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Thread: Making peace with sexual history

  1. #1
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    Making peace with sexual history

    I need to start acknowledging I am the problem here. I’m looking for help to come to peace with what I know and not let my insecurities manifest in ways that will damage my relationship.

    My girlfriend and I are both 34. We both have a history at not being great at relationships and we can both say we have messed up previous relationships and made some mistakes. Where we are both at now is the opposite. We’ve been together a little over a year, and it has been great. We go from strength to strength and feel closer today than ever before since we’ve been together. We’re talking about moving in together at the middle of next year after she goes away for work for 6 months.

    What I need help with is coming to terms with her self described ty period. Her words, not mine. She has told me a few stories (none that I have asked for) of some of the things she has experienced in the past that make me insecure. There is added hypocrisy with this as I have my own ty period, of which I keep more to myself. I have no doubt that we love each other immensely and want to be together for a long time, but every now and then, about once every day or 2, I can’t help but think of one of these stories then obsess over it and compare myself to some of her experiences.

    I told her I appreciate her words that what we have is better than a one night stand or a public dalliance with a stranger, and I know she is right, but is there any advice I can take in that will get these thoughts out of my head.

    I believe her, I trust her and I am excited by the future we want together, I’m just tired of my mind being polluted by my own insecurities. They shouldn’t be there. She’s told me I am the best and most passionate person she has been with. I satisfy her and she is wonderfully happy to wake up with me everyday. All this should be enough, but sometimes I can’t help but think I want her to pick me out in a crowd at a nightclub and have some fun with no strings.

    What can I do so I don’t let this fester and blurt it out one day in a tiff while emotions are high??

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Jibralta's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Sourmilk
    What can I do so I don’t let this fester and blurt it out one day in a tiff while emotions are high??
    I think you just need to be very vigilant about this, as you are being right now. You have to be careful every time there is a potential trigger until the feelings run their course, which I think they eventually will.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    While she is away, take the time to reflect and consider that with all the ongoing strive over this, that and the other for most of the relationship, whether moving in is advisable. It seems you both are trying very hard, maybe too hard to make this work.
    Originally Posted by Sourmilk
    We’re talking about moving in together at the middle of next year after she goes away for work for 6 months. I’m just tired of my mind being polluted by my own insecurities.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member SherrySher's Avatar
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    You should be honest with her and tell her that you'd prefer not to hear these stories as they don't help anything and make you uncomfortable.

    Surely she can understand that?

    I don't even know why she thought it a good idea to start even talking about it.

    As for the stories she already told, just remind yourself that it was all nonsense. Cause if it hadn't been a waste of her time, she would have stayed in that situation.

    It was her history and nothing good came of it...which is why she came searching for you.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Keyman's Avatar
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    Anxiety is based in fear, and no doubt the fear that if she used to be like that, that she might still be like that or will be like that again in the future. And I am sure it is coming to a head now she is off away for work for 6 months.

    There is no reason to believe she will do anything and in fact, it is most likely she will not. But, to be honest, for all we say, it will likely not change how your mind works. You need to do some work on yourself, talk to a councellor, learn to meditate or all of the above, just to work these insecurities out of your head. As it is all about fear of something that will very likely never happen.

    Do know that once insecurities start they have a tendency to spiral out of control unless you do something about it. And it could very well lead to the end of the relationship, with her wondering what went wrong with her wonderful man.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member figureitout23's Avatar
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    It sounds like you both learned some not so healthy relationship habits, for example her over sharing. Your insecurity, and instead of fixing it you kinda just found each other. Which your prerogative, but the unhealthy relationship habits don’t just go away because you meet the right person, that’s why they say fix yourself before entering the relationship, entering a relationship as two damaged individuals doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed failure but you’re guaranteed those issues will surface in some way shape or form.

    Unfortunately at this point you know, you can’t unknow, so there’s nothing to do to erase that knowledge, unless you have that one contraption from men in black.

    I think your best solution is going to be communication and you working on your self esteem and self destructive behaviors. I don’t see why you would have to be mindful to not say petty and hurtful things during an argument, don’t ever ever ever use someone sexual history as a weapon against them. Don’t you dare sl*t shame her when you were a sl*t your darn self! Seriously though the fact that you’d have to fight to not do that... not a good thing in my opinion, but whatever it is what it is. Have you considered role playing? If you want to be a guy who picks her up at a bar for a quickie, play the role, it can be a lot of fun, but that’s what Imean about communicating, communicate your desires.

