I am a 35 years old man who recently broke up with his girlfriend for 3 years, because I couldn’t handle the fact that she has had several lovers before me and I was an inexperienced virgin. I keep comparing us on that and I feel awful.
My life is severely fucked up due to family problems and as a result I have always been alone, feeling disappointed and with low self-esteem. I abstained from coming close to women. I met her through common friends.
She really loves me and I know I would have stayed with her, if it wasn’t for my constant urge to meet and have sex with other girls as I have never done before and “bridge the experience gap”. I never cheated on her and neither did she have a problem with me being inexperienced.
I feel I have lost my one and only precious love with whom I would like to spend the rest of my life. How can I proceed, feel good with myself and come back to her after all? I know from her own words that for the time being she is still there for me, showing her true love. Can I make it or do I have to cope with her loss to truly find myself and “grow up”, finding love with a new mate?
The thoughts that I am old, I don’t have many chances to settle down and that there will always be an abyss of experience separating me from the girls around my age buzz in my head and drive me mad.
Thank you very much in advance!
Virgin In The Wild
I get letters like yours all the time, VitW. Every time it’s someone who feels like there’s a window closing and that if they don’t somehow make up for their utter lack of experience, they’re doomed to never date, ever. When they do find someone, they then get anxious over the difference in numbers; they feel as though that their lack of experience means that either they are “missing out” somehow or that they need to balance out the scales so that they’re more equal with their partner, somehow.
Not that anyone can explain what equality is supposed to bring, exactly.
Here’s a truth: your experience – or lack thereof – isn’t the problem. Your problem is the importance you’re putting on it. The number of partners you’ve had is ultimately meaningless; it doesn’t mean anything other than “you slept with X many people”. It doesn’t automatically mean that you’re a more desirable person; people have sex for reasons that have nothing to do with the person they’re banging. It doesn’t mean that you’re a better lover; people can have lots of one-night stands because they’re selfish dicks who never get a return engagement. It doesn’t mean that you did anything right or wrong or anything else.
Here’s another truth: there is no amount of sex that’s going to be “enough”. When you’re trying to derive your value through how many people you’ve slept with – especially when it’s in comparison with how many people your partner has slept with – then all that’s going to happen is that you’re going to (maybe) rack up notches on your bedpost and still feel empty and unfulfilled. You’ll be trying to fill a bottomless hole with sex and wondering why you never feel any better about it.
The “experience gap” you’re worried about isn’t relevant. If someone is going to judge you based on how many people you have or haven’t slept with, then they are someone you don’t want to be in a relationship with. Someone who’s right for you is someone who accepts the number of partners you’ve had – whether it’s 0, 1 or 100 – as just part of who you are. There will always be people who’ve had more sex than you; that’s ultimately a null value set because it has nothing to do with you.
Being with someone who’s had more sex than you doesn’t mean that they’re judging you and thinking “man if only I had someone who actually had more than me.” It means that they have chosen you. You can either trust your partner and accept that they’re telling you the truth when they tell you that they want to be with you… or you move on.
And you, VitW, can’t seem to accept someone at their word.
Now it’s time for the Chair Leg of Truth: right now, you can’t go back to your ex. I’m sorry, but doing that is just going to destroy any chances you have of actually making that relationship work. One of the things I always tell people who want to know whether they should get back with their ex is that if you haven’t resolved the reasons why you broke up in the first place, you’re just going to replay your break up the second time around. Second verse, same as the first, a little bit louder and a whole lot worse. And you, VitW, have yet to deal with what broke you up.
You don’t need a loudmouth with a blog, my dude. You need a therapist. You need to find someone who can help you pick apart these issues and give you the tools to get your head on right. Until you do that, trying to rekindle your relationship with your ex is just going to cause more pain. If you don’t know where to find a therapist in your area, then you may want to start with the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists and find someone to your area.
I’m sorry that you’re hurting, my dude. But you need to address that pain before you try to date again. It’s the only way things are going to get better.