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How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Other non-sexual marriage issues.
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MrMarried
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by MrMarried »

SLS wrote: Sun Oct 10, 2021 2:48 pm
rusty.mahler wrote: Fri Oct 08, 2021 9:15 pmSue (27) & Mark (29)


If Mark lied to Sue and said he had no previous sexual partners when in fact he did it would make sense that Sue is upset. If he is willing to lie to her like that at the beginning of their relationship I would suggest breaking up,

On the other hand if the subject of sexual pasts had not come up until this moment and Mark honestly answered that he had had a previous pre-marital sexual relationship and has since repented there is no reason for Sue to be angry.

Again I would suggest breaking up since in this case Sue is apparently unable to offer grace for Mark's past failings.
MrMarried wrote: Sat Oct 09, 2021 11:21 amIt is reasonable for a potential partner not being a virgin to be a deal breaker, unless you are dating a widow or widower. We live in an unreasonable age. Forgiveness doesn't have to be the key issue here. Maybe that needs to occur. But you can forgive someone without marrying them.
For "not being a virgin" to be a true dealbreaker IMO there has to be some follow on consequence that would severely hinder a marriage (i.e., an STD, unrepentant behavior, etc.). In some parts of Christian culture there is an obsession about virginity rather than a call to purity. A person can sin sexually but then repent and make a commitment to sexual purity.
They can. But that doesn't mean some other individual is obligated to marry someone who does this. If a woman can only have interest in men who are over 6 feet or are muscular and if a woman can want to marry a redhead or a woman with long legs, and no one has a problem with it, why couldn't virginity be a criteria?

Before I met my wife I made a commitment that I would never reject a potential spouse on the sole basis of whether or not they were a virgin. Yes, I desired that both my future spouse and I would be virgins because that is the path that leads to less heartache and potential issues. But I was mature enough to understand that being a virgin was not a magical state of purity and that even as a virgin I committed many sexual sins in my thought life.

As it turns out my future wife was indeed a virgin but the principle remains. Rejecting someone on the sole basis of virginity is not correct in my view.
the Old Testament implies that virginity is desirable. A woman married off as a virgin who wasn't could be executed for fornicating in her father's house. Priests could marry virgins of Israel or widows of other priests, but not a defiled woman.

My concern was that I did not want a woman who had been 'one flesh' with another man, so it was a deal breaker for me... either that or a virtuous widow. But I was young and certainly preferred a virgin. I am not saying everyone has to think the same way.
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by MrMarried »

I think the best approach is to ask about it early in the relationship-- not so early that it is just plain weird-- not a first date topic for most couples. But not so late that either are emotionally invested and really hoping for marriage. There may not be an ideal time.

I know a woman who marred a man without knowing the situation under which he married his first wife, who had passed away. He had a step-daughter from the previous marriage (grown), but he would not tell his second wife the circumstances under which he married his first wife.

If I were single, I do not think I would marry someone who would not share at lest some minimal amount about their past sexual history and marriage-related history. They might not share because of pain, shame, etc. But that doesn't mean you have to marry the person.

If you are the type to marry only a virgin or virtuous widow/er then you would kind of need the information to make the decision.
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by newwifenewlife »

MrMarried wrote: Wed Oct 13, 2021 5:58 pm I think the best approach is to ask about it early in the relationship-- not so early that it is just plain weird-- not a first date topic for most couples. But not so late that either are emotionally invested and really hoping for marriage. There may not be an ideal time.

I know a woman who marred a man without knowing the situation under which he married his first wife, who had passed away. He had a step-daughter from the previous marriage (grown), but he would not tell his second wife the circumstances under which he married his first wife.

If I were single, I do not think I would marry someone who would not share at lest some minimal amount about their past sexual history and marriage-related history. They might not share because of pain, shame, etc. But that doesn't mean you have to marry the person.

