I have been struggling with something for a while. I have agreed to be in a monogamous relationship. While saying this is against my morals is too extreme, the idea of being monogamous rubs me wrong.
I still identify as a polyamorous person. My default mode of relating is to love many, both familial and romantic. I believe in the strength of a family that includes more than one or two parents. I believe in a relationship structure that encourages people to work through jealousy instead of letting it build walls around how we live.
I don't want to hear from friends or family how they knew it could never work. I don't want to endure knowing smirks, when I tell people my decision. I definitely don't want to give anyone the impression that all it takes is meeting the "right one."
Here is the real reason: This relationship was far too tumultuous and unstable when we tried to love others. I am extremely possessive of this man, and he of me. We are both too insecure. Me, because of past actions of his. Him, because of past actions of others. Trying to share someone and re-build trust at the same time is... I don't recommend it.
Yes, I am more satisfied with this relationship than I have been in a
long time. No, I would not have agreed to monogamy if I thought I would
be aching for some extra person to "complete" us. At some point in the future, we will be stable and secure. (Because, if not, my goodness we are failing!) If he wishes to renegotiate at that time, I will be open to it. On the other hand, I may just continue this way until I die. And that's ok too. I'm content just being me.
Polyamory is part of who I am. Monogamy is what I choose to do.
I have started writing three times. I keep wandering off after the kids, or getting distracted by some other conversation. I keep choosing topics and discarding them. There are things I want to explore, but I can't keep my focus for any of them.
So I guess I'm just writing whatever comes to mind, today.
I am still silly amounts of happy. That's strange to me, when security is uncertain and trust is shaky. Still, I am so damn in love with the man in my life. I have a home that I can invite people into -- anyone I want, when-ever I want. I can buy the food and make the meals that I want. I have freedom. I have home. I have family. I have everything.
When I try to do too much (an amount of activity which varies), I get stressed out. When I get stressed out for too long, I get depressed. When I am depressed, I have a hard time looking at the bright side. Still... Through all my complaints, I am happy.
Finding the strength to do even basic things like take a shower is difficult. I mostly stood under the water and sobbed. Keeping food down is also a problem. I haven't lost anything yet, but breakfast almost didn't make it. I'm only eating out of habit anyway -- my appetite is gone.
I am proud of myself for making sure the kids are taken care of. At least they are getting their chores and such done, even if I am not handling mine very well.
Sometimes being vulnerable seems like the
worst idea in the world. And sometimes when it seems the most
frightening is the best time.
Fear, doubt, insecurity, and just plain hurt -- These things make me want to hide away. They make my submission withdraw. They make the walls go up and the hard shell close in.
When he lied to me, I ran away. Physically, I left the bed we share and I left the room. I went as far from him as I could, without leaving the house. Emotionally, I clammed up. All the softer parts of me were buried inside, and I wore the shield of anger. (Have you ever noticed that anger is a secondary emotion? I get angry because I'm hurt, or angry because I'm frustrated, but I don't think I've ever found myself angry without any other emotion buried in it.) I did want to let him see me hurt. I hid everything but the strength to get through.
After I wrote out all I was feeling here, I sat with myself for a while. I let myself cry. In doing so, I let myself need him. I let myself remember that I need him. I took the time to calm myself down, but once I had, all I wanted was to crawl back beneath the blankets and feel his arms around me, telling me it will be ok.
It scares me to want to run for comfort to the one who hurt me.
The next day, we tried to talk through things, but I tripped over my own defenses. In trying to protect myself, I was making things worse instead of better. He questioned my commitment. I questioned his repentance. We cleared things up, but only after I was willing to be vulnerable and let him do what he would with it. It turns out that's all he needed. I am still frustrated by this urge to apologize -- I'm not the one who fucked up! But...
I don't need to be right. I don't need to win. I only need him.
Later, it occurred to me: This is what it takes to be successful. With or without the D/s part, this is what it takes to make a relationship work. We are both going to make mistakes. We are going to hurt each other. We are going to stumble into situations that feel like the end of the world. If we are going to make it, the end of the world has to be less important than loving each other.
