Partner wants restrictions on my dates

Evie

Mod
Yep, Amy's NRE has definitely worn off 😂

Mark is also a little terse about the whole thing, but I'm admittedly more empathetic with his stance. I see the whole issue arose over tinder which, as a dating app, I don't see why you wouldn't put that you are (ideologically) poly on. Makes vetting simpler. I don't see it as unreasonably controlling to expect that she really only seek partners who are upfront about being poly/poly friendly even if they are monoamorous but happy to be the leg of a V or other configuration.

I can see the issue about trusting a spouse to pick their own partners, but it's actually not a big ask to only fish in the poly pool. Do it right and it's still a big pool.
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
Thank you for more info.

Otherwise I will choose for my self to have some level of discretion over my metas because despite popular belief here, they are my metas too and I have right of consent over who I involve myself with.

Well, to me it is more like... "I can't pick my metas. I'm not the one dating them. But I DO pick my partners. And if you start dating weirdos? I can stop picking you out. I don't have to stay in your poly network if you start filling it up with weirdos."

I'm particular about the company I keep. I don't like being around drama people. Maybe we mean roughly the same thing even though we express it different ways.

Let me repeat back what I understand in my own words. Please correct me if I get bits wrong.
  • Amy and Mark do/do not live together?
  • Amy is currently unemployed and trying to wrap up college.
  • Mark is footing all the bills for both people. (?)
  • Started out open/poly friendly and decided to temporarily close the relationship during NRE phase.
  • Have been together two years and starting to talk about poly lifestyle and opening the relationship the again. (Actually dating during pandemic? Or just talking about it for now?)


  • Mark prefers Amy only date people who are up front about being poly in their Tindr dating profiles.
    • Marks hopes this increases the odds for compatible metas who will be trustworthy, respectful, etc.
    • Marks want his nesting (?) relationship that he puts the most energy and resources into to be on the same page as him in terms of poly idealogy. (Not just the metas, but partners too. Which means Amy right now.)
  • Alternately, Mark is willing to detangle some with Amy and step it back.
    • Continue to date Amy, and share time over common interests only.
    • NOT be nesting (?) together any more
    • NOT provide financial support any more
  • They can also break up entirely
Then on the other side...
Amy says she gets where he is coming from. She also thinks it is controlling because____.
Amy would like to put her Tinder profile up
  • Amy wants to be able to date people who don't necessarily out themselves as poly on their Tindr profile pages.
  • She would like to determine compatibility based on ____ instead. (But doesn't actually list the _____. )
Am I getting that right? If so...

I guess I'd like to hear from Amy.

What's the controlling part? Because Mark is stating where he stands. What he is and is not up for. Is there something else?

You would like to determine compatibility based on ____ instead. What is the ____?

What about just stepping it back with Mark? Cuz he seems willing to reconfigure and step it back a bit. Date and enjoy each other over common interests and have that be the extent of the relationship. Then you can poly date how you want with the Tindr people, right? You are not willing to consider this because _____?

Or break up? Then you can poly date how you want with the Tindr people, right? I guess if some other idea cannot be found, this might be where it lands.

Right now Mark is at least putting possible solutions on the table. They might not work out in the end, but he's putting out possibilities.

What are the possibilities on the table from Amy?

Galagirl
 
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Tinwen

Active member
The problem is Amy wants to have her cake and eat it too. She wants full autonomy regarding who she brings into the relationship yet does not want an autonomous relationship with me.

I can be flexible, I have offered to reconfigure my relationship with Amy to one of complete personal independence, as such I will stop providing Amy with financial support and we can enjoy each other over common interests and have that be the extent of the relationship. I wont make an investment, monetary or otherwise in a relationship that is not give and take. (Because I am a "controlling" apparently.)
"I am making a financial investment, so it's my way in the argument?"
You two will have to clarify the terms of the financial support given. A place of dependence with "strings attached" is not only uncomfortable, but destructive longterm. The deal should be somehow clear.
 

Magdlyn

Moderator
Staff member
I've had a lot of experience with polyamory, going back to 1999 (before dating apps lol).

I have found since starting with dating apps in 2008 that (some/not all/but many) men will say anything to get laid. They'll say what they think you want to hear. They'll compliment you, they'll lie about other current relationships, they'll say their wife or gf is fine with them dating others, even though they aren't sure she is, they'll say they're straight when they're really bi (not that I mind bi men, but some women do), they'll say they want something casual, but are open to long-term dating, etc., etc.

Most importantly, they'll say they're polyamorous, when all that means is they want a quick shag or two with no strings attached. They don't understand what polyamory is, but they know it's a trendy term, so they'll put it on their profile. They don't understand that polyamorous people can be committed without being exclusive. They just want to get laid.

