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Should a woman worry about a man’s past?

In Lost and Found, main character Nate Wilson is a bit of a playboy. In that book, which takes place in a span of a year, he has four sexual partners before heroine Emi Hennigan makes the decision to give her best friend a chance. She knows about his past, and the year covered in the book is pretty indicative of his history, too. This wasn’t an abnormal year for Nate.

Emi has to get beyond Nate’s past. Since Lost and Found is told from Nate’s point of view, the reader doesn’t really get to see her journey, but there is one. What Emi has going for her is that Nate has been relatively honest with her from day one. She knows all the facts. She knows his habits. She knows of nearly all the women he’s been with. That allows her to make a relatively informed decision.

For Emi, it’s not so much STDs she has to worry about. Nate was good about safe sex, for the most part, and he was tested before they got together. For her, it’s commitment. Can Nate commit to a monogamous adult relationship, or is he destined to hop from woman to woman every couple of months? That’s where she has to take a leap of faith. And again, for her, I think she’s always known he had underlying feelings for her, so the leap wasn’t too great.

Did she make the right decision? Based on what happens, we know she did. But what if things were different? What if the ending of the book wasn’t as tragic as it was? Where would that leave Emi and Nate today?

Can a man who’s had a different woman every few months truly commit to one woman for the rest of his life? I think it all depends on what he was looking for in the first place. If his motives are purely sexual, then I think it would be difficult for a man to stay faithful. But if he’d been looking for love all that time, and just had never found it, I think there is hope, provided the woman understands his nature and his needs.

Now all of this is null and void if he’s cheated before. I think anyone who’s read the books knows how I feel about cheaters. I don’t think it’s something that should be overlooked. I’m not sure people who cheat can stop. If they got away with it before, they can do it again.

For me, personally, it all hinges on honesty and maturity. The last guy I dated passed himself off as mature and honest. The honest part, I’ll give him. He was too honest, probably, if there is such a thing, and I knew it was trouble when he showed me the list of girls he’d been with on his iPhone. Yep, it was in his notepad. All twelve of them. That said everything I needed to know about his maturity– especially when he deleted it in front of me. Like that was proof he’d grown up in the four minutes of chastising I did. That experience just further supported my hard and fast rule of not dating men boys younger than me. I have never met a younger guy that I could see myself with. And truth be known, there aren’t a lot of older guys I can see myself with, either.

My biggest problem, I think, is trusting that what a guy says is true. I’ve been lied to so much that it creates a general distrust in all guys. So I’d have to jump that hurdle first, and then move on to figuring out if his past sexual history is something I could accept. I really just want someone who will be devoted to me until death do us part. If I believe that can happen, and I believe he loves me as much as I love him, then I think I could overlook a lot. I think that’s what Emi did.

What do you think? Don’t dwell on the past? Or analyze the history for clues of his future?

One thought on “Should a woman worry about a man’s past?

  1. As someone who believes the past should never be forgotten as it prepares us for the future, I firmly believe that hanging on to your or your partners past in a relationship is a sure fire way for it to end. I realise it’s not as cut and dry as that, and there are factors that need to be taken into account (such as if you are dating a serial cheater) but in general, I think it is not helpful to hang on to tightly to someone elses past.

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