Naked and Unashamed

Yesterday I sent out a message on BB which read the following,

Please answer truthfully: You’re not a virgin and the person you’re courting is not either. Do you need/want to know how many persons she has been with in the past or would you rather not? Whatever your answer, Why? And when is the right time to tell? For girls, what’s your take on this?

Before I share the replies I got, I will tell you what led me to asking this question in the first place.

So, there was this guy I started talking to again (don’t roll your eyes, I am not always talking to guys; and no, it is not the friend described here either) and, well, stopped talking to again too.
The story went something like this:

I met Jay, whom I met through Mo. Stating the obvious here: I knew Mo first; we met in 2006. We kind-of-went-out then but didn’t make it official. I didn’t want to because I knew it would most probably not last. We are still friends till date. I met Jay a year or so later and we spoke as good friends.. nothing more (at all). Moving on, he really liked me but nothing ever transpired between the two of us; after-all, there was Mo, who was our common friend, besides I didn’t see the point in dating someone else “just for the sake of it”.

Fast-forward a couple of years and we are in June 2012. I (as I am so awesomely good at keeping in touch with people) am still communicating with Mo (just as friends, every now and then), but as I haven’t seen Jay in over four years, look forward to meeting him again. Jay picks me up from the house and his old passion is rekindled. “I still like you, Yinka.” I smile, I blush, I thank him. “You never gave me a chance. Why now? I think we would work really well..” I reply with a smile and tell him, “You’ve always said you liked me. I wonder why. You know so little about me. About my past. My Ex’s. My life. What basis do you have for liking me? I really don’t get it.” And he simply replies, “Believe me, I am not a boy, I know what I mean when I say I like you. I know you well enough. I know your family. I know why I like you. But you wouldn’t just let me prove it.” I laugh sheepishly at that, “What does my family have to do with that? Just because I come from a good home doesn’t mean I’m a good girl or haven’t had my share of naughtiness.” He smirks and waves the topic off. We should talk about different things. I shake my head. “Okay oh.”

We don’t really drop the topic, but we don’t discuss it much either. We just chill and talk. He drops me at the airport (I was on my way back to Vienna) and we talk some more as I land. We Whatsapp a lot; then it stops.

I wonder the first day as he stopped sending “Good morning, darling” messages, and the second, realizing I haven’t heard from him at all.. no “Good night, babe” message either. I decide to enquire about how his exams went and am relieved they went well. He’s probably just been too busy preparing. Girl has learnt to chill. But a couple of more days pass; nothing. I decide to call once, to write twice, nothing. I shrugged and moved on..

That was until I got a message two days ago, “I can’t believe you had something with Mo!” My first reaction was to lol.. I was shocked he didn’t know. Surely Mo would have told him about us then? Apparently he didn’t, good. But he wouldn’t have now either. I reply, “Yes, I did.” A long moment of silence passes and he replies, “I can’t believe it. I’m in shock.” I don’t know whether to hiss or to laugh, or to be upset. I explain it was many years ago; and wonder why he was making a big deal of it now. After all, we weren’t even dating!!
What upset me the most, however, and why we are probably not going to talk for a very long time, is the fact that Mo hadn’t actually told him anything at all; he was “trying to use style” to find out about me.
My reply to him was this, “I am really disappointed to see you act like this, as we are both adults. If you want to know about my past, why not just ask? You’ve known me for a very long time, I don’t act, I don’t lie, I don’t pretend. I have no problem with my background at all, and I am willing to share information freely. You only have to ask. Why “use style” to find out whether I had anything with Mo? He did not disvirgin me, so there is obviously at least one more person I’ve had something with. All I can say is that next time, just ask.”

Needless to say, he did not reply and that was that. I then talked it through with a good friend of mine and she was furious, as she did not even see the point in anyone asking about things that are now long gone. What’s his business in asking? Why does he want to know about you and Mo? You guys are not even going out. Besides, he should have just asked. And it’s way too early to talk about these things anyway!

