Our poly is not like your poly

I was invited to march with the Vancouver Poly...

Vancouver Polyamory group in the 2011 pride parade (Photo credit: theslowlane)

I’ve hinted at some of our dating activities in this blog before.  Anyone who knows us well knows that Bear and I love each other like crazy.  Anyone who knows us REALLY well knows that some of that love spills over onto other people on occasion.

Polyamory, for those who haven’t heard the term, is the notion that a person can love more than one person at a time, and can have serious relationships with more than one person as long as there is open honest communication.  It’s that open, honest communication that distinguishes polyamory from cheating, which involves lying and sneaking around.  Also, it’s the loving relationship part that distinguishes polyamory from swinging, which is mostly about having sex with others, but not necessarily any emotional attachments.

Man, I wish we were just swingers.  Life would be a lot easier if we were swingers.  The problem is that Bear and I both tend to get attached.  So we have trouble with the notion of casual sex or friends with benefits.  In fact, we’ve gotten attached to the wrong people (together- we always date together) more than once.

It would be fine if we could mitigate that damage by dating several people, only getting and giving small portions of attention/emotion, but that’s just not the way it goes for us.  We just do better seeing one person at a time, and giving them all of us.

This is why our poly is not like the poly of others.

I always thought that polyfidelity was our ideal.  With polyfidelity, the group consists of more than two, but it’s closed to dating outside of the group.  I always thought we would end up with a third, and I’ve chased that.  We’ve had some success, made some really close friends, had our hearts shredded, but we’ve always come out of it stronger than ever because our commitment to each other has never wavered.    There’s always the hope that that one person who ‘gets us’ exists, but we haven’t had any luck finding that yet.

So we went the other way and experimented with more casual dating.  It was nice, but left me feeling like I was just one of a crowd for the other people involved, and kept me from really investing any emotion.  I’m a rather serious person when it comes to relationships, and if I’m not investing, I eventually get bored and wander off.  Great sex isn’t enough to keep me involved for very long.

So where are we with all this?  Honestly, as much as I dwell on it and wonder what it takes to make it work and where I’ve gone wrong, I’m finding myself very bleh about the whole thing.  I don’t know if I even want to bother dating anyone right now with all the writing/health issues/work issues/holidays coming up/insert other excuse here.  And Bear barely gets involved anymore, even if things are really promising.  I think he’s just tired and expects the inevitable split, so why bother?

I’m certainly not jaded about love and relationships.  How could I be with my amazing Bear here to remind me how insanely good things can be when you find the right person?

I guess I’m just taking a break.  That is, until I get bored one night and start browsing my favorite dating sites again.  Then it’s on like Donkey Kong.  The truth is that Bear and I are too boy crazy to stop looking for long.  😀

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Relationship spread, 4/16/13

Preface: Bear and I have been seeing someone since roughly December.  She’s very limited as far as the time she can spend with us, but we usually manage to see each other once/week.  I’ve been fine with that.  I know that a relationship isn’t measured in time, but in emotions.  Bear and I had a deep, intense, loving relationship for an entire year online before we moved in together.

We have both used ‘the L word’ with her, but she hasn’t used it back.  I’ve tried to welcome her into my family, my home, and my BDSM ‘house’, but she stays one step out the door.  She hasn’t ever acknowledged me on Fetlife, as if she doesn’t even know me.  She hasn’t even changed her profile, which says she’s still looking for someone to serve.

A few weeks ago, I tried to ask her about the seriousness of our feelings for us.  i.e. If Bear ended up in the hospital again, or I did, would she be there for us?  Would she be there for me through the pain stuff I’m dealing with?  I wasn’t having one of those crazy woman moments, I was honestly just wondering.  She withholds a lot, and I wasn’t sure where we all stood.  Long story short, she didn’t answer for a whole night, though she WAS on CollarMe.  So I’ve always gotten the sense that she’s just keeping her options open.

She also went to a munch a few days ago where her ex Domme was.  If she was mine, that would piss me off.  She should have at least told me that it was a possibility.  But she isn’t mine anymore, and she didn’t choose to tell me.  So that’s a pretty good sign of where things are with us.

She either doesn’t seem to know that a relationship can still be deep, though the time is limited, OR, she just doesn’t want a deeper relationship with us.  Either way, we’ve talked and decided to take things down a couple notches.  We aren’t working on a relationship or something stable (though in the end, that’s what I really want), and we’re just casual until things change.

Which made me IMMEDIATELY want to go find someone else to get the taste of her out of my mouth and Bear’s mouth as well.  However, I don’t honestly have the energy for that right now.  So I’ve started up a new long distance friendship with a kindred soul in Virginia, and that’s been kinda great, actually.

