Dear Dr. J.
My partner recently shared with me that they identify as bi-sexual, and that they have been in same-sex relationships in the past. They shared this as a part of a conversation we were having regarding fantasies and previous experiences we have had and enjoyed. This is shocking to me, and now I have so many questions for my partner, but I don’t want to seem weirded out by this new information. How do I explore the conversation further, while remaining non-judgmental?
Signed, Ignorance was bliss
I think it is safe to say, that when our partner(s) share new sexual information with us, that most of us will probably have questions. The good news is that you have created a safe environment for your partner to feel comfortable sharing this type of information with you. Sharing information of a sensitive nature can be a challenge for some. The fact that your partner trusted you enough to share this is a sign in the right direction. How you respond can set the tone on how information is discussed in the future, and how your partner feels about what was already shared.
First let’s process your feelings about the details shared and the pending conversation you want to have. Is this new information concerning to you, if so, why? Think about the specific information you want to garner from talking, and the type of follow-up discussions you hope to have in the future. You can even start with communicating to your partner that you have questions, but that you don’t want to sound insensitive or judgmental and that this is very new for you. Your partner has put themselves in a potentially vulnerable place. Allow yourself to be vulnerable as well, be honest with yourself and your partner.
Now that you know what you want to ask, think why you want to know. Are the questions you have more informative or simply curious in nature? Meaning, do you want to know if you partner is attracted to the same sex, if they were experimenting, or was the behavior they participated in for the benefit of someone else? There are many questions that you may have, but you want to approach this in a healthy way. If you are inquiring to understand your partner and their desires more that is great. If you are asking to be “nosey”, perhaps reevaluate your purpose and questions.
You know what you want to ask, and you know why you want to ask it. The only thing left to do is to ask; openly, honestly, and lovingly. You want your conversation to be just that, a conversation, not an inquisition.
Your partner shared this with you for a reason. You want to respect the reason, and details. If the discussion gets awkward, stop for a moment and acknowledge those feelings on both sides. The key is to continue to foster a safe space for open dialogue on this topic as well as others that may arise.
Peace, love and orgasms,
Do you have a sexual health related question you want answered? You know what to do. #goaheadandaskme. Send your questions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org, or use the contact me form at https://drjsperkins.com/.
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The information contained in this column is for educational and informational purposes only. The information contained in this column is not intended as, and shall not be understood or construed as, medical or health advice. While the professional does address sexual health issues, the information provided in this column is not a substitute for medical or health advice from a professional who is aware of the facts and circumstances of your individual situation. The views and opinions expressed in Dear Dr. J. are of the author, and not necessarily those of Elite News.
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