New to Poly, I’m the secondary and he wants to add a girlfriend. I’m struggling help

Big heart

New member
Ok. I’m new to the poly lifestyle. I am the girlfriend of over a year to a married couple. He wants to add a girlfriend for himself and we have discussed it with both him and her. The wife is ok with it, the other woman’s husband is ok with it but I am struggling with telling him I’m ok with it. Because they are all ok with it, I feel slightly pressured to also be ok with it. I’ve been on an emotional roller coaster. 😢 she knows her place in this and that I am their secondary. I’ve spoken to her and still feel terrible. How do I conquer this overwhelming feeling? Please help. I love my couple very much and want to be ok with him having this other girlfriend
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
I'm am sorry you struggle.

Why are you not able to say "I am not ok with it at this time" and be emotionally honest with your people? Are you safe enough in this relationship?

I would encourage you to be HONEST and say you are not ok with this yet and need some time to think. Then do take some time.

WHY are you not ok with it? Are you able to articulate?

  • You don't want to deal with a larger network? You wanted something smaller?
  • You didn't like how you were approached? Like this is a "done deal" and you are the last "hold out?"
  • You wanted a longer honey moon phase with you couple because it's only been a year?
  • You don't get enough time as it is? So adding more partners -- how will your time with your partners change?
  • Are you expected not to see anyone else in this poly network? Yet he can add more people for him to date?
  • Is this person a relative, coworker, or other "messy" person for you? (Like if she's your boss... him dating her would be extra problems than him just dating a "regular" person with "regular" poly problems?)
  • Is it that all these other people are married and have other partners for support or have legal standing/rights/privileges. And you don't?
  • Do you all live together and watching him date someone else makes you feel ugh, where if you had your own flat it would be easier
  • Something else?
  • Maybe a combo of things?
Galagirl
 
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kdt26417

Official Greeter
Hello Big heart,

GalaGirl and SEASONEDpolyAgain have asked you some good questions. If you can identify what it is about adding this new girlfriend that troubles you, that will go a long ways towards helping you be okay with it. Or, maybe you will realize that you shouldn't have to be okay with it! This proposition of his may be unfair to you. And, it's not like you can wave a magic wand, and change how you feel. If you're not okay with it, you're not okay with it. You feel how you feel. It is not fair for the others to insist that you be okay with something that is not fair to you. So analyze the situation. What is it about adding a girlfriend that rubs you the wrong way? and I am also wondering how you feel about being a secondary partner. Maybe that is not fair either!

I hope you can post with some more info,
Sincerely,
Kevin T.
 

Big heart

New member
This is in the wrong place but don't worry, a moderator will move it, I'm sure.

Can I ask if you and his wife also have the freedom to have other partners?
We both have the freedom if we wanted other partners. We have agreed if there is someone else we discuss it. They have taught me that communication is key
 

Big heart

New member
I'm am sorry you struggle.

Why are you not able to say "I am not ok with it at this time" and be emotionally honest with your people? Are you safe enough in this relationship?

I would encourage you to be HONEST and say you are not ok with this yet and need some time to think. Then do take some time.

WHY are you not ok with it? Are you able to articulate?

  • You don't want to deal with a larger network? You wanted something smaller?
  • You didn't like how you were approached? Like this is a "done deal" and you are the last "hold out?"
  • You wanted a longer honey moon phase with you couple because it's only been a year?
  • You don't get enough time as it is? So adding more partners -- how will your time with your partners change?
  • Are you expected not to see anyone else in this poly network? Yet he can add more people for him to date?
  • Is this person a relative, coworker, or other "messy" person for you? (Like if she's your boss... him dating her would be extra problems than him just dating a "regular" person with "regular" poly problems?)
  • Is it that all these other people are married and have other partners for support or have legal standing/rights/privileges. And you don't?
  • Do you all live together and watching him date someone else makes you feel ugh, where if you had your own flat it would be easier
  • Something else?
  • Maybe a combo of things?
Galagirl
Hi Galagirl,
I am in a very safe relationship, they have encouraged me to be open with them and always communicate how I feel.
I am the last hold out, they have known each other for about 4 years and have been together before me being in the picture.
I’ve never been In this lifestyle and they are my first couple.
we have the freedom to add partners, as long as we communicate with each other.
he has reassured me that I am a priority in his life. I love my relationship with both of them.
I know this is something he wants, and I want to be in a place that I can say sure have fun.
Thank you you’ve given me plenty to think about.
My bf told me first and foremost I have to be honest with myself and them. I have to think about what my struggle is.
they have been so caring and helping me sort my feeling out
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
I am in a very safe relationship, they have encouraged me to be open with them and always communicate how I feel.