They are under the mistaken impression that polyamorous women are sluts who will have sex with anyone, while the truth of the matter is, they are male sluts, who don't give a rat's ass about whom they fuck, they just want a warm wet hole or 2 or 3, to have a quick release in, and then run. They want a whore who isn't a whore. They'll pay for your dinner, instead of just putting a hundred bucks on the dresser. That's classier to them, haha.

So, my point is, men may say they're polyamorous on their profiles, without knowing or caring what the hell it even means. Therefore, it's hardly a safe standard to rely upon. It's possible to have much better relationships with mono but poly-friendly men, as a leg of a V. They might not want to date more than one woman. They might be at their emotional limit with one person. They might be introverted and need lots of alone-time, with no nesting partner in their way. They might be caring for children or an aging relative. They might travel a lot, or have a large family or group of friends. They might have a couple of time-consuming hobbies or side gigs.

It's not important that it be a second romantic relationship that's keeping them busy. A man with lots of interests and friends won't be a cowboy and try to rope off your woman, if that's what Polymark is afraid of.

It's always a bit weird when both members of a couple come on this board and continue their fight and their vitriol in public, trying to get others on one side or the other of the disagreement. A counselor might be a better mediator.
 

Marcus

Well-known member
I would recommend to anyone with the desire to maintain a very high level of autonomy to abstain from financial support from others. Nothing is more freeing than self sufficiency.

For sure. Absolute dependence on someone, financial or otherwise, can be a breeding ground for resentment for all parties involved. Some people can do it (so I'm told) but at least some of the time you end up with deep resentment that looks like this:

When I entered into a relationship I also consented to certain levels of controlling behavior from Amy. Such as, my own financial autonomy as I have redirected some resources and bestowed them onto Amy as she works towards her college degree. It is also a difficult time for her as she is unemployed due to the pandemic. Though no one would call Amy "controlling" for asking for support in order to spend more time with me and take the relationship to the next level. But that is how the classical double standard goes.

This particular red flag tells me that this person might have been on board with offering the financial support, but they expected some level of obedience in return. To drag this out and parade it around as leverage is the sign of an association that has gone fully sideways. I suspect both of these people got balls deep into this association without doing a lot of thinking about whether or not they were a good match for each other.
 

SEASONEDpolyAgain

Active member
Seems to me like the guy is saying if you want to do the nesting thing or primary thing, you need to be compatible for that and picking people who list a poly identity in even the shortest profile is part of being compatible with him.

I'd be quite concerned if someone had a massive issue with this but then I probably wouldn't raise it. But hearing that it is this BIG ISSUE AND RAAAAAHHHH would be weird.
 

FallenAngelina

Well-known member
I don't see any controlling behavior going on here, just incompatibility and resentment on both sides. Both people seem to feel wronged.
Above all I see this:


It sounds to me like the polyamory "discussion" you two seem to be having is merely a distraction. I would say that the two of you have some pretty big problems and I'm skeptical that polyamory has anything to do with it.
 

Polycurious_Adam

Active member
I think the financial support might be a big piece of this tangle, for sure. Financial dependence can easily breed resentment if there is not ample communication about equity in the relationship. Someone dependent on another for education, shelter, food, clothing, etc... can very easily feel controlled, even if the benefactor never even thinks about using leverage. As a hyperbolic example, there was an episode of Big Bang Theory in which Sheldon loaned Penny a substantial (from Penny's perspective) sum of money, with the only stipulation being that she pay him back when she can. Penny felt hunted every time Sheldon was nearby. He was not demanding or impatient; he hadn't changed at all! It still hurt their relationship until Penny paid him back.

Mark, why are you financing Amy's education? Is it because you want to provide her with an opportunity to live a more productive life? Would that motivation change if she wasn't sleeping with you? Are you investing in her future, or yours? I'm not trying to call you a sex slaver - it's a common quid pro quo, and even kind of makes sense in an exclusive, life-long relationship. I don't want you to answer me, I just want to shine a light on the co-ownership that you have to let go of if you hope to resume a healthy poly lifestyle.

Amy, how independent are you prepared to be, practically speaking? I wouldn't presume that you aren't capable of taking care of yourself, but why is Mark paying for your education? If you can't pay for it yourself, then how tragic would it be if Mark suddenly withdrew his support? That's not a rhetorical question - how much would that hurt you? Would you be okay? I think the best thing would be to step back slowly, together.

