By Ilex Bien-aime
Relationships are difficult. It’s two people from different backgrounds and life experiences trying to come together as one. There are so many things and influences that are involved in making a relationship work. Though not every couple will struggle with the same issues, one issue seems to be universal – most of us come into new relationships with past love lives.
When you meet the “love of your life” odds are, he or she has dated several people before you and vice versa. As a result, by the time you have found that special person, you have broken several hearts and/or you have had your heart broken several times. You probably participated in several flings and a few long term romances. Scattered in between those relationships are people that you casually slept with along the way. And even though these experiences have led you to become the person that your mate loves, they can also complicate your relationship.
By the time we have found our “soul mates”, we are loaded with so much baggage that we are barely able to walk straight. We are now learning to deal with a new person who has new views and different ways of handling things. We soon begin to learn that even though this person is the best of the people we have dated, they come with a new set of imperfections.
As I said before, relationships are not easy. So why do we complicate them by allowing others to interfere? We can’t erase our pasts and our past dating resumes even if we wanted to. What I am learning is that you can obsess over your mate’s history but it will not help your current relationship. With that being said, you should make sure, if at all possible, to keep your past from your present.
Of course not every situation will be the same so there are exceptions to this premise. Some people have to deal with exes because they have children together. In these cases, you have to make the decision whether or not you want to date that individual. Some people will find that this is no big deal, while others will choose not to pursue this route. There are some things that quite frankly are beyond your control. However, you must master the things over which you do have control.
I remember watching a commercial a few years ago that made me mad and has stuck with me ever since. In the commercial there is a man watching TV with his girlfriend. The guys asks, “Where did you get that sweater?” to which she replies, “It belonged to my last boyfriend.” He then says, “How come you don’t wear any of my sweaters?” She then replies, “I dunno. His are bigger. Bigger is just more comfortable.” The guy finally says, “He sounds like a really big guy.” She then replies, “He was.”
While reading Men’s Health Magazine the other day, a guy asked what should he do about his girlfriend wearing her ex’s boxer shorts. When I talked to some girl friends about this, they said that they still own boxer shorts from old boyfriends. According to them the shorts were about comfort and they had no sentimental value. They say that it would be different if we still had our old girlfriends’ underwear because we can’t wear those. Though this may be true, it’s not about the underwear – it’s about what the underwear represents.
The underwear represents your past. A time when you were madly in love with someone else. This person once gave you butterflies. You once called your friends bragging about them. In some cases this person has seen you naked and has been intimate with you. If your past is truly your past, then stop leaving around the reminders of your past. No one should have to deal with this.
I have a girl friend who says that she has a box filled with old love notes and pictures of ex-boyfriends. She said that when she moved into her new apartment, she left the box at her mother’s house. When I asked why she hadn’t thrown the box away, she said that she didn’t want to give away the memories. But I think that this is the real problem. Our past needs to seriously be left in the past. Dwelling on the past will not help the present and trust me, it WILL HURT YOUR FUTURE!
I read an article where a man was digging in his attic and found a box of love notes from his wife’s old love interest. The notes gave intimate details of their sexual romps and this drove the husband crazy. Some will say that he should not have read the notes but why were those notes in their house and in their lives? If he is your husband, than you do not need to keep this past record of lost loves.
When I started getting serious with my wife, before we got married, I threw away my old box of notes, letters, and pictures. These women were no longer important to me and they were not worth the potential drama that could have come from my wife finding traces of them. There are no journals filled with memories to make her jealous or to give her a mental picture of my past. She was all of the woman that I wanted and all the woman that I needed. So why should I hold on to these past memories?
Most women and men think differently about this subject but I’ll tell you one thing, you need to make sure that you honor your marriage as best as you can. So are you going to fight to keep these constant reminders? What might this cost your relationship? If the past is no longer important to you, then you need to let that crap go. Why would you allow notes, pictures, poetry, journals, and other similar things to ruin your current good thing? If your past was so great, then you would still be there and maybe you need to go back there. But if not, please keep your past away from me.