No matter how much you try to fight it, you have to deal with it.
As much as you may want to, you can’t get around it. The person you’re married to probably had s*x with someone else before they had s*x with you. Maybe it was with a few people. Maybe it was with a lot of people. And honestly, some of the experiences they shared with you may not leave you feeling too comfortable or secure about the relationship.
But if you want your marriage to work, it’s your responsibility to deal with that past. No one said it’s easy to deal with your partner’s s*xual past, especially if it’s more colorful than your own. If you find yourself getting jealous, you’re not alone either. Jealously is something that most people have to deal with at one point or another in their marriage.
The great news is we have the power to move past it. Here are five things you should do when dealing with a s*xual past in a marriage.
Whoever else they had s*x with and however many partners they had has nothing to do with you. They can’t do anything about their s*xual past. They can’t go back in time and erase it. If you need time to deal with it, take it, but fight judgment. Remember, the fact that they’re telling you about it at all tells you something.
Make sure you’re not punishing them for what happened before you met them that can’t be undone. If everything else about them works for you, that’s what matters the most. If they’re not treating you how you think you deserve to be treated, that might be at the heart of the issue and what you’re truly upset about.
On the flip side, the apathetic glossing over a confession may do your relationship more harm than good, particularly if your partner’s past was particularly damaging. It’s important that you discuss how their past may impact your relationship going forward.
Whether you need to discuss interacting with an ex or how to keep pornography out of your home, recognize that the conversation may not stop at, “I don’t care,” or “I forgive you.” One thing that should give you some confidence is the fact that they’re being honest with you and sharing details about their s*xual past. This gives you license to be honest about your feelings as well.
Many of us were told growing up to guard our hearts and were warned that forming too many romantic attachments before marriage was like giving away pieces of our heart. If we weren’t careful, when it came to our relationships we wouldn’t have anything left to give in our marriage.
Because of this notion, some people place their assurance in a whole-hearted future with their partner, when they should also be rooting their heart’s affections in God, the only one who can ultimately satisfy us. If you walked into the relationship without a s*xual past, but your partner had one, it’s easy for pride to get in the way and for you to hold their past over them which isn’t healthy for your marriage either.
Even when you’re married to the person you want to spend the rest of your life with, feelings of insecurity may show up. You may wonder if they still think of their ex or if they are satisfied with you. You may also wonder if you stack up with their previous relationships. It’s important that you remember their past has made them who they are.
The confidence they have may be a result of others confirming their attractiveness. It also may have come from getting screwed over and healing. Know that every experience they’ve had has made them the person that you love, and every experience you’ve had made you the person they love.
It’s easy for envy to show up, particularly at the start of a marriage. Envy can be difficult to pinpoint for a newlywed, because in a sense, we have a right to be jealous for our husbands. When you marry someone, you are one flesh. We are not called to share them with other women. Prior to marrying your partner, you may have guarded your heart and kept the marriage bed sacred.
You may have saved everything for your partner. If your partner didn’t do the same, some difficult emotions may show up including anger and bitterness. It’s imperative that you recognize that there is a fine line between zealous protection of marriage and petty jealousy over the past. Don’t let the little things destroy your marriage.
If you’ve been struggling with your partner’s past, you can break through those doubts. Be open with each other, try to understand that their past was before you and let your love unite you. You honesty, openness and love in marriage will bring you closer to each other. When you understand grace and forgiveness, you can give it much more freely.