Both of you have invested a lot of yourselves over the past two years, right? Mark will be hard-pressed to let go of the sense of ownership he's fostered through emotional and financial investment. That will make him over-interested in Amy's other relationships. Amy has had two years of being supported, and may therefore have felt like she's been under Mark's thumb, expected to deliver, to perform, to be worthy of that support. She's going to be drawn to any hope of independence that she has access to, and that might make her covetous of her privacy regarding her other relationships.

There's going to be a lot of friction, and sense of loss on both sides of this transitioning relationship. You should both consider the ramifications of a possible split in your future. Only if you're confident that you can stand on your own two feet without the other should you consider jumping straight back into poly. You have to have an inner sense of security when you stop relying on a mono relationship for that.

Now, this is all just my impression of things, based on what I've read about the situation, and I'm probably projecting a lot of myself into the advice. I hope that long-winded rant had something helpful in it!
 

Polymark

New member
I've had a lot of experience with polyamory, going back to 1999 (before dating apps lol).

I have found since starting with dating apps in 2008 that (some/not all/but many) men will say anything to get laid. They'll say what they think you want to hear. They'll compliment you, they'll lie about other current relationships, they'll say their wife or gf is fine with them dating others, even though they aren't sure she is, they'll say they're straight when they're really bi (not that I mind bi men, but some women do), they'll say they want something casual, but are open to long-term dating, etc., etc.

Most importantly, they'll say they're polyamorous, when all that means is they want a quick shag or two with no strings attached. They don't understand what polyamory is, but they know it's a trendy term, so they'll put it on their profile. They don't understand that polyamorous people can be committed without being exclusive. They just want to get laid.

Exactly what I want to avoid.

They are under the mistaken impression that polyamorous women are sluts who will have sex with anyone, while the truth of the matter is, they are male sluts, who don't give a rat's ass about whom they fuck, they just want a warm wet hole or 2 or 3, to have a quick release in, and then run. They want a whore who isn't a whore. They'll pay for your dinner, instead of just putting a hundred bucks on the dresser. That's classier to them, haha.

In our culture, it's classier to most women too! But yeah, I do not want people with this mindset in my "orbit" as Marcus eloquently put it.

So, my point is, men may say they're polyamorous on their profiles, without knowing or caring what the hell it even means. Therefore, it's hardly a safe standard to rely upon.

When shopping you go by what the label says and your instincts. I personally strongly disagree that "many" men would place the word "poly" in an online dating profile just to get laid. If you were a man you would understand that placing "poly" in your profile is just about the worst thing you can do for quantity of matches. It ranks right up there with "night time stalker", and "serial killer clown". A man places the word poly in a profile and interest turns to crickets. Why? Because poly is a small community. Which is why from a perspective of statistics, men who put that in there profile are overhwelminly going to be poly to a far far far higher degree than the opposite; (poly men with "mono" in a profile). Men with mono in there profile will be statistically overwhelmingly mono.

It's possible to have much better relationships with mono but poly-friendly men, as a leg of a V. They might not want to date more than one woman. They might be at their emotional limit with one person. They might be introverted and need lots of alone-time, with no nesting partner in their way. They might be caring for children or an aging relative. They might travel a lot, or have a large family or group of friends. They might have a couple of time-consuming hobbies or side gigs.

Again, I'm not looking for "possible" I am looking for probable.

Mark, why are you financing Amy's education? Is it because you want to provide her with an opportunity to live a more productive life? Would that motivation change if she wasn't sleeping with you? Are you investing in her future, or yours? I'm not trying to call you a sex slaver - it's a common quid pro quo, and even kind of makes sense in an exclusive, life-long relationship. I don't want you to answer me, I just want to shine a light on the co-ownership that you have to let go of if you hope to resume a healthy poly lifestyle.

Because I thought we were a team and I was investing into our future together. Because I love her and believe in her and our partnership. Amy has a visceral reaction to anything that can be construed as controlling behavior. I am looking for a partnership that can come to the table and negotiate to create a poly circle that makes everyone happy and comfortable. This was merely our first attempt at having a discussion about it. But your endless analysis is falling on def ears because Amy has shut down and doesn't want to discuss it.

It's not like I would "ideally" like to be paying Amy's way. And its not like Amy would "ideally" be required to choose romantic partners that have the best chance of success in our circle. To me, its a small concession on both sides and feels intrinsically fair. I don't understand why everyone is calling me controlling when the investment into the relationship is two sided; but I will hear rationalizations on the topic.
 

Polymark

New member
Seems to me like the guy is saying if you want to do the nesting thing or primary thing, you need to be compatible for that and picking people who list a poly identity in even the shortest profile is part of being compatible with him.

