Everyone has a past. We have all have made mistakes and had relationships and experiences. And although open lines of communication foster a healthy relationship, it’s best you keep mum about some things.
- An affair you’ve had in the past
Revealing an affair you’ve had in the past has the potential to damage your current relationship.
Sexologist Emily Morse, cited in Shape, says: “Telling him that you’ve cheated on a previous boyfriend will trigger his insecurities,” says Morse. “Even if he brushes it off, believe me, he won’t ever forget.”
Author of When Good People Have Affairs: Inside the Hearts & Minds of People in Two Relationships (St Martin’s Griffin), Mira Kirshenbaum says although she is an advocate of the truth, she doesn’t believe in disclosing an affair you’ve had in your previous or current relationship. She says confessing is unnecessarily destructive.
“Confession puts the other person in a permanent state of hurt and grief and there is a loss of trust and an inability to feel safe. It doesn’t alleviate your guilt,” she says.
- Intricate details about your family
Understanding your partner’s background is essential, as it helps you understand their character, personality and how they view the world.
In the same breath, you also need to be careful of what you say about his family. His family will never be your family, and vice versa (even if you’re married), so it’s best to not share too much. Also, if you join him in his gripe session, it can make him shift gears and feel protective of them – then you end up being the bad person. It may also hurt him as he may feel you don’t like the people he loves.
- How many sexual partners you’ve had
Author and relationship expert Paula Quinsee said: “We’ve all had a sexual past, but to count how many sexual partners you’ve had isn’t necessary,” she says. “Where it becomes difficult, however, is if you’ve had a sex change – in which case, you’d need to be transparent with the other person.”
Morse, cited in Shape, agrees and says couples should limit discussions about their sexual histories. “It’s bound to tap into insecurity and jealousy, and it never feels good to think about your partner being with another person,” she says.
In an article in eHarmony, sex and relationship expert Tracey Cox adds that it’s a question no-one should have to answer.
“The reason is this: numbers mean nothing without knowing the circumstances. Reducing your sexual history to a number doesn’t work.