My “friend” has recently realized he’s poly, but he’s still in a mono relationship with his live-in gf. When he brought up the idea of them opening the relationship she flipped and refused, and he caved and agreed to stay with her for her own happiness even though it makes him miserable. I’ve tried to convince him he’s wasting both their time by not breaking it off, but I can’t seem to get him to actually move forward because he’s too scared of hurting her. Any advice?
Your friend is going to make the choices he thinks are best for him, and nothing you do or say can change that. This is true of all relationships. We are all condemned to be free, and with that comes the fact that we are surrounded by other individuals equally condemned to their own freedom.
Almost all of us have watched people we love make choices we believe are bad for them, and we all know how frustrating and powerless that feels. But there is nothing anyone can do to change another person’s mind.
If you value this friendship (note: I am confused by the meaning of the quotes you used to describe this person’s relationship to you), the best thing you can do is support him in the choice he has made. As long as she’s not actively abusive, even if you think this makes him “miserable,” there’s nothing you can or should do to change his mind.