I have been in a relationship for 6 months now. She came out of a relationship with a married guy and was heavily in love with him and was still getting over it when we started this made me insecure at the beginning, (she would not tell me at first with who this was and I learned afterwards that we actually once met this guy together and I didn’t know it, I felt very stupid about this afterwards when I heard) but I loved here so I stayed around. And it worked out great we are living together and I feel great and comfortable with here and I really love her. But somehow there is something in me that doesn’t trust her. Her sexual past is more wild then mine she’s had 18 sexual partners she told me, she had a threesome, she had sex with girls and once went to a sex club with a guy, where she only had sex with this guy, but in a “room where other people could watch” it was an experiment and something that excited her at that time. She told me the plan of doing it was more exciting that the actual fact. She tells me that this was an experimental period and that she did what she wanted and want’s to get married and have kids and spend the rest of my life with me. And I believe her. But still, all of this, still turns my stomach. She tells what she has done very high level so no names, I have my past as well but I did not experiment in that sense and I am open about what I did with who. As I believe that past behavior is the best prediction of future behavior I wonder how this will go. She tells me that, when I get annoyed about it, (for instance when an ex want’s to meet up with here to tell her that he is getting married) that she feels that I punish here for being honest. Opening up has always been hard for her but she feels comfortable to do that now, everything apart from stories about her past love life which I understand since I am getting annoyed every time she tells me about it. I suppose somewhere I do not trust her and she triggers this behavior with me. But I can’t seem to get past this. And I don’t want to have it but still do so I start hating myself for it. And I start to create distance between us and dislike her. The feeling that she is hiding something from me by often being vague and a growing feeling that I should check here phone is making me utterly sad and I have a feeling that I am slowly blowing myself up and will annoy here so much or myself that my relationship will end. She is my Sunday morning I want to grow old with her but I cannot get rid of this feeling it actually sometimes makes me feel sick. What can I do?
I am going to talk a little about how we are attracted to each other and will direct you to a series of articles I have written about what is referred to as a General Theory of Love. But the long and the short of it is you were attracted to a whole person. All of her past and evolution to who she has become is part of what you were and are attracted to. In other words, her sexual being was a component of what you are attracted to both consciously and unconsciously.
Her past, as is yours, is what allows you to have chosen each other. Her sexual experimentation was part of that formula. I believe the work is to acknowledge that you fell in love with a whole person and part of that person is a woman who was willing to be sexually adventurous. You have a choice: You can focus on her past as a negative, a deterrent to your future, or you can accept that her experiences were part of what you fell in love with.
My encouragement is to make an appointment with a couples therapist who can guide you through making this shift in thinking. The Find Help tab at the top of the page will help.
Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.
APA Reference Tomasulo, D. (2018). Distrust Over Her Sexual Past. Psych Central.
Retrieved on December 6, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2012/09/24/distrust-over-her-sexual-past/
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 24 Sep 2012) Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018 Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.