This weekend was hard for me.
Saturday I spent most of the day feeling extremely anxious and near-panicky. It took me until the evening to figure out what was going on. Lora had initially said that her stuff would be out “by the beginning of August – definitely the first week”. Yesterday was the eight, which is literally no longer the first week, nor the beginning of August, and though I didn’t consciously know it, I had been…I don’t want to say “expecting” her stuff to be out, because I’ve always figured that she’d draw this out as long as possible. That said, there was a naïve, hopeful part of me that did believe that “by the beginning of August – definitely the first week” would happen, and watching it roll by…will her stuff never be out?
I resolved to talk to Jon about it when he got home from work. He’d been working like crazy since Thursday on a big project for a client, so I hadn’t seen him much in the last few days. I didn’t want to talk to him about something like this when he was in the middle of a crazy deadline, but as it ended yesterday, it seemed like it would be a good time to bring up how I was feeling. I wanted to tell him that I really, really needed him to talk to her and nail down a definite date. Maybe it’d suck, maybe it would involve pusher her a bit, but I need a date. I can’t keep doing this snail-slow bullshit.
Right after Jon got home, he started rummaging in the fridge for a snack. I figured we’d have a snack, chill a little, and then I’d bring it up. While he was rummaging, I got…I don’t know, a weird feeling. Maybe I heard something. But I decided to go into the kitchen and check on him, and he was still rummaging in the fridge while crying. I asked what was going on.
Turns out, Lora had emailed him a long email a few days prior. She talked about how hard it was to see him, that every time she saw him, it brought all the pain of the break-up back. She had really high hopes that they could try again someday, and while she knew that wouldn’t be for a long time, seeing him always caused her to hope that maybe *this* time he’d say he was ready to try again. So she decided that she couldn’t see him or have anything to do with him anymore. She would coordinate getting her stuff out with him, but after that, she didn’t want to see or hear from him for a long time.
If this is genuine, then it sounds like one of the most emotionally healthy things that I’ve seen Lora do for herself. I’ve been really concerned for both of them ever since Jon said they were planning on continuing to have a relationship after the break-up, with no break for both of them to heal a little bit and get used to life without each other. While I have had break-ups where we transitioned pretty quickly to friends, it’s always been when the break-up was pretty mutual – both people deciding along the same time that the relationship wasn’t working anymore. Transitioning into a friendship straight out of a years-long relationship where one person ended it and the other person wanted to keep trying seemed like a really horrible idea.
But as I keep saying, that wasn’t my call. That was Jon and Lora’s call. I do think taking some time apart is the right call. I think it has the potential to do both of them a lot of good.
I’m assuming, in saying all this, that this is a genuine request from Lora. There is a part of me that wonders if it was a bid to see what Jon would do if faced with the prospect of not having her in his life at all – would he decide to get back together, if the options are either a romantic relationship with Lora or no relationship at all? I think it’s too soon to tell for sure, though I sincerely hope for both their sakes that it is a true request-from-the-heart.
I also really hope that if Lora is no longer going to have Jon to lean on, and she can’t really talk about the break-up with her mom, that this might push her into a “sink or swim” kind of place where she draws deep inside her and decides to swim.
That aside, given this new information, it seemed a bad time to bring up my feelings to Jon. Not that I’m putting them on the back-burner permanently. But he was deeply upset that Lora was cutting off all contact, and I didn’t want to add to his misery in that moment. I did tell him that I needed to have a talk with him in the next few days about getting a date for her moving out. I’m not sure if it will happen tonight. If it doesn’t, then I plan on letting him know tomorrow that we really need to talk tomorrow.
I haven’t come out and said it before, but this is definitely one of the most exhausting aspects of polyamory. Doing the things that best balance the needs of all the emotionally exhausted and traumatized people after a break-up/move out is really freaking hard. I’ve been trying my best to hang out with my feelings extra-hard, and only push for what I need when I’m sure that I do absolutely need it. I really wish that Lora would have just make plans to get her shit out as soon as the break-up happened. But I am completely certain that at that time she was still thinking this was some sort of game she could outlast, and that she and Jon would be getting back together momentarily.
Hum. It just occurred to me – Jon said before that part of Lora’s problem keeping friends was her extremely black and white way of seeing things. You’re either her friend or her enemy, and given the extremely narrow set of behaviors that she seems to find acceptable in those around her, most people wind up her enemy. I wonder if Jon’s afraid that this is the start of a transition to her viewing him as her enemy; just another person who played with her and then fucked her over in the end. I wonder if that could actually be what’s happening.
When I muse on these things, it’s momentarily, and without a lot of energy invested in them. I think about them for a moment, but then a loud voice in my head says “Whatever, as long as her stuff is out before we go on vacation”.
That’s still where I am: Get her stuff out. Get her out of my life. Make a wish to the universe that wherever she’s headed will be a place where she can learn to manage her life in a healthy and fulfilling way.
And lastly, but most importantly: get on with living my life.