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Polyamoruous Love Sickness: Can This Be Primal?

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  • #31
    I think that men are genetically designed to seek out multiple women (while women are designed to seek a single male).

    This creates a lot of problems, because I think that most men don't WANT to act on this impulse necessarily, so most are engaged in a constant battle between their minds (that want to be monogamous) and their genetic programming (that drive them to seek multiple partners).

    I think this problem is a pretty normal one. You've been given some great advice, so now you just have to figure out what your priorities are, and which desires are worth acting on and which are better ignored.

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    • #32
      Originally posted by LordPistacchio View Post
      Interesting. I shouldn't have any problem imagining the damage. A bit more background:

      There was always a strong emotional bond between us but we started to really develop into good friends after her husband cheated on her and left. My wife and I spent a lot of time helping her because she was suddenly a single mom. Of course she used some of her new-found freedom to sleep with every man she could; carefully avoiding me through it all. But then husband came back. They're trying, but it's tenuous between them and their children are noticeably and permanently shaken up.
      IMO... your new found "love" (which I believe is something other than strictly romantic love... see BELOW) is a response to her attempt at re-kindling her relationship with her, in your own words, "douchebag" husband. You don't like him. You feel protective and it is driving your feelings a to a more urgent level than your previous level of comfortable platonic love/friendship.

      Originally posted by SarahW View Post
      Love shmove.

      Eh, the more I learn, the more I feel like Americans have this weird idea about love. Our ancestors understood that what we call "love" is multi-faceted. They even had lots of different words to describe it/them and depending on the situation the type of love and its expression could differ.

      Look up Platonic love. Not what we call "platonic" love, but what Plato called platonic love. The Four Loves by CS Lewis also talks about the different kinds of love. I'm sure there's lots more good books on this subject, but I can't think of them right now.

      Deal is, you have a personal relationship with more than one person in your life. Congratulations! I'm guessing if the OW was a guy you wouldn't be in this pickle, you would be happily reveling in a "bromance" and openly driving your wife crazy with it. As it is, yeah, maybe you should think about being open with your wife. I hear you saying "I'm really good friends with this friend of ours, and I really care about her happiness, but I'm confused because she's a she and not a he, but I don't feel like having sex with her." Depends on how good your relationship with your wife is. I can totally handle my husband catching up with women he knew growing up, but then I know that he didn't have a romantic relationship with them. But like even in a bromance, you need to be certain of where your priorities are. If your wife is your #1 priority then you have to make sure she knows that.
      Yep.

      The other thing is... when modern western notions of what is and isn't an acceptable relationship get mixed up with "love"... then people start automatically attaching sex to it. And things get stupid and awkward... and perfectly good friendships get completely screwed (pardon the pun).
      Last edited by cori93437; 10-09-2012, 02:57 PM.
      “You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.”
      ~Friedrich Nietzsche
      And that's why I'm here eating HFLC Primal/Paleo.

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      • #33
        Originally posted by Sandra in BC View Post
        By confiding in the OW, you HAVE acted on this.
        This. Think about where your energy is going right now. Not into your marriage, that's for sure. By focusing on the OW and the drama of your feelings, you are already removing yourself from your wife (you already mentioned that you're surprised she hasn't noticed your mood).

        Dude, you're creating a self-fulfilling prophecy here. If you love your wife, then get into counselling and start focusing on what you DO have, not on what isn't yours in the first place.
        Started Feb 18 2011

        Tried basic primal and almost everything else in pursuit of IBS control, mood stability, and weight loss.

        Journalling here

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        • #34
          Originally posted by BestBetter View Post
          women are designed to seek a single male
          hahahahahahahahahaha
















          ahahahhahahahahaha




















          ha.
          “The whole concept of a macronutrient, like that of a calorie, is determining our language game in such a way that the conversation is not making sense." - Dr. Kurt Harris

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          • #35
            Originally posted by BestBetter View Post
            I think that men are genetically designed to seek out multiple women (while women are designed to seek a single male).
            I think that that is a meme that serves to minimise female sexuality.

            It may or may not be true. I don't think it is.
            Disclaimer: I eat 'meat and vegetables' ala Primal, although I don't agree with the carb curve. I like Perfect Health Diet and WAPF Lactofermentation a lot.

            Griff's cholesterol primer
            5,000 Cal Fat <> 5,000 Cal Carbs
            Winterbike: What I eat every day is what other people eat to treat themselves.
            TQP: I find for me that nutrition is much more important than what I do in the gym.
            bloodorchid is always right

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            • #36
              Word. It's simultaneously insulting to women that they have lesser sexdrives and/or that having a slower sex-drive is necessarily a good thing.

