My Boyfriend Can’t Handle That I’ve Slept With More People Than Him

My boyfriend and I recently told each other how many people we’d slept with before we got together. I thought it would be kind of funny and forgettable, but when he found out that I’ve had more partners than him, it really started to affect our relationship.

  1. He thinks I’ve had better. Sex never used to be a problem for us. In fact, it used to be one of the major selling points. But now that he knows I’ve slept with more people than him, he’s paranoid that I’ve had better, as if the quantity of partners correlates to the quality of them. I can tell you here and now that that’s absurd. For all I know, he’s slept with women who are better than all the guys I’ve slept with combined.
  2. Men expect women to have fewer sexual partners and that needs to change. Why is it that guys who are sexually liberated are thought to be sexy and enticing and girls who are sexually liberated are called sluts? To be honest, I’m pretty sick of it and I can’t help but lose respect for any guy who makes it a big deal that his girlfriend has more sexual experience than him.
  3. I feel like his approach to sex indicates bigger issues. If he thinks it’s the wrong way around for a woman to have had more sex than her boyfriend, what does that say about his views on women? He’s a self-proclaimed feminist, but given the way he treats this particular issue, it’s clear that his values go only as far as his ego will let them and that seems like a bit of a red flag.
  4. During our worst arguments he brings it up. He pretends it doesn’t bother him, but sometimes when we’re fighting about something totally unrelated, he’ll bring it up like an accusation, as if it’s something I’ve been holding over him. For the record, I couldn’t care less what anyone’s sexual history is. It’s in the past. I don’t care. As long as we love each other and have great sex, why should it matter?
  5. Our sex life is fantastic, but he’s always trying to compensate for his perceived inadequacy. One of the things that brought us together was our sexual chemistry, but the minute we told each other how many partners we’d had, something changed. Now he’s so paranoid about who he’s “competing” with that sex just isn’t as fun as it used to be.
  6. I’m worried he’ll want to even the score at some point. This whole thing seems to matter to him quite a bit more than I would’ve imagined or thought reasonable. He seems to think it’s a threat to our relationship and I’m a little concerned he might think he needs to get some more experience so we’ll be even. I’m all for equality, but I think we can agree that it would be pretty damaging for our relationship in this case.
  7. It makes him insecure. My boyfriend has nothing to be insecure about. He’s gorgeous and I’m totally obsessed with him, but the fact that he’s slept with fewer people than me is making him insecure about our relationship. He thinks he can’t possibly satisfy me or do anything I haven’t had before. No matter how much I reassure him, he still seems uncertain.
  8. It makes me self-conscious. Whenever we talk about sex, I get really uncomfortable because I know he’s thinking about our different levels of sexual experience and wondering if it’s creating any issues. It’s always the elephant in the room and I feel like I’m supposed to apologize for something I’m not guilty of.
  9. He’s jealous. Obviously it’s hard for anyone to not be somewhat jealous of their partner’s exes, but my boyfriend likes to bring up my exes almost as a form of self-punishment. I’m just as jealous of his exes as he is of mine, but I don’t intentionally think about them to make myself feel bad, and I definitely don’t sit around and wonder what they were good at that I’m not.
  10. The fact that he cares makes me think less of him. Why on earth should it matter how many people I’ve slept with in relation to him? It’s not like it’s a huge difference anyway. It’s just his insecurities getting the better of him, but it’s becoming a real turn off. Any guy who’s that insecure about his girlfriend’s previous relationships has a lot of work to do before he can be a good partner.
Rose Nolan is a writer and editor from Austin, TX who focuses on all things female and fabulous. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Theater from the University of Surrey and a Master's Degree in Law from the University of Law. She’s been writing professional since 2015 and, in addition to her work for Bolde, she’s also written for Ranker and Mashed. She's published articles on topics ranging from travel, higher education, women's lifestyle, law, food, celebrities, and more.