It was based on this, that I sent the BB message out and got very interesting and varying opinions.
The first few will be guys’ reply to the question. I will share observations right after the selected comments. The second part will be the ladies’ replies. Enjoy and feel free to comment!

I’d want to know. Badly. But I know it’s best if I don’t. So I hold off from asking as much as I can. The right time to tell is a time when it helps boost trust in the relationship. But I wouldn’t want to know. Personally, it takes a great deal of trust for me to commit in the first place so I wouldn’t be with someone who I didn’t trust or whose past I wasn’t comfortable with in the first place. (Male #1, 27)

Yes, I would want to know, just for curiosity. If she’s been with many guys, I really don’t expect her to tell me the number though. I’d rather she just kept it to herself, that’s just me though. I’d want her to tell me 4-5 out of 10. If she said she’s only been with two, I’d definitely know she’s lying. (Male #2, 26)

What kind of question is this? NO! (Male #3, 19)

Well, 9/10 I already know. I would have done some sort of research into her past. I can’t marry a harlot. I can’t marry a girl who’s been with one of my friends. Besides, I like to think that from the time she met me, she behaves. However, sometimes someone’s past can tell you a lot about their character. Even if I don’t know any of the men she had something with, a hoe is a hoe. A girl once told me she was wild, cheated on her Ex. So I already knew the extent of her wildness. I wouldn’t date such a girl. Little things like people already knowing about the girl can be embarrassing for the guy. Definitely enough not to want to take her serious. Men have pride, you should know this. And for the girls who have claimed they have changed, most really haven’t. And when you know their past, it’s like a hint to stay away. And if they don’t say, if the guy does find out, it can bite them. I am laid back, most of my friends are too. We don’t want a girl with more than 5 guys to her name. (Male #4, 23)

It’s irrelevant.. why? Because it could change the view of the person, even if it is small. I see it as a question I don’t want to know the answer to. I wouldn’t feel cheated or deceived if I eventually married her and found out because it was in the past and before. (Male #5, 23)

Sure, I would definitely want to know how many guys she’s been with. If not for anything, at least for aproko sake. Anyway, not asking because I want to use it against her but because I want to know. Even if she was a virgin, I would still want to know how many guys she’s dated before. I just want to know everything about her past. Others might not care about all this much, but I personally would want to know. From the first guy, to the second guy, to when and where and how it happened. I want all the details! (Male #6, 28)

I don’t think I would want to know. I really don’t want a mental image of her being intimate with another guy. But anyway, I wouldn’t just ask for asking sake. If it somehow came up in a discussion, fair enough, yes. I’d probably probe, but with my heart in my teeth. I’m very uncomfortable with those kind of conversations. (Male #7, 26)

It’s pretty irrelevant. Even if she slept with 100 guys before you, you can’t undo it. If you love her, you love her, simples! If you really have to discuss it, it should be towards the deep end of your courtship. But there’s really no point to it, because you’re sure to meet fights there. So no, I wouldn’t want to know. What about the girls the guy might have done? Or you find out she’s done 30 guys,  4 in one night. Your ideas about her change, thoughts fly in. Things will definitely change. What is past is past. She was not answerable to me then. (Male #8, 28)

The only observation I will share at this point will be that the more “gracious” guys were all- with one exception, perhaps- Christians, who quite obviously had a profound understanding of what it meant to love, forgive, and be born-again. I posted all replies in compressed form (I left out some things), but can disclose that the more judgemental of comments stemmed from men who also said they did not believe a person could change. This was evident in statements such as “once a hoe, always a hoe”. Others, although they admitted to being curious, were humble enough to admit their own weakness (ego) and dangers (such as looking at her with different eyes) should her “number count” come as an unwelcome surprise. It is also interesting to note only one person (Male #8) found the guy’s past to be as (un)important as the girl’s.

