It isn't easy.
When I met my polyamorous boyfriend, Buddy, I couldn't ask him enough questions.
This was my first time trying something like polyamory and, being the nerd I am, I felt like I needed all the information possible before I embarked on the journey.
Talking about his recent ex, I asked, "Why did you two split up?"
He didn't miss a beat.
"She had a hard time with the fact that my partner and I are trying to have a baby."
I plumbed my own depths in that moment to see if I had similar feelings. I was pleased to find that I didn't.
Maybe I'm good at this polyamory thing, I thought.
That was then, and this is now.
It's strange how I'm not jealous of their relationship. I don't know that I'm ready to live with anyone just yet, and he really needs to have a partner to come home to.
Together, Buddy and his partner are living out every minute detail of daily life, so when I'm around it's like a vacation or a holiday or a break from the norm.
It's made me feel both guilty (I really should stop eating all their food) and spoiled rotten.
But lately, there's been another feeling too.
That feeling is worry about the future, and I'm trying not to panic about it.
Recently Buddy went to see a fertility specialist to make sure that his parts were in working order.
Being thoughtful and sweet, he texted his partner and me throughout the appointment, on a group text.
She had a lot of questions, and fair enough.
Eventually, I dropped out of the exchange, not because I felt excluded, but the other way around, like I was shoehorning myself into a moment that really should just be about the two of them.
It made me feel afraid. It made me feel nervous.
You see, I want to have a baby, and I have always imagined that experience being something I share with just my partner.
The knowledge of having a baby and sharing that process with two other people seems like it's asking an awful lot of me.
That line of thinking led to another: Is polyamory asking too much of me?
I've never felt in this relationship like I'm not getting enough time or affection.
But a polyamorous relationship is, in its very nature, a compromise. That's the nature of the beast.
And I'm a pretty compromising person, almost to a fault.
Being happy comes naturally to me, but staying happy doesn't, and I'm used to having to bend over backward in my relationships to try and make them work.
A man with another woman could be another in a long line of things I've agreed to do, while unconsciously holding out hope that some day I will be looked at and appreciated for who I am without having to compromise.
It's scary writing this stuff down because these are new feelings.
I don't know what they mean.
I don't know where they will take me.
But I do know I'm not alone in this. That, ironically, is one of the perks of polyamory: I've got to be open and honest about everything if I want the relationship to succeed, which means talking about even the stuff that scares me shitless.
And that includes this.