I always knew that relationships take sacrifice and compromise. No one is perfect, and forgiveness is essential. Still, I always held back. There were deal-breakers. "I'll work with you through anything. ...Except ___." That's what society teaches us these days. You should always draw a line. If love isn't all happily-ever-after, dump the mother fucking ass. S/he's not good enough for you. (They seem to forget that whoever you are, you're not perfect either...) Sure, sacrifice and compromise, but only until they make a BIG mistake.
I don't want to hold back any more. Not with this one. I want to give everything, because there is no one else. I don't have a backup plan. This is it.
Yes, it's going to be tough. Yes, I'm going to question things a lot. But we've come through bigger things than this, and it's worth it.
I'm ready to hurt, scream, hit, lash out, cry, cut, and kill with my words, but I am not ready to talk.
I am not ready to hear the predictable advice and condolences of my friends. Not until I have an opinion and a plan of my own. Certainly not until I figure out what. The fuck. Just. Happened.
He lied to me. Again.
Not even about anything important this time. No, not important but blatant. The fact that this is a pattern is a problem. The fact that he would try to sneak by something so small and insignificant belies a larger issue. One I thought we were past.
I suppose knowing when the email was sent was a test on my part. I don't know why I bothered to find out. It wasn't important at the time. Just curiosity. Maybe a bit of leftover suspicion. (That still wins, now and then. Doubt and Suspicion are strong little demons.) He told me that he sent it within a day of having done so, and I rejoiced!
Oh, sure, part of me wondered "Is he telling me this because he values honesty, or because he values not getting his ass kicked for things I can easily find out?" Then the rest of me remembered how hard he's worked to earn my trust. I remembered that he has good intentions, and the poor execution is only due to inexperience. Part of me held out, but most of me took his honesty as a wonderful step.
"You see?" I told myself, "There was no reason to let the demons win."
But when I asked whether he wrote it while he was at the computer in the evening, he denied it. Not willing to believe that he would tell me the hard part and lie about a silly detail, I asked when he sent it. He said he sent it in the morning. To my face.
Even when I called him on it, I was too surprised to see what it was. "Shading the truth," I think I said. When I heard it come out of my mouth, I was appalled. At me. I corrected my mistake. There was no vague-ness, no hedging, and no "shading."
He lied to me.
Those demons jumped to the fore, screaming "I TOLD YOU SO!" at the top of their lungs. They begged me to claw his eyes out. They commanded me to spit every vile thought that might tear that closed look off him. I know his weaknesses -- Oh yes! -- and both Doubt and Suspicion would have had me shred him. (Just writing this, my face keeps twisting into a snarl. Too much of me wants to give in.) But I did not. I simply averted my eyes, so I could not see his lies. I held the demons in check.
I know the conversation that we must have. So many questions rolled through my mind. Most were courtesy of Fear and Insecurity, I'm sure. Though those fellows are perhaps entirely called for, I set them aside as well.
Because, you see, I am not ready to talk.
I am not ready to gauge whether he is telling truth. I am not ready to look into his soul. I am not ready to bare myself enough to be reasonable.
When he said those words, the parts of my that have had faith in him crumbled. I have none right now. My faith is in my self, and my strength. The only thing I believe from him is that he will lie to me. Again. And again. And again...
I want to hurt him. I am not ready to talk.
Love said to calm down. Fear said not in his bed.
Love says we can work through this. It tells me he was ashamed for not talking to me sooner. It tells me he was ashamed even when he was writing to her. Sometimes I wonder whether Love might not be a demon as well. It certainly allows the others to rip into me.
Sometimes I wonder whether he will be able to live the way he is asking me to live. Monogamy is not natural to either of us. He wants her still. He won't say so, but I know it. Or maybe that's Insecurity wiggling in again...
I'm so twisted up, I don't even know where Sanity is. Would I recognize it's voice, if it spoke to me?