This topic contains 9 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by Love 8 months ago.
June 19, 2017 at 5:49 pm #635460
I have a question here that I’m debating with internally and need some guidance. How much is too much to tell your partner? I have two things that have always made me feel insecure and inferior:
1. My parents have no money: as a single mother for pretty much my whole life my mum has a council house and no money to speak of
2. I didn’t go to university at the usual age. I got into several great institutions but my mum was ill so I stayed home until my early twenties and didn’t do my degree until my late twenties part time whilst working.
The conundrum comes as I speak VERY well, my mum’s tiny little (council) cottage is sandwiched in one of the most expensive areas in my country. I also have a good job, unlike my parents I’ve worked every adult day of my life determined to give myself more security than my parents gave me. I’m self sufficient and have enough money to pay my own rent and bills with enough left over to see friend and have hobbies…. but my history is in COMPLETE contrast to the way I come across (middle class) and though I’ve never lied I feel like a fraud. People make assumptions that because of the way I speak and look that I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth but this literally couldn’t be further fro thetrurh.
I have been with my boyfriend for nearly a year, we are talking about marriage and settling down and whilst I’ve never lied I haven’t told him about my parents situation and I’ve always been hazy about university: telling him I do have a degree but not when I achieved it. He never pushes it probable sensing my embarrassment. Both my mum and sister tell me not to say anything as it’s none of his business but for me it makes me feel like I’m duping him in some way: I don’t want to do that. I love him. But at the same time I know my hesitation comes as I’m worried I’ll lose him if I tell the truth. Not because there is anything wrong with my past, only that it makes me look really really insecure. Also whilst it’s not important to me, as I’m very self sufficient, he has a lot of mo e.g and the last thing I want is for him to think I’m with him for his money. I’m really not, even if he had no money he is still the kindest and most sincere loving person I know. But he may not think that.
Help! Would you tell?
PixJune 19, 2017 at 6:02 pm #635466
When we do not talk openly about ourselves we create distance…that is not good.
Your problem is confidence and lack of pride. You should be so very very proud of yourself for all your achievements and who in the hell cares when you got your degree….you showed the determination to get it…
My aunt married a wealthy man…she came from the poor working class, did not get a degree, I do not even know if she finished high school…and her husband loved her dearly. He did not give two hoots about her past…just her present. They had a great marriage and I think he was proud of her for her ability to present herself well even though she did not have the background for it.
Be confident that he will take it well. Be confident that you should be very very proud, and he will be too.June 19, 2017 at 6:09 pm #635467
Hey, I really don’t think you have any reason to be embarrassed about these things, and I am willing to bet 100% that your boyfriend, any man who cares about you, any FRIEND who cares about you won’t bat an eyelid at this stuff!
I’m so sorry you feel a sense of shame about this. I honestly think shame is something that we build when we DONT let people in. I have had partners tell me things that they were so scared about revealing, and then when they did it was honestly not a big deal at all! I have also been in the same posiition, afraid to reveal something ( in my case, just for example, an abortion I had, or the fact that I had an eating disorder for many years). When I was open about it, nobody has ever rejected me or made me feel not accepted. Its’ almost always all in our own head.
Take a chance. Reveal. You will feel much bettter for it, I promise!!June 19, 2017 at 6:19 pm #635473
I really dont understand both of your issues. I can understand that they affect you somehow, but you should be proud of both. Your mom raised you and your sis with the little income she had and you managed to get yourself an education and were determined to finish it. Nothing you are now got handed to you. I dont know who your bf is, i assume not royalty, but even royalty have married people from working class background. maybe there is something thaf you do (in your work or with friends) that you feel like youre faking it. Or you feel that your bf is from a higher class. But trust me, the people that are born in richer families have a lot of understanding of how most people grow up. I was friends with guys like that and it was always a big laugh about how different we grew up. So youre not faking it. You are because of how you were raised and educated yourself.
My mum was an alcoholic. That was our family secret. But once i told that to someone for the first time, it was such a relieve from my chest. Just try it out.June 19, 2017 at 6:21 pm #635475
You’re trying to find reasons to be unhappy…June 19, 2017 at 6:26 pm #635480
Thank you all: I had tears in my eyes reading this. I’m more than a little scared but I do want to be honest. I’m in my early thirties and this shame has haunted me my whole life. He’s the first partner I’ve really wanted to open up to, but I’m scared. He really is a good man and I love him dearly and don’t want to come off as insecure/ hard work / too emotional if I’m honest with him.
Newbie, my mum had her demons and was an alcoholic too so i feel where you are coming from.
Thank you all: you’ve made me feel braver.June 19, 2017 at 6:31 pm #635485
Oh! I honestly believe he is going to give you the world’s biggest hug when you tell him… it will bring you closer. 🙂June 19, 2017 at 6:41 pm #635489
If youre very nervous, try a good friend first. You may have build up a lot of anxiety over thisJune 19, 2017 at 6:44 pm #635491
Honestly nobody sees this as a big deal but you. Tell him and don’t be dramatic about it, because I promise you he will not see it as dramatic. You have created this big fantasy in your head about what all of this means. You know what middle and upper class people worry about? That others will think they are lazy and entitled and do not know what hardship is. The truth is we all have our struggles, and it is normal to tell our fiance about them. Your situation is not nearly as horrifying nor as unique and special as you seem to assume. It will be fine.June 19, 2017 at 7:03 pm #635504
Oh man, reading this I just wanted to give you a hug. Because I can understand how shame works and makes you want to hide.
The thing is, reading what you’re shameful of, I’ve had the exact opposite reaction as you probably are assuming people would have. You’re looking at these things as a potential stain, but I think those things are awesome! You grew up in a single parent family. That’s tough. Your mum is tough, you come from tough stock and you’ve endured that. And you went to school in your late twenties? That is so f*cking awesome! You went and did something you wanted to do of your own volition, despite having some barriers. Also at an age where some young adults still feel pressure to follow the crowd. It takes initiative to do that. If anything, I think these things make you more desirable..if I was a man, I’d see these as pluses! Of all the best people that I know, all of them have come through some sort of hardship. I find these tend to be the most empathetic people!
In terms of what and when to share, I think it comes to trust. You share a little bit, and if someone demonstrates gradually, over time, that they can be trusted, then it’s at your discretion to share a little bit more. You don’t have to share any of this if you don’t want, it’s not a confession, you’re not on trial. I know you feel like an imposter, but you aren’t. These experiences have help shaped who you are, but they don’t even begin to encompass your whole truth and complexity as a person. Share when you feel he’s gained your trust, and when he has earned it. Don’t treat it as confession that you have absolve yourself of. You’ve done nothing wrong, so don’t treat it like these are wrong things about you. If anything, I would have a sense of pride about these things. Trully awesome 🙂