Now on to the girls:

No guy wants a trollop! Period! (Female #1, 26)

Don’t tell. That’s one stupid question. As in, never ever! Whoever wants to know needs to grow up. Then you ask why they want to know.. it’s just to judge you! Will they like you more or less; or feel better? Please! You are a new creature, old things have passed away. If he doesn’t get that, he gasta go figure out if he’s born-again jor. These kind of questions piss me off. Only self-righteous people ask them. Kmt. Nonsense. What bloody right does he have to ask? Is he God? When you get married you can share. But even then, what for? So he can use it against you when you argue? After-all he’s human and will make mistakes. Don’t give room for disrespect or insults, not even in marriage. All that happened in the past is the “old man” and he is dead, so it is so not relevant. Whatever happened then is between you and God. Did you know your husband then? Was he there? What does he want to do about it now? And the girl too, does she want to knock his confidence or something? Please. They’ll say it doesn’t matter but it will when it works for them, like when you upset them etc. Honestly, plus a man’s ego. Boy, you don’t want to mess with that! Nobody discusses news that’s 5-years old. Why should you? I’m speaking from experience (first, second, and third hand), plus study. So this is knowledge and understanding, not just blah blah. Don’t tell! Everyone who didn’t or won’t use this insight, trust me, will wish they did one day. (Female #2, 29)

No thanks, don’t need to know. It’s irrelevant because what’s done is done. You can’t unsex the person. He just has to accept you the way you come and forget about the past. (Female #3, 20)

What is he asking for? I don’t even mind saying because it’s my past and I am born-again now. But it’s arrogant and self-righteous people that will ask that question. What does he want to use the information for?    I see it as irrelevant. If he can’t love and respect me for who I am now, then what’s the point? Besides, a man’s ego. It will crush him if he knows you’ve been with lots of men. There is really no point in him asking. But if he does, I will tell him sha because I don’t want to deceive him. Let him know who I am and if he can’t deal with it, he can go. (Female #4, 27)

Why should I be concerned about his previous sex life? 1. Let’s go to the clinic together and both get tested. 2. Do you have any kids? That’s all I need to know in relation to his previous sexual activities. (Female #5, 26)

There really isn’t much to say to this. Girls are generally not so strict when it comes to “How many girls has my man been with?” but do care (for obvious reasons) about how this same info (reversed) can or will affect their relationship. No one wants to be judged based on their past. It is just sad that many (and these are mostly guys according to my study) will choose to overlook the plank in their own eye, well looking down on those with lesser/greater/similar faults.


The way I see it:
One of the things I value highly in individuals (and I am sure will be a strong determining factor in my choice of partner) is an understanding and forgiving heart; one that keeps no record of wrongs (and certainly none that were long before his time..)

One of the first things that happened to me right after I finally accepted to follow the Lord (fully) was remorse over having allowed useless guys touch me. I did not just feel sorry for myself, I felt sorry for him, my husband-to-be. I felt sorry because I believed that- although I did not know him then and he was nowhere to be found- I had betrayed him still. I felt sorry because I knew (even then, and still now) that he would feel as much hurt and pain as I did, and that this would (maybe in a perverse-kind-of-way) connect us intimately.
My “sexual escapades” do not define me in any way, but they have taught and shaped me a whole lot! I have a hundred-and-one stories to share. There is no way in heaven or earth (because I will surely share these stories, especially since they are more or less directly related to what I see myself doing in the near future: counselling) he will not end up asking me, “Gosh.. how many guys have you been with?” And I’d really just he knew sooner, rather than later.
This is a personal choice, however, as I do believe and see how it might not be the best course of actions for all females. I, however, value honesty, truth, and integrity so much, that any failure to disclose this on my (or his) part would be considered betrayal. And I would feel I betrayed myself.

I want my husband to look at me and feel no shame. I doubt I could do that if I knew there was something potentially important hidden from his “face”.
I could not look at myself and feel he really loved me for me- and all I came with- despite the fact that I am now a new creature and the old has passed away.
I would not feel confident in the love he had for me, for fear this little “secret” might come up one day with the ability to change the dynamics of our relationship.
But this is me. I want to be able to stand naked and unashamed, knowing I am loved regardless of my past. So, yes, at the right time.. I most probably will tell. (This song is so apt!)

