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sex and the past...


artandlies

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so, i'm not exactly sure how to say this...

 

lately i've been having some trouble dealing with some things i have found out about my boyfriend (though "boyfriend" doesn't really explain what he is to me; we've been friends for eight years and dated for two, and i love him completely. i just wanted to clarify that it's not a casual thing). it's not that i'm judgemental, i really sincerely try not to be. but i'm really broken up about this one thing, as lame as i know that is.

 

here's the deal. i'm a virgin. i did nothing, and i mean nothing, with any of the guys i dated before him. i'm not religious or anything, i just wanted to wait, because i, personally, think sex is one of the most meaningful ways you can connect with another human. i know that's just one way of looking at it, and i certainly don't think it's "wrong" to look at sex a different way -- i think most people probably view sex differently than me, and my way isn't better or worse, it's just mine.

 

but over the course of our relationship, i've sort of gotten bits and pieces of his sexual history. i don't know why, but finding this stuff out has affected me pretty seriously. i know it's absurd but i have this feeling of, almost betrayal...? i don't even know how i managed to learn the things i've learned -- ie: number of partners, experimentation, one night stands, acts, people, when, where, how. intimate details. i told him he had to stop bringing these things up, that they hurt me, and he did and apologized, i think he felt pretty badly about it, but i'm still left to deal with what i already know. thinking about it just makes me nauseus; i LOVE him, but he did these things with all these other women, some of whom i know and see regularly. i don't know -- even typing about it i'm crying it again. hah. i just feel like, i don't know. i feel like OUR intimacy has been chipped away at, like i have these other girls in my bed.

 

i guess what i want is for my first time to be his first time, but i can't have that. and i'm reconciled to that. it's fine; i just tell myself that our first time will be the first time it was an emotional connection as much as a physical one.

 

but i don't know how to make myself stop caring about the past. it's not even any of my business. i know it's not... i just, everytime he comes near me, i think about him and them. i don't want it to be this way. i want to be okay with it, but if i'm being really honest, i think i'm MAD at him.

 

ugh... i feel like a crappy person, even though i say i'm not judgemental, i think i am judging him for being what i view as irresponsible. i mean, he didn't use condoms sometimes, for chrissake. he could have gotten anything or gotten someone pregnant. he did it not just with people he didn't care about, but with people he actively disliked. i know he cares about me, but it terrifies me that he would do that or would find that desireable. and i know that's wrong of me to think that. but somehow, even though i can rationalize that i shouldn't be so pissed off, so hurt, the fact is that emotionally i AM really really really hurt. i don't mean to be. i just feel so genuinely broken-hearted about it even though i KNOW i shouldn't be, that it's the past. the other day we were just kissing and i started SOBBING about it. i felt like such a loser. and of course i didn't want to throw it in his face, so i blamed it on watching homeward bound... which is pretty pathetically hilarious. he keeps saying i seem really distant when we're doing anything, and i feel so bad about it, but i just don't feel comfortable with him anymore... and that makes me feel so unspeakably terrible and ashamed and just sick.

 

ugh. i feel all mixed up. i don't even know what i'm asking... has anyone else ever felt this before? how did you get over it? i want very badly to get over it, to not care, to just be a normal human about sex. i know i'm so over-sensitive. does anyone know how i can shake this whole thing off? how i can change the way i think about it? any advice would be appreciated...

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If you love him completely as you say you do, then you will accept him completely as he is and also as he was.

 

i know, but it's so much easier to say that than it is to deal with the actual reality of lying down next to him with all of these feelings... i do love him, and we've been together through much worse than this, but my love isn't so quick or perfect that i can instantly forget and accept...

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i know, but it's so much easier to say that than it is to deal with the actual reality of lying down next to him with all of these feelings... i do love him, and we've been together through much worse than this, but my love isn't so quick or perfect that i can instantly forget and accept...

 

Is there a problem with accepting slowly?

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You're projecting your beliefs, which are totally fine, I'm on the same page with you as far as it being a very meaningful connection between two people, onto him in a sense. Like you expected him to have the same view on it when he was committing those acts. Now, I'm assuming that he has changed in that regard given that you have been together for two years and he has been faithful, meaning to me that he has elevated himself from those low sexual views he has had in the past. So maybe you have been a positive change in his life.

 

Stop thinking about some much negative about it. I know it's hard, I've had those thoughts too. Just try to forget it as much as possible and focus on the good things.

