Poly Q & A: “What if one of the Guys fell in love?”


[box] “How you would feel if one of your men fell in love with another girl? My husband and I recently started an open relationship…I was fine with just FWB but the 1st girl he slept with turned into a love matter for him. Later it was decided it was NRE but I find that I’m still worried he will fall in love with someone else. I just wondered if you had experienced this or worried about it at all.”[/box]

That’s a hard question to answer because you never know how you will feel about a situation until you actually experience it. We can speculate about something til we are blue in the face but we just never know how we will react in real life.

But okay, I am not going to dance around the question that much. I do have previous experience to use as a possible scenario, although I hope that I wouldn’t react that way again. What I can’t guarantee is that I wouldn’t feel that way again.

So why would I, someone that obviously knows, both intellectually and viscerally, that human beings are capable of loving more than one person deeply, feel such fear and grief over my partner falling in love with someone else? There are, of course, many possible reasons. Fear of losing their love. Fear of losing their attention. Fear of being left. Fear of losing my importance in their life.  Whether or not those fears are valid, they are real to me.  And painful, and debilitating.

But I would no more want to be someone that would deny my partners love than I would want to deny them anything else that brings them joy. I also do not believe that we have control over our emotions that way. (Nor do I want to control their emotions!) We feel what we feel, no matter if it is what we want or something inconvenient. So regardless of how I felt, I hope I would not act on those feelings in destructive ways. Still, I’m not perfect. I am struggling along this path, doing my best to be the best partner I can for them both but still, sometimes, making mistakes and falling short. The bottom line is I don’t know how I would react. But I hope for the best – the best in myself.

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  1. Thane Flynn

    Interesting post and question posed yet I find myself somewhat confused. To be fair I have never been in a polyamorous relationship. But I do find the concept intriguing and so have read a good deal about it. I thought the whole idea of polyamory was loving many rather than loving one as is the case with monogamy? I see how the question applies in simply an open marriage or other intimate relationship or even to a new concept I have recently come across, “consensual monogamy” where the partners can have extra-relational affairs if they choose without it being considered “cheating.” But while I understand that not everyone in poly relationships is immune to the dreaded emotion jealousy, unless I’ve completely got it all wrong, the whole point of polyamory seems to be it’s fine to fall in love and be in love with more than one intimate partner at a time. Am I understanding it wrongly?

    1. Jade Post author

      Hi Thane,

      Thanks for your comments. I don’t think you are misunderstanding the basic concept of poly, no, but possibly not taking into account the vast differences and nuances within individual relationships and agreements, as well as the reality of putting those concepts into place in real life. Ideals and aspirations are one thing, how we react and feel when we are faced with a real-life situation can be quite another.

      In addition, I believe that there is also the issue, in the OP’s case, of expectations vs reality…it sounds as though she/they had an expectation that his outside relationship(s) would fulfill one role (FWB) but when it changed (when he ended up having feelings for his FWB) then that was outside their original agreements (her expectations), and she (naturally) felt threatened by that. The question then becomes, how do they deal with that? Do they alter the agreements to take into account human nature, or do they try to stick to their original agreement?

      Your question is a good one, and I think I will use it as a jumping off point for further discussion in a later Q&A.

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