. Our society is very fractured. A lot of us have trouble getting together physically with our oldest dear friends, say, people we knew from childhood or college, because everyone has moved to different ends of the country, or even abroad. And it can be hard to make new great friends when we are adults. Everyone is so busy. If you and your good friends all have kids, it can be hard to make time for a decent deep conversation.

At least, this has been my experience. And now that I'm older, I find it tiring to travel to see friends, if it's more than a half hour drive. I keep in touch with old friends online! And I've made tons of new good friends online, with whom I share my deepest thoughts and feelings. No, they can't bring me soup. And I don't have a dog that needs walking, anymore, thank god. I'm a good soup maker, and there's always takeout.

I'm not saying I have NO local good friends, I do. But it's hard to get together with them too, and especially now, during the fucking pandemic.

My other point: men in our culture are still taught, by and large, that showing emotions makes you seem weak. And men will take down men they see as weak, at work, at sports games, etc. Even out drinking with the guys, generally you talk casually, then get drunk, then someone gets in a fistfight. And only then can you speak openly. I have had guys tell me of this kind of scenario, and we see it in movies and on TV. What a lot of effort to go through just to share about hard things you're dealing with.

You can miss out on promotions at work, or be ridiculed, if you express uncertainty. My ex h went through this all the time, in his engineering job. The office was run by the alpha males, the young, the fit, the brash.

So, I think it's harsh to assume BrokenArrow came to his marriage "broken," (although he must be feeling broken now, hence the name choice). It's our society that is "broken," although that might be a lazy way to describe it.

I'd venture to say, the huge majority of men only share their most intimate thoughts with their female SOs. Although, I have one male friend who can't even share some of his deepest thoughts with his wife, much less with his male or female friends. His closest friends are too close, and he's afraid there would be gossip among them if he said "too much." So, he texts me with some of his fears, struggles and uncertainties! We are exes, and we don't run in the same circles.

Anyway! Men are trained to only share their deepest feelings with their one female partner. And women, sadly, are trained to "take on" their male partner's emotions and "handle" them for them. This causes burn-out for the women, and sometimes it can even cause them to check out. It's too much of a burden. If men are too dependent on their female partners as far as sharing time and emotions only with them, the women can start to feel unsexy and unromantic and might seek the romance elsewhere.

Therapy is also a great option, if you can find a good one you click with, and if you can afford it.

One of the first thing newly Open couples need to do is disentangle. You have to learn to be OK not being together. You have to learn to get out and get together with those friends, or take a course, or take up new or rediscover old hobbies, do volunteer work, etc., etc.

Here's an article about disentangling. It's not perfect, but it's somewhat helpful.

https://medium.com/@PolyamorySchool/the-most-skipped-step-when-opening-a-relationship-f1f67abbbd49
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
So, I think it's harsh to assume BrokenArrow came to his marriage "broken," (although he must be feeling broken now, hence the name choice). It's our society that is "broken," although that might be a lazy way to describe it.

I'm not using my best words right now, Mag. Dealing in a lot of pandemic stress but still trying to help in some way.

BrokenArrow clarified and then I could get my thoughts around it better together.

Anyway! Men are trained to only share their deepest feelings with their one female partner. And women, sadly, are trained to "take on" their male partner's emotions and "handle" them for them. This causes burn-out for the women, and sometimes it can even cause them to check out. It's too much of a burden. If men are too dependent on their female partners as far as sharing time and emotions only with them, the women can start to feel unsexy and unromantic and might seek the romance elsewhere.

Def agree. I think that "training" is messed up because it affects all the people down the road. Wherever it is they learned things things from, they have to work to let that "training" go and try something else that hopefully serves them better.

GG
 
Last edited:

BrokenArrow

Member
FallenAngelina:
Thank you for the reassuring words. That fear is very real. I'm going at this with a lot of hope. I'm looking forward to learning about and experiencing the community.

Tinwen:
The overall situation is fairly relevant. After 4 years the NRE wore off. She needed more from me and I didn't know how to give it. Neither did I invest myself in researching how to communicate my love to her. She swears up and down that I've always been a great husband but I think we can all agree that I really let her down there. Like I said before. We were not without our flaws. Now allow me to clarify before someone gets the wrong impression. She was always heading down this path. It's who she is. My neglect just hastened her realization.
I disagree ... the best you can hope for is a significant paradigm and value shift.
I agree with your disagreement. From the deck I stand on I can't see that as a reality. But over the horizon, who knows? Not many things are really set in stone, mostly mired in mud.

GalaGirl:
Thanks for the quote tips! From your words I can't help feeling that you might be reading me as some sort of shut-in leech. If this is the case I really hope I can dissuade you from that image in the future. You are certainly right that I don't have too many close friends IRL, though. Unfortunately my work requires that I relocate. Not even a year ago, in fact, my family and I moved to our current location from around the world. While I make friends wherever I go, most of those are work friends who I'll only know for the 2-4 years I'm at that location. A select few will become lifelong friends but we're often separated by distance and time zones. Over the years some have grown apart, some have fallen out and some have died. I have friends in places all over the world. New York, Italy, Bahrain, Japan and San Diego just to name a few. If you read what I've written earlier you should be able to see that I would never "pile it ALL" on my wife. We are each the person in this world the other trusts the most. I am her confidant and she is mine. I certainly have friendships for other things as well.