              It's also insulting to men that we'd be stupid enough to believe it.
              “The whole concept of a macronutrient, like that of a calorie, is determining our language game in such a way that the conversation is not making sense." - Dr. Kurt Harris

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              • #37
                Originally posted by Sandra in BC View Post
                By confiding in the OW, you HAVE acted on this. You've chosen to take this to a certain point. Regardless of the action you choose from here on in, your wife is going to be pissed -- and feel betrayed by both you and her friend -- for being the last to know. Or maybe she already knows, and has chosen to ignore it because if she confronts you she'll have to face the truth. Maybe she thinks if she confronts you she'll be forced to make you choose, and you won't choose her. AND she loses her best friend. Nice.

                You say you have no intention of acting on this, but what if your wife acted? What if your betrayal made her withdraw? What if she kicked your ass out? What if she forced you to choose? Would you go running to the OW? Would living with a hurt, distrustful, bitter wife be bearable? Would you find the OW more attractive? Are you keeping the OW within arms reach as a backup?
                Ultimately, I confided in the OW because she is the one person other than my wife I feel close enough to talk to. It may have been poor judgement and I should have kept it to myself. Honestly I thought saying it out loud to her would result in enough ridicule for me to WANT to avoid her. I didn't expect it to be reciprocated.

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by zoltankemeny View Post
                  Edited to suggest therapy too

                  I don't know if you've said whether you have spoken to the OW or not, but maybe you should tell her that you have some inconvenient feelings for her and that you want to stop them, so you're going to take action and not see her for a while. Leave contact with her and her kids to your wife for a little while. It doesn't mean you'll abandon her forever, because it sounds like she's a good friend. But if you want these inconvenient feelings to die, there are ways to deal with them, at least ways that have worked for me and others. I also like other people's suggestions to see a therapist so you can speak with someone who isn't judging you (you're judging yourself here pretty strongly) and can see the situation with different eyes.
                  Originally posted by badgergirl View Post
                  I third, fourth the suggestion of therapy. I sympathise and empathise, having gone through something very similar myself (after ten years of faithful marriage) and watched my best friend's marriage implode for the exact same reason (she acted on her desire).

                  Polyamorous relationships are possible, but I suspect that they have to be negotiated from the beginning rather than after decades of monogamy. I would suggest that you look at your marriage with fresh eyes (therapy will help) and identify the gaps that this new love has found to grow in.

                  Good luck and I understand how much pain accompanies these feelings of love. It certainly isn't easy.
                  The good new is that I already have a counselor I can see. Therapy at least has the potential to help me navigate this without losing or hurting anyone.

                  Originally posted by Jac View Post
                  This. Think about where your energy is going right now. Not into your marriage, that's for sure. By focusing on the OW and the drama of your feelings, you are already removing yourself from your wife (you already mentioned that you're surprised she hasn't noticed your mood).

                  Dude, you're creating a self-fulfilling prophecy here. If you love your wife, then get into counselling and start focusing on what you DO have, not on what isn't yours in the first place.
                  Again, thank you for encouraging therapy. I would like to point out that I actually put a great deal of energy into my marriage and my wife. The thought and energy that I put into my wife and children are the things that drew OW to me. I'm not sure she's really witnessed that from a man toward a woman before.

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by cori93437 View Post
                    IMO... your new found "love" (which I believe is something other than strictly romantic love... see BELOW) is a response to her attempt at re-kindling her relationship with her, in your own words, "douchebag" husband. You don't like him. You feel protective and it is driving your feelings a to a more urgent level than your previous level of comfortable platonic love/friendship.
                    We got to this point long before douchebag came crawling back. And for the record, he's a clueless douchebag.

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                    • #40
                      Well since you told OW you are now in a REAL pickle because now you, loving husband, and she, best friend forever, are CONSPIRING TOGETHER against your probably-not-totally-oblivious wife. This is bad news bears, indeed. You won't be able to maintain this tight rope walk forever.

                      My question to you is this... since this woman IS your wife's best friend... and yes this may be wildly out there but! Is there any chance your wife and other woman would consider... you know... polyamory? I mean is this something that you all would be open minded enough to try? For some people, this is a very maintainable life style. I tried it myself, and I personally didn't care for it because I am high maintenance as heck and require way too much direct attention. For some people though, it really can work, and can be a secure, deep, loving relationship for all involved.

                      This does not mean they MUST have sex, but, let's be real, that they would enjoy each other in that way, with or without you as well, would be ideal (in my delightful open mind, anyway :P). But even if their love remained non sexual, or was only sexually acted upon by making a LordPostacchio sandwhich, there could be something there. This of course all revolves around the relationship these women have, their open mindedness, their sexuality, etc.
                      yay!

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                      • #41
                        I have to admit I've received far more constructive advice than I expected and will make an appointment with my counselor. I'm grateful to all who responded both on the forum and privately.

                        I'll do what's best for my family in the end.