But I’m still wondering where we’re at with J, and if there’s anything there that is worth trying to fight for.  Casual is fine, but it breaks down pretty easily as things just become too much of a pain in the ass to bother with.

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So, I watched THIS VIDEO and learned a new spread- The Relationship Spread.  I like the flow of it, and it rings true, so I decided to try to use it.

Tarot 1

My signifier is the Queen of Discs, since I’m a fully grown adult Capricorn woman.  J’s signifier is the Page of Swords for various reasons, mostly since she’s an Aquarius.

The bottom row represents us (our signifiers) and what is between us physically.  The card between us is the 3 of swords, or discord.  This card really rings true, since there are two swords moving in one direction (Bear and I), and one sword moving in a different direction.  It’s not like anything is so bleak, nothing is coming to blows or anything, but I just don’t feel like she GETS us.  It’s more a discord of ideologies and life paths.

Tarot 2

The second row represents what’s between us emotionally.  On my side is 10 of Cups or ‘reward’.  This could be one of several different things.  She’s a submissive, and I reward her for the things she does well.  Also, I could also make a case for a submissive being a reward for me and for Bear for all the other misc. bullshit that we deal with in life.

On her side is the Shaman, which signifies transitioning into a new lifestyle, and attaining that which she is seeking.  I find this card particularly interesting for her because she’s gender queer, and likes to fantasize about transitioning completely.  To me, the Shaman is about transformation.

Between us lies The Druid.  The Druid has some interesting interpretations in the book I’m using, Tarot Made Easy by Nancy Garen.  Here are some snippets…  “You want to establish a deeper bond with someone or to unbind the bonds that block, restrict, or keep you from having what you want.”, “Romance will enter your life, but the relationship won’t get off the ground because you want an elevated love and will not settle for less.  You will sacrifice love altogether rather than have a relationship that isn’t right.”, and “You will not be fulfilled in your relationship because it is either non-productive or dissatisfying at a very deep level.”  Yep, all those sound about right.  :-\

Tarot 3

The third row represents what is between us on a communication level.  On my side is the Ace of Wands and creativity.  I do try to come up with interesting games we can play and ways to keep in touch that are fun, and not a daily burden.  The Ace is very telling too, as I can be very forward in my attempts to communicate.  The wand then becomes a torch, and I try to illuminate all the dark corners so that I know exactly what I’m dealing with.  It can come off as pushy and possibly intrusive.

On J’s side is the 8 of Cups, or Abandonment.  I don’t know if she’s been abandoned so many times (haven’t we all?) that she’s afraid to communicate with me, or if she doesn’t want to communicate because she thinks everything will end anyways.  The book mentions feelings of pressure or negativity which may create feelings of alienation or cause the relationship to sour.  Maybe she feels like me wanting clarity is creating pressure or negativity?  Or maybe that’s her other relationship?  Not sure, but it doesn’t look good.  It may also be that she’s abandoning us.

Between us is the 9 of Cups or Stability.  We both wanted stability in the beginning, or at least she said she did.  I’m always upfront about wanting an actual relationship, and not just a play partner situation.  Maybe that’s the problem.  Maybe she just doesn’t have that stability to give.  *shrug*

Tarot 4

The fourth row represents what is between us on a spiritual level, and also what will happen in the future.  On my side, there’s the 8 of Discs, or Skill.  The focus is on success in projects and accomplishments.  I DO have about 5 big projects I’m working on, and so that is something lovely to look forward to.  I’m still not writing a ton, but the end of the novel is nigh, and I feel like I do need to focus on that quite a bit.

On her side, we find the 9 of Wands, or Grounding.  This represents events coming to a plateau or a completion.  Also ‘biding time, or awaiting the right moment to react”.    “You want efforts to bear fruit, to socialize, circulate, and be out with others, and your health (or that of another) to improve.”  So..  Yeah.  She needs more than just us.

Between us is the 9 of Discs, or Gain.  Since this is also a 9, it also represents events coming to a plateau or a completion.  Sounds like we’ll be going our separate ways.  Interactions will be “primarily business-oriented” and there may even be unexpected offers of employment or money.  FABULOUS for me, but it sounds like her focus will be primarily social and mine will be primarily in promoting myself and getting my financial shit together.  Bear’s big focus is in the same self-promoting/career direction right now too.  I’m fine with that.  It’s really positive to me, and kind of bolsters the reading I did last time that said that financial gain is coming to me.

Tarot 5

As for us?  It sounds like we’ll just end up outgrowing whatever this is.  My only regret is that it’s hurting Bear.  I’m actually kinda fine with it.  While I wish we could meet someone who was passionate about us, I’m glad that we have each other.  He’s my rock, and maybe we’ll look again in the future when we’re ready.