Monday, May 31, 2010

Oh What a Tangled Web We've Woven

So life.

I'm aware that's banned - even from my blog world.

Life has been a series of ups and downs. Craftymama has been having a really hard time dealing with R spending overnights with Cableman. It's getting harder and harder to drop him off. She doesn't want her boys growing up in two separate houses like she did. Neither myself nor Glassman can really stand seeing the pain in her eyes, or the epic meltdown from M when Cableman takes R away. It's hard on everyone. Personally, I feel overwhelming guilt because I believe that had I not given Craftymama an ultimatum (essentially) or made her realize how she felt than she wouldn't be in this situation. Alas, here we are.

It was always hoped that everyone could live together; even just a house with a basement suite. So that all the kids could see Cableman all the time, and so he could be there for all the little things a father wants to be there for in his kids' lives.

We have been discussing, lately, doing just that - everyone living together. It's falling more and more apart moreso than it's coming together. There have been accusations of cheating, there have been discussions multiple times over the same topic with no headway, and there has been much frustration. On the one hand, I am glad Cableman is communicating - Im glad we all are. But it feels like we are trying to convince him, or that he is trying to make himself okay with something that he clearly isn't okay with.

I'm actually at a point where I dont know what to do.

The boys need to be with Cableman - Craftymama cannot bear them to be living in two separate houses - Cableman can't handle seeing Craftymama with us - and I can't stand to see everyone so unhappy and miserable.

Something has to change. Someone has to compromise. Not everyone can win this time, someone is losing big time.

Introduction time

Cableman was mentioned in Craftymama's introduction, but should have one of his own as well. He is obviously married to Craftymama, and the father to M and R. He is incredibly sensitive, a people pleaser, and desires to fix everything for everyone. He is very particular about his things, and has collections of geekery. He is amazingly positive about life, and wants nothing more than for those he loves to be happy.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Communication Breakdown

There are issues abound in the house.

From what I gather that has been kind of discussed,

Glassman was made to feel segragated. He was frustrated with a spoken lack of patience on my part - though I hadn't reached the end of my patience yet, with a back injury of his. He feels I don't include him in budget things. He has not felt connected with either myself or Craftymama in weeks.

Craftymama is feeling homesick for the life she used to have. Guilty for doing this to her boys. Can't think of a workable solution to fix it. Frustrated with her husband for his inability to understand.

I am feeling underappreciated. I feel like I am living in my head not my heart and that scares me. I am feeling incredibly distant on a more regular basis from Craftymama, and Glassman and I are either awesome or we are right back to our old habits - this changes daily.

All of these things should be talked about, worked through, and dealt with. Alas, no one is sharing - so the feelings linger.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Compersion as a Measure of Security

This blog post has been in the works for a little while - I have been trying to put the words on something I had been feeling, and trying to figure out why it is I feel a certain way.

So compersion. Essentially, it's getting that happy/blissful feeling from seeing your partner or partners taking joy/pleasure etc from others/eachother. Here is an article called "Compersion for Beginners" if you want to do some more reading on it.

When do I feel the greatest sense of compersion? When Glassman and Craftymama are playfully bantering or wrestling with eachother. When do I struggle with compersion the most? When they have sex.

I've been trying to figure out why this is. Why can I delight in them being playful, with eachother, but not naturally feel this wonderful feeling when they are intimate?

I think the answer is security.

The most secure area in my relationship with Glassman is the playful banter, the wrestling and the joking around. I have no fears about that ever leaving, or about me not getting my fair share (sometimes I get too much). So when I see the two of them engaging in those same actions; I can feel nothing but compersion for them.

The least secure area in my relationship with Glassman and Craftymama is when it comes to sex. I have an impressive sexual past, but am quite sexually shy and slightly naive. I have deep seeded fears that he prefers her over me (though those fears have been diminished significantly since this all started) and fears that she will prefer him over me because of anatomy alone. So when they are intimate together without me, which I both want and encourage them to be (if only so I am forced to deal with my feelings), my insecurity prevents me from feeling the sense of compersion I want.

Craftymama said the other night that her ultimate feeling of compersion is when Glassman and I have sex without her - I surmise this to be the case because she is very confident sexually. She is not afraid to ask for or take what she wants, isn't ashamed or embarrassed to admit how much she likes sex, and is pretty damn good at it. So why wouldn't she feel a great sense of compersion when two people she loves are doing something that she also loves?

I think true compersion comes when we are completely secure in our relationships. When we are able to love and accept ourselves freely, and feel in our hearts that I am worth it and I deserve all the love/happiness I want that's when we can let go of jealousy.

