How do I deal with a girlfriend who gets saddened frequently at my past?

I've had an... adventurous past with women. By contrast my current girlfriend has been with very few guys. Whenever something comes up that alludes to my level of experience, she gets kinda uncomfortably quiet/sad/emo.

It makes me feel guilty for having had the life that I've had. But obviously I can't do anything about it and I have never cheated and would never cheat on her. What am I supposed to do here? Am I in the wrong at all? Should I do my best to hide those parts of myself?
Updates:
Really appreciate all the discussion, seeing all sides is helpful to me. To clarify:
Yes, we were friends before dating, she knew me well before we got involved, including most parts of my past.
No, I don't have STDs or Kids.

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Most Helpful Girls

  • You’re not doing anything wrong and shouldn’t feel guilty about your past. For whatever reason, she’s very insecure. That’s something she’s going to need to deal with and get over. You might be able to help with some of it, but the catch there is it also greatly depends on how bad her insecurity level is. If it’s not too severe, the right kind of compliments and consistency (not to mention being and feeling genuine when you give them) may help her get through whatever she’s feeling and over it.

    Girls often (though of course there are exceptions to every rule) compare themselves to who you were with previously. Irrational to do? Yes. But we can be very competitive in that way. Especially if you’re the kind of guy that attracts what other guys might think is the “supermodel hot” type, and being our own worst critics, a girl may measure herself up to your previous relationships and worry that she comes up short. The best thing to do in this instance is reassure her in ways that come across as more genuine and less playing into whatever insecurities they have. So for example instead of being like don’t worry about my past girls, I think you’re hotter than them (which you would think would work, but doesn’t always), it may be more effective to be more subtle about it. Like don’t put any focus on your past and say things that are flattering, and at the right moment. Like if you think a dress looks great on her, let her know you think it flatters her figure. If she looks like she’s tired after work one day, maybe pick up some chores that she might normally do (if you guys split those up between y’all). If she asks what’s gotten into you, say something encouraging like you know she’s worked hard and had a long day. You appreciate her, and you’d do anything for your “beautiful” or “special girl;” to see her smile.

    If she loves corny little love notes, think about texting them to her, placing stickies on her vanity, putting them in a bag that she takes to work, or maybe even in her lunch, if she brings them.

    The key is to draw her attention away from your past by distracting her with how wonderful you think she is. Give her enough to have a sense of security that you aren’t and never will look anywhere else. Mind you, this will only work effectively on someone that doesn’t have severe insecurity problems. For people with that issue, it’s really not going to matter what you say or do. They’re always going to feel like they come up short.

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  • Having a past where you've slept around a lot shows poor choices and disrespect to yourself.

    I am in the same situation. In a relationship where I've slept with 2 men before him and he's slept with many. Though I did know about his past I didn't know about it all and we'd already done the deed and I take sex very seriously, where as my guess would be my current partner probably did not. I still feel mixed emotions about it all. As I don't feel massively confident because of well other reasons. But it is what it is, and I can't erase how I feel.

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    • I would counter ask how are you going to reconcile the lack of respect you have for people with a high number of sexual partners and the fact that you apparently made an exception for this person you're seeing?

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    • I do agree with everything you've said

    • It sounds more like you're giving people with a high number a sense of disrespect & your projecting.

      There's a difference between being a slut & desperate; that's like saying if you like hiking a lot that means you can't say no to hiking.

      If you liked hiking so much that you didn't care to have proper supplies &/or put yourself in a dangerous situation without a care for precaution; thats bad & same applies to sex.

Most Helpful Guys

  • I understand this all too well because I'm the girl in this situation. I've been with very few women and the girl I'm talking to has been with way more than me. 7 in the past year and half. I am disgusted by this because i haven't had sex at all in 3-4 years. I personally fought hard to look past her past because I really do like her and she has expressed regret for several of them as she was manipulated by them. But her eagerness to have sex in tbe first place still bothers me and I turned nudes down because she said it "wasn't a big deal". I am still deeply trou. bled by her past and some of her views on sex. And I have seriously thought that we might not be sexually compatible. I'm still not sure to be honest.