  8. #7
    Platinum Member Andrina's Avatar
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    Every person in my life has upset me at one time or another. She made a mistake by sharing irrelevant info to you. Obviously nobody wants to run that film reel through their head about their partner being intimate with someone else. In her mind, she might've liked a jealous reaction from you, and it's probably her own insecurity, broadcasting that other men do find her desirable.

    The control you have now is to stop her if she gets diarrhea of the mouth and say: What happened in the past between you and other men is something I don't want to hear about. I'd rather talk about us and our future together.

    When the newness of this relationship turns into a day after day building of a beautiful life together, that old discussion will become a non-important thing that you no longer think of, just as when you have an argument, it loses its potency as each hour and day passes, and then you get back to the business of getting along.

    If you want to be proactive about getting this relationship right, get couples books on communication, like Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus. Read articles on how to keep a spark alive in a relationship. Those are much more pleasant things to concentrate on. You can train your brain to go any way you choose. When you catch yourself thinking of something negative, quickly divert those thoughts to a better place. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

  9. #8
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Along with figureitout, I think what's very tough here is that neither of you have accepted that your "shi*ty periods" were actually just periods: chapters in your life that brought you to this chapter. Without that understanding—which is something we find for ourselves rather than through another—it can get complicated quick.

    You do what you guys are doing, which is making shame from your past a bonding point in your present and creating a romantic dynamic that has an air of atonement: a micro-loop of confessions and repenting that magnifies the very shame you're theoretically trying to dispel. Feels very hot and vulnerable early, the story of two filthy people baptizing each other through love. But filth is filth, in the end. You don't clean it up by flinging it around. You clean it up by realizing, oh yeah, it wasn't filth but just life.

    But, yes, here you are. If she is in the habit of bringing this stuff up on the regular, I would ask her, calmly and lovingly, to stop. That deprives some of the oxygen from the flame of corrosion. I would also give yourself some time to unpack this with a therapist, and with her about to leave for a good stretch you've got a wonderful opportunity for some reflection, some self-cleaning. Once you shed your own guilt and shame—once you stop identifying as someone with a sh*tty past but just someone with a past, like all of us, you'll be less concerned about hers, maybe less inclined to even think of her as a woman with a sh*tty past. Ideally, of course, she can also some day come to see that in the mirror, so in you she is not needing a mirror that reflects her self-conception of a wild child in emotional rehab.

    And, yeah, if you want her to pick you out at a bar and ravage you in the back alley—well, you can ask for that, suggest it. That's what's fun about being in a relationship: you get to do things that can be shame-inducing in other contexts, be it something saucy or just laying around in sweatpants for a weekend, and make it into something fun and beautiful, together.

  10. #9
    Platinum Member maew's Avatar
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    sometimes I can’t help but think I want her to pick me out in a crowd at a nightclub and have some fun with no strings.
    if you want her to pick you out at a bar and ravage you in the back alley—well, you can ask for that, suggest it. That's what's fun about being in a relationship: you get to do things that can be shame-inducing in other contexts, be it something saucy or just laying around in sweatpants for a weekend, and make it into something fun and beautiful, together.
    Yet again bluecastle said exactly what I was thinking.

    Being in a relationship doesn't have to mean the end of your $lutty period.

    While i think it's tacky to bring past stories of sexual experiences up, especially in a new relationship, maybe your GF is telling you these stories as a way to let you know that she might be into something like that with you.

    There is something to be said for having the level of trust and feeling safe you seem to have with each other where she feels free to share that stuff with you, and where perhaps you can be free to explore your passions and desires together.

  11. #10
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    How long have you been dating each other? You seem a bit of an over-worrier. Don't let your thoughts get ahead of you. I agree with Jibralta about being vigilant about your thought patterns and agree with the other members who have all mentioned better boundaries and explaining clearly that oversharing the past or previous experiences is not necessary. If it places you at risk for anything (stds or health issues), that's a different story. It sounds like both of you are still in the honeymoon stages where it's a free for all and emotions are always running high. It's natural to feel a little jittery and unsure of yourselves if this is the first one or two years of dating.

    Stop worrying so much about what might come out in an argument. If it has to come out, it comes out. You're too anxious about it. Trust in yourself and don't get wobbly and sad about it. Clear your conscience, be clear with her and enjoy your life together.

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