New to Polyamory, Uncertain, and Jealous.

...and you're the guy who doesn't trust words, SS? You certainly write words filled with scalding emotional honesty.

But man, you are in an emotional hurricane right now. Maybe the first priority is, as vandalin and Ariakas suggest, to find some calm. Take a few days off if you have the time and go to the beach or something.

Incidentally, I don't think anyone will duplicate your unique sexual experiences with her. I don't think it works that way -- I don't know what L and D do in bed, but I don't think it's the same as what L and I do. Different people, different experiences. You're still unique.
I'm working on diversifying, but making friends without relying on the crutch that is the internet, and without being in school or something, makes this very difficult. I can't even talk to most of my work friends, because I'm 22, and most of them are over 40.
Q1: What is the difference between male and female sex to you and why?
I really don't know. It's probably competition-based, or something. I feel like the way my wife would love a man and the way she would love a woman are completely different, therefore the sex would be different. And I only feel threatened by the idea of her having a sexual romantic relationship with another guy. Because it would be the same kind of sex. I'm not worried about not being good enough compared to somebody else, because I'm pretty confident I'm the best and nobody can beat me when it comes to listening to my wife's desires and knowing her kink inside and out.

No n00b can beat me at this, because I've got a one-year head-start on them. :p

And also, I know one thing in particular that bugs me about the idea of other men having sex with her. If the condoms ever come off, that part freaks me right out. The only seed that belongs there is mine. I think. I really don't think I could ever handle the idea of her getting pregnant with anybody other than me.
Q2: Why do you feel that she would be sharing "your sexual love" with someone else? If I read correctly, she doesn't look at sex the same as you but you seem to expect her to? If she never looked at sex as "sexual love" like you do, she is not sharing "your sexual love" with anyone else. She is sharing sex, plain simple sex.
What I mean is that she would be dividing the attention that would normally be focussed on sexing me, and spending pieces of it on other people. She isn't just sharing plain, simple sex. If she were, that wold be fine. She's as deeply sexual as I am (If I hadn't fucked her on our second date, she would have been devastated, as she told me later), but for some reason, I feel a kind of disconnect when we make love (though that disconnect is getting better, because we're getting over some assumptions we had -- she thought she had to look elsewhere to explore the darker, kinkier side of her sexuality, because our sex life was "too tame for that." A couple of days later, that changed, and I'm pretty sure her need to look elsewhere stopped or was strongly turned down). It's getting better. But the point still stands, that connection will be weakened by the decreased time and attention spent together in bed, and that is what I fear. I could be satisfied, somewhat by taking another romantic partner, but it still wouldn't be the same. Sex with her makes my soul jump for joy. Like actually. Nobody else will be the same, and with nobody else will my soul feel that way.
Q3: It might be good to figure out which parts need to be "labotomized" and which parts just need a little tweaking and reprogramming. Sometimes that is really all that is needed. The fundamental base is still good, it's just some of the other parts that need looking at.
Yeah, the reprogramming keeps happening kind of automatically, like I just think of what I want and it just happens. I'm surprised, daily, by my sudden leaps of progress.
Yeah, and that's exactly why I don't trust words. Because I know how to use them so effectively. If I can do this, why can't other people misuse words to control situations, and people's thoughts, and feelings? They can. They do it all the time. On TV. On the Radio. In the newspaper. On the internet. Always, and everywhere.

Yeah, hurricane-force is about the only speed my emotional winds know how to blow. Once upon a time I had inner peace of sorts, but something happened to it while I wasn't paying attention. I'd like to take some time off, especially with my wife, and go camping, or something, but right now we don't have the time or money for it since our whole lives are changing all at once.

I'm not worried about somebody duplicating my sexual experiences with her, I'm worried about losing the quality of emotional, spiritual, sexual connection with her, because the bandwidth will be divided between two points. However, it is also distinctly possible that her having another romantic partner will make our sex life better, because she'll have that much more support to keep her from being hurt badly enough to lose her sex drive altogether. Because that's what's been happening. We start to bring our relationship back to a decent level of intimacy all-around, especially sexually, and then *WHAM* all of a sudden everything's worse than it was last time it was bad.
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And so to continue the saga of high school drama that is my life right now...

I'm going to start by assigning nicknames to everyone involved now.

I'm myself. Of course.

My wife will either be my wife or A.

The guy she likes will be B.

And his girlfriend will be C.

So I've been in on pretty much all the communication between A and B. The guy VERY OBVIOUSLY is interested in being more than friends. Like, they almost say "I love you" at least once each day. They almost admit to one another how attached they are and how much they want one another each day. When she does things like visit an adult toy store, he gets all interested and asks questions. She pretends she didn't hear the question and keeps talking about other stuff, and a few minutes later, he brings up the toy store again.

