We are shaped by our romantic experiences, our disappointments and our previous joys. And as curious as it may seem, when you are in a relationship, talking about your past relationships can be a real asset: explanations and instructions for surviving these dangerous discussions.
To deal with the inextricable complexity of romantic relationships, we set up a set of sacred rules, inspired by romantic comedies , S ex & the City and the experiences of our friends. And if we cling to these rules because they give us – wrongly – the reassuring feeling of mastering the situation, they remain for the most part absurd and eccentric. Besides the rule of three days, the taboo around ex figures at the top of this table of fanciful commandments, under the pretext that “The past is the past”.
Except that one can never evacuate one’s past so easily. On the contrary, it is what conditions our present, the person we are today, our desires and our neuroses in a relationship . Someone who has experienced a chaotic and unstable relationship may require more trust and security than is customary to ask their partner, for example, while someone who has suffered from a lack of communication risks being very anxious about this.
Talking about your ex can therefore be an essential step in consolidating a relationship: it will allow you to give the other person keys to better understand yourself. This discussion can therefore considerably enrich your relationship – provided, of course, that you avoid the pitfalls associated with this difficult subject. By ego, lack of confidence, or insecurity, talking about people the other loved one can be complicated, even dangerous. Here are 6 tips to succeed in talking calmly about your past stories – story to avoid the ironic melodrama in which you are left when talking about your exes.
1- Do not ask questions which you do not want to hear answered
Stirring up the ashes of the past amounts to embarking on a dangerous slope: the main thing is not to throw yourself into the void. Because the temptation can be great to play suicide bombers: the border is sometimes thin between what you want to know out of interest for your couple and what you want to know out of unhealthy curiosity . But you don’t need to ask him how many times a day he slept with his nymphomaniac girlfriend if you know that the answer will make you anxious and complex. The goal is not to self-torture, but to better understand the needs of the other in a relationship , so avoid masochism (and therefore questions about his s ex life of yesteryear).
2- Don’t get lost in details
Your partner does not need to know the nicknames you give yourself, the place you prefer to go on weekends and the se xual preferences of your ex. Keep in mind that the purpose of going back is to strengthen your current relationship: you don’t need to talk about everything. What is interesting is to approach your feelings about your past relationships with an objective look, to succeed in targeting what has been a handicap , an embarrassment or a strong point.
3- Don’t fall for comparisons
In the age of social media, one person’s name is enough to find out what they look like, what they eat for lunch, what they like and what they do every Saturday night. In other words, it is easy to fall into a phenomenon which unfortunately spares no one: stalking on social networks , or “stalking”.
This compulsive comparison is a way of reassuring oneself, of evaluating oneself in relation to people who are “references” for your partner. However, this can be the source of many questions or a loss of self-confidence . To spare your partner and yourself these grueling neuroses, remember that if he is with you, it is because it did not work with that person. You even have the right to take a little big head, and tell yourself that you are better than her. It doesn’t matter that she looks like a Victoria’s Secret Angel , that she did the ENA and that she campaigns with WWF to save baby red pandas.
4- Ask yourself about your questions
Always so as not to cross the limit of unhealthy curiosity, which leads straight to melodrama, ask yourself about the relevance of the questions you are going to ask. Why do you want to know that? Because it’s interesting in the context of our current relationship, or because I’m jealous of her history with this girl and want to know more?
Talking about past stories can be a great way to better understand each other, because unraveling the threads of our romantic past leads us to clarify our needs and demands. But it is important to keep this course so as not to slip on confidences which could lead to jealousy or a questioning: if you wanted a crisis, it was enough to go to Ikea , it is simpler.
5- Be understanding
All our relationships do not end properly, with an honest explanation and goodbye in good and due form. There are stories that will always be more painful than others: there are sores that survive the disappearance of feelings. And it is important to talk about your regrets, your frustration or your sadness to your partner: in a couple, being able to confide your feelings and your injuries to the other remains one of the keys to sustainability.
And needing to talk about it doesn’t necessarily mean that the person in question is still important to you (if so, it’s a whole different problem ), but that you haven’t yet digested certain things. Discussing it with the person you love can also be an opportunity to remedy this, so be open, understanding, and break taboos from the past.
6- Do not let yourself be trapped in memories
When you talk about the subject of your exes , be careful not to get lost in the meanders of your memories of lost love. No matter how close you are to your partner, she is not your best friend. You cannot begin to unpack the history of your love stories for him by going so far as to ask yourself before him what you could have become or if you will find yourself one day. Beware of nostalgia for dead love: it is useless and hurtful for your partner. When talking about your exes, explore the past only to find keys that will make your two present better .