For the record, I love that they enjoy sex together. Craftymama's entrance into our sexual lives has enriched us both greatly. I love that they make each other so happy in that way, my insecurity lies in feeling inadequate in making them the same level of happy.

But I'm working on it.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My Own Reassurance

Reassurance is so important in our relationship. Maybe it is in all relationships. Maybe before I didn't realize how vital it was to my happiness, but I certainly do now.

I'm coming to the conclusion that I need reassurance both from my partners, and from myself. Craftymama and Glassman are decent at this. I asked for assurance once, on an insecure day - and got it 50%. It wasn't complete because I wasn't specific in my needs - I need and have to be more specific. I went on a date the other night, and got some awesome assurance from the both of them before I left - it felt wonderful.

Crafymama also said the other night that when she is intimate with one of us, when the other is home, she needs overly abundant reassurance when they emerge from the bedroom, and that she would be able to tell if its genuine. Im happy she was able to articulate this need. For me, if I am intimate with Glassman, I think I would just want things to be "normal" no discussion or anything when we come out. I haven't had sex with Craftymama when Glassman has been home, so I'm not sure what I will need when that happens.

Also for me, when the two of them are together, I think I need reconnection time. I think anytime the two of them have a moment, or have extended time, or have sex - I need to feel reconnected to them when they are done. Like a sort of reassurance that "yes, we had this amazing time together - but we haven't forgotten about you". I don't think I have articulated this need to them yet. Sometimes they do it naturally, other times, I still feel separated from them.

But I dont control other people, and I cant simply rely on their reassurance to get me through difficult internal emotions.

I have some personal mantras. This is what a mantra is. I used them extensively during my pregnancy and birth of S, but not until now have I brought them back into my thinking.

I have visual ones: like picturing a particularly awesome or happy time with either one of them, but mine are usually verbal.

"What would I want them to be doing while I did _____" : I usually use this when I am doing something separate from them, and I have a twinge of negative emotion about what they are doing or could potentially be doing.

"It doesn't matter, I know how ___ feels about me" : Being new to poly, I sometimes have moments of regression where I doubt one's capacity to truly love more than one person. This is quickly resolved both when I realize that I love both of them, and when I say the above to myself.

"I can have it, if I want it" : I'm afraid of asking for the things I want. When I see one of them getting what I want, I remind myself that if I truly wanted it, I could have it - simply by asking.

"Compersion, not jealousy" : When I think I might be feeling jealous, I stop and tell myself to be secure enough to feel compersion, and have it override any jealous feelings.

Those are some of the one's I use, and I don't use them daily, but I use them when I need to, they work. Since I've noticed that these help I have found myself in a much calmer, more positive state.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Joining in...or Not

So I have an issue.

I don't like being where I am 100% not wanted. That problem is coupled with the fact that I don't think anyone would tell me if I wasn't 100% not wanted.

We have a rule, when it comes to sex, that if two are having it, and haven't specifically requested time alone, then the 3rd is always welcome to join in. I would never join in. Part of the reason is like I said in my previous entry, I try to facilitate time between them because time is important, and also because as this entry says I don't want to be somewhere I'm not wanted.

But this issue goes beyond sex. When we are laying in bed together, and Craftymama is sleep cheese, if I am cuddled up next to her, and Glassman cuddles up close to her other side I move away. I dislike this because I like sleeping close to her, and I know 9 times out of 10 she likes to sleep close to me. There have been instances where she hasn't wanted me to close to her, two actually - both this week, but in general, we like to sleep close and can't get close enough.

Why do I move away?

Is it a not wanting to share thing? Obviously, I don't mind sharing her, or myself, with other people. I know I'm wanted there. So why don't I join in on the cuddle? It goes even farther than that, when the two of them are sitting next to eachother on the couch, I default to the loveseat across from them. I have realized, over the past two weeks, that this default position has made me feel more distant from them, and separate.

I'm starting to wonder if maybe it's because I dont give my relationships enough credit. I don't take or request time with Glassman. Well, I did once, just before he left for school, while Craftymama was busy piecing our epic package to send with him - but he says he didn't hear me, so I was shot down. I don't request it with Craftymama because I feel guilty.

Aha! There's another issue I hadn't realized. I feel guilty for spending time with Craftymama because I know Glassman doesn't get as much actual time (because he works), and I don't spend time with Glassman because I feel he would rather be with Craftymama. Not because I think he loves her more, but because we have had those years to have time together - they haven't, and because their relationship is still in NRE, so its hormonal/chemical for him to want to be with her.

Where does that leave me? Feeling separate. But I did it to myself, and I continue to do it to myself.

On the one hand, I should just be confident enough to do the things I want to do, but on the other hand I feel I need to be mindful of others' needs. Maybe my hope is that if I am more mindful of the things they want, they will make more of an effort to give me the things I want.

