My meta is now a hinge. Is it weird to feel relief?

Polycurious_Adam

Active member
I just found out that Ms. Fisher's other BF (Pete) has just met another woman, and is now giving polyamory a try for himself. I mean, I think it's odd that he didn't consider himself a poly participant before, but never mind that. When I found out he was taking up another relationship, it felt like a weight lifting off of my shoulders. I don't think that his relationship with Ms Fisher will change because of it, so it's not like I'm now anticipating having Ms. Fisher to myself again, but then where does the relief feeling come from? Is it normal to feel more comfortable with a meta who isn't a terminus of the polycule?
 

Magdlyn

Moderator
Staff member
I just found out that Ms. Fisher's other BF (Pete) has just met another woman, and is now giving polyamory a try for himself. I mean, I think it's odd that he didn't consider himself a poly participant before, but never mind that. When I found out he was taking up another relationship, it felt like a weight lifting off of my shoulders. I don't think that his relationship with Ms Fisher will change because of it, so it's not like I'm now anticipating having Ms. Fisher to myself again, but then where does the relief feeling come from? Is it normal to feel more comfortable with a meta who isn't a terminus of the polycule?
If you're trying to decide if you're normal or not, good luck with that. We feel what we feel. :)

I guess it seems to you like it will free up some of Ms Fisher's time, and so now she will spend more time with you. Or maybe it will hurt her a bit or cause her anxiety, and since she's been neglecting you, you want her to also feel some neglect, to kind of get back at her? Like, she's been having all the fun and none of the pain, so if she feels some pain, she might understand you better?

My partner's bf is mono with her, and it's never made a difference to me, other than knowing it makes for safer sex, which is a benefit, I guess. I think since I've rarely been seeing others lately (for a variety of reasons), it makes Pixi a bit sad...? She likes it when I have fun with the boys. When I finally got to see my "perpetuee" (a guy I've been in a sort of LDR for 12 years) recently, she was quite happy for me.
 

Polycurious_Adam

Active member
That's exactly the kind of feedback I was looking for, thanks!

I do like the idea of having some more time with Ms. Fisher, which actually has improved a lot recently anyway. I'm not sure if that's because of his new interest, but that seems like a positive take on my response that I wouldn't feel ashamed of. I'll also have to do some reflecting on that other possibility. I don't want to believe that I would take pleasure from her suffering, but I am past assuming that I won't do something just because I don't think I would. I'm trying to get past my adversarial urges, but I have to stay open to the possibility that I'm not there yet.
 

icesong

Moderator
Staff member
For me there's a... not quite subconscious, since I'm telling you about it, but close to... an anxiety that comes with having a metamour who is monogamous to my partner. There was a certain fear when ArtistSpouse had just been broken up with by their longterm partner that they were going to put pressure on Artist to go back to monogamy. Less so with Joan, as her current monogamy is more situational than anything (was just thinking about dating a bit when Plague hit) but I'm sure some people would worry that she was going to pressure Knight to go mono with her - after all, Joan's ex-partner is now mono with the person he started dating while he and Joan were still married.

Anyway, my point/question here is, is your relief coming from the idea that if Pete is also pursuing polyamorous relationships, he definitely won't put pressure on Ms. Fisher to turn their relationship into something more typically relationship-escalator-y?
 

Polycurious_Adam

Active member
That seems likely, and it's a little embarrassing. I like to give people the benefit of the doubt, but I don't think I was doing so for Pete. I don't think I should feel bad about not completely trusting him; I hardly know him. But maybe I was unduly suspicious that he would try to edge me out, not maliciously, but as a consequence of not fully embracing polyamory for himself. That does feel like less of a threat now, even though I don't think it was ever actually a scenario that Ms. Fisher would support.

I think that if Ms Fisher and Pete were to ever break up, I'd have a very similar reaction. I'd like to think I would be sympathetic to the unfortunate situation, but what if I feel jubilant, or victorious? I'm afraid that I'd find myself slipping back into that co-ownership paradigm without the ... I almost said "competition," but that just shows that I still have something of an adversarial stance to the whole situation. I don't want to think of Pete as competition. That's something for me to work on.
 

icesong

Moderator
Staff member
I wouldn't be embarrassed by not having entirely eradicated the entirety of your cultural programming around what to expect from other people who are romantically interested or engaged with the person/people you're romantically interested in. That's just... wildly unrealistic, no matter HOW long you've been poly or how "naturally" poly one might be. I certainly still haven't!

*Feelings* are never wrong. What you DO about them can be. But the feelings themselves? Morally neutral. At least that's how I see it, there's no such thing as thought-crime or thought-sin, no matter what some religions might say.