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34 Comments Add yours

  1. kovieparker says:

    I personally have been one of those who believe in the “Don’t ask; don’t tell” policy. I figured what he doesn’t know wouldn’t hurt him. Over the last few months, I’ve been seeing just how much I value honesty and openess. So if I’m going to be with someone right now, I’d want want him to know EVERYTHING. I’d want him to know, yet love me regardless. How can I believe him when he says he loves me if he really doesn’t KNOW me?
    It’s simple, here are my cards all laid out on the table; this is me. Once you choose to love me regardless of my past, then you can never use it against me. This is where being with a believer is so important, because he most likely already understands the importance of forgiveness since he also has been forgiven. If God doesn’t judge me, then you can’t.
    No, he doesn’t have to ask (I wouldn’t even expect him to) but I’d tell. I’m no longer ashamed of my past, because that’s what it is; past! If he can’t deal, then he most likely isn’t the one. Then again, this is just my opinion.

  2. kovieparker says:

    P.S. I love that India’s song. Oh so perfect.
    Sorry for the really long previous comment

    1. DeMorrieaux says:

      Beautiful comment.. and thanks for making it so elaborate too! 🙂

    2. 0latoxic says:

      Gbam! Gbam!! Gbam!!!

      These are my thoughts exactly. I won’t ask, but I’ll tell. I count myself extremely blessed to have ended up with someone with exactly that philosophy as well. Our relationship is one of complete honesty and openness with each other.

      I endorse this comment %100.

    3. highlandblue says:

      Lol Kovie how are you? When I read the post I was alarmed at the defensiveness of the ladies. I thought the sharing went both ways, the guy spilling and the girl too. I realize that society judges ladies to higher standards than guys and that is sad. But if your partner cannot protect or defend you against society, how is he worthy of being your partner? Isn’t this why lawyers ask their clients to tell them everything? Because a guy could meet your hubby twelve years down the line and hit him with a wild story about you. If you hadn’t told him already, he would be too stung to defend you. Or trust you. Then it would become something you “hid” from him. Sighs. Marriage only works God’s way, Cos He invented it. And when He did, His design was for them to both be “naked and unashamed.” Thanks for this.

      1. Annie says:

        Just wanted 2 reply 2 the bit bout being stung 12 years down the line…
        As idealistic as this will sound, I know it’s doable cos I do it. My person is my person & in public I’ll defend them 2 the death. Any betrayal of trust I feel we can deal wiv behind closed doors. Obviously I hope I end up wiv someone who feels the same way…

      2. DeMorrieaux says:

        “I realize that society judges ladies to higher standards than guys and that is sad. But if your partner cannot protect or defend you against society, how is he worthy of being your partner?”

        Loved that!

  3. FP says:

    Interesting post.
    As much as my stand on this is quite strong and clear – I totally understand why you feel the way you do about this. How you are wired as an individual – your personality/ expectation – demands transparity. It’s because of your values, the things that are important to YOU! There is no right or wrong – its down to the individual. As with everything, there are positives and negatives.
    Also, to love someone for who they really are has nothing to do with how well they know you either – its bigger than that!

    1. DeMorrieaux says:

      I agree (that’s the diplomat in me lol) it depends on the individuals involved.
      Besides, God distributed graces differently.. not every man (even when he truly loves a girl) can or will choose to deal with her past.
      If both can let it rest and move on, so be it. But if it’s important to either of them, there needs to be a resolution. “Two cannot work together unless they be in agreement”.

  4. dudubeauty says:

    Hmmmmm…

    This is why relationships are for the matured ONLY!

    I don’t have anything to hide what so ever but i will not share myself, past, or anything else with any Tom, Dick and Harry just for the asking….

    There is time for everything under the sun. Wait for the proper time, if the person has not shared their past maybe it is not the right time. No snooping around for information….patience is a virtue..you might not even be ready for their past.

    I cherish honesty, so i will eventually share my past, present and future with a potential spouse, and this is only for bonding and building trust. I really don’t understand why men, especially those with sordid past; would be so judgmental….the double standard kills me.