    I wanted so badly to have sex for the first time in a long time with another girl who also hadn't been with anyone for awhile. And the whole "experience" argument means nothing to me as I don't want experience. I want the both of us to grow and learn with each other. I don't want her to teach me. I want us to learn together. People who were promiscuous in their past need to own up to it and stop bitching about how others are too "closed minded" and uncomfortable with your past. Which is completely rational. Your past haunts all of us, like a shadow it follows you. We must accept that about ourselves.

    You two might not be meant for each other. If she can't get over your past (which although disappointing is very understandable) then you and her will have to accept that it isn't meant to be. This is why we must carefully consider our actions. They will eventually impact us in the future. Plus, sleeping around is simply not cool and not worth it.

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    • If you're that insecure that you can't learn things together with a woman with a past then pic a woman who hasn't had one. But building a relationship guilting someone will backfire on you. There's plenty of men out there that have also had a past that's not afraid he's going to be compared or can't still learn new things together with her. And he will see her as nothing but beautiful. Do her a favor and cut her loose so she can find a man that will accept her. It's that simple. If you get with her I have no doubt with each argument you will throw her past in her face and demean her. Thank God not all men think like you. But there's women out there that feel the same way you do so pick them. It's so messed up what you are doing to her. I wish I knew her so I could talk some sense into her.

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    • @SirRexington

      Alright man, well you gotta do you. If that’s how you feel about it I guess that’s fine. You’re entitled to your own thoughts and beliefs and opinions.

      I think I have been very frank and will continue to be so in stating that for the life of me, I can’t understand it. My thoughts are if you think a girl is attractive, and you like her personality, and you love her for who she is and you have lots of stuff in common... then why would how many guys she’s had sex with stop all that? I could understand it if she committed murder or was a drug addict. This is just sex. I wouldn’t let number of partners stop me from being with someone. All that bullshit about body count and not being able to mate bond is bullshit too. I have never once cheated, and I never will. I never feel a need to be with someone else. I also don’t believe in unconditional love. My love is entirely conditional depending on how I’m treated, but that’s besides the point.

      Anyway bro, in my opinion, if you like everything else about her I think you should let the body count issue slide. Besides, I’m sure that experience will benefit you. She’ll be comfortable with her body and what she likes and what she doesn’t. She will know how to blow you like a pro and can tell you “lick there faster” so she can cum instead of waiting as you painstakingly try to figure out what to do.

      If you can’t get past it then you should let her go. That’s the only fair thing to do man. Don’t string her along if this isn’t something you can accept.

    • @PinkMichae

      You said it so well. I agree fully and thank you for having the tact and words to state so eloquently what I could not.

      I also agree with you that I separate the 2. The sex I have with my current girlfriend is amazing. We have an awesome connection that takes place when we have sex and I do value that.

      I completely separate that from just hooking up. To me that’s just some sexy fun and is basically assisted masturbation. It’s you’re hot, you think I’m hot, great let’s fuck. But I have no emotional connection to those people. It’s just 2 people with an itch that needs to be scratched and it’s better than scratching alone.

      So again, thanks for summing this up so well as in doing so you also perfectly summed up my thoughts and I completely agree.

      I also think he’s intimidated and insecure and perhaps that’s why he hasn’t had much sex and is also stating this whole “sex is just for special people and circumstances” thing. Maybe it’s his way of trying to console himself. Not taking a shot at him but nothing makes a vagina dryer than insecurity and lack of confidence.

  • Be yourself like she is. If she is sad hug her. Lay beside her and just be there for her. Make sure she knows that you are there and that she can take her time. It is her body. Remind yourself that she does not have to do anything with her body or yours only because you are in a relationship. It is only about trust, real love for each other and helping each other to stay or get happy. You can make a difference. Now if you want sex, buy a fake vagina. Pressuring your partner because of sexuality is THE WORST one can do to another.

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    • To be clear, I've never pressured her to do anything, and she wasn't a virgin, both of us enjoy sex.

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What Girls & Guys Said

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  • "Everyone in the past is nothing compared to how your current girlfriend makes you feel because you have never felt this way about anyone else."