If you are the type to marry only a virgin or virtuous widow/er then you would kind of need the information to make the decision.
So what you're suggesting is, it's kind of important to communicate and ask questions, eh? Imagine that. :D
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by newwifenewlife »

rusty.mahler wrote: Fri Oct 08, 2021 9:15 pm
Sue (27) & Mark (29) have dated for 10 months. They have not had intercourse. They are Christians. Mark reveals he had sex 4 years ago with woman X, for 8 months. Sue becomes livid with anger. It damages her love that had been growing for Mark. Mark throws up his hands in bewilderment, and protests that woman X was in his past, before Sue came into his life, and now has no current meaning for him. Mark asks Sue to seek counseling with him. She is so angry, things break down. Sue had it in her mind that Mark had no prior sex partners before her.

Thom (43) has been married to Beverly (40) for 11 years. Their faiths are unimportant. One afternoon the couple shares with each other their relationships from their pasts. Thom states that Beverly was his first and only intimate partner. Beverly recounts 5 sexual partners from high school until 7 months before she met Thom. Nothing comes from this information at the time it is revealed to Thom, but some weeks later, Thom becomes irritable, sullen, withdrawn, and eventually erupts in verbally explosive anger towards Beverly, saying "I thought I knew you, apparently I didn't".

1) How might these couples mend their relationships?
2) how might a counselor advise them?
First of all, Sue has as much to blame, maybe more for not asking the questions she feels are important. She can become "livid" but she still carries blame for not stating what was important and asking early on about his status. If that's a value, she has, then she'd be betraying her values to continue...but she definitely needs to spend time reflecting.

For Thom & Bev, again blame can be on both but more on Thom for not asking the questions he felt important. It's spilt milk but why did he ask? What bothers him about it? And why does it bother him now?
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by SLS »

MrMarried wrote: Wed Oct 13, 2021 5:41 pm
SLS wrote: Sun Oct 10, 2021 2:48 pm For "not being a virgin" to be a true dealbreaker IMO there has to be some follow on consequence that would severely hinder a marriage (i.e., an STD, unrepentant behavior, etc.). In some parts of Christian culture there is an obsession about virginity rather than a call to purity. A person can sin sexually but then repent and make a commitment to sexual purity.
They can. But that doesn't mean some other individual is obligated to marry someone who does this. If a woman can only have interest in men who are over 6 feet or are muscular and if a woman can want to marry a redhead or a woman with long legs, and no one has a problem with it, why couldn't virginity be a criteria?
If a person's sole basis for deciding whether or not to marry someone is "6 feet and muscular" or "must have red hair" I would consider that person very shallow. Dealbreakers should not be based on mere preferences for looks.
the Old Testament implies that virginity is desirable. A woman married off as a virgin who wasn't could be executed for fornicating in her father's house. Priests could marry virgins of Israel or widows of other priests, but not a defiled woman.
First, nobody said virginity wasn't desirable. I agree with you that ideally a man and a woman should come into marriage as virgins. That is the better path for certain.

Second, levitical laws regarding priests have no bearing on us. Otherwise we couldn't shave or have anyone with a disability be a pastor. The same passage you are paraphrasing (Lev. 21) also states that the high priest could only marry a virgin and not a virtuous widow.

In Matthew 1 it is shown that Rahab, who was a literal prostitute before the Israelites arrived, is in the genealogy of our Lord. I for one am glad Salmon decided to look past her history.
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by MrMarried »

SLS wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 9:27 pm
MrMarried wrote: Wed Oct 13, 2021 5:41 pm
SLS wrote: Sun Oct 10, 2021 2:48 pm For "not being a virgin" to be a true dealbreaker IMO there has to be some follow on consequence that would severely hinder a marriage (i.e., an STD, unrepentant behavior, etc.). In some parts of Christian culture there is an obsession about virginity rather than a call to purity. A person can sin sexually but then repent and make a commitment to sexual purity.
They can. But that doesn't mean some other individual is obligated to marry someone who does this. If a woman can only have interest in men who are over 6 feet or are muscular and if a woman can want to marry a redhead or a woman with long legs, and no one has a problem with it, why couldn't virginity be a criteria?
If a person's sole basis for deciding whether or not to marry someone is "6 feet and muscular" or "must have red hair" I would consider that person very shallow. Dealbreakers should not be based on mere preferences for looks.
There may be certain looks you just aren't attracted too. If a woman were only attracted to tall muscular men, and just didn't feel attraction for other men, is that wrong?

