Post # 1
Hi. I’m new here so let me start with a quick introduction. I got engaged a couple months ago to my boyfriend of 9 months. We have known each other for a couple years but didn’t start dating until this year. We are both 27 and basically knew instantly that we had found the one and that we were both totally on the same page. We are blissfully in love and have a fabulous relationship so I should be totally happy, but I have a little issue that I just can’t shake.
Before we started seeing each other I was engaged to my high school sweetheart. The relationship had run it’s course and we had changed and grown apart over the years so it ended and I started seeing my now fiance fairly soon after my relationship ended. As a result I have interacted with a grand total of two penises in my entire life – which I am fine with.
The thing that I am struggling with (and it really is the only thing) with the love of my life, is the fact that before we started seeing each other he went through a kind of wild period and had a very active sex life – and because I knew him before we started dating I know too much about it. Basically he had never had a long relationship and was a bit of a short term serial monogamist with numerous one time things thrown in the mix. Based on stories he has told me I can literally count 20 different girls and I imagine that the number is probably at least twice that and probably even more than that since these are just the people I know about and I have since made it clear I don’t want to know about these things.
I have gotten much better about it but I still can’t help feeling insecure about the number of people he has been with. He has been so fabulous about reassuring me that he has never even really been in love before (I’m the first girl he’s ever brought home) and that our sex is better than any he has ever had, etc etc, and I feel terrible making him feel bad about his past or guilty for anything. I know his past is his past and it is a part of who he is and who I love and all that, but thinking about him being with so many other people just makes me miserable and I can’t help but worry about things making him remember these other girls. I have been seeing a therapist to help me work through it but it is still a daily challenge.
So my question is: Has anyone ever been in this situation and been able to work through it? How did you overcome these feelings of insecurity?
Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated.
(Also, we are planning to have a pretty long engagement – no date set yet – and I know that we shouldn’t get married until I have resolved these issues.)
Post # 3
@clarej: You just need to not think about it. Try really hard and in time it will be easier.
Post # 4
Your guy has had sex with lots of women, but he’s chosen you to share his life. That says a lot about how he feels about you. Sex is one part of a relationship, but there are so many more parts, and he wants to share them all with you. You are the one who is special to him. Try to let go of what he has done in the past, and just enjoy all the special things of what you two have together, that neither of you has ever had before.
Yes, he’s sowed his wild oats. But, even now, it’s much more acceptable for a man to do that than a woman. A man has sex with lots of women and he’s considered a stud. A woman has sex with lots of men and she’s considered a slut.
Post # 5
This was me not that long ago. I have been with more men than my husband has women, but his past bothered me so bad. My past bugs me too, but it is what it is. It killed me to think of my husband being with any woman that isn’t me. It kills me to think about the fact that I was with any other men than the man I’m married to now (with the exception of my ex husband- we have two kids together). It isn’t easy to deal with, but it gets better with time. My husband chose ME, not the other girls. I chose HIM, not the other men. And I whole heartedly believe him when he says it is better with me than it has been with anyone else
Post # 6
i’ve only slept with two guys … Actually one was AFTER DH ( but I didn’t cheat – thats a whole nother story)
but DH has slept with a few more gals… It was werid at first but you get over it.
A week before our wedding we had this huge .”Spill ” session and I found out some things and he found out some thigns…
It FELT SO GOOD! and we love eachother even more for it!
Post # 7
Thank goodness my FH does not have that problem. I am WAY more experienced than him. Lets just say I had a wild young adulthood and I can guarantee you that I have your fiances numbers beat. Easily. I haven’t even asked FH how many sexual partners he had before me and he has never asked me for an exact number either, It is not important to either of us.
He is the same guy you fell in love with. Unless he has given you some reason not to trust him, please cut him a break. Frankly the problem is your insecurity, not his past, and like other PPs have said, he chose YOU. Don’t let this hang-up mess up a good relationship. If you cannot get past this on your own, then please get some counseling.
Post # 8
1 stop talking about your past experiences going forward. They are you past and unimportant to your future.
2 stop thinking about his pasT. Just stop. If it creeps into your mind remind yourself that he has chosen YOU not any of the ones that came before you because YOU matter to him, he loves YOU. they do not matter.
3 build upon your memories, sexual and otherwise as a couple. Put yourself in his mind so you know when he thinks about love and sex, he us thinking about you. There are ways to link memories to music, scents, places and colors. My FI cant look at a certain nail polish color I have without getting turned on and totally distracted thanks to one very fun and passionate night.
And the do #2 about 10 more times. You will slowly change your way of thinking and time and shared experiences will help build your security just as no longer talking about or thinking about the past will push that past further and further away and diminish your insecurities.