The guy definitely likes her in more than a "just friends" kind of way. If nothing else, he likes her as a friend, and has separate sexual interest. Whatever.

In any case, once A started getting C to talk to her, we started having this grand idea that everything would be ok. However, once that dialogue opened up, all kinds of monkey wrenches suddenly appeared in our social workings. Things like C telling A that she had asked B to ask us if we wanted to meet up, and C telling A that B told her we didn't want to. Things like A, B, and myself hanging out at a gaming shop on Wednesday night, thinking it was just the three of us, and then yesterday (Thursday) morning, C telling A that she had asked B to ask us over to their place on Wednesday night, and saying that B had told C that we didn't want to.

Both times we were "invited" to hang out, we were never notified. It's as though B was running interference between A and C and never wanted them to have time to be okay with things together.

But now, I suspect that C is just being manipulative and trying to distance A and me from B. I feel really positive that B had nothing to do with this, and that C is just being vindictive and manipulative.

So, anyway, my wife and I had finally worked out some communication models and worked through a couple of problems yesterday morning, and we were feeling great. I saw happiness in our immediate future. I imagined coming home, the two of us going to Ikea to buy our new bedroom furniture for the new place, and us coming home and fucking like rabbits, and I know she did too, because we talked about it.

We were happy and okay, and then about 15 minutes after my wife and I had finished our discussion, while I was writing her a love letter (actually), she IMs me and tells me that shit exploded.

Right then was when C told A about the "lies" B was telling.

And then, when we confronted him about it, B told us that he never loved A, and had tried to tell A multiple times that he was monogamous, loved C, and nothing was going to change that. B told us that he had told A numerous times that he didn't love her and just liked her as a friend, and C told me that B had told her that A had replied with something to the effect of "that's ok, I don't expect it to be reciprocal."

I know for a fact he's either lying about that, or he was lying and leading her on the whole time before. And I'm really pretty positive he wasn't. I'm really pretty positive that C has been manipulating him and scaring him into dropping the issue with my wife and me. I'm pretty sure he's being emotionally abused, or something like it. Neither he nor his girlfriend have any friends in the area, and they've been here for two years. They moved here from Michicgan and have no friends. Neither of them. B is afraid of losing his only stable ground (C), and she is obviously also afraid of losing B.

And C and B now decide to tell us they're not interested in the kind of polyamorous family we had in mind, even though just days ago, they were each, individually, at least acting open to the idea.

Gods, the way I describe the situations with all the hearsay involved and really does sound just like high school. Ugh.

So basically, now my wife and I are utterly crushed, especially my wife, since she's been putting all her energy into opening dialogue and getting nothing back and getting no help (except from me when she decided she was too tired to keep it up and needed me to take over -- she wouldn't let me handle any of it until yesterday).

So yeah, now, because somebody felt like being a dick, all the hard work my wife and I have gone through gets tossed to the side, and now I get to wait who knows how long until she has recovered before I have any chance of being able to expect something normal out of our relationship. I mean hell, I can't even see sex on the horizon. I'll be sexless for weeks, no doubt, and that pains her as much as it does me, because she relies a lot on sex too, but her sex drive is easily killed, whereas mine is still in existence, just subdued and harder to get going.

And every conversation ends up turning back to the topic of A, B, C, and me. I can be patient and helpful and help us get out of this, and I want to make it all better, but I worry about how long I can make it without basic things like happy conversation, the urge to have sex and spend time together, and the ability to have a conversation about something besides B and C and how we feel wronged by them.

My future looks bleak.

So I've talked all this over with my wife, and she and I agree that I am correct in coming to the forum for advice, and she has no resentment for it, because I talked to her about it before I talked to you about it.

So is there anything that can be done, or do we basically just have to go through a long healing process now and just accept that it's over? Should we even bother trying to get B to admit the truth?
I think I will have to run this question past my hubby, Cajun. A lot of this sounds similar to what we had gone through minus C. He may be able to give some advice that fits to your side of the equation and what/how you can help. (He also tends to be very verbose like you. ;) )

On my end of things, yes, you both have a healing process to go through but how long it takes just depends. It has taken me months to get through some of the emotional problems that I was having with Elric but then boom! I was ok. Now, instead of missing the more sexual/romantic intimacy that I had been hoping for, I am just missing the friendship that we are trying to foster (if that doesn't make sense, feel free to read my two about drama!)

