Disclaimer: If I violate any man laws by writing this piece, please forgive me.
This blog entry falls squarely under the category of, “Do I really wanna do this?” While I know this topic is certainly important to any relationship, it also has a myriad of gray areas. And it is those areas that are the cause for my trepidation. The gray is where many well-intended men and women have found themselves locked in heated and prolonged debates regarding good and bad intentions, infidelity and unscratched itches.
Alright, enough beating around the bush. Today’s topic: Do you tell a spouse or significant other that you’ve met up with an old flame for lunch, dinner or coffee? Or if they ask if you’ve seen anyone you know while out and about, do you dare mention that ex-girlfriend you dated before your current love? Or perhaps a chance encounter at the coffee shop with your college sweetheart, whom you almost married?
To tell or not to tell, that is the question.
There are several factors that can go into answering this question:
- How often do you meet or intend to meet with this person?
- Have you ever given your spouse the impression this person was the one who got away?
- How long ago were you involved with this person?
- Was this the last person you dated before your current mate?
- Was there ever an engagement?
- Are there any children by this relationship?
- Have you ever been caught in infidelity with this person?
- Have you ever been caught in infidelity with any person? If so, how long ago?
And the list of potential inquiries could go on for quite some time. However, at the end of the day it comes down to two things: 1) Where is your relationship regarding trust? and, 2) your intentions.
Is there an unconditional trust in your relationship? That means a trust that goes beyond the two of you being in one another’s presence. It’s a trust that can comfortably operate when your mate is across town or across the globe. It’s a trust that gives the benefit of the doubt. It’s a trust that doesn’t have to constantly be earned. It’s unconditional.
Admittedly, this type of trust is often most present when it hasn’t been repeatedly violated. Everyone has their own definition of a trust violation. It would certainly help if you and your mate discussed where the gray is and what more clearly resides in black and white.
Secondly, what are your intentions? If you have had nothing more than a chance meeting, then if your trust levels are high it really shouldn’t matter whether you tell them or not. This wasn’t pre-meditated and you certainly have no intention of seeing them again. If the trust levels are low, perhaps you don’t say anything in order to avoid an unnecessary fight. If they are high, then a matter-of-factly mention should more than suffice.
If however, you are having frequent, scheduled meetings, then you may be placing yourself and the trust in your relationship into a difficult situation. While at first it may seem innocuous, over time old feelings have a way of resurfacing. Especially as the two of you go through ebbs and flows in your own relationships. At some point, one of you may want to take it further. That’s just human nature because the bond that is created when you “know” someone intimately is incredibly powerful and lasting. Remember, sex is a helluva drug
To tell or not to tell…it just depends…or does it? What do you think?
Rev. Robinson – “Love God, Love People”
Next Month: “Little Fib – Tall Tale: It’s All Lying to Me…or is it?”