The Cloverleaf Chronicles – Growing Pains

4 Leaf Clover

Today is the one month anniversary of when the four of us met! Over the weekend H and I finally met B and his wife’s daughter. I was very excited to meet her and she is an adorable girl. B is not her biological father, but he’s been in her life since she was very young. Her biological father lives near by, so B and his wife have her 50% of the time, and the other 50% of the time she is with her biological father. I wasn’t sure before how close B and she were, but H and I spent time with the three of them over the weekend and it’s clear that they are a family. She calls B “daddy” which I find so endearing. B obviously loves her very much. I had asked him at one point if he and his wife wanted more kids and B told me they did want one of their own some day. I thought that was really cool.

Anyway, over the weekend B and I went to a local dog park just the two of us and talked for a couple of hours straight. I told him the things I’ve been holding back: about V, my history of sleeping with married men and the cutting. It was also my first chance to really talk with him about my family and some of the crap I dealt with growing up. He was, as always, extremely kind and understanding. He hugged me and held me and encouraged me. It was a wonderful feeling, and I was so glad to finally feel like everything is out in the open between us.

Naturally, I didn’t want to be far behind with his wife. She also enjoys writing, so we decided to share some of our stuff. I pulled quite a bit directly off of this blog and sent it to her. I hadn’t told her about the cutting, but she pretty much knew about the rest. However, she and I haven’t really talked about BDSM and that was certainly a recurring theme in what I sent her. She read most of what I sent her today and responded with a bunch of interesting and thoughtful questions. I was extremely nervous last night after I sent her so much of who I am and what I struggle with that I’d made a mistake and our cloverleaf was going to fall to pieces because I showed the real me. Instead my relationships with both B and his wife are already stronger. It feels amazing to be cared for by people who know things that matter to me, by people I’ve chosen to¬†trust.

H seems to be the most unstable component of our cloverleaf so far, which doesn’t surprise me in the least. B said he thinks H might see our relationships as more of a friends-with-benefits situation than a polyamorous relationship, however B and H don’t really talk to one another so he’s drawing that conclusion indirectly. I admit it’s possible B is right, but my gut is that H is interested in B’s wife as more than a friend-with-benefits based on the time and energy he is investing in his relationship with her. Also, B’s wife has her own baggage and perhaps isn’t connecting with H on the deeper level that I’ve been connecting with both B and her. However, H needs the most time out of all of us to become comfortable and it takes time to really get to know him. I hope that over time H and B’s wife’s relationship will deepen. On a selfish note, although I would be wrecked if I lost B and his wife from my life, at least H and I will have had an experience with polyamory and perhaps we will find a permanent relationship down the road. In the meantime, the cloverleaf continues to learn and grow. I personally feel like I’ve grown a ton in the last month just by letting new people into my life and opening my heart again. Whatever happens in the end, I am grateful.

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Mr. Casual Friday vs. The Cloverleaf

I had a dream last night that really upset me. I’m not even sure where to begin explaining.

As I’ve referenced in other posts, I still have secrets from B and his wife. Admitting my history as a survivor of domestic violence to them was a big step, but there is more I need to tell them. I started with that secret because I don’t feel shame or guilt about it most of the time any more. I understand that I was a victim and it wasn’t my fault. My other secrets however? I still feel culpable for both my decisions and the results. That makes it far more difficult to admit to my history of self harm and affairs with married men.

Enter my dream last night. I think my subconscious is afraid that I am going to sabotage this very new and beautiful relationship the four of us are developing. I could go in to far more detail, but the short version is Mr. Casual Friday was naked in bed with a woman while I was in the room. I tried not to watch them but failed to resist completely. He was gorgeous, all sexy and sweaty and rippling muscles. As I was building up the courage to walk out of the room he turned his full attention on me. I wanted him but he is married and I would never want to hurt B. He persisted and got some of my clothes off. I woke before we made it all the way, but I was feeling incredibly guilty and disappointed in myself both in my dream and once I was awake.