Post # 9
Honestly, though I have “seen the world” before FI, it still was very VERY disturbing to find out his number. I asked. It’s my fault for asking, but it was WAAAY more than I was comfortable with.
Truly, i advise to just move on from what you know. You chose him because you love him, and he chose you for the same reason. You both won.
I advise getting a new mattress, if his isn’t new. It made a big difference to me, psychologically, to know that we are the only two bodies that have slept (or more) in his bed.
Post # 10
@clarej: FI’s number is actually lower than mine (neither of us were very wild) but he had cohabitated with one of his ex’s. I won’t live with a man until I live with him and he’s already done all of that with someone else. At first, it was a little hard to come to terms with. At first I thought it would help if we were open and I knew EVERYTHING- but the more I found out, the more I realized I didn’t want to know. Dwelling on the past is no way to build a future. You can’t change it, so let it go. I find not talking about it helpful. If he did have a crazy sexual past, having him tested would be a good thing to do. Also, as PP said, a new mattress might help too.
Post # 11
@clarej: Sure, there will be things he has seen and experienced that he may or may not share with you. His past will always remain, as will yours and everyone else’s and is something that can never be changed, but remember – He is with you and only you, and he loves you for a reason. You give him something that no one else can – and whether you know what this is or not, just focus on that fact, and look towards the future you will share together.
If he wanted to go and have crazy one night stands with random people, if that’s the life he wanted to live, he would, but he isn’t. It’s up to you to make his decision worthwhile! 🙂
Post # 12
Thank so much for the words of advice.
I am fully aware that this is totally my issue and not his. That is why I sought the help of a counselor, so I would not have to burden him with this issue. But the issue still comes up when something makes me think about it or he accidentally mentions something that upsets me.
He really has been so supportive though. When we moved in together we took my mattress and he let me have the final push as we tossed his mattress into the dumpster. Sometimes I do worry that it wears on him though.
When we first got engaged I was feeling much better about things because I started to tell myself that I didn’t have to worry about his past if I was his last, but he had a bit of a slip up recently where something I was telling him reminded him of a funny incident (not so funny for me…) involving a one night stand. It was a bit of a set back for me because it made me start to feel insecure about things reminding him of other girls again.
Basically it is just really is comforting to think that with time these things will improve since sometimes it feels like it will always upset me.
Post # 13
- Wedding: June 2009 - Mountain Meadow/Mansion
Long story, but I met my guy through a friend I had dated a few months with (and had relations with) and remained friends with after. He married a woman who can’t let it go that he’s had a past. She banned him from talking to any female friends, has engaged in some other strange behaviors and sent a holiday card to us this year in DHs name only. Her DH admitted to my DH that is can be a lot to handle at times. Don’t be that girl. Let it go. The only person your thinking is damaging is yourself and your ability to have a healthy relationship with your guy. Seriously. If you can’t let this go, it has the potential to rob you of the ability to appreciate what you have.
As for me, I’ve been with 3 people (including DH) and don’t mind that he’s been with more. We had lives before we started dating and those relationships helped make us into the people we are today. In a way, I’m thankful for the women who came before.
Post # 14
First off hugs… second I know how you feel… I don’t believe in sex before marriage (seriously no judging here – that is my belief and I stuck to it – I do not expect everyone to share that belief) so you can imagine my heartache when I learnt that my now dh had slept with his exs… To be fair he was upfront about it from day one as was I about my beliefs. However, it didn’t stop it from bugging me… I felt hurt in a way that I had managed to commit to sleeping with only my husband and he hadn’t but within a few months of us dating that had all faded.. A. I realised I was being ridiculous – he didn’t have to share my beliefs he just had to respect them which he did and B. in the end I knew he wanted to be with me and not them… he made that choice and in our case it meant no sex for like 3 years for him and he sucked it up and was fine with that because he wanted to be with me.
Give it time, it will fade… Next month you’ll think about it a bit less and then less and less until it no longer enters your mind…
Post # 15
Agree with others, you need to simply stop thinking about it. Your partner’s past is not any of your business.
He loves you (although, so what if he had been in love with someone before? How could this possibly matter??), and wants to spend his life with you. My advice is to be very careful, because I’ve seen plenty of girls ruin their otherwise great relationships by being irrationally insecure and jealous about their SO’s past.
Let it go, OP, and congrats on your engagement.
Post # 16
I think it’s one of those things that will always illicit an “Ew” reaction that’s somewhat uncomfortable. For me that’s the case with someone who has had a lot of people or even just a couple.
As time goes on and the past is farther and farther away it really does matter less, until it’s distant and not-relevant enough that it really doesn’t matter at all.