When you’re with someone you love or really care about, it can be difficult to think about the fact that they may have been with someone else before you.
It can be even more difficult to think about the fact that they might have been with several someone else’s before you – is this something you will let destroy your current relationship or is it something you can move past and have a healthy relationship in the here and now?
Dear Dan and Jennifer,
I am not my girlfriend’s first boyfriend. She has had sex with previous men and images of her having sex with them keep popping into my head. How can I forgive her for her past?
The Past Is The Past
Everyone comes with a past – it’s what makes us who we are today. Everyone’s past is diverse and different and that’s what actually makes us beautiful as human beings. Sometimes someone’s past may include romantic relationships with people that it didn’t work out with, and most often, these romantic relationships are intimate.
Many times, two people will come into a new relationship with pasts that involved being intimate with other people and this is completely normal, especially if you’re older and have had several relationships. Fortunately, most people are able to let the past be the past – if you’re in a relationship now and you love and care about the person you’re with, it’s easy to leave the past alone and focus on the here and now.
Love and Acceptance
Although thinking about your partner being with someone else romantically and sexually may not give you warm and fuzzy feelings inside, it’s something that generally needs to be left alone to have a healthy and happy relationship in the present.
It’s not “bad” or even at all inappropriate for your partner to have a romantic and sexual past – in fact, you might have a romantic and sexual past. Even though you may have some feelings of jealousy or you may wish that your partner had only been intimate with you, it’s important to let it go, because in all reality, there’s nothing you can do about your partner’s past.
For a healthy and happy relationship in the here and now, it’s important to learn to accept your partner for who they are today, even with everything that happened in the past.
Ask yourself the critical question – who is your partner with now? Who does your partner want to be with now?
Chances are, the answer to the question is you. Don’t let something you can’t help destroy a relationship with someone you love and care about and someone that loves and cares about you right now.
Sometimes it’s hard to let go of feelings of anger and jealousy, even if you know that they’re unhealthy feelings to have. Some people need counseling to help them work through these feelings and that’s perfectly okay – if you take the steps to move towards a healthy and happy relationship and working towards getting rid of negative feelings, you’re taking steps in the right direction.
Whether you can learn to let go of negative feelings you have about your partner’s past yourself or you need counseling to do it, it’s important to let go of them for the sake of your relationship. Being caught up in your partner’s romantic and sexual past can destroy your relationship in the here and now.
If you can’t come to terms with your partner’s sexual past, consider moving on and finding a partner that has less of a sexual and romantic past or none at all.