As for getting B to admit the truth? That has two factors. One, will it be the truth or just the truth as you/she/he wants to see it? And two, will it really help in any way to speed the healing process or will it just make it harder? Always remember, the truth, once set free, cannot be hidden again without undo harm.
So there's another guy, the guy she met earlier this week, who we shall name D.

D and A talk all the time now, and it's really great. They get along great, and they share a common interest in Hapkido an Iaijutsu (the art of samurai swordsmanship), as well as a bunch of other topics.

Last night, while we were talking, she told me about a tempting offer D had made her; that she could crash at his place Friday (tonight) after work in the city, so she could more easily check out the Iaijutsu class at 09:00 Saturday (tomorrow) morning. She told me she was tempted, but initially told him no thanks.

I told her she should do it, if she's interested. She warned me that there was the slightest hint of a "hey, I might get laid" look in D's eye when he offered it and that she wasn't entirely sure if she'd say no when propositioned. Which is part of why she turned him down, because she doesn't want to risk rebounding.

We talked about it, and agree that if she keeps a close eye on the situation and on her feelings and thoughts, and she can determine, rationally, that she really wants it, and it's not just a reaction and groping for NRE, then she should feel free to take the opportunity to explore yet another decent romantic prospect.

One thing that bugs me is that she'd consider having sex with a new friend while she's hurt, but not with me, not the kind of sex that could heal us both. But whatever, I know that's completely different.

So yeah, anyway, am I telling her the right things? Should I be helping her shelter herself from rebounding, or should I trust her to be strong and say no if she realises it will only be rebounding?

Also, I should point out, *I* was a rebound relationship, while she was just getting out of a very similar situation to what she's in now. And it was around the same time last year (early March, last year, but still, Spring). Look where this rebound got her. A growing marriage that both parties want to be involved in. I'd say that's a success and a testament to how rebounding isn't necessarily destructive. Who knows, maybe A and D can go at it, and hook up, and we'll begin our poly family with him. I don't know. But the chances are good, considering the similarity of the circumstances and stuff.

So I'm rambling. Point is, did I make a good choice in offering that to her?

I know I will be very lonely tonight, sleeping by myself, and I will be very worried, and very much in pain, but it's an essential step on my road to personal recovery, for certain. If I'm ever to get used to the idea of her spending time with other men, and spending time away from me, I have to just grin and bear it, and slowly learn to be okay with it.

Should I, instead, be focussing on ways to rekindle our relationship in the shadow of this great depression? Should I be trying to find ways to synthesize NRE between my wife and me, or should I just let this go and see what happens? I really kind of just want this to happen, because I think it's the quickest and surest way to recovery, or at least feeling better in our situation, and because I can tell that part of her *really* wants it.

Am I making the right choice by encouraging her to consider staying overnight at this guy's house tonight, with the possibility of the two of them hooking up?

She has not, by the way, decided, yet, whether she is going to do it or not. I have asked her to decide by 16:00, since that's about when I'll be packing up at my job to leave and pick her up from home and take her to her job, at which point she will work, and then either go to his place, or not go to his place.
As for getting B to admit the truth? That has two factors. One, will it be the truth or just the truth as you/she/he wants to see it? And two, will it really help in any way to speed the healing process or will it just make it harder? Always remember, the truth, once set free, cannot be hidden again without undo harm.
Yeah, and that's why this is so painful, because my wife and I know that he either led us on, or is lying now. Either way, the truth was hidden, and now we're in a shitty situation, with nothing but words between us to help us cope. She is completely uninterested in even being touched normally, and she has to fight to be okay with cuddling. She just wants to withdraw completely, even from me.

And I'm left here wanting nothing other than to touch...somebody. I will settle for somebody besides her, I'm getting that desperate. I feel like I can't breathe, like not being able to touch somebody is drowning me. So I sit there, trying to help her, trying to get her to reach out, and it pains her to do so. So I want to be near her to help her feel better (lack of my presence makes it worse), but I don't get to touch her, because it hurts her. So I'm in pain too, and soon I won't have enough energy left over from fighting my demon to help her fight hers.

I'm almost willing to completely give in and let D handle this. Let her find NRE and get a boost, so that the resulting lift will leave room for me to put some supports in place, so this doesn't happen again, or at least not so badly. I'm so crushed, I'm so sad, and I'm so alone. And I feel sick again, not because I feel bad (though I do, but it's not the reason for this particular feeling), but because the one person I could count on to touch me or hold me or something can't. The one person I want to touch and hold doesn't want me to. And I don't have anybody else.

And I'm afraid that she'll get so swept up in a new relationship that she'll forget about me, and I'll be left alone trying to deal with my part of this without the help of the only person who can help. I can't be okay if I'm not touched.
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I hate to say it, but there is no "right" or "wrong" with this unless you do not give her any choice. She gave you the choice to say "no, absolutely not" and instead of giving her an ultimatum like that, you two worked on it and discussed it.