I hope you become more willing to say "No, I'm not ok with this at this time."

I know this is something he wants, and I want to be in a place that I can say sure have fun.

Sometimes people want things and they do not come to pass right away or at all.

My bf told me first and foremost I have to be honest with myself and them. I have to think about what my struggle is.

Then take the time to reflect.

If you are full as it is, it is ok for you to say "I don't want to be in a bigger poly network than this" if that's how you feel about it. Then sort things out from there. Be up front and honest.

Or maybe you don't like that he approached this potential lady (who would be the new GF) BEFORE talking to existing partners. (You and wife)

Cuz that kinda sets you up like the "gatekeeper" or the "hold out" preventing him from having fun when really? It's like him trying to take off before clearing the runway. Esp if you are new to poly -- you might need extra ramp up time. Doesn't sounds like you got a heads up. To me this is not a heads up like "Hey, we all have the freedom to date other people. I'm interested in a new potential. FYI."

This seems more like "Ok, I'm all systems go, can I have clearance from you? Everyone else is on already board."

So he says he prioritzes you, but maybe didn't think about how a poly newbie would feel, esp if this is the first time with him dating someone else. (His wife already has that -- there was you. Maybe others. You don't have that experience.)

Just because they are your first poly couple, doesn't mean they are the experts in in poly and "how it should go." Or in how you want to be treated. YOU are the expert in that. Reflect, and then speak up.

Galagirl
 
Last edited:

Big heart

New member
We discussed it but not in the beginning. I knew they were in the lifestyle and I know that’s my fault for being nieve. They have not been with anyone since being with me
 

Big heart

New member
I hope you become more willing to say "No, I'm not ok with this at this time."



Sometimes people want things and they do not come to pass right away or at all.



Then take the time to reflect.

If you are full as it is, it is ok for you to say "I don't want to be in a bigger poly network than this" if that's how you feel about it. Then sort things out from there. Be up front and honest.

Or maybe you don't like that he approached this potential lady (who would be the new GF) BEFORE talking to existing partners. (You and wife)

Cuz that kinda sets you up like the "gatekeeper" or the "hold out" preventing him from having fun when really? It's like him trying to take off before clearing the runway. Esp if you are new to poly -- you might need extra ramp up time. Doesn't sounds like you got a heads up. To me this is not a heads up like "Hey, we all have the freedom to date other people. I'm interested in a new potential. FYI."

This seems more like "Ok, I'm all systems go, can I have clearance from you? Everyone else is on already board."

So he says he prioritzes you, but maybe didn't think about how a poly newbie would feel, esp if this is the first time with him dating someone else. (His wife already has that -- there was you. Maybe others. You don't have that experience.)

Just because they are your first poly couple, doesn't mean they are the experts in in poly and "how it should go." Or in how you want to be treated. YOU are the expert in that. Reflect, and then speak up.

Galagirl
Thank you so much Galagirl you gave me so much to think about. I am going to sit with bf this weekend and talk to him about exactly how I feel and that I need time.
I feel like this other lady is the one putting pressure on him but he told me I have to be honest with myself. He even said if wife wants another partner he will need time as well. So my best bet is total honesty
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
I feel like this other lady is the one putting pressure on him but he told me I have to be honest with myself.