Exactly! But you all are focusing way to much on the profile thing. There is a bigger picture at play here and the profile was simply a topic of conversation that upset Amy.
 

dingedheart

Well-known member
I think the bottomline for Mark is he thought he could buy leverage / rule that would in the end give him the illusion of security. Unfortunately IMO this isn’t about money or loyalty or the labels of being mono or poly it’s not trusting that Amy isn’t going to fall for some mono guys mind trick and steal her away. AND equally silly is the notion that she won’t fall for some poly guy and want to do the same thing or at minimum reallocate her time and attention to better fit her new relationship. I can give give you the names / links where this has happened over and over.

Im not saying you don’t have the right to want what you want or that wanting that is even controlling what I’m saying is the premise for wanting it is flawed and perhaps condescending. AS Mags has pointed out there’s an awful lot of lying scumbags out there willing to lie to get in someone’s pants and I can’t believe she the only woman that’s discovered this fact or at least shared it with others and yet dating and mating and seeking each other’s company seems to be a thriving business whether your mono or poly.

SO the question is how much is this protect yourself from being hurt or left and how much is this you trying to protect poor little Amy from some scumbag that’s going to pump and dump. ?
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
PolyMark said:
Because I thought we were a team and I was investing into our future together. Because I love her and believe in her and our partnership. Amy has a visceral reaction to anything that can be construed as controlling behavior. I am looking for a partnership that can come to the table and negotiate to create a poly circle that makes everyone happy and comfortable. This was merely our first attempt at having a discussion about it. But your endless analysis is falling on def ears because Amy has shut down and doesn't want to discuss it.

That's pretty much it.

Until Amy solves the part in blue....

Amy has a visceral reaction to anything that can be construed as controlling behavior.

I don't think you will get to the part in purple with her.

I am looking for a partnership that can come to the table and negotiate to create a poly circle that makes everyone happy and comfortable.

If Amy has that reaction a lot and/or shuts down a lot and then cannot have productive conversation with you? I don't know how you can negotiate something.

It's not like I would "ideally" like to be paying Amy's way. And its not like Amy would "ideally" be required to choose romantic partners that have the best chance of success in our circle. To me, its a small concession on both sides and feels intrinsically fair. I don't understand why everyone is calling me controlling when the investment into the relationship is two sided; but I will hear rationalizations on the topic.

Unless there's more behaviors going on than what was posted?

I'm with Evie and Fallen Angelina. I don't find you stating where you stand and what you are and are not up for at this point in time especially controlling. People are not mind readers. How else would they know if you do not say?

It is trying to sort out what lines up and what does not, and if there's compatibility here or what.

And if you are trying to grow trust with Amy? Kinda hard if you can't even talk.

Amy could have suggested a counterproposal like "Alright, if I agree to only poly people on Tinder for the first ___ mos, and you see and trust that I'm not picking out weirdos? If the dating pool turns out to be slim pickings, then I want to be able to expand out."

Like keep negotiating until you arrive at something both can deal with. Since it is pandemic and this is just the first conversation, maybe both take a break to cool off and regroup before trying to talk again?

Galagirl
 
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icesong

Moderator
Staff member
I do not want people with this mindset in my "orbit" as Marcus eloquently put it.
And do you not trust @polyamy to be able to select against those people without it being a question of exactly what they have written in their profile? To some large degree I think the opposite of "control" isn't "freedom", it's trust. And setting what seem to be, at least from what's been written here, fairly shallow initial standards for someone else's partners... not even partners, _potential_ partners... isn't very trusting.

I mean, I get why you're concerned about dating monos - as I've mentioned previously on the site, one of the reasons that Joan lives with us now is that her ex-in-all-but-law husband started dating someone who was basically mono and chose her in the long run. 'Course, that is the exception that proves the rule as when the two of them started dating, she stated and I think even believed that she was polyamorous, and was living with a partner at the time. Point is, labels aren't going to save you - the only way to build a long term happy partnership is to trust that your partner has your best interests at heart and will act accordingly. Making rules to try to ensure that just complicates the issue.
 

HaloOnFire

Active member
And do you not trust @polyamy to be able to select against those people without it being a question of exactly what they have written in their profile?


In a word, no. Quite frankly, all of his answers smack of deliberate roadblocks as opposed any actual "boundaries", because he is paying for her education. Nothing quite like financial blackmail to grease the skids, amirite?

For example (and my favorite part, imo) is his "When I entered into a relationship I also consented to certain levels of controlling behavior from Amy. Such as, my own financial autonomy as I have redirected some resources and bestowed them onto Amy as she works towards her college degree." quite literally shows @polyamy and everyone else, just exactly who he is as a person. No, my dude. You CHOSE to do that. OWN. YOUR. CHOICES. Do not put the onus of that decision off to Amy because you chose to financially "bestow" your money on her and now you don't like what she has to say about choosing her own partners. Quite frankly, I am in complete accord with @dingedheart and that he thought he could leverage his way into security.