People have to make their own choices and sometimes all we can do is be there for them to share in their joy or comfort them if they fall. When one has kids, they have to learn this, but it applies to all people and relationships. At some point, we have to stand back and let people make their own mistakes and their own successes.

One should always be thinking of ways to make a relationship "better" whether mono or poly and no matter what stage. Even when I was pursuing Elric, I was trying to figure out not only how this effect my relationship with Cajun, but how I can use the NRE I was feeling to boost our relationship.

If I may be bold and give one bit of advice for your wife. If she does go, she should be strong enough to at least tell the guy that she would rather be platonic, at least for the night, as she doesn't want to hurt him or be hurt by a rebound. (despite the fact that you two met/hooked up as a rebound) And if he respects her and cares enough about her and what she is going through, he may be able to curtail his lust...if that is what she truly wants.

If she does go tonight, do your best to find something to do, something that she may not have wanted to participate in or something that you know will distract you enough that you won't be lying awake all night.
Thank you vandalin, I will share that advice with her. That way, she can kind of have the best of both worlds, in that she gets to spend time with him, without worrying about it becoming a rebound.

Cool. I wish I had thought of that, though there is definitely room for it. Just because she's staying the night doesn't necessarily mean she'll sleep with him. We did talk about her making that decision in the moment, but I don't think we really focussed on it. For her, the issue seemed to be more about leaving me alone at home.

As for me finding something to do, She won't be getting off work until around 11 or midnight, maybe even later if the kitchen is busy enough. So I'll have the possibility of clubbing, pretty much, as my only outlet. And a guy who looks lonely going to a club is a sure recipe for disaster. Basically, I'd be sitting there trying to look like I'm ok, and people would be glancing at me and talking about how weird I am. :p Or I could come back out to the suburbs and...I don't even know. I don't really have many active friendships, and most of those friends make plans for weekends and already have them set. So The suburbs isn't an option.

So the most likely thing is I'll come home, stay up for a bit on the webernetz, or read, or watch something, or play a game. But even more likely I'll just collapse in bed from exhaustion, and then sleep decently (because I can sleep, for the most part, no matter how I'm feeling). Then I'll wake up, and remember everything and a huge crushing wave of suck will land on me. That's how that kind of thing usually turns out.

I will have no choice, pretty much, but to tough it out.

Still no decision, so I don't know what I need to be preparing myself for yet. Man, a lot of me wants to tell her to go, and to stop trying to decide, and just do it for herself, and stop thinking about me for a little bit, and just relax and have a good time. Because that's probably what will be best for her right now. I don't know about long run, but at this point, all I want is her pain to go away and her smile to come back and her face to light back up. And I don't really care what I have to go through in order to bring that back. Besides, seeing her happy will make it worth the pain.
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I can't be okay if I'm not touched.

If you recall the book I mentioned before, Passionate Marriage, one of the skills, probably the most important skills that is mentioned is called "holding onto yourself". Being touched and comforted by others is wonderful but there is always a time when you may not have that option...what then?

"Going through gridlock in your marriage is much like climbing a mountain: if you feel in control of yourself, rather than trying to control the terrain and weather, you can relax and enjoy the climb. When you're tense and feeling out of control, the climb seems far more difficult. It helps if you keep in mind that you never really master the mountain - you master yourself in the process of climbing the mountain. The mountain remains the same; it is you who changes. And, remember, you have to climb several mountains before you feel confident of yourself - but you can't wait until you feel safe and secure before you venture out for your first climb."

Holding onto oneself helps to create and maintain the relationship with the one person we are never without, our self. By learning to soothe oneself, we can break out of being totally dependent on others, we can stand on our own two feet and be more for the people we care about, especially if they have not learned how to do this for themselves.

I hope I'm making some kind of sense, it's hard to summarize half a book in a couple paragraphs.

I, like you, love to touch and be touched. I am a very tactile person. Luckily I have not had to go through a time where Cajun has not wanted to touch or hug me. I have been in the position where I have not wanted to be touched though. At first, I would shrug off any attempt at physical comfort, but then just a hand on my back or knee or covering my hand would be comforting, just the warmth and knowledge that this person still loves me and wants to be with me can sometimes help bring me around. Like when you try to comfort a friend by placing a hand on their shoulder and giving it a gentle squeeze before letting go, you are letting them know you are there for them when they are ready. In the meantime, you need to comfort yourself and hold onto yourself.