B knows about my crush on Mr. Casual Friday and teases me about it occasionally. I’ve made it clear to B that I am not looking for more partners at this point nor will I be at any time in the near future. I always imagined four, and I think my instincts were right. I think four is a good balance and is enough for me without being too much. Anyway, B has no reason to feel threatened by Mr. Casual Friday, but the alpha male in him still makes itself known occasionally in a devastatingly attractive way! So, I need to tell both B and his wife the secrets I’m still holding back. I need to know that they want me in spite of past mistakes. And I need to stop fantasizing about Mr. Casual Friday. It’s very clear to me all of a sudden that I’d far rather be fantasizing about my cloverleaf ūüôā

Emotional Affairs

I had planned to write more about my past today. I had decided on a topic and was all set to delve into a specific issue that’s been on my mind. Instead, I discovered a more urgent consideration. Hopefully I’ll have time to get back to my original plan, but as tends to be the case with the past, it can (and will) wait.

 

Part of my personality as a sub is always wanting to give to the people I care about. I trust few people, but those I do trust I trust explicitly. I only dated one guy in between dealing with E’s abuse and meeting my husband. J was a great guy (actually, still is). J was everything I thought I wanted in a guy. We had all the same interests. We went on shooting dates, liked the same kind of movies, both loved animals and a rural lifestyle. J loved my dog and my horse. He was very intelligent, hard working, and worshipped me. As much as I loved spending time with J and as much fun as we had, I never loved him as more than a friend. The sex was great, but there was no emotional component for me.¬†

 

I didn’t realize it immediately, but I was also physically intimidated by J. He never made an aggressive move toward me, but he was a big guy and far stronger than me. I told J a little about what I went through with E, so he knew he was the first guy I’d dated since. I realized I was afraid of J after I had already decided to break up with him. I went to his place to deliver the bad news in person, and suddenly realized I was frozen-to-the-spot terrified. Here I was, alone, about to break up with a guy who really cared about me, in a room full of loaded weapons he is quite adept in using. I’m still ashamed of having feared him; J did not deserve that from me. He’s the last person who would ever hurt a woman, simply due to his impeccable morals.¬†

 

J and I eventually became friends, and I fessed up to why I couldn’t stay in the relationship. We were also friends with benefits for a while. Did I mention the sex was¬†great!? I slowly got over my fear of J. H knew that J & I had dated, that we had been friends with benefits after I’d ended our relationship, and that J & I still would text. None of that was a secret. But, J understands me so well, in so many ways H doesn’t. H is my opposite in most all every day things. Our taste in material items, our hobbies, even our approach to decision making. All opposite. It’s daunting and exhausting at times, H and I trying to meet in the middle and understand one another. Despite our best efforts, communication remains the single most difficult barrier to our happiness in our marriage. Good thing we are both committed to working on it and not giving up.

 

Back to J. One day, I invited J to go riding with me. He missed my horse, and I love having company when I go riding. I’ve taken other friends out to the barn and its never been an issue. H was not please. At all. In his view, texting is very casual. To H, texting someone doesn’t mean you are friends. I only text people I consider to be my friend. Why would I waste my time and attention on texting someone who isn’t? I don’t keep in touch with “casual acquaintances” like H does, I guess. I assumed H knew I considered J to be a friend. We had even invited J over to play one time and had a threesome. We all had a good time and there was no jealousy issues. But going riding with J? Apparently¬†that’s where H draws the line. I was flummoxed!¬†

 

I really struggled with this. For months, I felt like there was a wall between H and I. I felt controlled, demeaned, devalued. H told me who I could and couldn’t be friends with, and what I could and couldn’t do for fun! Furious didn’t even begin to describe how I felt. I was heartbroken, devastated. I thought I would never go through that again. I thought H loved and trusted me enough to never forbid me from a friend. I was wrong. H tried to explain to me why it would be “inappropriate”. He really did. But I just couldn’t understand his point of view. I slowly, and through additional conversations with H, came to accept that H did not wish to control me, but needed me as his wife to understand that he has limits, and, somehow, this was one of them. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still¬†not happy about the situation, but I was able to slowly begin to feel closer to H once again and rebuild the trust and intimacy that was shattered through this experience.