And IMO, if he speaks to @polyamy the way he has replied to some of the other posters, no wonder she shuts down. I would too if I had some sanctimonious jack wagon using his money as a bully pulpit in order to badger me into doing things his way.


Edited for spelling
 
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Tinwen

Active member
Point is, labels aren't going to save you - the only way to build a long term happy partnership is to trust that your partner has your best interests at heart and will act accordingly. Making rules to try to ensure that just complicates the issue.
This
his answers smack of deliberate roadblocks as opposed any actual "boundaries"
and this.

@Polymark I've read and understood your statistical reasoning, and the rule still doesn't make sense. Relationships always go a different way then you'd imagine based on the dating profile, plus the dating profile rule isn't a good expression of where you actually stand. You'd like to build a network with poly people only (to the exclusion of cheaters and mono's, I assume). This is totally understandable. But is it Amy's goal too? If not, that's where you need to start. If yes, why not trust her with dating?
 

icesong

Moderator
Staff member
In a word, no. Quite frankly, all of his answers smack of deliberate roadblocks as opposed any actual "boundaries", because he is paying for her education. Nothing quite like financial blackmail to grease the skids, amirite?

<snip>

And IMO, if he speaks to @polyamy the way he has replied to some of the other posters, no wonder she shuts down. I would too if I had some sanctimonious jack wagon using his money as a bully pulpit in order to badger me into doing things his way.

Based on the words written here, you're totally right. That said, I was going with the assumption that people are better than their words sometimes express, and trying to talk to that better self...
 

HaloOnFire

Active member
Based on the words written here, you're totally right. That said, I was going with the assumption that people are better than their words sometimes express, and trying to talk to that better self...

My husband and I, along with a friend of mine, discussed this thread for quite some time yesterday. My husband's and friend's hot take is that while @Polymark may have initially given the money out of love and care with no strings attached, he is now attempting to retroactively place terms and conditions on that money. In other words, "I have altered the deal. Pray I do not alter it further", springs immediately to mind. She now has a financial sword of Damocles over her head and poly or not, that is not a loving thing to do to someone.

Just my two copper. :)
 

Inaniel

Active member
It could, or could not be malicious... Couples often redefine relationships after apparent compatibility issues are realized, I think that is a healthy behavior. Upholding misery is foolish for all. If finances are part of the relationship, it is bound to be on the table for renegotiation just like every other aspect of the relationship... You added the "no strings attached" to the conversation to strengthen your perspective, however it was never explicitly stated by Amy or Mark... My pointing that out is not meant to chastise, I am pointing it out because sometimes subtle additions presented as facts ignite into fodder for the fire...
 
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HaloOnFire

Active member
It could, or could not be malicious... Couples often redefine relationships after apparent compatibility issues are realized, I think that is a healthy behavior. Upholding misery is foolish for all. If finances are part of the relationship, it is bound to be on the table for renegotiation just like every other aspect of the relationship... You added the "no strings attached" to the conversation to strengthen your perspective, however it was never explicitly stated by Amy or Mark... My pointing that out is not meant to chastise, I am pointing it out because sometimes subtle additions presented as facts ignite into fodder for the fire...


This is true and it is quite telling that neither of them have stated otherwise. And I may be the only one in the room with this thought/opinion, however, I also find it extraordinarily telling that he hasn't been very quick to state what Amy herself has brought to the table since she's been unemployed due to the state of the world as it is right now. I am unsure as to why Amy hasn't spoken up about that, but that too, is telling.


Additionally, I am merely going off of what Mark has stated. ""When I entered into a relationship I also consented to certain levels of controlling behavior from Amy. Such as, my own financial autonomy as I have redirected some resources and bestowed them onto Amy as she works towards her college degree."" to be specific. That sentence sticks in my craw to NO end. Bestow? Is his serious with this?! How very Noblesse oblige of you, my dude. While it is a known fact that all relationships are give and take, regardless of their nature, they are not an accounting ledger that has to be completely and totally balanced in order to have everything "equal". Fair does not mean equal a lot of the time. So really, it boils down to do you want things equal or fair? As it stands right now, Mark has all of the perceived power in the relationship due to his deigning to "bestow" his money on his SO, so that she can go to school to better herself. IMO, Amy needs to find a job and get that yoke off of her neck, stat. That would be a good way to unbalance, or rather rebalance, this equation.
 
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