 

you're right. if i'm being honest though, i think that part of my upset stems from that fact that i'm no longer really sure if we are on the same page... or, more specifically, if he's just on this page because he's with me. i don't want to have been "a positive change in his life," a strange as that sounds, so much as i want to be with someone who holds similar values to me in their own right. i do wonder if he's only into the whole sex-as-meaningful-bonding-experience thing because he finds himself in a relationship where that's what's expected... that's not a real change, a real value, it's a circumstancial behaviour... you know?

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it's hard to do this, but i think maybe something you might want to think about is trying not to let his past doom your future. people have very differing rates of maturity. perhaps when he was younger, he didn't see sex as you do, but if he's willing to be in a serious (and chaste) relationship now, it sounds like he has wised up. his previous experiences aren't slights to you -- they were things he did before he dated you. it's easy to be jealous or intimidated by his past, but it just isn't something he can change. with you and at the right time, he won't make the same judgement errors he made in the past. the sex with you won't be meaningless or empty; he will use protection with you.

 

it's hard to think about your man being so intimate with others... but really, what matters is that he is with you now and that he has matured.

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There is not much you can do. Everyone has a past. It is unfair to let his past affect your emotions towards him and the relationship, though.

 

I would sometimes feel like this in my relationships too. I just reminded my self that this person is in a relationship with me at the moment and thats all that really matters.

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Sex is a very personal thing. Being that you've never had sex, you are going to view it as a far more personal thing than it actually is. Because as personal as it is, it is in fact not the be all and end all of the world - though my vague memories of the subject when I was still a virgin (is that the right word for a guy??) are of it being something sacred that should be put up on some pedestal.

 

It isn't.

 

Not trying to take anything away from you here or to somehow make your decision to withdraw from sex less heroic - but sex is sex. Everyone does it. Everyone. It isn't some huge thing that is going to be the defining factor of your life.

 

He's had some sex. So what? Like I said, everyone does it. Your perspective on it is different from most so I don't expect you to understand what i'm saying here.

 

But it isn't that big of a deal.

 

In my opinion, a deep conversation is far more personal than sex.

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Not trying to take anything away from you here or to somehow make your decision to withdraw from sex less heroic - but sex is sex. Everyone does it. Everyone. It isn't some huge thing that is going to be the defining factor of your life.

 

He's had some sex. So what? Like I said, everyone does it. Your perspective on it is different from most so I don't expect you to understand what i'm saying here.

 

But it isn't that big of a deal.

 

Wanna object about what you said here. Sex is not just sex! and the fact that everbody does it shouldn't make it less a deal. I mean there are degrees to a good sexual relationship like everything else. Some ppl don't want to associate with what they believe are lower levels. Like you can't say the sex that a prostitute has with her clients is the same as the sex a girl has with her loved one!

 

to the OP, if he is really perfect and you love him so much try to forget, I know it can be hard but it may worth it. Otherwise don't forget and try to find someone who see sex as special as you see, there is nothing wrong with the way you look at sex by the way.

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Wanna object about what you said here. Sex is not just sex! and the fact that everbody does it shouldn't make it less a deal. I mean there are degrees to a good sexual relationship like everything else. Some ppl don't want to associate with what they believe are lower levels. Like you can't say the sex that a prostitute has with her clients is the same as the sex a girl has with her loved one!

You're introducing a whole new element here. Not what I was referring to.

 

However, I stand firm in saying that sex is sex and that a deep conversation is more personal. People will of course have differing opinions - especially those who think that sex is a 'prize to be won'.

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Sex is a very personal thing. Being that you've never had sex, you are going to view it as a far more personal thing than it actually is. Because as personal as it is, it is in fact not the be all and end all of the world - though my vague memories of the subject when I was still a virgin (is that the right word for a guy??) are of it being something sacred that should be put up on some pedestal.

 

It isn't.

 

Haha, I think virgin applies. Is it strange that I find this thought completely comforting? You're right, I am pretty sure that a lot of my problem stems from it being completely foreign. So my emotions on the subject will probably fade with time... Hmm. Okay. Thanks for the perspective.

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Sex is not just sex! and the fact that everbody does it shouldn't make it less a deal.

 

also agree. attributing values to things is so strange! essentially, the value of sex is exactly what you make it. what it means is up to the individual. but i do hope that, for me, it seems less formidible in the future...

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Your views of sexuality will change over time. Not necessarily in a bad way, but there will be some changes are you explore it and understand it better.

 

You want to keep in mind that our past experiences shape us into what we are today. It seems like you would only be satisified if he showed a great amount of remorse for his previous activities. They are done and over with. And honestly they helped prepare him for the relationship he has with you today. Either enjoy what you have or try to find what you perceive to be ideal.

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It seems like you would only be satisified if he showed a great amount of remorse for his previous activities. They are done and over with.

