Would you, the reader, be willing to do me a favor? Go read this post by TheFerrett entitled Fuck Your Jealousy. Try Mine. Did you read it? Seriously, go read it! It’s important to what I’m about to talk about.
My previous marriage ended within a few months after we opened it, added additional partners. I haven’t really taken the time to dissect all of it. Part of me barely likes to think about it. In short, my ex husband and I brought another woman into our bed. She was a friend, still is – believe it or not. At one point I asked if we could close our marriage. I wanted to go back to how it was, probably because I was insecure and scared to find my own second relationship. But that is in the past. Needless to say, my husband at the time couldn’t walk away from his relationship with our friend. As a wife that tried to always treat others as she would like to be treated, I gave him my blessing to continue with his relationship. I would go back to monogamy.
A week into our new arrangement and I was not getting the physical attention I was used to from my husband. Not that I always wanted sex but I was used to him showing me attention and now I was an after thought. I had him in the car one Friday afternoon (about 2 years ago) and I said something like, “Just because you are with her doesn’t mean you can forget me.” He responded by asking for a divorce.
Fast forward 2 years. I have two really stable, happy, long term relationships. Except every time one of them takes a liking to someone new, I feel the fear. I’d been thinking it was jealousy. It wasn’t until I read this post that it dawned on me what I was really afraid of and why I was afraid. I’m afraid of being tossed aside and forgotten, not cared for, my needs not being important because that is what happened at the end of my marriage.
In reality, so far we have always adjusted. I’ve started to learn that it doesn’t have to have a crash and burn ending. I’ve relaxed, at least on the outside, and I can sooth myself and tell myself that it will be ok. What’s the worse that can happen? I state that I’m feeling ignored or neglected and they don’t want to meet my needs? Our relationship gets renegotiated or maybe even ends? It won’t be the end of my world like it was 2 years ago when my marriage of 18 years ended. I’m not that same woman I was.
The reality is that I’m a wonderful girlfriend. In fact, I have so much love to give that one of my partners regularly says that I need more partners just because I have that much love. I take good care of those that take good care of me. I’m open and honest. I communicate very well and push myself to improve on my insecurities. I’m GGG (Good, Giving and Game – coined by Dan Savage) and I am always up for something new. I’m calm. I’m careful. I’m grateful. I will be ok.
Polyamory has been a struggle at times. Recently it’s gotten so much better. Looking back, it’s the unknown that usually gets to me. Every new partner changes things. But adjustments happen. Everyone is fine. I’ve come so far that I can boast that I actually shared my home with one of my partners along with one of his partners. I’ve even had both my partners stay over on the same night. It wasn’t that long ago that I could barely figure out how to have them in the same room as I didn’t know how I was suppose to share my time.
Lastly, while we are talking about jealousy…
“The fetishization of jealousy is so detrimental. Jealousy DOESN’T equal love.” @ during a #SexTalkTuesday Twitter Chat about relationships and commitment.
I still wish my partners would come to me with a problem. I wish I didn’t feel like the only person in my relationships that struggle with either the thought of jealousy or whatever other insecurities and fears go through ones head. But because they don’t doesn’t mean they don’t love me. We are all just doing this thing called love on our own terms. My terms include a learning curve and a lot of communicating of my fears. Thankfully they’ve both been very patient and have helped me write some new memories to cover up those old ones. Memories that remind me that everything will work out just fine.