one of the most significant things i have done is unlearn the idea that a boyfriend / partner should do things ie: reply to me quickly, reach out to me when i declare that i want space, control where i go & what i do under the guise of “caring”, etc. in unlearning these things, i’ve grown to learn that freedom & simplicity are essential to a relationship (for me!). i’ve understood that asking for attention is not bad or a sign that my partner does not care or want to give it to me on his own, & i’ve learned to challenge unrealistic expectations of total consistency. i’ve learned to be honest in regards to my feelings, simply saying “you hurt my feelings” & focusing on resolution so resentment does not build. as small as these growths seem to be, i’m proud of myself & the strides i’ve taken to let go of accepting abusive relationship behavior as normal & the implementation of such behaviors as proof of care & closeness. letting go of these notions has given me a true sense of freedom, & in that freedom i’m growing to be the partner my boyfriend deserves while enabling him to be the best he can be for me. i’m really proud of that. i’m excited to keep growing.
When I tell people that the skills I learn being in a poly relationship are skills that I think would help me in any kind of relationship, these are the kinds of things I mean.