I think one of the weirdest things in our poly situation is that I get to see my partner's relationship skills when relating to someone else than me. I've learned a lot about rory when I've seen her interact with Alec. And I bet she has seen sides of me that wouldn't have come up if I weren't with JJ. For example me and rory haven't had a single fight during this time but she has seen me argueing with JJ so she now knows how I might behave in that kind of situation.
One thing that I've learned is that I need to ask for what I want. I haven't done that much with JJ because we seem to have quite similar needs when it comes to ways we show affection, amount of communication etc. At first it felt weird to me that I would have to say what I wanted. If my partner loves me, they would know what I want, right?
Well, now I know better. I guess this one comes down to the love languages many people here talk about. I suppose my and JJ's love languages are quite similar so we've never had to talk about these things. He does just the things I expect someone does if they love me. Me and rory talked about this and she thinks it's good to ask for what you want, how else would the other one know. But for me this isn't so straightforward. If for example I needed to hear the words 'I love you' more often, I would really struggle to let my partner know that. If I did and the partner started saying it more, I would probably feel it's not genuine and couldn't enjoy it.
This is something I really need to learn especially in a poly relationship. I need to feel more comfortable asking for what I want because that is just one of the things my partner needs to care about. She also needs to care about what her other partner needs and what she herself needs, so she can't concentrate 100% on me.