I’ve recently started dating someone who is polyamorous but they like to constantly talk about their other partners. Is it wrong of me to be jealous and upset or is this a normal thing? I’m monogamous and I’ve never been with a polyamorous person before. I’m okay with the idea but it upsets me how they constantly talk about how great their partners are and how they wish they could be spending time with them. It makes me feel less important. Is this wrong of me?
Okay, this needs to be unpacked a bit. There are three different things you mention that should be disambiguated:
- Feeling jealous and upset that your partner has other partners
- Feeling jealous and upset when your partner talks about their other partners
- Feeling jealous and upset when your partner talks constantly about how great their other partners are and how they’d rather be spending time with them
It sounds like you’re experiencing #3, but holding yourself accountable for #1. Don’t do that!
If the real issue is that your partner is being insensitive by talking about their other partners in a way that makes you feel less important, say something to your partner! “Hey, I know you really care about Flemily and Borbra, and I’m so glad they make you happy, but when you constantly talk about how great they are and how you wish you were with them instead of me, it makes me feel bad.”
Your partner may not be doing this on purpose - they may not even realize what they’re doing. Maybe they say the same thing about you to their other partners! Maybe they’re nervous about you liking their other partners and think they need to talk them up to you. Maybe you’re the first new person they’ve dated in a while and they just don’t know how to make conversation without talking about these people that are a huge part of their life. The first step is to just gently bring it up and see if there’s a solution!
If they keep making you feel less important, re evaluate whether this is a healthy relationship for you. No one, mono or poly, should ever be with someone who makes them feel that way. As for whether your feelings are “wrong,” I think it’s perfectly reasonable to feel uncomfortable in the situation you’ve described. It would be one thing if you were trying to pretend they didn’t exist and just ignore your partner’s polyamory, so you bristled at any mention of their partners - that’s unhealthy and disingenuous - but it sounds like you are okay with this arrangement and doing your best to enter into it in a positive way, but you struggle with your partner talking insensitively about how great their other partners are. That’s a very specific and solvable problem, so first try talking it out with them, and consider their response to be a crucial point of information to tell you whether it’s healthy to stay in a poly relationship with this person.