It is hard, but in the long run will be worth it. Growing often is painful.
I'm working on diversifying, but making friends without relying on the crutch that is the internet, and without being in school or something, makes this very difficult. I can't even talk to most of my work friends, because I'm 22, and most of them are over 40.

:) of luck. Making friends, that count, can sometimes be as difficult as finding a good partner. Only thing I can say is, and this applies to finding partners too, surround yourself with as many people, as like minded as you feel you need, and you will find someone. (friend or otherwise) :)
By the way, she decided she would not be okay staying there without me, and decided not to do it. Though she said she might do it next week. Uncertain, is the future.
Next week would be preferable anyway, because I won't have far to go to be home (moving on Thursday). That, and I'll be near things to do without having to worry about finding a way to get home if I'm too tired or drunk. :p Thank the gods for the El.
My wife and I don't want this situation with B and C to bring about the end of what could have been an amazing family. Is there some way to use "I" language effectively to defend against somebody whose response to being upset is "I can't control your feelings, only you can do that?" Because, seriously, that's manipulative, projecting, unkind, irresponsible bullshit. Basically, she's all like "well you don't like it, tough, live with it. I get to manipulate you all I want, and you can't feel bad about it."

How do we deal with that?

The woman seems completely unwilling to take responsibility for her actions, her words, or her emotions, and instead painted us into such a crystal clear representation of "the bad guys" that she truly believes it, and she can convince her boyfriend of it, too.

Is there some way to use "I" language effectively to defend against somebody whose response to being upset is "I can't control your feelings, only you can do that?" Basically, she's all like "well you don't like it, tough, live with it. I get to manipulate you all I want, and you can't feel bad about it."

Why bother? I wouldn't waste my time or energy with someone that closed off from their emotions that they would even that let crap fall out of their mouth.

The self protective measure of "your emotions are your emotions" is one of the least compassionate and loving attitudes I have seen personally. What a shitty world this would be if everyone thought this way. If her boyfriend is so soft brained to buy into her crap, perhaps your wife could do better to find a more compatible and secure partner?

The core thing is, not only will your wife's partners affect you (already proven)...but her partners partners will also affect you indirectly or directly.

Sorry to sound so blunt and harsh but this shit makes my blood boil sometimes. Think I'll put this energy into polishing my bike LOL!

Take care my friend. Go out and find a girlfriend or something:rolleyes:
I'm so excited. It's weird how I turned around in such a short time, but I'm so excited. She's got a date with her new friend set for Wednesday this week! She'll be hanging out with him late (most likely crashing at his place, knowing her) and I'll pick her up Thursday morning (move-in day) before or after I drop off the first load of stuff to be moved. Awesome.

I'm actually really excited for her, and I look forward to hearing how it went.

It feels pretty good, this feeling. It's like the tight tingly feeling I'd get in my chest when I worried about things and when I was jealous, but it's not painful. It's like a whole bunch of adrenaline backed up trying to burst out. I can't wait. I get to spend the night alone, but I'll figure something out. Maybe I'll just go to bed early so Thursday comes that much sooner.

We'll see. :)

Did I mention I'm excited?
Maybe anticipating her coming home happy and excited and wanting to share it all with you? :)
Yeah, that's it. She and I talked about it while she was setting the date (I even did some of the texting for her, transcribing her speech to text because she was driving for part of it -- I also gave her a few clever quips and hooks to use in her conversation with him :p) and I made sure to impart to her how excited I was and how she should tell me as much as she's comfortable telling me when I pick her up. I really hope this turns out awesome. She really needs it. She's at a point where there's nothing I can do to recharge her, she needs a new, outside influence. A new friend. A new lover.

And I can only hope that she turns some of that energy around and puts it back into our relationship, because there are many issues sitting on ice that need to be addressed (though most of the big ones are out of the way, I have a few details I want to wrap up so I can make our relationship tight again).

I wish today was tomorrow. The waiting is killing me. :p

They'll be going to the park with a blanket to make out and, "you know, whatever." I think we all know what *he* has in mind. My wife and I certainly do.
I'm glad you are feeling better about this. It is amazing how sometimes feelings or reaction change like a coin being flipped. All chaos and then plop, there you go. :)

Hopefully she will get her batteries charging again and be able to "plug back into"" your relationship. That is what happened with Cajun and I when I first started exploring poly. The more love there is around the more love there is to share.

And we are here in case those boogey thoughts starts coming back tomorrow while she's out. <hugs>
Thank you. Even though I said I'd be staying away for a while, I'll probably hop on here and talk about how I'm feeling tonight. And also on Thursday, to see how I feel the morning after (I really think this will be the most awkward part), and again to see how I feel after I talk to my wife when I pick her up.