    Christ makes all things new! If you don’t understand this, we will probably not be heading down the relationship path.

    1. kovieparker says:

      My point exactly. If I don’t see you as someone I could be completely honest with, then there’s no point being in a relationship. Of course I won’t just meet someone and bare all. We have to come to the point where we both know that we want a future with each other. The Spirit’s leading as to the right time and place is key. It’s something I pray about often so I know God’ll prepare his heart before I even speak.

    2. DeMorrieaux says:

      Beautiful comment.
      And yes, it is always guys that have been around the block, that fear the girl they end up with might have been one of those “block girls” who’s been with one of their kind before. Hence the need to “snoop around for information”. They know why.. *sigh*

      The need for Christ..

  5. lushvox says:

    This blogpost appears to be a hit for some reason… what I forgot to add as well is that the number of men she may have been with in sexual terms would not be an issue as much as her character. For example, a home-wrecking woman who has only had sex with one married man would be worse than a girl who has been in a 100 failed relationships (non adulterous ones). This is my opinion at least

    1. DeMorrieaux says:

      Judging each case based on its merits.. I get..

  6. Martina says:

    After reading your article, I have to amend my answer. I don’t even want to deal with someone who was once my friend’s ex or toaster. That’s different all-together. Your BB question wasn’t really accurate.
    However, I have never been with someone who asked me about my sexual partners. It’s always just been “How long have you been single” or “Why did you guys break up”?
    A man doesn’t like the idea of his girl being with somebody else.
    If in the future I meet a man who asked me such, I would question his motives. I would deem him to be extremely insecure.

  7. Martina says:

    I await the day a REAL MAN asks me about how many sexual partners I have had before I met him *hissss*

    When there are bigger and more important issues to tackle

    1. DeMorrieaux says:

      Lol.

      But yes, I think that’s another thing that is often overlooked/ forgotten/ avoided/ ignored: the need to get tested!

      (For those in London, please contact Frances on Tel: 020 8221 4560 (NHS Newham) as they do free HIV/Chlam/Gor testing)

      This obviously has nothing to do with how many, but how “smart” enough one has been with his sexual partners.
      Abstinence is really (still) the best protection/prevention.. *le sigh*

  8. TEE says:

    People are really scared of the past.. they shouldnt be! lol

  9. J says:

    My bf is a virgin & I’m not. When we started courting, he asked me about my past…like at the beginning & I told him(because I wanted him to decide early on if he was sure he still wanted to continue). When I was done talking, he told me ‘I love you’. Was I scared of losing his love & being judged? Yes. But knowing that he knows about my past & still loves me has helped build our relationship.
    Honesty helps relationships grow although it depends on the persons involved. I think being a born again christian helped him to overcome some of the issues he might have had with my past.

    1. DeMorrieaux says:

      Hey J,

      I can definitely relate.. I’m sure many can.
      Bless his heart.
      In a way the unwillingness or inability of guys to deal with my past has helped filtering them rather quickly. It makes it quite obvious: “You are not mine”, and saves a whole lot of time in seeking the Lord’s face for an answer lol.

      Thanks a lot for your comment.

    2. dudubeauty says:

      @ J…Your story is so beautiful! Reminds me of Gods love toward us 🙂

  10. My Opinion:
    If asked & or if d occasion arises,I will be completely HONEST,If he also feels like,I wouldn’t mind knowing,but I doubt its relevance,all that matters is wat we feel 4 each other NOW and where we are heading.
    Thanks…

  11. Lady via Email says:

    This was sent to me (Yinka) via email. With the permission of the writer, I am sharing it

    ***
    Wanted to comment on d blog but had some issues. Decided to email it to u. You can post it if u want. Morover, it is longgggg.

    Let me say a story, a long one.

    While dating my bf then, he kept asking of my past. Said I should tell him, that it is better he knows so in d future something ugly won’t arise. I told him I had nothing to share (plainly cos I wasn’t sure of where d relationship was headed). Still dating, I cheated on him with a guy he knows as my very good friend.

