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Confused and don't want to hurt my girlfriend

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  • #173735
    Lester
    Participant

    So I’ve been with my girlfriend for 5 months now. It’s been great and we have a great time together. We have great communication and always honest and truthful towards each other. We have never argued only discussing how we feel and we can work on them.

    Even though we have an open communication about how we feel, there is one feeling that I keep away from her. That is, how I feel about her sexual past. I asked her about them and she told me the honest truth, and every day since then, it’s been haunting me. It hurts me to the very core knowing she’s had sex with other guys. It just hurts.

    The sad thing is, I know this is on me. I know that she isn’t doing anything wrong, she lived her life, and anybody at 26 will have a “past”. But I also can’t control how I feel. I know that, I don’t want to hurt her as she is nothing but sweet to me. I just want to do what is best for her.

    When I’m with her I’m happy and I forget about my troubles. It’s just so hard because I don’t want her to leave, she is the best thing I’ve ever known and she’s taught me so much in the short time we’ve been together. I know she loves me and she shows it everyday.

    But maybe, what’s best for her is to not have some like me, a judging asshole, to be in her life. Maybe, it’s best that I’ll just be back to my alone self, rather than risk hurting somebody who loves me.

    #173741
    Aura
    Participant

    Hello Lester, I gotta say I have been in your position too, with my first ex. I was raised in a very traditional environment and as a woman I was told to “save” my virginity for after marriage, so I really wanted a guy who had no sex past either, I thought it was only fair that if I had kept myself “clean”, my boyfriend should too. However, after losing virginity I became a lot more open minded about it. I felt I lost nothing that made me any less of a person, and thus, a partner with a sexual past wouldn’t have lost any value either.

    I’d like asking you a few questions first:

    Are your feelings out of judgement, or out of jealousy? Judgement would be as in, you think poorly of people with a sexual past before marriage. Jealousy would be, you would have liked being her first.

    In any of both scenarios, have you clear why you feel this way? Why do you think poorly of people with a sex past, or why are you jealous? Are you afraid of being compared to her exes?

    Lastly, and just for extra info and if you don’t mind me asking… do you have a sexual past yourself?

    #173771
    Lester
    Participant

    I do have a sexual past. But this is the reason why I feel so bad. I’ve never had a girlfriend before but I have paid for sex (This is why I feel so bad for judging). That’s my only sexual experience.

    I’m very jealous. I’m jealous because I don’t feel all that special being her nth boyfriend. I’m very jealous cause I didn’t meet her earlier in my life. I’m jealous that all the names she calls me and the things we say to each other she has been through multiple times. She calls me “cutie”. I look at her instagram in the past, she has called her ex’s “cutie”. It’s so hard trusting that all of it is real. She has fallen in love many times.

    I’ve never had a girlfriend. I’ve never had to call someone babe, or do special things for someone. Every time she does special things for me, I wonder how many times she has done that before. I wonder every day if she really finds me attractive, or staying with me because I’m nice, safe, and have my life together. Nice and safe, because she knows someone like me would never cheat, lie, and have a promising future. It’s true, I can never cheat and I’ve given up lying for good.

    I wonder everyday if I’m just a big rebound from all the wrong “attractive” guys she has been with.

    I guess my ego wants to feel special. My ego wants to know there is something special about me.

    I guess all of this, is just me having so much trouble I can be attractive to someone other than what I can provide. It’s just so painful to think that could be the case. It makes me just breakdown and cry.

    #173809
    Eliana
    Participant

    Hi Lester,

    If you really love this woman, don’t punish her or ruin something beautiful over her past. She can’t go back and erase it. It doesn’t matter what she called her prior boyfriends before. None of it matters. It’s out of both your control, and you should look for the positive in this woman and a wonderful future with her. If you meet another woman, then another, they are most likely going to have sexual pasts too, or prior boyfriends.

    Concentrate on today, the present and all the beautiful feelings. Don’t psych yourself out over past events no one can control. You will just make yourself resentful and upset, when you don’t need to be. Don’t let the past define your future.

    #173883
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Lester:

    This must be the woman you referred to as Bre in your May thread, and tomorrow, Oct 20 would be exactly five months to the day, if I have it correct, that you officially became boyfriend and girlfriend.

    You expressed before your distress over perceiving yourself not physically attractive. That belief that you are unattractive, undesirable to women preceded meeting your girlfriend and it has caused you a lot of pain before you met her. It keeps causing you pain still.

    It is your belief in your lack of attractiveness that is causing you pain, not your girlfriend’s sexual past. If she did not have a sexual past, you would still be hurting from that belief you have.

    The relationship you described, the one you have with her, other than your pain over your pre-relationship belief, is a healthy one and a very special one, one without arguments. And honest. The very fact that you have a non-argumentative relationship indicates to me that you are special and that she is special.

    You are focused on her sexual past as if there is more in it than there is. She called a boyfriend before you “cutie”- it is only a word. She also brushed her teeth and combed her hair when she was in previous relationships.

    In your previous thread you expressed your experience of having been rejected by women before, which I figure encouraged your belief in your physical unattractiveness. And you expressed a motivation to end contact with a girl so to avoid her rejection. I hope you don’t do this here, that you don’t push her out of your life to avoid a feared rejection.

    Reality is she is physically attracted to you. A woman can be attractive to a man of your height and your physique. It is possible, happens all the time. I hope you post again.

    anita

     

    #174387
    Lester
    Participant

    Thank you Anita, you always have best things to say.

    I do care about her very much. But, the images in my head does cause me pain. Every time we have sex, I picture her doing the same thing to her ex and I get very jealous and gives me unpleasant feelings. It also hurts me that before me, she went out on clubs and had casual sex at some point of her life.

    I understand that this is my own head making myself miserable as she is nothing but kind and sweet to me. And, I do the same for her. I do care for her so much hence the reason why I keep these thoughts away from her. But, everyday is a battle. She makes me so happy when I’m just being with her, but it also hurts.

    It helps the more I understand her past though. The more I understand where she comes from, the more it makes sense why she doesn’t see sex the same way I do. I see sex as something hard to attain and should only be done with special people. It hurts me that she did it with people so casually in the past.

    #174391
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Lester:

    I think you should share your distress with her, responsibly. You need to not have more information about her sexual past so to not add to your collection of existing images, images that torture you so. Don’t ask her for more information and communicate to her that you need no more information.

    Maybe she can help you with your distress, not resolve it magically, as such is probably impossible, not for long. But help you along.

    anita

    #174409
    Lester
    Participant

    I’m afraid that I will hurt her if I bring this up. We already talked about it before and I can feel that it hurts her as she feels I’m judging her even though I tried to talk to her about it as responsibly as I could.

    I don’t want to keep hurting her by bringing it up. But now I’m left battling this on my own.

    #174419
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Lester:

    Something to consider: sure it would have been better, way better, if you didn’t experience this distress in the relationship with her. But in absence of an immediate solution to this distress, it may very well be possible to manage this distress and focus (and keep refocusing, again and again) on the positive aspects of the relationship. This distress, you can think of it as an annoying itch, an itch in the brain. Feel it and know that you are able to endure it, that it is something you can live with and yet enjoy life, at least at times.

    Practice this thinking, re-focus. See how it goes…?

    anita

    #174421
    Lester
    Participant

    I’ve been telling myself that everyday. And it’s been working for me so far. I just tell myself that despite everything ‘she helps me grow as a person, and she worth this battle’.

    Thank you again Anita. I really appreciate you letting me release some of this burden by talking about it here.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 11 months ago by Lester.
    #174429
    anita
    Participant

    You are welcome, Lester. Anytime.

    anita

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