    She needs to know that on a daily basis so she sees your past as a fleeting moment. So do that and don't feel guilty about your past because without your past you wouldn't of found such an amazing woman without being with the ones who were not.

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  • Cuddle with her when she gets sad

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  • My question to you is did you tell her this before or after you dated her? I would rather know this way before I get myself involved with a person because I personally would not be with somebody who had such past. This is why you don't have premarital sex before marriage, and you make sure you tell other people the same lessons you had to learn. Are you having such a pass it shows you have no respect for her, no respect for yourself, no respect it is really you slept with, and no respect for any women that you encounter in the future especially if this relationship will not last. There is nothing that you can really do to rest assure her of what you chose to do. She's the one that has to live with it especially if she is sexually active with you. If you didn't tell her this before you started dating her then yes that's where you're in the wrong. Because I'm very certain that she wouldn't have continued to date you had she known this sooner. There's nothing you can really do about hiding any of it. If she can't handle it and you know that you can't deal with it then you need to separate and find all the people.

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  • You are not in the wrong, and you shouldn't feel guilty for having had the life you've had. It sounds like your girlfriend is feeling inadequate and/or insecure. You can try to help her through that (reassuring her that you like what she does, that you aren't comparing her to other girls, etc.), but she's an adult and should be able to accept your past without making you feel guilty about it.

    She probably needs to know that she is at least equal to all the other girls in your eyes. If she is adventurous, why not try having new experiences with her? Try things that are new for both of you and make sure she knows how exciting that is for you. Tell her what you like and help her to get better at it (if that would help). Help her to understand how your relationship is different to/better than your earlier experiences.

    At the end of the day, all you can do is be honest with her, which is sounds like you have been. You can try to help her get past her hangups, but she has to make an effort, too.

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    • Do people not realize this doesn't always have to do with insecurities but rather principles and values we have for ourselves?

  • You're not in the wrong at all... you can maybe help by reassuring her etc. which I am sure you already do. As long as she isn't giving you hell for it is is it really a big deal? You shouldn't have to hide yourself from her but this certainly isn't something you should flaunt (if you do). HOWEVER, I will say, there is by far a double-standard that exist with this sort of thing. How would you feel if she had just as an ADVENTUROUS past as yourself?

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  • I think all you can do is reassure her that you love her and the experience or lack thereof doesn’t matter. Just let her know she’s important to you, and what you did in the past was... well, in the past.
    I’m sure she will adjust, just give her some time.

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  • Fuck that noise. I try like hell to avoid that question. My current girlfriend asked me this recently after we got done fucking. I told her I was a virgin until just now. She didn’t buy it. Kept asking. I told her “enough to have learned a few tricks.” She kept pushing. Finally I got sick of it and told her I didn’t know the exact number. I never kept track. All I know is it’s over 100. She laughed hard and said I was a whore. She truly doesn’t care and now and again busts my balls about it jokingly. I always give her shit right back and tell her she’s lucky number 126 in my body count and if she doesn’t behave I’ll dump her and soon be up to 127.

    For me there is a half truth there. I don’t know the exact number, and it’s over 100, in fact it’s over 300. Will I ever tell her that. Not a chance!

    So I’d avoid answering that question in the future and with your current girlfriend, I’d tell her she can either be ok with it or get lost and just be another notch in the bedpost. What you did is what you did, and that was before and so long as you stay faithful she shouldn’t care. I did ask my girlfriend if she cared, she said she truly doesn’t, and I believe her, but once in a while she’ll break my balls over it because, yeah, I used to be a man whore. Never got a disease or anyone pregnant and I like pussy so I don’t see what the big fucking deal is.

    Bottom line, you’re not wrong, don’t answer those questions anymore or tell a half truth... if you’ve been with 50, say over 15, and yeah hide it.

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  • You can try not to talk about it in front of her but she knew this before she decided to continue a relationship with you. You should have a talk with her and let her know you can’t change your Past and this is who you are. That you are done with that and only want her. Ask her why it makes her sad and what you could do to help her

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  • Try to avoid talking about it, but it's something she's just going to have to accept. A high mileage partner can be harder for somebody who is less experienced to accept. Just understand that it is a sensitive subject for her, and don't bring it up. Also make sure she knows your exes are irrelevant if she is worried they might come back into the picture.