    When my BF became quite serious abt d relationship and we had gotten to d stage let’s fix a date for d trad, I decided to be a “good girl” and open up abt my past when next he asked and he did ask. I told him abt d 2 guys while I was in Uni, I watched his reaction and it was ok. He just said its in d past so baby let’s move on. I then said, its remaining one person, he asked who….I told him who and when….BAM he exploded. Relationship kaboot! Ended. Asked me to move my things out of his house and 4get him. I did all of that.

    I cried, prayed for forgiveness. I forgave myself too cos I had this guilt. I didn’t blame my BF, cos I knew I did bad. My Aunt blamed me for telling him. She said She has been married for 28yrs & her husband does not know all abt her past. That it was safer that way. That I had a big mouth.

    I prayed like never before, with tears- but I moved on. 1 month later my BF called me said he wanted to see me. We met, he asked; why did u do it? I told him I had no reason, it just happened. He called me a Slut and walked out. Called me 2days later. We had a crying bout. Today we r married.

    My advice is this; PLEASE TELL ur spouse about ur past. Spouse oh, not roadside BF or 2 days BF and u go spilling ur life history cos that past always has a way of coming up. 6 months into our marriage, a friend of d friend I cheated with sent my husband some very intresting emails and pictures. Just imagine if I had not told him about it.

    It wasn’t easy starting the relationship again but God’s mercies, love and Grace was abundant. We leaned on God and prayed for his help. I had a new relationship with God like never before. He had several trust issues with me but I believe we have scaled through it.

    Sorry for my blog post. “Covers my face in shame”

    ***
    Nothing to be ashamed about, my dear!
    Thanks for sharing your story so honestly and freely.

    1. DeMorrieaux says:

      I’ve alreaady commented in private, so I won’t again on here 🙂

      1. highlandblue says:

        You see, it’s women like this I want to meet. Make this happen, somehow

        1. Hi. says:

          The Woman knows u and she I saying hello Efe.

  12. s_Hotzs says:

    I will still maintain the basis that…………the less you know the safer you are, this aint ignorance or some sh*t but why in Gods earth will i want to know, serious if you ask me that question in a relationship, i will evade it simple. Sometimes Less is more

    1. J says:

      Depending on how serious you are about the person or where you want the relationship to go, I think you should know everything. It will help you in understanding the person, fortify your relationship & protect it against ‘extermal forces’.

  13. the yinx says:

    My mother once told me ”Anything that does not add value to your life, don’t tell a man”. I find this to be one of the best pieces of advice I have ever received. No matter how forgiving u are, the thought that ur significant other has been with over a certain number of pple that u find high will surely affect ur view of such a person. So pls keep ur questions to urself. Plus I find it very hypocritical of men to expect their gilfriends not to av slept with more than x amount of men when they themselves have very colourful pasts. All d women they slept with, those ones won’t marry too abi? The only thing I would divulge is if I’ve had sumng with a friend or relative of a guy I av an interest in, cuz word gets around. Better he hears it from me than from his buddy over cold star and nkwobi.

    1. DeMorrieaux says:

      LOL @ the feast

      ”Anything that does not add value to your life, don’t tell a man.”

      I totally see the point. My pastor (Pastor O, House on the Rock, free ad! :)) says something along similar lines. Even when cheating, he doesnt just advice everyone to go and confess: will it help improve the relationship, or is it simply to help you (the “offender”) deal with the pain more easily. Will it help build trust eventually, or just destroy it all? Each case on its merits, I guess.. People and graces are different..

  14. Daniel says:

    Personally, I believe that when two people are in love, not just bed mates ,they should share everything about their past no details hidden, if the guy loves u, he’ll stay but if he flares up and breaks up, then he Neva saw beyond ur legs.it is necessary u share so that if he goes out or she goes out and hear it somewhere else, he/she will not be embarrassed. A girl ‘s past has nothing to do with ur present, hear the story and move on just for trust and openness in the relationship, because if u do this u’ll always be comfortable discussing everything about anything thru out ur relationship.

feel free to say something..

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