(Also even though Ms. Fisher would never support a relationship where Pete or anyone else were pressuring her to leave you, knowing someone was applying that kind of pressure WOULD feel threatening and somewhat rightfully so. I certainly would be pretty pissed at a meta who did it. )
 

Polycurious_Adam

Active member
Yeah, the programming is a bear. The language used when discussing romance doesn't help, either. MY girlfriend. I BELONG to you. You BELONG to me. You are the ONE for me. My heart is YOURS. It's all ownership based! So when I think about the fact that Ms. Fisher is Pete's girlfriend, my brain says "but she's MY girlfriend!" It's true, but the connotation of exclusivity is implied by the language, and that makes it harder to change my perspective. Then there's the fact that not everyone is privy to our arrangement, so I feel like I have to pretend like I still see us a each other's owners in some situations, and that's training my brain in the wrong direction. You perform the way you practice, as my high school band director constantly reminded us.

Ah, well I guess this is just a feature of exercising a non-standard relationship style. I'm sure the queer community has had to deal with living a dual life for a lot longer than I have, so I'm not going to bemoan my plight. I did choose to join the alternative relationship style club. Most people that keep their sexuality a secret didn't choose their path; they were born that way. I think this will help me gain a new appreciation for the oppression shouldered by the LGBTAI+ folks.

Anyway, that seemed to wander off-topic a bit. The point is that I'm glad Pete has another interest, as it will probably lead to my having a bit more time with Ms. Fisher. I can feel good about that without being possessive, and that seems like a better head space than the one I was in a couple of months ago!
 

PinkPig

Active member
Lots of good points brought up about why you may feel relief that Pete is now dating. My partner, Blue, frequently ends up with monogamous or monogamish women. I do feel relief when he dates happily partnered women. My experience with Blue is that the monogamish women tend to cause lots of drama in our relationship (I know that it's actually Blue allowing the drama.) We actually broke up because of the drama.... and we de-escalated the relationship when we got back together.

I'm much better at maintaining my boundaries and I'm less codependent, thanks to therapy. Now all of my relationships are healthier, including the relationship with Blue, regardless of whatever drama may be going on in my partners' other relationships.

Also, I could see you feeling relief that now Ms Fisher has to do the work you're doing... it's easy to be the be the poly one when you're the only one with multiple relationships! Now she has to do some of the hard work that you've had to do (or not, since it's easier for some.) If that's the case, it doesn't mean you're being vengeful. It could just simply be relief that now she'll understand the work you've been doing. Just my thoughts :)
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
...where does the relief feeling come from? Is it normal to feel more comfortable with a meta who isn't a terminus of the polycule?

It's normal to feel whatever. Feelings come and go.

I don't know what action behavior or thinking behavior you were doing that led to the more ugh feelings.... but sounds like you stopped doing it so you can feel new feelings of relief.

Maybe you were worried about him trying to rope her off into monogamy with him. Maybe you think Ms Fisher now has to do the work of sharing Pete's time with her own meta so she gets to see what that's like. Maybe it's something else.

Whatever it is? Maybe it's ok to just feel ok feeling better without delving into the whys of it?

The language used when discussing romance doesn't help, either. MY girlfriend. I BELONG to you. You BELONG to me. You are the ONE for me. My heart is YOURS. It's all ownership based!

That took me aback. I was thinking "Who talks like that?" But on reflection I guess some people do. The only one I use is "My husband" like if I'm introducing people. "Hi so and so, this is DH, my husband." I've never really used those other phrases.

So when I think about the fact that Ms. Fisher is Pete's girlfriend, my brain says "but she's MY girlfriend!" It's true, but the connotation of exclusivity is implied by the language, and that makes it harder to change my perspective.

You don't think "Pete is my meta?" Like if things are relational to you... wouldn't that be the thing to say/think?

Or are things for you relational to whatever Ms Fisher is doing?

Then there's the fact that not everyone is privy to our arrangement, so I feel like I have to pretend like I still see us a each other's owners in some situations, and that's training my brain in the wrong direction.

What behavior do you do to "pretend" rather than just being yourself and not pretending anything?

Why do you think you have to pretend anything? For whose benefit? Who are you putting on the show for?

I mean, you don't have to be "out" as poly if you don't want to be.

But neither are you obligated to sit around in the restaurant gushing at Ms Fisher -- "You belong to me! My heart is yours" and stuff right?

I'm glad you are in a better head space. It's fine to enjoy more time with Ms. Fisher.

Galagirl
 
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kdt26417

Official Greeter
Staff member
Hi P_Adam,

My first thought, when I heard of your feelings of relief, is that on some level, you were gaining some assurance that Pete wouldn't "steal" Ms. Fisher, as he now has someone else to occupy his attention. Even if rationally you know that wouldn't happen, emotionally you could still be operating from that perspective. I think I remember from another thread, hasn't Ms. Fisher been spending a *lot* of time on the phone with Pete? In that sense, he was already stealing her. Maybe she will spend a little (more) time with you now. And, maybe she'll understand what you had to go through when she first hooked up with Pete. These are just some of the possible benefits to the situation, but I still mostly fall back on my first thought: that he won't "steal" her from you.

My 2¢,
Kevin T.
 
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