So you have a shitty past, something you are not so proud off. You have made the mistakes, learnt from them and moved on. The person you were then is not the same as the person you are now. In-fact, you have done so well for yourself, that no one can even link you to whatever it is, you had done in the past.
You meet a great guy/girl and things are getting quite serious. It looks like you both will be walking down the aisle in a matter of time with the way things are going. He/she ticks all your boxes, your visions. goals and plans for life compliment each other.
Your values about life are similar and above all, it seems like you can’t breathe whenever you are apart from them.
Should you or should you not tell?
It’s been so long. It is also confirmed, you are not the same person you were then. So what is the point of ruining a good thing with old stories? But then again, you are not at peace with the situation.
There was this true life story on Humans of New York. The couple have been married for about 40 years, they had built up a nice family and were cool with each other, but one day, the police suddenly shows up at the door.
Truth finally comes out, A 40 year plus best kept secret. The man was not who he claimed to be all those years, he had taken on a totally different identity, dissociating himself from his past life.
At some point, the wife was interviewed, she said and I quote, “…he loved me-but something was missing. He never liked to be in photographs. And he always thought people were watching him…there wasn’t much affection…, etc.
40 years is a long time to keep a secret that big. If it is something as big as the above, I think you owe the truth to that person you love. You should tell them. It is not easy living a life with a secret.
In the above story, the wife forgave him, and went all out to secure a pardon for him. The man on the other hand does not have to hide anymore, and they have no more secrets.
Its my opinion that you tell, so the person makes an informed choice when they choose you, and when they do choose you, they are choosing for you, all of you.
Benefits of opening up
PEACE. Peace is very important, I cannot overemphasize the benefit of having peace. It is peace that saves you from sleepless nights.
Especially when whatever it is you have done in the past, may have future consequences.
You may think that keeping secrets may hurt the one who the secret is being kept from, but you who bears the secret will not be able to have a deeper level of intimacy with your partner.
Why you may be scared of opening up?
You may be scared of telling the person you love about crazy things you have done in the past, because of the fear that they might not accept you. No one wants to loss someone they love.
It is scary to be vulnerable with someone knowing that it may change the way things are between you two.
You may be also scared that if they do accept you, they may never look at you the same way.
If someone truly loves you, whatever you have to say about your past won’t change the way the feel about you. It better equips them for the future and for whatever may arise as a result of the consequences.
And If because of your past, they call it quits, then it wasn’t meant to be.
The truth will set you free indeed, but when and how you tell the truth is very important.
When should you tell…
As soon as you see things have become serious. The earlier the better.
How should you tell?
- Start up by explaining to them why you think it is important that they know this new information about you.
- You do not have to go into every single detail, just basic important information.
- Expect that they may get upset, so give room for your partner to come to terms with this new information.
- Going forward, you both should communicate freely and openly on how your past may affect your relationship.
It is important to know that you are not the same person you were before so don’t let anyone make you feel less than.
You are valuable irrespective of your previous experiences.
It is also very important to be kind to yourself and forgive yourself for any of your past actions that you are ashamed off. The past is the past, you can’t change it, you can only make better choices for now.
I totally agree especially when you said ‘so the person makes an informed choice when they choose you, and when they do choose you, they are choosing for you, all of you.’ While another person’s perception and expectation should not define us, it’s satisfying to be accepted just the way you are- flaws, mistakes and your good side. Lovely post.
Exactly. Thank you so much