How to Talk About Your Past Romances With Your Partner

When you have kids with an ex, it’s unavoidable

Photo by: halfpoint via Canva

Take these steps ahead of time, before you have the discussion:

Decide how much disclosure is right for you

Some people prefer to leave the past in the past while others want to be able to talk about

Know your criteria for a partner

Some people have religious or other reasons for wanting a partner who has never been in another relationship or who has not been sexually intimate or hasn’t had children. It’s important to be clear about your own status to allow those people to move on if you don’t meet that criteria.

Develop valid bases of self esteem

Feeling good about yourself reduces jealousy and possessiveness. It also makes you more attractive to potential mates. Look for healthy ways to increase and maintain your self-esteem.

Take a long term view

Of course, we all have insecurities. Sometimes it’s worth taking a risk to open up so you and your partner can grow closer even if it’s a struggle to talk about things you may have kept secret.

Protect your physical health

Whatever the nature of your relationship, protect the health of you and your partner. Muster up the courage to assess any risk factors and practice safer sex.

Photo by Matheus Ferrero on Unsplash

Take these steps together with your partner:

Think before asking

Figure out how much you actually want to know. Consider whether the information you request from your partner really matters or is likely to make you happier together. Sometimes we think certain details will satisfy our curiosity or make us feel better about our partner’s past relationship, but it actually just makes things worse.

Go easy on the details

You can often give your loved one a rough outline rather than a minute-by-minute replay. Sometimes all your partner needs or wants to know is that you had a relationship. They don’t necessarily want the person’s name, how many times you had sex, or the tiniest details about the breakup.

Avoid comparisons

Recognize that everyone is unique. Downplay your dalliance with a TV chef if your new love has trouble distinguishing between the rice cooker and the toaster.

Pay attention to patterns

The greatest value in this whole exercise may be spotting areas in your past where you can make positive changes. Talking things over with someone you are close to is an effective way to feel validated and motivated to move ahead.

Time it right

Neutral times and places can make sensitive subjects easier to address. Eye contact and physical connection might seem like a good idea for this, but sometimes it’s easier when you’re able to have a little space.

See the humor in the subject

The world’s top social scientists concede the illogic in decades of studies reporting that the average heterosexual man has more sex partners than his female counterpart. There is still social pressure for men to exaggerate and women to underestimate.

Be accepting

In most cases, the way you respond matters more than any magic number. Your reactions and responses will tell your partner if they’ve shared too much, not enough, or a detail that you didn’t want to hear.

Focus on the future

If looking back helps you to gather more insights, put them to good use by making improvements in your future. That history could help you learn to make your current relationship a success.*ZBb4pHnvnfUpQ7DwnWGy1A.png*ZBb4pHnvnfUpQ7DwnWGy1A.png

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