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Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 14 July 2021, 17:32
by Bruckner_A
Hey everyone!

This is my first post and it’s about something immediately personal. I figured I would just use this forum for anonymity, to dump it out there, and hopefully get some suggestions.
I’ve been dating this guy for about two months and the relationship is actually really wonderful and sweet. So, the other night I found out that he used to sort of be a rent boy in a major city before we met and for some reason I can’t shake that out of my head. He says he isn’t really proud of it, but that at the time it was “just a fun thing to do” and he didn’t even need the money.
I guess what I’m doing that I absolutely hate is slut-shaming him in my head. Has anybody had similar problems/any advice or resources to get me started on a path to get over this?

AB

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 14 July 2021, 17:34
by Marmaduke
What are you struggling to get over specifically? Presumably you were aware that he’d been with other men before you, why do you feel the context that led to those meetings reflects upon the relationship between the pair of you now?

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 14 July 2021, 17:40
by René
His past relationship with sex was obviously different than yours. But what matters is his relationship with sex now. Is it good? Is it healthy?

I recommend seeking a therapist if you continue to struggle. :hug:

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 14 July 2021, 19:14
by pozzie
Everyone has a past and often there are chapters that an individual doesn't like. In this case, the individual is a partner. To be blunt, what is it about his time as a rent boy that bothers you, specifically?

As you even call it "slut-shaming", this suggests that you recognize this emotion as somehow unhealthy. Is there some internal conflict that you are struggling with? I'm not sure an internet forum is always the best place to deal with such issues and I second the recommendation to consider talking to a therapist. It doesn't have to be a long-term commitment.

If the relationship is good and otherwise healthy, why risk it over something that can't be changed? All you can change is your response to the facts as they exist.

Good luck!

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 05:24
by OutsideIn
Of course the past matters. It shapes who we are today. We all make mistakes, some more serious than others. We all go through phases. We may continue to live as we were raised, or we may reject our upbringing and go in a completely different direction. It does not help to dwell on the past, but it is not wise to ignore it either.

My question would be whether you two are really compatible. Some people try too hard to force a relationship when there are fundamental gaps in what makes you happy. Compromise is part of any relationship, but too much compromise leaves one party, or more likely both, too unhappy for the relationship to survive long-term.

I would start by examining what really bothers you about this situation. Is it the fact that he had many partners? Or is it the fact that he viewed sex as casual enough to to be willing to exchange money for it? Does this conflict with your own feelings about sex? People can have drastically different views about sex. For some, it is simply a physical act for temporary pleasure. For others, it is one aspect of a complex and deeply personal emotional bond. What are his attitudes toward sex now, and are they in line with yours? If they are different, it doesn’t mean that one of you is right and the other is wrong. But it may be too large of a division for either of you to overcome, and no amount of counseling is going to change that.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 12:10
by Brenden
Marmaduke wrote:What are you struggling to get over specifically? Presumably you were aware that he’d been with other men before you, why do you feel the context that led to those meetings reflects upon the relationship between the pair of you now?

Perhaps because there is a material difference between having sex with romantic partners, having sex casually with strangers, and selling sex to strangers (which can be further subdivided into 'for fun' and 'out of necessity').

They all reveal a different underlying psychology which may impact the current relationship.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 12:27
by Marmaduke
Brenden wrote:
Marmaduke wrote:What are you struggling to get over specifically? Presumably you were aware that he’d been with other men before you, why do you feel the context that led to those meetings reflects upon the relationship between the pair of you now?

Perhaps because there is a material difference between having sex with romantic partners, having sex casually with strangers, and selling sex to strangers (which can be further subdivided into 'for fun' and 'out of necessity').

They all reveal a different underlying psychology which may impact the current relationship.

In what context do the past choices of someone you are with now, and apparently love as they are, affect your choices in the present which are entirely separate from them?

Say it was me. Who I’ve slept with before, for whichever reason I chose to sleep with them, doesn’t impact my ability to commit to a relationship now. If I want to, I will. If I don’t, I won’t. The amount of people I’ve slept with before making that decision is irrelevant. I’m just as likely to not want to commit to you (not you you, Royal you, hypothetical you, though if it was you you I think we both know we’d kill each other eventually) if I’d slept with no people, 5 people or 500. In fact, I’d argue, modern age being as it is, I’d be more likely to be tempted by the concept of indiscretion having never been with anyone else beforehand. The curiosity of whether or not the grass really is as green as porn makes it seem to inexperienced little old me.

The only reason anyone gets hung up on someone else’s sexual history is their own insecurity. Be it fear of not measuring up, fear of being replaced or fear of someone else judging the other person and judging you by extension. It’s all anxiety that the insecure person needs to work through.

What is certainly not going to be constructive is an amateurish unpacking of psychological profile versus motive. Because let’s face facts, all we’re going to do on that front is sow seeds of doubt without even the most rudimentary of agricultural tools or understanding. He ends up with a plant taking root he didn’t want, we end up with dirt under our fingernails that didn’t need to be there. We’re all losers.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 15:23
by Brenden
Someone who's had lots of sex "just for fun" with many casual partners might come to miss that casual fun and the novelty of many new partners and then decide to end the relationship (or cheat or whatever).

Someone who has taken money in exchange for sex may have a very distanced and transactional view of it and not quite 'get' the emotional aspect that it has within a relationship.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 15:52
by Marmaduke
Brenden wrote:Someone who's had lots of sex "just for fun" with many casual partners might come to miss that casual fun and the novelty of many new partners and then decide to end the relationship (or cheat or whatever).