You could be honest and say "Nope. I'm not ready at this time" and then leave him to deal with the pressure lady. You aren't dating her. It is not your problem if she pressures him.

If he's "passing the buck" or pressuring you, that's another story.

they have been so caring and helping me sort my feeling out

You may also consider talking to someone OUTSIDE this system. Maybe a poly friendly counselor or trusted friend.

The people we date may be lovely, but it's not like they don't have horse in the race.

To balance that out, you may also consider talking to someone OUTSIDE this system. Maybe a poly friendly counselor or trusted friend.

You need your own support system apart from the people you date. Worse case scenario and there's a break up? What then? You seek comfort from your exes about the break up? No. You seek comfort from your support system -- friends, family, etc.

Best case? Things work out and you carry on? Great! You have support inside the system AND outside the system you can turn to.

How do I begin to sort through being ok with him having another gf

I think you have to answer that for yourself. What brought you here to this polyship? Why did you say yes? What are the actual agreements here? Are people holding them up? What is expected behavior? Are people doing it?

Maybe you start thinking about relationships as participatory.

Not like him having another gf, or having french fries, or having a day off. But how people actually participate here.

What behaviors YOU need to stop/start doing? BF to start/stop doing?

So you can give continuing consent to keep participating in his poly network if he chooses to add more people to it. Because if you consented at the start for one kind of of poly arrangement, that doesn't mean you are up for all and sundry.

These may or may not help you figure out what you are and are not up for:




Wagner did a jealousy article here


Labriola has a jealousy workbook here.


I think it is fine to feel envy or jealousy. It's fine to feel happy or sad. We are alive. Something happens, we feel things.

The goals is not to erase feelings. It's to be willing to experience them and figure out what's going on with that. Enjoy them if they are fun ones, weather it out if they are not so fun. Sunny days and story skies.

If the feelings are chronically coming up bad over and over? It's a signal to listen to the warning that this situation may not be so great and it's time to bow out.

You can find a better poly situation elsewhere without these people who participate poorly.

Or you just don't want poly for a while or at all. YOU get to pick how you want to be living your life.

GL!
Galagirl
 

Big heart

New member
You could be honest and say "Nope. I'm not ready at this time" and then leave him to deal with the pressure lady. You aren't dating her. It is not your problem if she pressures him.

If he's "passing the buck" or pressuring you, that's another story.



You may also consider talking to someone OUTSIDE this system. Maybe a poly friendly counselor or trusted friend.

The people we date may be lovely, but it's not like they don't have horse in the race.

To balance that out, you may also consider talking to someone OUTSIDE this system. Maybe a poly friendly counselor or trusted friend.

You need your own support system apart from the people you date. Worse case scenario and there's a break up? What then? You seek comfort from your exes about the break up? No. You seek comfort from your support system -- friends, family, etc.

Best case? Things work out and you carry on? Great! You have support inside the system AND outside the system you can turn to.



I think you have to answer that for yourself. What brought you here to this polyship? Why did you say yes? What are the actual agreements here? Are people holding them up? What is expected behavior? Are people doing it?

Maybe you start thinking about relationships as participatory.

Not like him having another gf, or having french fries, or having a day off. But how people actually participate here.

What behaviors YOU need to stop/start doing? BF to start/stop doing?

So you can give continuing consent to keep participating in his poly network if he chooses to add more people to it. Because if you consented at the start for one kind of of poly arrangement, that doesn't mean you are up for all and sundry.

These may or may not help you figure out what you are and are not up for:




Wagner did a jealousy article here


Labriola has a jealousy workbook here.


I think it is fine to feel envy or jealousy. It's fine to feel happy or sad. We are alive. Something happens, we feel things.

The goals is not to erase feelings. It's to be willing to experience them and figure out what's going on with that. Enjoy them if they are fun ones, weather it out if they are not so fun. Sunny days and story skies.

If the feelings are chronically coming up bad over and over? It's a signal to listen to the warning that this situation may not be so great and it's time to bow out.

You can find a better poly situation elsewhere without these people who participate poorly.