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  • You aren't wrong. She's insecure and lacks self esteem. She needs to work on herself or its gonna cause constant problems in your relationship or any relationship she has. She's not giving herself enough credit as a woman. And I would tell her that. Tell her how beautiful she is and should never feel like you're comparing her to women of your past because they couldn't compare.

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  • I’m not sure you can do anything about that and it would have been even more wrong to hide your past.. I myself have had a high number of sexual encounters previous to my girlfriend and like yours she knew from when we first discussed our past but she decided logically ( and not emotionally ) .. I think you’d have to get to the roots of why she goes quiet , it could be for a variety of reasons but she needs to realise that the past is the past.

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  • It's your past, that's no who you are anymore. You're who you choose to be. You shouldn't have to feel guilty from what you did if you're not the same person anymore.

    I think you should talk about it with her and reinforce the fact that you're not that guy and you're fully committed to her

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  • Well, what do you mention to her? Do you brag like an idiot about the girls you've nailed? It is common sense not to bring up past relationships with your current partner

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  • If you are the more experienced person in the bedroom, use it to your advantage by teaching her things that she doesn't know about. You're not in the wrong dude, she is just a bit shy I think. Don't hide parts of yourself. Just say that you love her with your heart and what you did is in the past.

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  • Just make sure you reassure her she's the best and you dont think of other girls and that sex is very special between you two. I've been in the same boat but in my experience girls haven't been upset about it. BUT i am a big believer in building people up so id never ever say anything less than how great my girl is and all that. Im probably reassuring them before they even have a chance to get upset.

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  • All you can do is reassure her, but honestly she needs to step back a bit. She's taking it personal, but it's a illogical thing to take personal.

    Sit down with her & try to understand why she thinks she needs to be at the same level, or seems uncomfortable, & let her understand how she's making you feel bad which honestly isn't warranted if you haven't done anything.

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    • She probably considers that it's said a lot about the kind of guy he is which is true. Past says a lot... Always...

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    • ... To you...

    • 👍 thank you for answering my question & telling me your side of things; I'm enlightened.

  • If you feel guilty then it shows that her psychological war on you is successful. Her being concerned of your conquest with women is her way of trying to keep you on a leash, especially if she feels like you're the best she can get. She understands that you're a man high on demand and that's why you're not obliged to settle down with just one woman.

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  • I think it's completely normal to bring those things up, she has to know. Otherwise she won't know something important about you, and you will constantly feel guilty or feel like you can't talk to her about you and your past. But I think an easy way to help her get through it is talking to her about how you view your past, that you don't want to be that person anymore, the reason why you probably settled down, why you think she is worth more than any person you have met. You know, those types of talks that shed light into your thoughts about your past will help her understand you better and also understand where you are coming from and what you think of it all.
    Ask her why she is upset, sometimes letting her talk it out will help her also understand why she is upset, and may even feel like she is being unreasonable. Even if she is being unreasonable, show her that it's okay to feel what she is feeling, but that you hope she will (or you two will together) overcome this.

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  • Either she gets over it or you have to break up. Some people can't get over that kind of stuff (which is nothing wrong) but its not something that can really be fixed untill she gets over he insecurity

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    • This is something you should have discussed PRIOR to becoming official. I've only had a few partners and I prefer to date someone with few partners as well. I learned that because I had a guy (he literally had no idea how many girls fucked him, 30+). He treats sex like going to the bathroom. Lets just say I learned my lesson.
      Before I date a guy I ask: how many partners? And how many were female?
      I prefer under 5

  • Some girls just prefer guys who dated few girls before her and there are also some who prefere virgin. But why does she date you if you she know your past.

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  • Your past is your past you can’t change that nor should you feel any guilt for it! It will create resentments if she makes you feel that way! You can’t change how she feels! I would how ever try to build her confidence up. Pick out some things she does well that really get you going! Tell her all the time... I really love the way you do ———- to me, it makes me feel ———-! Compliment her on how she’s a goddess! Sexy AF, beautiful, great body, great heart etc... make her feel like your the lucky one to have her! It will take some work on your part but if she feels like she’s your universe that other stuff will lessen/ fade in time. Just reassure her, build her lacking self esteem/ insecurities back up. You will win as her love for you grows, you’ll get more attention from her and your relationship will blossom. Win/ win, and you will be the one who helped create this beautiful thing between you! Good luck. Just try and be genuine!

