In polyamorous life, whether you like it or not, you learn to communicate. You learn to communicate a lot! We dissect issues and we analyze things to death to get everyone in an “extended poly family” on board and on the same page. If you don’t have communication, you don’t have poly.
Many months ago, I had a rather large miscommunication that I’d like to write about today because I feel I can learn from it and perhaps others can as well. I have a bad habit in that I like to fix things – people, situations, etc. I like to fix things right away, without waiting.
A while back, a unique situation came up for me. My ex-husband was interested in dating again; dating me, specifically. It came as a shock. We did not have a friendly divorce at first. For months, it was contentious and horrible, quite frankly. I didn’t know if we’d even speak again, let alone resolve anything. Towards the end of our divorce we started to reconcile and become friendlier and that’s when dating came up.
The great thing about polyamory is that when a relationship ends, it doesn’t have to end forever. Maybe it changes for a while. Maybe you still love each other but don’t live together anymore. There are many options available, whereas the monogamous way is *usually* that the relationship ends and you stop loving each other and go your separate ways. At least you are told by society you are *supposed* to stop loving each other.
At the time, I felt a little closer to my ex’s girlfriend. She’s a good stepmom from what I can tell and my son seems to like her. As do “my other boys”, my former stepsons. She was very respectful of my role in their lives as well.
Here’s where I screwed up. I panicked. And when I panic I send emails. I don’t sit and think about the emails. Oh no! That would be too easy. I mean, I write them and rewrite them and then rewrite them again, but that’s all in the span of an hour or so and then …. “send”. I made such a mistake recently. I took conversations I was having with both of them separately that weren’t making sense and I panicked and sent an email to both.
What should have most likely been a face-to-face conversation turned into a huge mess.
His girlfriend and I patched things up for the most part. She’s his wife now, not legally, but in a spiritual sense after a ceremony they had. Due to other tensions she has me blocked on Facebook and we’ve only spoken once in the last few months. I sent her a Mother’s Day card and she sent me an email to thank me.
It’s an uncomfortable feeling, sending your son to a place where you don’t have a sense of what goes on. In the end, I’m still glad that the dating thing didn’t work out. Though it may have temporarily brought families together, I’m a firm believer in moving forward. That’s something that couldn’t have happened with issues from the past never having been resolved. You can’t have a future without handling your past.
Unfortunately there were many misinterpretations and miscommunications along the way. Maybe we’ll never get down to the bottom of it. Maybe one person will always blame the other for the past. One thing I’m learning lately is that things can always change. This year I’m jealous of my son’s stepmom for spending time with my former stepsons. Next year I may have repaired a relationship with them after correcting the lies from the past. Next year I could be living somewhere else, caring about something else, and moving on with other people. The future is what we make it.
In the meantime I continue to work on miscommunications, patience, and learning to wait.
Now I wait.
Now I learn to wait.