Or you just don't want poly for a while or at all. YOU get to pick how you want to be living your life.

GL!
Galagirl
Thank you so much. I will read the articles abd I am going to talk to bf tomorrow. I need him to know I’m not ready right now.
 

Evie

Well-known member
Hiya

So, in my polycule with Puck, I'm the "last one on" so to speak, so perhaps I can give you a little perspective from the "new girlfriend" side of the equation.

I've started a relationship with someone who is already poly and already in other committed relationships. I knew that from the beginning. I walked into it with absolutely zero intention or desire to interfere in any way whatsoever with the existing relationships. Sure, I've face-stalked a little to learn a bit about them, and I'm sure they have done the same in return, but we don't interact at all. There is someone who would let me know if something happened to him, but other than that it's basically parallel poly. Puck has made time in his schedule for me and although we have both daily regular chats and a once a week date, those are also flexible if either of us have other irregular plans that crop up with other people.

In short, his relationship with me doesn't diminish his relationship with anyone else. Impact, sometimes; diminish, never. Recognising the difference is rather important. Sometimes his other relationships impact me, as mine do him, that's poly. That could also be like dating someone with kids, an intensive hobby, or a job with crazy hours. We all just work around and keep communicating effectively.
 

Magdlyn

Well-known member
I can share my experiences with having my partner considering dating another new person, or actually dating someone new.

My long term partner Pixi spent the early years of our relationship also on dating sites, seeking a Master. (We are both female and have an egalitarian relationship. I was also on dating sites at this time, also seeking a Dom or a bf.) I always felt loved by her and she never lost her focus on me when she was talking to people or dating them. She always gave me positive attention and quality time, even when she was in NRE with someone new, or if this or that relationship had troubles.

On the other hand, another person, a guy, whom I dated for over 2 years, spent our first year focused on me. But, it seemed like, once he thought he had me firmly hooked, he immediately lost focus on me, and went out a-hunting for new partners. He made some bad choices in partners, and had troubles, ups and down, breakups and getting back togethers. I was demoted. He gave our relationship less and less attention over a matter of months. I let him know this was not acceptable, but it continued and I had to break up with him.

It speaks to the character of the person, and if they are really suited for polyamory, or just using you as a sort of sex toy, or attention faucet, when they start to seek another partner, and do it properly... or not.
 

Big heart

New member
I can share my experiences with having my partner considering dating another new person, or actually dating someone new.

My long term partner Pixi spent the early years of our relationship also on dating sites, seeking a Master. (We are both female and have an egalitarian relationship. I was also on dating sites at this time, also seeking a Dom or a bf.) I always felt loved by her and she never lost her focus on me when she was talking to people or dating them. She always gave me positive attention and quality time, even when she was in NRE with someone new, or if this or that relationship had troubles.

On the other hand, another person, a guy, whom I dated for over 2 years, spent our first year focused on me. But, it seemed like, once he thought he had me firmly hooked, he immediately lost focus on me, and went out a-hunting for new partners. He made some bad choices in partners, and had troubles, ups and down, breakups and getting back togethers. I was demoted. He gave our relationship less and less attention over a matter of months. I let him know this was not acceptable, but it continued and I had to break up with him.

It speaks to the character of the person, and if they are really suited for polyamory, or just using you as a sort of sex toy, or attention faucet, when they start to seek another partner, and do it properly... or not.
Hi Evie,

thank you for your input. When I first started dating them I was the only other at the time. Then covid happened and no one was around except me. I’m at their house all the time, we all go to the gym together. The. Kids love me and I love them. We became almost like sister wives.
so when this other woman came in wanting something she had one other time about three years ago I knocked me for a good minute.
I am sorting through my feelings, and I have had a conversation with bf letting him know I’m not ready for him to have this other relationship yet. He understands and is giving me time.
I have also found a friend of mine that I can talk to that is not my couple.
You all have been so helpful, this couple means the world to me. I want to be cool with this lifestyle not just for me but them
 
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