Magdlyn:
Thank you for that article on disentanglement. When I was first perusing this site I found similar advice in the Struggling Mono thread. We talked about how I needed to create my own social circle that very day. Sadly it isn't looking like I can go out and meet new people any time soon (damn you COVID!). The reality of our situation is that due to the frequent relocation, we've come to rely pretty heavily on each other for support. Disentanglement is the next logical step forward. It may be a slow process but we have the time. Speaking of having the time, I don't have much left to type so please forgive me if I don't convey this right. The suppressing of feelings does not happen exclusively in men. It can be rooted in many reason and it does serve some purpose. It may even be tied to the fight or flight response. I work in a field wear on many occasions there is no time for feelings. Some issues require feelings to be set aside to take immediate action. Regulating that to not spill into life outside of those instances is the real challenge and is a very common problem for a lot of people. So a bisexual-polytheistic-monogamous man walks into the Anglican Chaplains office and says "I'm having a problem with my wife's polyamory." Not the setup to a bad joke but the reality of my Tuesday. During our talk I guess my face slipped for a second and he saw my pain. He explained to me how men are taught not to cry but that it's okay and healthy to let it out. I had to explain to him that I personally feel that it is essential for a man to cry sometimes but we only had so much time to talk and I didn't want to waste it on incomprehensible sobs. I assure you, I cried about it later.
My wife and I have talked about finding a poly-neutral therapist if things start taking a turn for the worse. I'm not sure if it's within our budget at this time but I'm willing to make sacrifices to afford it if it comes to that. Thank you again for your suggestions!

Hope you all have a great day. Thanks for letting me chat at you!
 

Magdlyn

Well-known member
Thank you for that article on disentanglement. When I was first perusing this site, I found similar advice in the Struggling Mono thread. We talked about how I needed to create my own social circle that very day. Sadly, it isn't looking like I can go out and meet new people any time soon (damn you COVID!).

The reality of our situation is that, due to the frequent relocation, we've come to rely pretty heavily on each other for support. Disentanglement is the next logical step forward. It may be a slow process, but we have the time.

Speaking of having the time, I don't have much time left to type, so please forgive me if I don't convey this right. The suppressing of feelings does not happen exclusively in men. It can be rooted in many reasons, and it does serve some purpose. It may even be tied to the fight or flight response.

An idea I ascribe to is that men have evolved to show less emotion, just as they evolved stronger bodies, to enable them to pursue game, while women networked at the camp, needing emotional skills to raise and educate the children, do the "domestic work" and cooperate with the other women.

Now that women are less forced into motherhood, or at least into have very large families, we are getting more into the military, medicine, politics and other male dominated areas. Our better emotional and networking skills are benefiting society.

I work in a field where, on many occasions, there is no time for feelings. Some issues require feelings to be set aside, in order to take immediate action. Regulating that to not spill into life outside of those instances is the real challenge, and is a very common problem for a lot of people.

So, a bisexual-polytheistic-monogamous man walks into an Anglican chaplain's office and says, "I'm having a problem with my wife's polyamory." Not the setup to a bad joke, but the reality of my Tuesday. During our talk I guess my face slipped for a second and he saw my pain. He explained to me how men are taught not to cry, but that it's okay and healthy to let it out. I had to explain to him that I personally feel that it is essential for a man to cry sometimes, but we only had so much time to talk, and I didn't want to waste it on incomprehensible sobs. I assure you, I cried about it later.

My wife and I have talked about finding a poly-neutral therapist, if things start taking a turn for the worse. I'm not sure if it's within our budget at this time, but I'm willing to make sacrifices to afford it, if it comes to that. Thank you again for your suggestions!

So, BrokenArrow, in battle, there is little place for emotions. I am sure it is a struggle to then be vulnerable and let your guard down in non-battlefield situations. Obviously a marriage is not a battlefield. It's extremely important to be open, and honest, to express doubts, to openly laugh and cry, to dig down and hold nothing back.

I was wondering if you were sometimes deployed, leaving both of you without a trusted companion intimate for months at a time? You may not have much time for emotions in a stressful war situation. Even your grief over the deaths of so many of your buddies or those under your command must be suppressed, just as a doctor can't take time to grieve over every lost patient.

But maybe your wife, home with a kid or two, feels your absence more than you feel hers. Maybe she, almost against her will, is seeking a warm loving relationship with someone who is there for her regularly, isn't at as much risk of losing his/her life, and of course, there's that bubbly sexy NRE to tempt her.

There's a story that some Air Force soldiers in WW2 knowingly asked their buddies on the base to "watch out for" their wives while they were deployed, and/or if they didn't come back. It is said this was the first time in recent history when men openly consented to polyamory, although I'd suspect it has happened fairly regularly over the course of history.
 
Top