Virginity is different because you can't tell if someone walking down the street is a virgin. And I don't know of anyone who would have virginity as the _only_ criteria. It was one of many for me. I'm sure there were many virgins I was not attracted to, and probably many that had personalities that would not have fit.
Second, levitical laws regarding priests have no bearing on us. Otherwise we couldn't shave or have anyone with a disability be a pastor. The same passage you are paraphrasing (Lev. 21) also states that the high priest could only marry a virgin and not a virtuous widow.
It is evidence that it is not immoral to only marry a virgin.
In Matthew 1 it is shown that Rahab, who was a literal prostitute before the Israelites arrived, is in the genealogy of our Lord. I for one am glad Salmon decided to look past her history.
That may be the case. I've also seen 'innkeeper' as an alternate translation for harlot in the footnotes.

But that and Hosea marrying a prostitute doesn't mean other men have to. Western society is full of $0 prostitutes, male and female.
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by SLS »

MrMarried wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 3:26 pmThere may be certain looks you just aren't attracted too. If a woman were only attracted to tall muscular men, and just didn't feel attraction for other men, is that wrong?
I agree that zero physical attraction should be a deal-breaker. Maybe I was an outlier but my "type" always morphed into the look of the woman I was attracted to at the time.

That is not what we are talking about though. A person can't change their body type. A commitment to sexual purity is a decision we can make and put into action. Virginity or lack thereof isn't some magical confirmation of that commitment.

In other words the deal-breaker should be based on the sincerity of a person's commitment to sexual purity. If, God-forbid, I am ever again in the position of deciding who to marry I would much prefer to be with a woman who had a past but is virtuous than a "virgin" who is unrepentantly engaged in sexual sin.

I do agree though that sin has consequences and some of those consequences (STDs, children if a person doesn't plan on raising kids, etc.) can themselves be deal-breakers.
Virginity is different because you can't tell if someone walking down the street is a virgin. And I don't know of anyone who would have virginity as the _only_ criteria. It was one of many for me.
In an earlier post you stated "it is reasonable for a potential partner not being a virgin to be a deal breaker". Calling not being a virgin a "deal-breaker" means that factor alone determines whether or not to proceed with the relationship.
It is evidence that it is not immoral to only marry a virgin.
I Corinthians 6:9-11 states,
Bible:
Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. and such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
Were all the Corinthians who were sexually immoral before coming to Christ barred from marriage? One of the things I Cor. 7 implies is that single Corinthian Christians were sinning sexually. Paul doesn't say, "Well, you sinned therefore you are barred from marriage because you lost your virginity."
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by SeekingChange »

SLS wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 4:30 pm
MrMarried wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 3:26 pmVirginity is different because you can't tell if someone walking down the street is a virgin. And I don't know of anyone who would have virginity as the _only_ criteria. It was one of many for me.
In an earlier post you stated "it is reasonable for a potential partner not being a virgin to be a deal breaker". Calling not being a virgin a "deal-breaker" means that factor alone determines whether or not to proceed with the relationship.
It is evidence that it is not immoral to only marry a virgin.
I Corinthians 6:9-11 states,
Bible:
Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. and such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
Were all the Corinthians who were sexually immoral before coming to Christ barred from marriage? One of the things I Cor. 7 implies is that single Corinthian Christians were sinning sexually. Paul doesn't say, "Well, you sinned therefore you are barred from marriage because you lost your virginity."
Am I missing something? It seems like Mr. Married is saying it's okay for individuals to have a personal preference, or even make it a deal-breaker in their own choice, to marry a virgin. I haven't seen him saying it bars someone from getting married, nor that everyone has to make it a preference or a deal-breaker. ?????
God can change what people do, behavioral patterns that have been in play for decades. He can change what we do to cope, to find comfort, to survive conflict, to count. Rahab had done a same old thing for years... and then she did something new.
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by SLS »

SeekingChange wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 4:48 pmAm I missing something? It seems like Mr. Married is saying it's okay for individuals to have a personal preference, or even make it a deal-breaker in their own choice, to marry a virgin. I haven't seen him saying it bars someone from getting married, nor that everyone has to make it a preference or a deal-breaker. ?????
My thought was that if not being a virgin was a dealbreaker for Christians then no Christians who were non-virgins could marry.

