Secondary Travels

bluemerle

New member
I am in a relationship with D. He is a nice guy and he is my first poly relationship. I am a secondary in the relationship. His wife is primary and she has a bf that is her secondary.

Anyway, things are going okay. We are getting along, having fun, have things enough in common to make our time together very enjoyable. Both in and out of bed.

There is one hitch. Okay. Two.

One is his not communicating - text, calls, emails. It is like pulling teeth to get him to respond to me. I mentioned this about a month ago and it got better for a week or so. We are both on goggle chat and can chat a little at work. Even that little bit cheers me up.

I have mentioned this to a couple friends and they just said "oh that's the way guys are".

Not sure how to solve this one.

So the bigger hitch is availability and how I get wind of it.

In the middle of August D, his wife and I all sat down at the table after dinner and discussed various aspects. I felt good about this because of some of the thoughts that you all had helped me with. We also went thru the calendar and reviewed what days/weekend they were busy and which ones I was and figured out dates that way.

Now it has all gone for naught. He started a new job and needed to devote time to that. Had training classes and such. Okay. so we skipped a week and then the next week made up for it by having our first ever overnighter. Actually two nights. It was a great weekend and got the NRE revved up.

Then. Well. Then we were to get together and he got sick. Couldn't make it that night (thursday) and then they went away for the weekend and now I am looking at another quiet week and will see him on Saturday - which again is when he is "available" as he puts it. Saturday will be another overnight visit, but he will have to leave by noon to meet his wife to go fabric shopping for a costume they are making.

I am feeling a bit, well, I guess put out. Maybe I really don't get what being a secondary is all about. Maybe he is looking for more like a FWB or such. And wants to call it gf or secondary. I am also not looking to move in with them, or mess up their marriage or become his primary. No.

I am thinking that any dates he has with me has to be approved by wife. When she is on a date with her boyfriend, or is out doing something else, then it's okay. Well, that's not what I really signed on for. And I don't know for certain that it is that way, but it seems like it.

The thing is, I really enjoy his company when we are together. And all the stuff above aside, I don't want to risk messing up our relationship - at least not till I can give it time to work bumps out.

I gchatted with him briefly on tuesday and told him I wanted to talk a bit to 'process' some concerns. I want to hash out some time scheduling. Back when we first talked about it at the table, the wife pulled out her schedule book and gave information for the few weeks but then went on to say that her time changes and she can't plan more than a few days ahead. :confused:

I am actually wondering if maybe I need to find another person that could help fill a need that D is not -but I am not sure exactly what that is, other than a little more attention.
 

sdguitarguy

New member
I appreciate your difficulties in this situation. I am in a primary relationship and have a secondary girlfriend. My girlfriend and I have had some similar issues.

For us, communication and clarity are really important. I don't buy the "that's the way guys are". Relationships take work. It's common to have different understandings and expectations but without communication, there is no way to resolve them.

Next, scheduling is our biggest challenge. We have google calendars that we share so we can see what's available and what's not.

And, unfortunately, sometimes stuff just happens and it's not anyone's fault, frustrating as that is. My primary got a new job and it completely changed her schedule. That affected my schedule (for better and worse) which affected my ability to get together with my secondary. I'm just saying that sometimes things happen even when we all have the best of intentions.

So, I wouldn't give up on this quite yet. It's hard to find people that you click with. It seems like you could ask D some of these questions directly about his expectation of your relationship with him.
 

Vinccenzo

New member
I would caution to assume the wife is behind it unless you have evidence. My husband's ex came up against things she wanted VS what he offered and assumed he only offered what I allowed. It get it; it would hurt more to believe he offered only what he wanted when things didn't line up with her wants. But that was exactly what was happening.
Talk to him about it, but it will give you a clearer picture of whether or not he is the guy for you if you pin his actions solely on him. Maybe your suspicion is right? If it is due to his wife restricting him, it is still HIM complying.
 

Dagferi

Active member
Ditto to what Vinccenzo said re the wife being behind his lack of availability.