 

Although I’ve just started this blog, it’s a place where I allow myself to be completely vulnerable and exposed. A place I can say and think and work through the things I have to hide in most every other aspect of my life. My intention was to keep it a secret, remain completely anonymous. I didn’t plan to tell H, my friends or my family about it. Well, plans change. First I told R about it. I hadn’t talked to him in years. He and I never dated, but we were friends with benefits around the time I was being abused by E. R didn’t know the details of my situation with E, but he knew enough to know I things were less than ideal. R gave me what I needed at the time, and I didn’t even recognize how well he did that until last night. I heard from him, rather out of the blue recently. I’ve really enjoyed reconnecting with him. He’s smart, easy going and has a heart of gold. And yeah, you probably saw this coming‚Ķthe sex was great! *fond smile*¬†

 

I always felt I could trust R. Unfortunately, I was never as up front with him as he was with me. I regret that I never gave him even a fraction of what he gave me, or what he deserved. But at the time, I was as open and honest with him as I was capable of being. We had a good time. R¬†smiled at me. He even got me to smile too! I really needed that back then. So rather quickly I find myself opening up about my brand new blog and letting R read it. He didn’t know that H & I swing, didn’t know that I’m bi, didn’t have any idea that I’m a sub at heart. Pretty shocking discovery for R I’m sure. I was terrified he’d be disgusted and never speak to me again. Luckily he proved me wrong. We talked a lot about what he learned and I answered his questions as best I could. I’m so grateful I was brave enough to tell him about my blog.¬†

 

Then, I told another friend. S is a great listener. We met through work, and don’t see each other often, but he became a confidant and highly trust friend so fast I’m surprised I didn’t get whiplash. Super unusual for me. I still have no idea why I trusted him, it just happened. In the time we’ve known each other he’s proved over and over again what an amazing friend he is. He knew that H & I swing. I even talked to him about my fears about C (a story H is still in the dark about). But S did not know that I’m a sub. I’d never told anyone other than H, until I created this blog to have an outlet. I really didn’t know what to expect from S once he read what I’d revealed so far. He didn’t know about my history of abuse. Not something I share lightly.¬†

 

S understood probably better than I’d like. Didn’t expect that. If my friend can understand better than my husband, what does that mean? I love H. I probably sound selfish and completely self obsessed in my blogging, but that isn’t how my day to day life looks. I always consider H. I never say “no” to him because I don’t want to. I want to give H anything, everything. So I get up and get him something to drink when he asks, even though I’m warm and comfortable in bed, because it makes me happy to make him happy. I watch T.V. shows I don’t care for because instead I can watch him & his enjoyment. That’s what I want. H is always in my thoughts. I’m constantly considering how my choices and action affect H and our marriage. Finally, this brings me to my point.

 

How much is too much? How much of myself can I give to my friends, and at what point am I giving that which belongs to H? Am I sabotaging my marriage? I really don’t know where the line is. Obviously, based on the fiasco with H & J. How much can I tell my friends, how much can I confide in them, how much can I admit to them, without degrading my relationship with H? Does it make a difference if it’s a friend I’ve slept with or not? To me, relationships aren’t about sex. Sex is just an aspect, and often for me, a transitory stage. I value friendship¬†far more than I value sex. So, does having had sex with someone years ago mean I can’t have a friendship with them now? Unfortunately, I fear H’s answer to that is “yes”.¬†

 

Perhaps its a result of my shitty upbringing, but I’d never had a real friend until I was an adult. I probably don’t understand what friendship is suppose to mean. How it’s suppose to work, how to interact, what to talk about and not talk about, it’s all greek to me. So I don’t blame H for having different ideas about what friendship means. That doesn’t mean I know how to have a friendship he himself would. So here’s the question, do I have friendships, or do I have emotional affairs? I wish I knew.