As someone who has read of and seen the disastrous results of the "purity culture" of the late 90s and 2000s I am very sensitive to arguments that imply non-virgins are unworthy of consideration for marriage. Young people, especially young women, were fed a lie that if they made a mistake sexually they were tainted for life.

Also when I hear the argument about virginity being supremely important the vast majority of the time it is made with respect to female virginity. A guy can mess up sexually just as much as a woman but the focus always seems to be on women*.

I also have encountered people whose preference for virginity was based on pride and ego. They want a "virgin bride" cause that makes them look good and feel better about themselves**.

*Based on his posts I do appreciate that Mr. Married consistently applied his standard to both men and women.
**I don't believe MM is one of those people.

Mr. Married and I will just have to agree to disagree on whether virginity should be a dealbreaker or not.
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Re: How does Person A 'deal' with Person B's prior sexual partners?

Post by MrMarried »

SLS wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 4:30 pm That is not what we are talking about though. A person can't change their body type. A commitment to sexual purity is a decision we can make and put into action. Virginity or lack thereof isn't some magical confirmation of that commitment.
But who are you to set that as a standard for someone else?
In other words the deal-breaker should be based on the sincerity of a person's commitment to sexual purity. If, God-forbid, I am ever again in the position of deciding who to marry I would much prefer to be with a woman who had a past but is virtuous than a "virgin" who is unrepentantly engaged in sexual sin.
I would not have wanted to have married a woman with a hymen who had gone around doing anal oral sex either.
I do agree though that sin has consequences and some of those consequences (STDs, children if a person doesn't plan on raising kids, etc.) can themselves be deal-breakers.
In a society where virginity is highly prized, one of those consequences would be difficulty finding a marriage partner, potentially. Sociologically, that may be better for a society, where it is difficult for those who fornicate before marriage to marry, or at least to marry anyone other than their partner in fornication. It probably reduced sexual immorality in past generations...back before 'the pill'. Divorce rates skyrocketed after the sexual revolution. Part of that may have been the rise of feminism, women in the workplace getting their own incomes, a decrease in adherence to the Bible as a foundation for society, and a number of other factors. But marriage partners not being virgins likely contributed to it.

]quote]In an earlier post you stated "it is reasonable for a potential partner not being a virgin to be a deal breaker". Calling not being a virgin a "deal-breaker" means that factor alone determines whether or not to proceed with the relationship.
[/quote]

It was for me, though I might have made an exception, theoretically, for a virtuous widow. And I probably would have considered that if I'd not found anyone later into my thirties.

One of my concerns was reading in the Old Testament was that two would become one flesh. A man who'd taken a virgin's virginity was obligated to marry her in the Old Testament if her father were willing to give her in marriage. I wanted to be 'one flesh' with someone who had not become one flesh with someone prior. I passed up on a couple of dating opportunities over this (and in one case, partly to avoid temptation) as a young man.

Statistically, also, woman who have had sex with only their husbands had significantly lower divorce rates (1990's research.) There is no concern about past sexual partners. Committing adultery would likely be a much bigger deal to someone who had not slept around prior.
It is evidence that it is not immoral to only marry a virgin.
I Corinthians 6:9-11 states,
Bible:
Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. and such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
Were all the Corinthians who were sexually immoral before coming to Christ barred from marriage? One of the things I Cor. 7 implies is that single Corinthian Christians were sinning sexually. Paul doesn't say, "Well, you sinned therefore you are barred from marriage because you lost your virginity."
That is not what I am arguing. I am saying I did not have to marry a non-virgin. Nor do others. If the woman in the OP wants to marry a virgin, it is not immoral for her to marry one.

I Corinthians 7, also says if a __virgin__ marry, she has not sinned. I'm not saying it is a sin for non-virgins to marry, but even the Corinthians living in a pagan, sexually perverted city had virgin females among them. And it may have been normative to want to marry a virgin in their culture and also among Christians.
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