He just may not be available or not looking to see you as often as you would like. He has other commitments. Probably a household to run along with all that goes with it. It takes a lot of time.

I just started working a full time job with A LOT of responsibility. It has seriously cut into my time with Murf. Plus my kids are back in school. My other husband works second shift right now so many weeknights I have kids stuff to attend to. The kids while getting more independent they now have more activities that they are apart of. Add on pets, grocery shopping, and Murf's crappy work schedule there just isn't enough hours in my day.

As for the communication issue... Some folks don't need to talk to someone every day or very often. My dad is that way. If life is the same old same old he doesn't need to talk about nothing. Doesn't mean my Dad doesn't love me he just isn't one for small talk. I am the same way.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Hi bluemerle,

It sounds like both of the hitches you mentioned were communication-related. You need more communication with your boyfriend (and his wife?) about scheduling, and you need more communication from your boyfriend in general.

I get the impression that your boyfriend isn't into communication as much as you are. He is used to maintaining radio silence, so to speak. Learning to communicate more would be counterintuitive for him. So, it's no surprise if he does better for a week or so, then lapses into "bad" habits. You'll probably have to keep reminding him if you want him to keep it up.

As far as scheduling is concerned, first of all it is understandable when getting sick or starting a new job affects his availability. There is also a chance that, as a secondary, you are getting the "leftovers" of his time. It may not be what you thought you signed on for, but it may be what he thought you signed on for.

The only way to know for sure is to sit down and talk to him about it. And maybe you don't trust that he'll tell the whole truth? but I don't know that there's much you can do besides take his word on things. Unless/until, like Vinccenzo said, you have evidence.

There's a "Bill of Rights for Secondaries" you can use, in case that would help.

Sincerely,
Kevin T.
 

bluemerle

New member
Thanks for the input.

You know some of getting it right in my head is just being able to type it out, formulate the thought and figure out whether it is an issue that is overworked in my head (overthinking is something I do well) or something that needs to really be addressed.

Vinccenzo - the thought of not assuming it's the wife is a good one. I had been doing just that and it was because of how he worded things - but you are right that's not fair and it needs to be discussed. I want him to know that I don't have issues with him needing him time. That in fact, we all have times like that. To decompress and just chill out. It's more an information need. I can handle it if I can understand it. Thanks for sharing that personal example.

And I wasn't complaining about losing time to him being sick or his new job. That does happen. I get that. It's not so much the missing a date night that is the issue it's just that when it happens, there isn't another one set up again for another week and very little communication about any new days.

I spoke to a friend of mine about this today while we were getting a pedicure and she told me that I am part of the problem with the communication because I want responses right away, on my time, not being patient. She was telling me how annoying I can be with multiple emails. I stopped to think about it and I have come to admit that I oversaturate. I am going to try and do better to all my friends with this.

sdguitarguy - I am going to suggest google calendars. That may help.
 

A2Poly

New member
I spoke to a friend of mine about this today while we were getting a pedicure and she told me that I am part of the problem with the communication because I want responses right away, on my time, not being patient. She was telling me how annoying I can be with multiple emails. I stopped to think about it and I have come to admit that I oversaturate. I am going to try and do better to all my friends with this.

I do that too, especially because I know he has his phone on him all the time. So I KNOW he got the notification, so why (oh why??!!) hasn't he responded?! But the truth is, life gets in the way. Wife, family, job, hobbies, friends, all of it takes time, and immediate responses aren't always possible. It took us hours today to have a simple text conversation because things (at both ends) just kept getting in the way.

I'm in an LDR, so while I've thought about sharing calendars, the truth is I don't want to know every second where he is, because 90% or more of those seconds the answer is 'not with me'. Sharing calendars can be fraught with as much trouble as they solve, so tread lightly!
 

nycindie

Active member
I'm in an LDR, so while I've thought about sharing calendars, the truth is I don't want to know every second where he is, because 90% or more of those seconds the answer is 'not with me'. Sharing calendars can be fraught with as much trouble as they solve, so tread lightly!
People can share Google calendars without letting others see exactly what they are doing. It can just indicate time slots as "Busy" or "Available" without any more detail than that.
 

