A: I’m not sure you can fix this, unless you are willing to wait for your boyfriend to mature into a secure adult … and there’s no guarantee that he will. I agree with you that couples are rarely “equal” in number of past relationships or sexual partners, but most folks figure out a way to handle it. I can understand that your current boyfriend is a little insecure that you have more experience than him, but that does not give him a right to say hurtful things to you. It’s his issue, not yours. I can also understand that he may feel that grinding with someone in a bar is not the same thing as knowing you loved someone and were intimate with someone before you met him. But again, it’s his issue to get over.
I think your reservations about marriage are warranted. He needs time to grow up. Maybe if you leave him and he realizes that he will be hard pressed to find someone who meets all his criteria, it may speed up his learning curve. In the meantime, stop trying to justify the fact that you have loved before. It happens. It helps us grow. It helps us know what we want in a lifetime partner. Is this what you want?
All the best,
Dr. Holly Counts