Sunday, December 23, 2012

How to Navigate Rough Patches.

Note:  I wrote this a few weeks ago, and sat on it for a while before posting.  The objective here is to give a glimpse inside of those times when things aren't smooth, easy, or feeling great, and to show that even experienced poly folk have moments of difficulty with their own emotional state.  More importantly, that it's normal and recoverable.  Cut to today, and I'm back to a more usual state of joy and resilience with my relationships and metamours!

If only we were all enlightened, all the time.  Existing in a place of security, safety, joy, love, and compersion at all points.  Alas, I, at least, am human, with soft spots, baggage, life events, hormones, and interactions that drag things to the surface I would prefer remain neatly tucked away.

Today is one of those days.  Today I feel that having needs is "being needy".  Today I feel as though sharing means I am giving away things that I value out of obligation or fear of being told no, rather than desire.  Today I am tired of making requests. and asking for my needs to be met, because the things that I feel I need in this moment are silly, selfish, unreasonable, and not constructive, and I want them to happen spontaneously, without needing to ask.   Today, I feel like my partners being autonomous individuals, with their own wants and needs that don't always align with my own, is a burden. Today is a rough patch.

The support I have, my partners, friends, community, is all wonderful  No one is "making" me feel this way.      Everyone is acting with integrity and good intentions.  It's just where I am at at this point, for a variety of reasons, very few of which have much to do with my current relationships, and I'm not sure how to navigate my way out of this space I am in.

Being who I am, tossing in the towel and giving up isn't a viable option, nor is making demands that my brain says are illogical, or damaging to my long-term well-being, and that of my partners.  Nonetheless, the desire is there to just lock everything down so I don't have to deal, to avoid dealing with these feelings that I'm very uncomfortable with, and not handle one more single solitary thing that doesn't feel purely good at the moment. Oh!  And I kind of want it to stay that way for a while too.

So what is a reasonable person in an emotionally unreasonable space supposed to do?  Distraction is often touted as a good option, but there really isn't much as compelling to me currently as my own emotional distress.  "Being with your feelings." is another much-recommended tactic to take.  The idea being that, if one is able to observe the feelings and emotions, understanding will be close behind, and with understanding comes the ability to control or direct those feelings in a more useful direction.  Right now, it just sounds like a butt load of work. What about finding a new shiny to break things up? Dating someone to plug a hole, literally, figuratively, or emotionally, is a spectacularly bad idea, even if it would occupy some bandwidth.  So instead, I write, and I try to be around people that love me when they are available to do so, and know that this too shall pass.


Unknown said...

Hearing your reaction to the rough patches helps others who have similar feelings realize that polyamory is not always sweetness and light and that they are not alone.

It is generous of you to write about the downside now and then. Thanks for sharing your experience with us.

lynelle said...

i love how you analyze even the hard parts. and i love that you look for reasonableness even when your emotions aren't. truly admirable. thank you for sharing even the vulnerable parts. hoping your rough patches are rare and brief.