My outlook and perception needs to change - I don't know how to do it.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Art of Time Management

Never before have I realized both how long and how short days are.

With 4 kids sometimes the days take forever to go by. There are at least 27 meals/snacks to make in a day for everyone, that many dishes to do, clutter to clean up, 8 loads of laundry every other day, and personal hygeiene of course. Its a lot more of the every day mundane stuff, and it takes a lot of time. But, really, that's not what this entry is about.

There are four relationships present in our home. Me and Craftymama, Me and Glassman, Glassman and Craftymama, and the three of us together. That's four relationships that need nurturing, commitment, and most of all time to develop.

Glassman and I have had years together, but, our relationship is brand new now. We are more honest and open with eachother and we are learning that we have changed as people and so need to get to know one another. Craftymama and I have an awesome friendship as we were best friends for 1.5years before we got together. But we are learning how to be partners. Glassman and Craftymama are brand new - so to speak. They began a relationship 6 months ago, they lived together really quickly, and they had no prior relationship. The same goes for the three of us together.

What we are all lacking is time with one another.

Craftymama and I are together during the day, everyday - but its a different kind of time. It isnt quality time, its parent time - which is still awesome, and I dont take it for granted - but, I still want non parent time with her.

Glassman has said in the past that he is jealous of this time I get with her, even if its with the kids - so, much to my own detriment at times, I attempt to give them time to themselves whether the kids are there or not; the point is I'm not there. This gives them to develop a relationship both as parents and as adults. He has told me that he is no longer jealous in the same way, but that it still bothers him. They both have said I needn't go out of my way to ensure they get time, but if I don't, and no one is completely comfortable asking for it - how will they get it? I think its each of our responsibilities to help the other relationships along until we are all more able to ask for what we need/want without fear. I give them time alone, because they need it - more often then they get it - for me, it's as simple as that.

I've been thinking lately it might be a good idea for one night a week, for a couple of hours, for one person to go out, leaving the other two at home to do something together. Or every other week have two people go out together. But where would the person go? You can't just expect them to drive around or walk aimlessly. We all need a hobby or something we can do to 'distract' ourselves or occupy our time.

I think I would feel more secure in our relationships if I felt each relationship was getting equal respect - which I dont think, in the logical sense, they are right now.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Ethical Slut

Im finally reading this book . I love it! Im just past half way. I've already applied some of the things that it teaches, and its actually opened my eyes to a new way of thinking. Well, not entirely opened - more affirmed.

I particularly need to learn something from Limit Setting section. Basically its about recognizing your own limits, your own wants, and accepting them so fully that you are completely capable and comfortable of expressing those limits/wants to your partners. I am so not good at this. I have sex when I dont want to, simply because I feel like I should. Not that I am forced, its more that I know thats how my partners connect to me and express their love and I dont want to turn away their love. I feel uncomfortable telling them sometimes when I dislike something or its making me feel a negative emotion. I really need to get better at this.

What I also took thus far from the book, was how to argue properly. I love to argue - but need to improve my skills. So do Glassman and Craftymama, but I'm the one currently reading the book, so its more fresh on my mind. It also talks extensively about jealousy - something I experienced a lot of when the relationship first started. It was interesting to read something I had already processed quite a bit, and then be told that its okay to feel it, okay to express it, and that I need to own it. No one causes me to feel jealous, its my own doing - but people still need to be empathetic to my feelings.

I'm actually quite excited to be as open, honest, and free as I want to be...I have faith in myself that I didnt previously posess.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

And Baby Makes.....

S is walking! Well, not really, but she took her first steps last night. Here's the video:

I can't believe it!

Her walking, and well, the 'original' plan of being pregnant by this time have really got me thinking about babies. In fact, its on all of our minds.

Do we want to have another baby?
Who would have the baby?
How would that affect every other existing relationship?

Our families would most likely disown us. We already have four kids under 4, and we are still adjusting to caring for them and our house, and well - given that its a new relationship - no one is sure they are really ready.

Simply wanting to have a baby is never a good enough reason to have one. Then there is the fact that we do have 4 children - we are lucky to have so many wonderful, amazing kids. It's a lot of pressure on Glassman to be the sole provider for all of us, and I don't want to strain him any farther.

Then there is the issue of space. Our house is only so big. Where would a baby sleep? We would need another car, or a 15 passenger van as we already use all the seats in our 7-seater.

There are a lot of reasons not to have any more children: at least not any time soon. Not that we would try to have a baby right this second - even if we decide we do want more kids.

I am having terrible baby fever - my baby is a toddler. I want so desperately to be pregnant. And I really want to have another baby. More than all that, I want our family to be stable and strong and happy.