On the Transition from Mono to Poly to Triad
Onyx and I have been talking heavily the last few days and weeks regarding the things that are coming up in regard to our shifting from essentially a monogamous relationship to a polyamorous relationship and then into the triad we are trying to develop. Despite calling ourselves polyamorous since the beginning of our relationship Marla is the first person we’ve actually opened up our relationship to in a serious way.
While we flirted with the idea of being with Kat and glen last year, mostly that was in an N-style relationship with everyone else as close friends but only relationships between some of us not all of us. Kat and I began exploring a possible relationship in addition to my relationship with Onyx and her relationship with glen. Perhaps eventually we would have evolved into a square or some other configuration, but we didn’t get past initial exploring.
Opening up our relationship has brought some issues between Onyx and myself to light, ones that need to be fixed before we can really move forward. For one, we really haven’t been paying a lot of attention to our relationship, a lot of the reason for that is because we really have not had any time apart for a very long time. We had over two months together when we moved and before he got a job when we were essentially with each other constantly.
In some ways we have come to take our relationship for granted. We are so used to the other one being around it’s difficult not to. Because we lack a sufficient amount of furniture we also have essentially been living in a studio apartment, because we have not been utilizing the bedroom for anything other than storage space. This needs to change, and we realize that.
For another, Onyx is much more comfortable with me being with someone else than I am with him being with someone else. This is something I need to work on. It’s not that I don’t want him to be with someone else, part of it is he’s never really expressed interest in someone else before so it’s a new experience for me. Of course, part of me wants to keep him all to myself, but only a small part of me, the rest of me wants him to be happy and have the same opportunities I do.
Because we are working on bringing Marla in we have begun communicating more often and more effectively, I believe. We are forced to because now we have another person involved and in some ways that’s more pressure on the both of us to make everything right. It’s both helped and hurt our relationship in many ways, which is normal for the monogamous to non-monogamous transition process.
Marla and I have been exploring our relationship quite heavily, and have moved into solid relationship territory as far as I’m concerned. We know each other quite well now, and our attraction and desire for each other continues to grow, even if I’m unable to express it sometimes. The next step is for us to meet, and we’re pretty sure that’s going to happen at the beginning of May while I’m in D.C. for Sex 2.0.
The problem for me comes in when Marla and Onyx try to get closer. Moving now from the polyamorous Vee relationship we have been nurturing into the triad we all desire. The problem stems from my own insecurity, and I really don’t like it at all. In many ways I am threatened by the idea of the two of them getting closer, even though part of me wants them to get closer and wants us to become a triad like we have all been talking about.
I had a dream a while back that the three of us were starting to fool around together and they up and left me, went to another room and locked the door so that they could play by themselves without me. This hurt. A lot. I woke up sobbing. It was not a good time. Essentially, it all comes back to my rejection phobia. It’s ridiculous, because I know they both love me and they are coming together in many ways because of me, but I’m not confident enough that I believe that they won’t stop being interested in me.
Logically I know this is silly, because I know that, like I said, in many ways I am the reason why they are coming together, but the fear is still there. I am working on acknowledging it, understanding it, and working with it to the point that it won’t be an issue, but I fear that the fear will always be there, lurking at the back of my mind.
The fear also makes me feel selfish, because I have no problem with me having multiple partners, but when my partners show interest in each other my insecurities flare up and I’m unable to fully feel the compersion that part of me feels. I am both elated and scared at the possibility of the two of them together.
On the one hand I really encourage their relationship. I’ve been trying to incorporate Onyx into the nightly phone calls that Marla and I have, I’ve been trying to encourage the two of them to explore and interact more so that they can get to know each other better, I’ve been trying to be the biggest supporter for their relationship. Then, when I see them interacting I close up, I send mixed signals, even though part of me wants them to work another part of me is worried that it will work too well.
This all mostly stems from sexual insecurity. It feels strange for me, as someone who embraces sexual expression and sexuality, to feel insecure about my sexuality. I have worked hard on being confident sexually, and I feel that I am in many ways but I’m not in others. Specifically, I haven’t been with a woman for years, and I’m worried that I’m not going to be any good. It’s a silly and baseless fear, but it’s one I have nonetheless.
My inability to be sexual with Marla compounds the issue. I want her, I fantasize about her, I imagine all sorts of wonderful things that we will eventually be able to do, but I have an extremely difficult time flirting with her or expressing my sexual interest in her at all. I’m not sure where this mental block is coming from, but it’s there and it’s not conscious. I’m worried that I will say the wrong thing, I overanalyze what I do say and always assume the worst, and then I watch Onyx and Marla interact so easily sexually and I’m envious and jealous both.
It seems easier for them to interact on a sexual level than on a personal one, and it’s the opposite for Marla and me. She has been pushing us in a more sexual direction but I have been resisting, even though I don’t want to resist. I watch how easy it is for Onyx to say things that I wish I could say and I shut down.
I’m working on figuring out how to fix this, but it may take a while. I’m hoping that meeting Marla in D.C. and actually physically being able to be with her will help me get over this mental block. Being able to explore each other and become sexual with each other on a physical level will help me be able to be sexual with her long-distance I think. Once I’m more able to be sexual with her long-distance I will be able to not be envious when she and Onyx express desires for each other sexually, and I’ll be able to feel the compersion I’ve been experiencing intellectually in my heart as well.
That’s the hope, anyway.Labels: bumps in the road, communication, compersion, desires, growth, insecurity, long-distance relationships, loving, meeting, moving forward, non-monogamy, opening up, poly, polyamory, queer, relationships, Sex 2.0, triad