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    • If you were friends before and she knew how you were, she shouldn’t be being weird about it at all! She shouldn’t have been involved with you if she couldn’t handle it. But the heart wants what it wants. So back to my post before. Try to make her feel she’s a goddess and your universe right now!!! And hold on your going on a roller coaster ride!!! 😊

  • If she can't handle it, she's not the girl for you if she's going to let it hold her back

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  • Get her focused on your relationship. Regularly tell her how you feel about her.

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  • Well I don’t understand why she cuffed a thot if she’s so bothered by a thotty past

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  • Why is she with you? Why are you with her? No offense. I'm just wondering why she didn't choose to date an inexperienced guy and you the opposite.

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  • I don’t care about a woman’s past. I know I’m a great love and I can measure up.

    I’m not too sure why a woman would be upset about a man with a lot of partners. Women like men who are desired by other women. But I suppose that’s where the fear comes in. She knows that you’re being looked at like a piece of steak and someone better might come along and steal you from her.

    So how do you calm those fears? I don’t know tbh. I know girls are giving advice but I’d like to hear more what exactly girls are afraid of, and what do they need to know to be assured that she’s the one you choose and you’re not gonna just run off with someone else.

    I have had this problem and I’m not even in the boat of having tons of partners but I guess I’m attractive so most of me exes had been insecure. At the time I didn’t realize it because my self image was absolutely horrible. Looking back I have no idea what I could have said to make them feel better.

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  • Tell her to grow up. If she won't grow up, ditch the stupid little girl and get a real woman.

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  • I would say all you can do is support her and reassure her that you love her, not anyone else.

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  • Just reassure her that it was all in the past and that you love her and no one else

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  • Grow up.

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  • I have the same issue.
    I was a virgin while he had casual sex with other women before we met. I waited until our wedding night.

    The thought of him having sex is still hunting me even after years. I can imagine him having it with different ladies and those moments breaks my soul until I cry.
    You say to get over it but it's just too hard. He is committed or it wouldn't have worked. He loves me a lot which is why I don't bring it up but you can't simply expect me to forget something like this.

    Hoping time only can heal my soul.

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    • I am so sorry and i know exactly how you feel. It is so much more difficult to get over than people say and people will also shame you for thinking this way. Telling you that being bothered by his past is stupid, I'm here to tell you that it's not.

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    • @Exterminatore I get that you think that. I think it's absurd not to be bothered by that. Most people are. Now I have a problem specifically if it is a long list and if it was mostly hook ups and non relationship romps. Also the type of sex she had it shows who she is as a person. Our values in that case don't align.

      As someone who has not had a lot of sex I desire and require someone else who has nit had a lot of sex.

    • Some people don't think of sex besides that it's Sex but to some it's a deeper connection.

      He stopped hook ups even before we met as he wanted something deeper.

  • It's okay. Give her time. And show her that you love HER.
    I'm in the same situation with my boyfriend so I get how it feels.

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  • I never had a girlfriend I don’t know how will I react to someone who had a adventurous past. My situation will be she can get anyone she wants why me?
    I know it’s sound disgusting but it’s what it is.

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  • I have the same situation as you. In my case I am the adventurous one and my boyfriend had only few relationships. He can get sad sotimes too. But everytime he gets depressed, I try to tell him how much I love him and how no one in the past ever made me feel the way my boyfriend treats me now

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    • Aw that's sweet

    • I think what us guys truly want to know, is if you’re still pining for some top tier dicking and if he’s able to match that level. I don’t think we care so much about “oh but you treat me so well!”

      We want to know you’re not constantly aching for some Alpha male huge cock that you frequented in the past and although he’s perfect in every way you still secretly wish you were getting dicked down like that.

      I’m not saying that’s what you’re doing. But I’m just saying this to you so maybe that could help lol.

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