A2Poly

New member
People can share Google calendars without letting others see exactly what they are doing. It can just indicate time slots as "Busy" or "Available" without any more detail than that.

Yes, and that would be 'treading lightly' :)
 

bluemerle

New member
I have just started using the calendar on my phone. Not quite up to speed on google calendars but was going to throw it out as a suggestion.

I did take a proactive step and emailed to let him know what to expect from me time wise this weekend. I let him know I had a commitment in the morning (cable repair) and then wanted to do some shopping for shoes for work, but wanted to see if I could drop some food off for dinner before I went shopping. Then, added that I had another meeting at noon on sunday so I would be out of there around 11.

My friend suggested this so that he had a clear idea of my availability and it was in a nice way.

He responded within the hour and said that he had yoga in the morning but would love to go shopping with me in the afternoon. And we could cook something up together.

That made me feel better. How can it be that just a few lines of some acknowledgement can do that.

Anyway, I am thinking of talking to him a bit maybe after dinner and before we watch Empire Strikes Back on his uber 60" screen. We are both Star Wars geeks. :)
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Sounds like those hitches are starting to get ironed out ... Glad to hear it.
 

bluemerle

New member
Sounds like those hitches are starting to get ironed out ... Glad to hear it.

I think just coming here to get the emotion out and write things so that I can clear my head helps a lot. Along with input from others that may have experienced this. I am glad for this forum.:)
 

bluemerle

New member
So here I am. Home. Alone.

For the last few days we have been planning to have the weekend together. First it was friday night, then I got an email saying he was wrong, it needs to be saturday night. Fine. No biggie. Then I got an email a day later saying that his place is a mess with halloween decorations all over. And could we meet at my place. Okay, that's fine too. we will meet up and do something and then make dinner and watch a movie. He was even going to go to a Poly discussion group meet up tomorrow with me. I thought that was so cool. Perfect.

And now he is feeling sick again. It has been a whole day of 'hanging on' waiting. First he was going to be here at noon, then he texted me to say because he wanted a shower and some lunch (I had made some chicken salad for lunch up here) so he could meet me at 3pm. Then at 3:30 he texted me and said he felt dizzy and wanted to lay down. I called him back right away and asked if there was anything I could do and could I just come down there to take care -make dinner, rub his back or something and got a 'no, i am too grumpy, I don't want to have to be 'on' or nice. You don't want to be around me.' Then he said he would need to eat dinner so maybe we could meet then. I don't know. I feel like my whole day has been wasted just waiting. Now I am waiting again to see whether he feels good or not. I don't know. I am pretty upset and feel like I shouldn't be because he is sick. It's not on purpose. He said he really wanted to get together. It's all too new. I don't know what to think/feel. I am swinging all over. The worst thoughts are does he really want to end this but can't so he wants me to? can I tell him, if he wants to see me, to call me when he is feeling better. That is horrible. I don't really want that. I really want to be able to reach out to him. Am I not supposed to do that? I want to be in his life enough to help him. I guess being tolerant is the way to do that. But damn, it is a turmoil in my head right now. It was a beautiful day and I was very very excited. I haven't seen him since Sept. 20th. I am going to go cry a little and wait to see what happens for dinner I guess.
 
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bluemerle

New member
I really just needed to vent. I am in a state of mixed emotions and just want him to feel better, and also want to be able to help him somehow. I feel so helpless when I get the plans set and then they get canceled. I know, I know it happens. I have been thinking about what if it was me. :( I need a hug.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
[hug from afar]

I have to admit, this is starting to sound like he is avoiding you. Maybe not even doing it consciously but come on ... one excuse after another? Is he really sick? Does he kind of want to be sick? I wonder.

How long have you been seeing him, and how many times per month have you actually gotten together with him? I want to get a feel for how much of a relationship you're working with here. If you're seeing him once a week, that's not a lot of relationship and it might be worth looking for other things (e.g. people) to fill your time with.

Yes I am beginning to be inclinded to tell him to just contact you when he is ready to actually come over and see you. Unless/until you hear from him, you may want to assume that you're on your own.

