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Trying:poly, casual,hook-ups and not to cry

From someone who has only been in monogamous relationships that also ended horrendously so…maybe it’s me

By Jay,when I writePublished 4 months ago Updated 4 months ago 6 min read
Trying:poly, casual,hook-ups and not to cry
Photo by Mae Mu on Unsplash

*This is just part 1 of my ROMANCE & OTHER THINGS SERIES*

So, if you read the title and got worried about me, raise your hand…

Don’t worry though, I’ve had some fun and I’m healing/giving out apologies like my life depends on it.

Look, if you told first half of 2022 me that I would attempt being in a relationship with someone who is into polyamory/ethical non-monogamy, then I would‘ve probably looked at you like, “What are you talking about? Though, I respect it wholeheartedly, I already know I’m not built for that and that’s not something I wanna change.” Heck, when I met the person and they told me that they were into that, I was like, “Cool cool, this person will make for a platonic friend. No biggie,” but then they had to make me fall. Very quickly. I mean, we first hooked up, but after that it was somewhat romantic.

The Beginning and Middle (because it was a very quick thing)

How did that work though?

Internally, it barely did. I mean, I’ve always understood it, but I never quite connected with it, and that wasn’t changing. We would go for a nice night of talking under the city’s…not stars, I wouldn’t say those were visible (but it sure did feel like they’d be there if it wasn’t for how we treated the planet), to being apart for work or them needing to tend to their other relationships, and that’s when my mind would do the thing where it convinced my whole body to shut down. I understood that they cared for everyone, I understood there was nothing wrong with it, but why couldn’t I just be so “cool” with everything?

I was actually pointing out to them that I would stay practicing monogamy in a way. I would only speak to them, and honestly only opened a dating app when the thought of “Well, shouldn’t I be doing that,” would pop in my head. Who does this seem helpful and kind to? No one. I wasn’t obligated to do anything, but a part of me thought I needed to try to do everything in my power to get on their level instead of just walking away. I was in deep.

Unfortunately, I kept questions from them because I was afraid of not only answers, but seeming like I wasn’t onboard with everything. I didn’t want them to think I was far too much to handle, and walk away. But, I also needed to keep their other partners away from my brain as much as possible; I kept their titles in my head as what they did for work, and I still don’t know their names.

Crappy situation and execution? Yeah, I know. I wasn’t being fair to anyone involved. Trust me, I’ve sat with it all. Even during the quickest—what, two weeks—relationship ever, I knew I was scrambling to find some ground we could both be comfortable on. My freaking thoughts and moods would swing drastically, and I mean I did my best to keep it all to myself, but this eventually

The Fall

Picture this: I’m mentally unstable, and exhausted from THE longest 24 hours of my life. I mean, I went from

1. being at my partner’s place after a romantic “date” (?) because my housemates were throwing a party (I’m some what fun, but I didn’t celebrate that holiday and I needed to get up for work at 5 in the morning…my housemates hate me, I think),

to

2. feeling like absolute crap and having to ask my boss for the day off (she actually told me to just come in later that day...I’m glad I quit soon after…I also texted her some semi risky messages on accident that morning but was able to lie my way out of them because they weren’t explicit and could be easily explained a different way),

then,

3. I went to a friend’s place for our first D&D meeting, except it was so pointless because not everyone came, and we at least needed the uh, *checks nerdy uncomfy notes* master, but he was M.I.A.

Lastly,

4. I went back to my place where I am always uncomfortable and I was having a very sad moment due to work and feeling off that day

So, I texted my “I don’t know because he technically doesn’t do labels even though I kind of asked if we were the night before” to just chat and see if he wanted company. He said sure, but that I would have to be up early tomorrow/my day off because he needed to meet up with someone/a friend the next morning.

Look, don’t get me wrong, we had already jumped over this hurdle. I knew the code words he was using. So, I asked him directly if it was one of their other [redacted]. He said “Yes,” this bothered me, but not as much as how it was all phrased. It was phrased as if he had remembered mid texting his message, it was phrased as if he was tiptoeing…it was weird, but I won’t share the exact message. What I will share is that I was sad because I felt like I could never be prioritized the same way or in the way that I needed to be at times. I was also sad because of the phrasing in general.

It wasn’t just this instance that made me think it, I once lost my key and felt like a bother for having to stay at their’s, and I had many thoughts about what if I just needed him, especially because I was upfront about my mental illness. I didn’t want to be a burden, but I also didn’t wanna keep thinking I was due to outside people. I don’t know. It was like that night made everything both crash down around me, but become very clear. I needed something else that he couldn’t give me at the time. And he needed something that I couldn’t give him. And honestly, that’s ok. We both had different expectations, wants, and needs, and in this case…there wasn’t enough bending either of us could do to make it work.

*Here’s where I note that it could work for others. I have read stories on mono-poly relationships going well, it just couldn’t work for me for us few reasons, even something I don’t feel comfortable with disclosing at this point*

So, how did I handle it?

Horribly. I told him it was over. Told him I didn’t like, nor get how he could be with me at night, then get pancakes (my favorite food) with someone else the next morning. The thing is though, even the word “get” doesn’t really point out how it felt/connected in my brain or in my body. All I could really access was the first time he had to leave me in his bed to go to one of them, and how much it hurt, but I did my best to stick it out.

The thing though is, I need someone who can be a bit more attentive and I need to be better at my own set of things. I need someone who just wants me, and that’s cool too. I think love, in all of its forms, can be very beautiful. But, not every form is beautiful for my life.

Now, don’t get me wrong…I know I probably could’ve gotten further or probably should’ve at least done 2 things:

1. Asked more questions

not every poly relationship needs everyone to know everything. I still don’t feel the need to know their names, but I should’ve learned certain things-like how this would look for us in their head and what exactly they wanted, instead of playing the guessing game and trying my best to “go with the flow” for once in my life.

2. Taken a Step Back That Night

I don’t regret ending things. However, I do regret how I went about it. Even after, it was messy and messy and messy…and I beat myself up consistently for months

What’s the takeaway?

For me it’s that it’s best to leave certain things alone. I wanted to prove that if I just did my best, then I could help make it work, but with everything…it didn’t add up well. I needed a different kind of connection and no amount of sweet talk could fix it.

I don’t need to “try to be chill,“ or to try everything. There are tons of people in the world with a nice smile, and who’ll want to explore love the same way I want to explore it.

Your heart only gets ya so far sometimes.

So, you gotta listen to your gut, and let it carry you the right way.

It’ll save everyone some heartache.

love

About the Creator

Jay,when I write

Hello.

What?

23, Black, queer, yup

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Comments (1)

  • C.R. Hughes23 days ago

    Okay, 1) I love the casual quirkiness of the way you write. It's like catching up with an old friend and I am totally invested. Can't wait for part 2. 2) I completely understand the feeling. I had a similar situation a couple of years ago and I was progressive enough to know that there is nothing wrong with polyamory but realistic enough to also know that I'm too possessive to share myself or my partner with anyone else. I'm glad you were able to do some healing in this process. I'm really curious to know what the breakup was like on your partner's end. Were they ok with everything because they had other partners to fall back on? Did they try to win you back after the fact? Sorry, I'm nosy and a hopeless romantic lol. Great read!

Jay,when I writeWritten by Jay,when I write

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