What does it mean when you have more than one partner and you are asked to be exclusive to them alone?
This has come up for me in a conversation with a friend recently and it got me to thinking. But I’ll use my own situation for the example.
Our relationship with Chane and Arwen was exclusive.
Does that imply anything to you? It did to me. Particularly with things that were said to me. It does to my friend as well.
It implied more than a secondary relationship to me. When we exchanged rings and a little later when we all sat down and agreed we were going to treat this relationship as we would a marriage.
Where and when did that change? Because I was a secondary to Chane. I’m not blaming one person here for this. When the newness wore off what happened? When everyone wasn’t happy, what happened?
For me, I’m wondering if I made the mistake of not realizing that the quad was more important to most than the dyads. The rings I exchanged weren’t to marry a group. I was married to Dirk and I was making a commitment to Chane. The fact that all the rings were the same was significant to me in that I was doing the best I could under the living circumstances to be in an equally committed relationship to both men and that I had made a commitment to support the whole group in whatever way I could.
It could be that more than secondaries was also the intention at the time for everyone. I’m no longer sure if I ever was looking back. But, the long distances and the work schedules and so many other things came into play. Why weren’t these addressed the way they should have been?
Why, when it became obvious to all that this was just secondary relationships, didn’t we end the exclusivity?
I knew that the secondary aspect of things was a real sticking point for me with Chane. I’ve written about it here. I’ve talked with him about it. I’ve talked with Dirk about it. I did not talk much with Arwen about it. I knew I struggled with this. And I know that I couldn’t get it.
I’m realizing that the request for exclusivity implied more to me than I was aware of at the time.
I’m realizing that this isn’t really just a breakup from a boyfriend that I’ve been healing from. For, in my eyes, he was much more than that.
I’m not sure I’d go down the polyfidelity road again. To me it automatically puts a relationship in a certain category. I just think I may lay cards on the table about what I have to offer at the time and if it changes down the line we can readdress things.
Does polyfidelity imply anything to you? Why or why not?