When you’re single, and you want nothing more than a fulfilling romantic relationship, you love to wave a magic wand and, of course, you meet a partner.
It’s natural that you have more serious past relationships under your belt before settling down. This is usually a good thing, because you can learn more about what you do and don’t want in a significant other. It gives us a chance to test the dating waters before settling on one person to spend the rest of our days with.
However, there are some negatives. It can kill you to imagine the hard, cold truth that the love of your life once loved someone else entirely. While we certainly don’t recommend replaying their love affair scenes over and over in your head, it’s not a bad idea to broach the subject with your partner now and then.
The more you know about his or her past romantic affairs isn’t always better, but there are a few things you should know. Here are some things to know:
Did they part amicably or was it a messy breakup? This can be important to you if your relationship ever ends. If cheating had something to do with why they broke up and it was your partner’s fault, you need to know.
A single cheating breach of trust can be corrected and amended, but a history of multiple cheating episodes is a sign of a bigger problem.
- How did they deal with conflict?
Whether you’ve just started dating your partner seriously or you’ve been together for years, you may already have an idea of how he or she deals with conflict. Some people like to solve it head on while others are more passive. How your partner handled communication issues and arguments with his or her previous romantic partners is a mirror to how he or she will cope with you. You need to know from their past relationships that you have a willing participant in open communication without defensive postures. You want to know that your partner has self-examination skills and the ability to take responsibility and not always blame you for problems that arise.
- Does your partner have regrets?
Is your partner completely over his or her ex? While you probably don’t want to ask this question outright, it doesn’t hurt to do some investigative digging. You deserve to understand how the relationship turned sour. By learning this from your partner you can gauge how he or she feels about how it ended. Does he or she regret it? It gives you a sense of how introspective your partner is and how much responsibility they are willing to take when you have relationship problems.
- If they have ever had any STDs
Assuming your partner was sexually active with his or her ex, it’s worth inquiring whether or not he or she was exposed to any STDs during previous relationships. While some are curable, such as chlamydia, syphilis, gonorrhea, and trichomoniasis, herpes, hepatitis B, HIV, and HPV are incurable, meaning they stay with you for life. Both of you have the right to know in advance what kind of health you have and if there is anything to be concerned about with the previous partner.