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                        • #42
                          Originally posted by qqemokitty View Post
                          Well since you told OW you are now in a REAL pickle because now you, loving husband, and she, best friend forever, are CONSPIRING TOGETHER against your probably-not-totally-oblivious wife. This is bad news bears, indeed. You won't be able to maintain this tight rope walk forever.

                          My question to you is this... since this woman IS your wife's best friend... and yes this may be wildly out there but! Is there any chance your wife and other woman would consider... you know... polyamory? I mean is this something that you all would be open minded enough to try? For some people, this is a very maintainable life style. I tried it myself, and I personally didn't care for it because I am high maintenance as heck and require way too much direct attention. For some people though, it really can work, and can be a secure, deep, loving relationship for all involved.

                          This does not mean they MUST have sex, but, let's be real, that they would enjoy each other in that way, with or without you as well, would be ideal (in my delightful open mind, anyway :P). But even if their love remained non sexual, or was only sexually acted upon by making a LordPostacchio sandwhich, there could be something there. This of course all revolves around the relationship these women have, their open mindedness, their sexuality, etc.
                          I think this might be a realistic option *if* the friendship was new or the marriage was new, but switching it up like this after 20+ years of marriage (and how many years of friendship?). I'm doubtful.

                          My own experience of polyamoury was both intensely wonderful and intensely destabilising. To make it work in an equal way - rather than a religious fundamentalist whackjob way - everyone involved has to be way better at communicating than a usual two-way relationship requires. It's a huge amount of work. Not impossible, by any means, but probably not possible for the OP, his wife and the OW/best friend.
                          I like badgers, books and booze, more or less in that order.

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                          • #43
                            qqemokitty,

                            I'm aware of schmucky this can seem but there is no conspiracy. It was just two friends who talk ending up somewhere unexpected.

                            OW would be very open to polyamory and would very much like to enter a relationship with me AND my wife. My wife? Just, no.

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                            • #44
                              It is not a conspiracy to you, but I have no doubt that your wife would see it otherwise.

                              Emotional attachment to another woman? Strike one
                              Her best friend? Strike two
                              Telling that woman before telling the wife: Strike three, doghouse.

                              Heh.

                              I hope the counseling helps, good luck!!!! <3
                              yay!

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                              • #45
                                Originally posted by Uncephalized View Post
                                First off, I want to say that I think what you are going through is perfectly normal human feeling, and that it's nothing to be ashamed of, and I don't think you've done anything wrong. You can't stop yourself from falling in love with someone. It's not under your control, and the fact that you are clearly struggling to find the correct way to behave in order to avoid hurting anyone you love is admirable and honorable.

                                That said, you've got a few options here, the way I see it.

                                1) The status quo. Continue denying yourself, don't act on your feelings, and keep seeing Other Woman (OW) in a friendly capacity. In this scenario you run the serious risk of cheating on your wife at some point even if you don't really intend to--assuming your attraction is reciprocated--with all the consequences.

                                2) The illicit affair. Cheat on your wife with OW. Obviously this is not a good option since you'd be betraying your wife's trust and hurting her very badly if she finds out. And, you run a serious risk of hurting OW as well if she wants to be your only partner and you're not willing to leave your wife, which you clearly don't want to do. But it is of course an option that is available and as such needs to be considered, if only to be discounted.

                                3) The straight and narrow. Tell your wife how you feel about OW, and ask her to help you sort the situation out. Here of course the consequences depend heavily on how understanding, open-minded and prone to jealousy your wife is, and how diplomatic you are. This is probably the most honorable option IMO, but it is obviously fraught with peril. The consequences could range anywhere from your wife leaving you, to your wife telling you she doesn't want you to see OW anymore, to the one in a million chance of your wife being OK with entering a polyamorous relationship with OW, to the significantly more likely chance of your wife being OK with you having a discreet side relationship with OW as long as you don't leave or neglect her (and any children--not clear on whether you have any). Neither of those last two is particularly likely, though. And of course there's always the chance that your wife could say she's OK with it but would actually come to resent the situation deeply. This one is very up in the air depending on everyone's personalities.

                                4) The tactical retreat. Don't tell your wife, but stop seeing OW entirely. Obviously this is more or less feasible depending on how exactly you know OW. You mentioned she is your wife's good friend so this may not be possible. If it is, though, it would be a good chance to see if your feelings cool with distance and perspective, or whether they remain undeniable in her absence, and then you might be better-equipped to proceed, having learned a little more about yourself.

                                I wish I could give you wise advice on which course is best but ultimately that's up to you, your wife and OW. I would advise against straight-up cheating, though. I want to tell you to come clean with your wife and let the cards fall where they will, but that's easy to say when it's not my marriage on the line.

                                Best of luck, friend.
                                Option 5: Both women are attracted to each other, leaving male husband out of the equation. 'Buyer Beware'
                                ----------------------------------------
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