Probably not what you wanted to hear, I know. We'll see if he shows up for dinner.
 

bluemerle

New member
Thanks for the hug.

This hasn't been long. Enough that I can pretty much count the dates with two hands.

We met beginning of July, and had one date and then went into a meet with wife, get things talked about with all three of us and I thought things were cool. Then we got together twice on thursday nights (wife is out with her guy and he has the time available) and then he went away for a weeks vacation.

They came back and we saw each other two more weeks in a row. Everything seemed fine. I cooked dinner one time, and the other time we went out for bbcue. That was the night his wife called while we were at the restaurant. She was upset because her boyfriend canceled because he was sick and she had some drama going on at work. So we went back to his place and the three of us watched a movie. I was trying to show some support to her and show him that there was some depth to me more than just the great sex. lol. A good friend of mine asked me why did I even stay. Well, I stayed because she was so upset and needed some human contact/support. I don't know. Anyway. We didn't have any kind of date to make up for that. I didn't know what to think. I mean I didn't even know if that should be an option. It is all too new to me.

Then Labor day weekend he was away again with wife fixing up their rental house a few hours away. I saw him the labor day monday night and then after that he started a new job and we didn't meet up for two weeks. Again. I understand that. He needed to concentrate. The weekend of 9/20 was my birthday weekend and he invited me down to his place for friday and saturday night and we did a nice brunch out to celebrate. Those two days were wonderful. We had some good connecting (I thought) and spent more time then we had before. I really came away feelling good. Then we had plans to meet the following thursday and they got canceled because he wasn't feeling good. Then he told me that he had this weekend free and would love to get together. That's about it.

I do know that he has medical problems. Sinus or migraine headaches. he had surgery on his sinuses. One thing that I have been able to do is give him so really good back and head rubs. That seems to ease the pain a bit.

I just got off the phone with my bestest friend and is also Poly. She didn't know what to think but she did tell me that I should get out of the house tonight and be around some people. If I don't see D that is. lol. There is a party close by that I was invited to but declined thinking I would be busy. I'm going to check that out.
 
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Dagferi

Active member
Never make someone a priority who sees you as an option.

Sweetheart he sees you as an option. He is blowing you off. Any man who is into you will keep dates with you. Halloween decorations cone above you? Really?

I have pulmonary edema.. migraine and work 60 hrs per week. I STILL manage to make sure I see Murf as close to 50% of my off time as I can manage. I have kids and pets that need my attention too.
 
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wildflowers

New member
Some people function through sick, and some people don't.

And some people keep being optimistic that they can make a plan work, even though there are obstacles, and so make a series of changes rather than just canceling. My BF used to do this to me and it drove me crazy, feeling strung along, but he was just clueless.

He could be making you a low priority, but I wouldn't leap to that conclusion. Why not give him the benefit of the doubt? The 20th is not all that long ago, given all that's going on.

None of which is to say that it is easy to deal with cancellations and disappointment and feeling unclear about where you stand. It's tough, and I'm sorry it's been such a difficult day.
 

bluemerle

New member
Dinner was almost canceled.

He called to say he was not up to driving. I said, hey how about I bring it down to you. He told me that was sweet but he didn't want me to expect anything because he still wasn't feeling good.

I took some stuff I had already cooked up and it's a 20 minute drive. Nothing too bad. So we had dinner. He answered the door in Pj's and looked like he had been asleep. Dinner was very pleasant and I got to make him smile a few times. Afterward I gave him a face rub and we snuggled for about a half hour and then he fell asleep on me. I left smiling.

I am home now and going to go out to hang with friends. I feel a little better seeing that he really was in pain (that didn't sound right but you know what I mean) and also that he is going to see a new doctor on tuesday.

He still wants to come up for a brunch and spend the day tomorrow. I am not going to count on it but will be pleased if it happens.

I think that one thing I want to discuss with him is what does he see me as. An option? I didn't think so, but I also know that his wife is his priority. I thought the relationship was more than just me as an option, but as an addition.
 
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