Confusing New Situation

I don't respond on threads here very often; mostly I just read.... I really only ever hop in when I see a point of view that's not been mentioned. So, while there's tons to say, I'm really only going to focus on the bits that no one else has. Please don't take offense; none is meant, I assure you. I just see a point of view that seems unmentioned so far.

Jill sounds like a very carefree, life-loving, spontaneous, free-spirited woman. You mention world travel, burning man, and feminism. These characteristics are a two-edged sword; someone spontaneous and free-spirited can be so refreshing to be with and to love. The personality of such a person can bring new perspectives and layers to a relationship. But on the other side of that are the problems that spontaneity and free-spirit-ed-ness (hrwuh? new word!) can almost invariably bring.

I am, whenever possible, a very spontaneous person. On the way to South Dakota, I might take a detour through Brazil, if there's time. I totally understand the concept of things "just happening". Things often DO "just happen", with me. Thing is, I understand that about myself and wont make relationship agreements that disallow spontaneity. I'll agree to lots of things - barrier protection, calling if I'm going to be gone longer than expected, etc. - and I try very hard not to break plans once made. But I WON'T agree to things that limit my spontaneity too far. I would utterly wither under the expectation of being what you call "intentional". I am my own person; I go where I like, I kiss who I kiss, I love when I love. I won't change, and I know that. And I know VERY well that there are whole heaping piles of people who would not date someone like me. And that's okay.

I suspect that Jill is similar. I also suspect that she might be still discovering and understanding herself. I know I am; most of us are. Further, I suspect that she may not yet even KNOW what sorts of agreements are or aren't right for her, and that by agreeing to being "intentional", she may be agreeing to something that's beyond her abilities, or worse, detrimental and damaging to her very spirit. By agreeing to be "intentional", she may be agreeing to curtail her spontaneity. Maybe this could even be a step in destroying that free-spirit-ed-ness that might be part of what you love about her.

I don't know if any of that is true for Jill, and maybe none of it is. But it might be some food for thought. You might consider weighing the cost to her against the cost of the "damage" that comes with her as-is. For example, is the cost of the change in personality greater or lesser than the damage of her having sex with someone spontaneously? Could there be other agreements that free her up to have that sexual spontaneity? For instance, I wouldn't agree to discuss with an existing partner prior to sex with a new partner, but I WOULD agree to discuss it at the earliest convenience, be it before or after. To elaborate: say I like Gabe, and I go out with Gabe occasionally, but I don't really think Gabe is interested in me sexually. Though I would discuss Gabe with my existing partner (I like talking about my friends, so of course my partner would know I'd been hanging out with Gabe!), I wouldn't have thought to discuss about having sex with Gabe with my existing partner. Then, say Gabe and I go out, have fun, and Gabe discloses an interest in sex with me. If the mood strikes, I might be all for it. So we have sex. The following Tuesday, my partner and I are together, and I explain, " Hey, guess what? Gabe WAS interested in me sexually, and we had sex! We used barriers, etc., etc." Of course, if I'd thought that sex was in the cards beforehand, I'd have mentioned it beforehand.

Anyhow, just some thoughts to chew on. Just remember that some of the traits you love in someone may be the very traits that you hate, too.

Oh! Also, you might consider a little more self-caring in this, too; stop blanketing your anger at Jill with your love for her. You're MAD at her, and that's okay. You keep covering it up in ways like, "I'm angry about her screaming and fighting, but it's not a big deal, it's okay because she's so awesome and I really love her. Stop covering the anger! Feel it. It's there for a reason, whether it's rational or justified is irrelevant. Feel it and process it, or LET IT GO. Don't cover it up. You're entitled to it, and it's okay.
Wow, great perspective! I wonder if it would be helpful to give that to Jill, see if it resonates. Hell, it might even be good for her to see this whole thread so she can know how you're struggling too...
Thank you VA that is something she has said herself. I have a hard time with the idea. I feel like she often knows what she wants but is unwilling to admit it. Our "rules" so to speak are going as far as making out before talking to your partners is fine. And to talk about attraction as soon as you know about it.

We are working with her to give her that freedom the kind you are talking about. We all want that but it takes time and steps for jack and I to get there... time she doesn't seem willing to give... and part of that is her fear that we aren't really working towards that. That we (but mostly Jack) wants to control her. It's an issue we've been working on for sure. I don't want her to give up part of herself but I do need her to listen respect and care for her relationships and partners. Manly the issue has been the lying. When she is straight forward about what she wants she always gets it. We work our emotional asses off to figure out how to give her the things she wants... the problem is she would rather _take_ what she wants then giving us the chance to give it to her... or work together so she can have it... she won't wait... which I guess is the same issue you are bring up...

Maybe you can help explain it more? if you have time? I'm often clouded by my own feelings and history with Jill so maybe hearing it from some neutral party might help me understand it better.

As for my anger... I'm still working on it... I don't know how to handle it... I scared of being an asshole I think such angry awful hurtful things when I'm upset, stuff that would only make things harder... so I do hold it back. There has been so much anger and I constantly see how reactive hurt feelings just make things worse and worse.
Well, it sounds like all this is just a process really. I don't think there is really anything to do expect keep going until its done or you decide its done. She sounds very passionate about life and how to live it, but I agree, don't allow that to bowl you over and don't make excuses for her. Ya you love her, but you can also want to "dance on her grave singing alleluia" ;) My PN says that to me sometimes. I'm glad as I am a pain in the ass sometimes but at least I have a sense of humour about it and so does he. I have learned to tone it down big time as a result of being so. :p
It makes a lot of sense. You are saying now the shoe is on the other foot and she won't give in to how uncomfortable it is because she would then have to admit that you shouldn't have to wear it either.
I won't have time to reply in-depth for a few days, but I'll try to do so as soon as is easily convenient. Thanks for asking and considering my opinion; I will offer more when I can.
Hey, I've got some time during a flight, so will be formulating a reply which I'll post when I have internet access again. Just wanted you to know I haven't forgotten you.
You've been talking about Jill being attracted to Adam and wanting to fuck him. You've been talking about you being attracted to Adam, interested in sex, but holding back. You get the sense Adam would like to have sex with you.