Baseless fear in and of itself, his past choices don’t factor into it. It’s anxiety.

Brenden wrote:Someone who has taken money in exchange for sex may have a very distanced and transactional view of it and not quite 'get' the emotional aspect that it has within a relationship.

See above.

“May” and “might” are speculative, nonsense fears. OPs boyfriend is apparently very open, communicative and honest about his past and his motivations around the decisions he made. Throwing baseless worries of what he may come to do, or might feel or struggle with, against that really open and honest behaviour is essentially encouraging OP away from a foundation of trust in his relationship.

He’s in a relationship with someone, a relationship that he describes as really wonderful and sweet. That someone has been much more open and honest than he’s needed to be, and about things that a lot of people would keep to themselves. There is no evidence whatsoever that his boyfriend is anything other than committed to the relationship and keen to make it work. His sexual history is not relevant. The only reason to concern yourself with it is anxiety. His conduct now, in the relationship, is what you should base the relationship on. The people he has been with in the past were not you, and so he would not have treated them like he treats you, felt about them like he feels about you, perhaps been as open and honest with them as he has been with you.

The sexual or romantic history of the person you are in a relationship with is ultimately non of your business because you were not a part of those relationships and those relationships have no bearing on you in and of themselves. What matters is his behaviour whilst he is in the relationship, how he treats you, how he behaves with you.

Trust him. If you can’t, ask yourself why and if it’s because he’s had sex with people before you, or more people than you would deem to be seemly then you need to take some time to deal with that yourself, because there’s nothing he can do about it and he shouldn’t have to.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 18:15
by Brenden
So I guess every day we wake up a tabula rasa and our past behaviour and experiences and entire lives are completely irrelevant. We make choices with our free will, and they're not influenced by any previous choices or experiences. They are just pure manifestations of free will, arising apparently out of nowhere, since everything that came before those choices doesn't influence them.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 18:45
by Marmaduke
Brenden wrote:So I guess every day we wake up a tabula rasa and our past behaviour and experiences and entire lives are completely irrelevant. We make choices with our free will, and they're not influenced by any previous choices or experiences. They are just pure manifestations of free will, arising apparently out of nowhere, since everything that came before those choices doesn't influence them.

No, you’re right, that I slept with people in the past that aren’t you means I’ll probably leave you for someone else. There need be no other context or information. Who I’ve slept with and why is a useful tool upon which you may make assumptive judgements on me as a person, determine my values and my value, and discard me. And better discarded early, lest I leave you, or you be marked by shame through associating with me. Existence is pain, after all. Best avoid as much of it as possible in the interminable wait for death or suicide. I am tainted, forever and always, irredeemably tainted by the choices of my youth simply because they aren’t choices you made, or would’ve made, irrespective of us being in entirely separate situations. You’re right. I surrender to the indomitable height of your straw man.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 19:37
by pozzie
Why do I get the sense there are longer-term philosophical discussions happening across threads on this forum?

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 19:46
by Severelius
pozboro wrote:Why do I get the sense there are longer-term philosophical discussions happening across threads on this forum?

Because Marmsy and Brenden are on at the same time. This happens a lot.

On this one I side with Marmsy.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 19:59
by Marmaduke
It’s the eternal struggle of good versus evil, light versus dark. I, the chaotic good, once more triumphing over the lawful evil of Brenden.

It’s like if V from V for Vendetta was locked in an eternal battle with the Dowager Countess of Grantham.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 20:05
by Severelius
Marmaduke wrote:It’s the eternal struggle of good versus evil, light versus dark. I, the chaotic good, once more triumphing over the lawful evil of Brenden.

It’s like if V from V for Vendetta was locked in an eternal battle with the Dowager Countess of Grantham.

As a slut I'm just taking the side of the person who's not basically saying sluts can't be trusted.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 20:14
by Marmaduke
You side with me all the time because I’m charming and charismatic and I like show tunes. I’m basically Mary Poppins, and Brenden is George Banks. And as is well known in this fictional context, where there’s a job that must be done, there is an element of fun. Soon, we will break through to him, reveal him to be a human being with feelings rather than an unfeeling turn-of-the-twentieth-century chauvinist, and have him flying kites in the park before you can say “supercalifragilisticexpialidotious“.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 20:44
by pozzie
Marmaduke wrote:It’s the eternal struggle of good versus evil, light versus dark. I, the chaotic good, once more triumphing over the lawful evil of Brenden.

It’s like if V from V for Vendetta was locked in an eternal battle with the Dowager Countess of Grantham.


lmfao

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 21:06
by Severelius
Marmaduke wrote:You side with me all the time because I’m charming and charismatic and I like show tunes. I’m basically Mary Poppins, and Brenden is George Banks. And as is well known in this fictional context, where there’s a job that must be done, there is an element of fun. Soon, we will break through to him, reveal him to be a human being with feelings rather than an unfeeling turn-of-the-twentieth-century chauvinist, and have him flying kites in the park before you can say “supercalifragilisticexpialidotious“.

God knows you and Brenden's arguments do have a strong sense of "something is brewing, about to begin" about them. And I do feel like it's all happened before...

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 21:11
by OutsideIn
This one kind of went off the rails. People getting really passionate about these kinds of topics. There are a lot of strawman arguments here. No one light a match.

Re: Help with shaming

Unread postPosted: 16 July 2021, 21:13
by Marmaduke
OutsideIn wrote:This one kind of went off the rails. People getting really passionate about these kinds of topics. There are a lot of strawman arguments here. No one light a match.

You’re Uncle Albert when it’s time for everyone to go home.