Recovery from toxic metamour: advice to keep relationship going?


Active member
It's too bad that kittykate has left the building because she didn't like Seasoned's advice. She split before other people could chime in! Meera's experience sounded so similar.

Very similar! And I forgot to mention that before my passive ex dumped me, he spent about three months trying to get ME to dump him (so that he could remain passive). I was so naive I didn't catch on to what he was doing, I was just increasingly bewildered by his meaner and meaner behavior toward me. Finally I had to tell him that if he wanted to break up with me, he needed to do it himself, I wasn't going to do it for him. He finally agonizing month later.

I'd like to say he was the last passive guy I dated, but there was one more. He is now happily married to a controlling woman, LOL. It took me until I was 30 to figure out how to identify, and not date, this type of passive dude.


Active member
i honestly think my partner just doesn't know what he personally wants, so he lets his partners tell him, which is why i am not sure if he is suited for non-hierarchal poly as you describe.
Someone who doesn't know what he wants is not suited for any kind of healthy relationship.*

However, it's expedient and easy to blame our partners for the big problems, but the truth is that if one partner is wobbly about what he wants, he'll always end up with someone who has equally bad boundaries - and those bad boundaries result in either doormat behavior or super controlling behavior. You and your meta took on these rolls. The rolls are different but the underlying issue is the same. All three of you are not clear about what you want. Your words may perhaps be clear, but your (all three of you) demeanor and behavior does not follow up. People who are emotionally healthy and clear about themselves (AKA have healthy boundaries) do not end up with partners who are unsure. Exploration of limits from a solid base of self understanding is very different than wobbly personal boundaries. "J" is not on stable ground about his own values and so the partners he attracts will be as equally unstable in this area.

The productive way forward for you is not to imagine that things will stabilize with "C" out of the way, nor is it to look to "J" for healing and stability. The productive way forward is for you to focus on what you want, what you value, what you're all about. The clearer you are about what you value, the more you're able to partner up with others who reflect this clarity - and you don't get to clarity by talking about it, you get there by doing the internal emotional work. You will find much more fulfillment moving forward if you base your quest on firming up your own values rather than basing your quest on keeping "J" in your life.

*Don't be fooled into thinking that D/S relationships are exempt from this. The most emotionally damaging of these involve people who have murky boundaries. The best of these involve people who know exactly who they are and what they want. Power exchange is just another option of relationship type, it's not an excuse for bad boundaries and codependent control issues. Mono, poly, kinky, gay, straight - every healthy relationship requires that the individuals know who they are and stand by their own values.
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