Then recently you talked about the possibility Jill would fuck Adam. But why? Do you get the sense he'd want to fuck her? He seems more attracted to you than to her... would he just go ahead and fuck her and not you? Isn't this kinda ass backwards? If he desires you more, why doesn't he get to have sex with the one he wants a lot, not the one whom he thinks is just OK?

Just because Jill somehow feels she got "first dibs" on him, before you and Adam realized you 2 were quite attracted to each other, do you 2 really need to keep your hands off each other forevermore? That sounds kinda high school, chicks before dicks...
So, some more things to consider.... Do please understand that all of this is speculative, as I do not know Jill or you or Jack, and can only speak to what I THINK Jill MAY be like, as she sounds so similar to me.

First.... You mentioned past breaches of trust, and that those breaches of trust are what prevent you and Jack from giving her the "freedom" she seeks. Did Jill actually recognize those incidents as breaches of trust, or did she believe she was within the bounds of propriety at the time? Maybe a "rule" wasn't clear, or assumptions were made either by her or you or Jack about the expectations of her? This is an important point.... If what she did "wrong" was not thought by her to be wro.g and there was and confusion, even just in different definitions of what "polyamory" IS, then there could be a big looming resentment here; if she feels like she actually did no wrong, she could feel like she's being "punished" for no reason, in the worst possible way: having freedoms stripped.

The freedom to do what I like, go where I wish, kiss who i want, fuck who i want, is, for ME, inalienable. I am my own person. I spent enough years in an abusive relationship with the most passive-agressive "punisher" I've ever had the displeasure of knowing, so that plays into it, but really, I've been like this all my life. I think it's as hard-wired as polyamory, or sexual preference.... Freedom and autonomity are things I simply won't let go of. I know myself well enough now not to compromise on this. I NEED freedom and autonomy, or I simply wither. I crumble. I feel trapped. If I feel trapped, I resent the one(s) responsible. That resentment can build and get ugly.

But on to the "intentional" thing, and spontaneity.

The freedom bit is hand-in-hand with the spontaneity. Nothing makes me happier than to hop in a vehicle and take off, unplanned, to nowhere in particular. This one thing is my bliss. It's a great example of the meat and potatoes of the need for spontaneity and freedom. I can go anywhere (at least within the land mass I'm on; cars don't do ocean very well!), do anything. I even have a tent constantly in the car, and camping gear, "just in case". I don't always know when or where I will go. When the urge strikes, I try to be safe and respectful, and I let my partner(s) know as early as possible. Sometimes it's not until I'm in the car and taking off, sometimes it's a month in advance. I do try to never break existing plans, however.

If I were dating someone who didn't accept my need to take off, we simply wouldn't last. Incompatible. The same goes for other aspects of my life. I wont restrict my needs, but I totally accept and respect that there are plenty of people who can't deal with this need - I just don't date those people. We are fundamentally incompatible.

More on the spontaneity.... Life is beautiful. I want it. I want ALL of it. Life is MINE. This whole planet, is MINE. I live and breathe and love for the pure, unadulterated enjoyment of this beautiful experience of living. I take what comes my way. I WANT what comes my way. I accept whatever life throws at me, as best as I can, and appreciate the opportunity to experience it, whatever it is.... Bliss, despair, and everything in between. We only have just this one shot at life, as far as i can tell, and to squander that would be utterly criminal to me.... Sacriligious, even. Similarly, I don't want to have any expectations of Life - planning out a path to take, even with a friend that might be a potential partner, is just not feasible for me. I don't WANT expectations, I want experiences. I might not even know I'm truly attracted to someone until it hits me one day. Or maybe I'm on a spontaneous picnic with an old friend that I've never had sexual interest in, and suddenly we both find a passion for each other. I'm not going to stop to say, "Hold on, Partner X won't let me have sex with someone unless I've discussed a growing attraction with them first. Let's put this moment on hold until the second Tuesday of next month." What I WILL do is follow safer sex agreements (it's not my right to threaten someone else's health) and at the first opportunity I will disclose the sex to existing partner(s).

Things really do Just Happen. Life really does Just Happen.

I respect people that need things like advance notice prior to sex. I just won't date them. I have learned what is important for me, and as much as they may NEED advance notice, I NEED freedom to be spontaneous. Sometimes, that might suck. Sometimes life sucks, but that's okay. It's no one's fault, it's just the way it works, or doesn't work.

Jill may find during this time of self-discovery that she's similar. She may find that agreeing to compromise her spontaneity kills a part of her. You may find that killing part of her is worse than letting her go. Or maybe you can find appreciation and acceptance of that fundamental part of who and what she is. You and Jack might fi.d that letting go of the "rules" that constrain her will bring her closer to you. Sometimes you just gotta let 'em go in order to keep 'em.

Perhaps a better focus would be to try to find ways to let her be herself and still meet Jack's needs. Try to get to the WHY of Jack's and your "rules" and see if there are other things that Jill can do to meet those needs without being damaged. If the need for the rule comes down to "I feel like I can't trust Jill", then maybe working on trust is more important than announcing an attraction. Since announcing an attraction can be impossible (at least, that's how I see it), perhaps Jack and Jill can find things that help buil trust between them.

Though there's more I might say, I think that's probably enough for now. I'm a little on the wordy side. You see why I don't post that often? :p