 

I don't think it's necessarily that I want him to show a great amount of remorse for the activities themselves, although I do want to know that he is different now. I do, however, think he should be very remorseful for the way he talked about these things with me; they had no place being brought up in our relationship. I mean, you have to be pretty damn insensitive to think that the details of doing Shelly and Sheila is something you should share with your girlfriend. Either that, or really immature. They may be in his past, but they've brazenly presented themselves in my present, you know?

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you mentioned that he brings these things up to you (or used to)

and you told him to stop. i am just wondering how such a conversation about his intimate past just sort of 'comes up' around you. its not exactly dinner convo material.

 

under what circumstances was he doing that?

 

thats what bothers me in all of this, he has no reason to tell you about the past girls. unless he is trying to get you jealous and into bed with him...

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i am just wondering how such a conversation about his intimate past just sort of 'comes up' around you. its not exactly dinner convo material.

 

under what circumstances was he doing that?

 

yep. i feel you. it came up at various times in various ways. like, once we were driving by the side of the road and he was, like "hah. i did it once with X there. 4 in the afternoon. i can't imagine how many people saw!" and then another time he was complaining that canadian blood services asks you about anal sex before you donate. and i was like, "oh, really?" and he was like "yeah. i used to do it with X: *insert intimate detail that goes too far*." then one time some SNL character said something about fisting, and he was like "yeah, and it never goes back properly after; i did it to X and she was loose FOREVER after." moreover, even though i'm a virgin, i'm not completely innocent; i've done some stuff with him, just not the thing. every damn time, he was like "hey. you never cum. X used to cum every time. well, only when i did her really hard. it's, like, the hottest thing a girl can do." i never said anything for a long time, because i was so so so embarrassed to. then i told him how completely * * * * ty it made me feel and he stopped, but even now feel pretty inadequate. there's more. i'll spare you from the worst of it. it's just stuff like that, and after a while, you end up with the whole hideous story...

 

uggggghh.

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Open and honest communication is one thing. If you felt he was putting it out there in order to "brag" then I could understand you being upset about the comments. Not the deeds.

 

Personally I don't mind hearing about my wife's previous life. It helps me understand who she is now. But all conversations should be respectful. And one respect is to ensure that you aren't hurting your partners feelings. His comments above are pretty rude, in my opinion.

 

So your more upset about the presentation of the information rather than his actual participation in those activities? Make sure you tell him this clearly.

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So your more upset about the presentation of the information rather than his actual participation in those activities? Make sure you tell him this clearly.

 

yeah. i guess. i think the presentation of the deeds has made me resent the deeds themselves though, in some way... i really don't mean to. i just feel like it's me against them. or that he blends me together with them. ugh. if he had just said "i've had sex before, with x number of people. alright. there you go" that would have been fine. but i resent his attitude. and i'm worried about his having an STD... i mean, guys can't even be tested for stuff like hpv, and it's one of the most common ones. i have been clear with him, that he can't do that anymore. but i still feel like crap. i just don't know how to deal with the left over feelings.

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His attitudes regarding sex have not changed from what they were before. You are picking up on this clue and it is making you uncomfortable as well it should. Do not have sex with him because he will be telling the next girl about you.

 

but... well, i am worried about that, yes. i know he probably comes off as a complete loser, but this is really only one part of out relationship. i don't think he would tell the next girl about me... i mean, we broke up once for a little while, and before me he would always run off to another girl. he didn't. his friends told me that he just moped around and wasn't interested in anything with anyone. so i don't think he's exactly the same as he was. i hope he's matured some, but maybe isn't all the way there?

 

ah, i'm ridiculous. i'm condemning him and defending him at the same time. oi. but your point is maybe valid.

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but... well, i am worried about that, yes. i know he probably comes off as a complete loser, but this is really only one part of out relationship. i don't think he would tell the next girl about me... i mean, we broke up once for a little while, and before me he would always run off to another girl. he didn't. his friends told me that he just moped around and wasn't interested in anything with anyone. so i don't think he's exactly the same as he was. i hope he's matured some, but maybe isn't all the way there?

 

ah, i'm ridiculous. i'm condemning him and defending him at the same time. oi. but your point is maybe valid.

 

Then discuss your concerns about the way he treats the topic of sex in general with him. His responses should tell you all you need to know about whether he's really interested in maturing.

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this guy sounds like scum. no offense, but the vibe i am getting is that he treats women like trophies once he has sex with them. you should decide if you can handle being on the mantle one day.. because i would bet my bank that his attitude wont change. he may hide it from you from now on, but it wont change.

i'd ditch him. guys who are really into you and who respected women wouldnt bring things like that up the way he did. especially not to his own current gf.

red flag.

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