Q: My wife loves dogs and we have adopted a stray puppy. However ever since the puppy has come into our lives, she has stopped giving me any love and affection and everything is centred around the pup. I enjoy having the puppy at home, but how do I explain to her that the pup can't be the centre of the universe.
Ans: A pup can be the centre of the universe and replace you too. Old tricks, new dog. You were the only one in your wife’s life and now there is someone new who has replaced you. Let’s draw some inspiration from how the polyamorous community deals with a similar problem: New Relationship Energy.
Nonmonogamy veterans know that this is a phase that will pass. Yes, they do take steps to speak to their partners about how they feel and establish time management structures. They know that affection and love are unlimited but time isn’t. I am sure you will agree that your wife has not stopped loving you, she is probably just spending more time with the pup. The more self-aware polys, take the opportunity to address their own feeling of jealousy.
They know that, jealousy feeds right into their fears of abandonment, not being good enough, not being loved and rejection. They make use of the situation to introspect. They perceive jealousy as not something to be denied, avoided or feared, but something that can be informative and worked through. Where are your fears and insecurities coming from? Is this something you experienced while growing up?
Many people would grab the free time you are getting to meet their friends, go on weekend breaks, play sports, get some me time. You are stressing over it. How familiar is this feeling to you? How far back does it go? If this sounds like too much soul-searching for you, take a practical path. Become more involved in caring for your pup and take turns with your wife. That will surely create some great memories and strengthen the bond with her.
The writer is an Intimacy & Relationship Coach, Founder of The Intimacy Curator, an organisation promoting self-discovery through emotional and sexual wellbeing (www.theintimacycurator.com). (Have a query? Send it on email@example.com)Candid Corner: Childless marriage
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