There’s a significant difference between communication and baiting your partner.
I recently read an article that listed almost 100 fun questions to ask your boyfriend.
As I read through them, all I could think was, “Yeah, if you are looking to pick a fight or end the relationship, or be lied to.”
Quite frankly, I was horrified by about 75% of the questions.
Luckily, I had both my husband and a guy friend of mine in the same room with me as I read this article (they were embroiled in video game play—go figure!) and I asked their opinion on a few of the questions (while they were on break from slaughtering entire towns full of spiders and Orcs), just to make sure I was on the same page with the male brain.
Upon sharing these questions with them, they both agreed that if any chick asked them any of these questions, especially early in a relationship, that they’d want to run screaming for the hills.
Quote, “Too many fish in the sea to answer that shit.” Ha!
Here are a few of them and they are definitely questions to avoid in a relationship (early on):
- How pretty to you think (insert friend or celebrity name here) is?
- What are the personality traits you hate in me most?
- What do you think about marriage?
- How often to you lie?
- Is your first love a special memory to you? How special and why?
- Have you ever said, “I love you” to a girl and not meant it?
- Do your friends like me? What do they think of me?
- Have you ever wanted to have sex with your one of your best friend’s girlfriends?
And the list of horrors went on and on. Questions about having kids, living together, your religious beliefs, etc…
Now, you guys know I’m a huge believer in communication.
I think one of the things that often ruins a relationship is a lack of honest communication.
You have to be able to say what you think and feel (in a kind and thoughtful way) in order to really have the kind of relationship that will survive the long haul.
And once you are thinking about marriage or something long-term, you may have to gently discuss some of those big questions.
But let’s save those types of topics for when they become pertinent to your future, not just on a whim because you are bored or tipsy or nosier than is good for you.
Curiosity killed the cat for a reason, and the kinds of questions above could easily ruin an otherwise happy relationship or at a minimum just start a terrifically unnecessary fight.
I remember once, when more than slightly drunk, and hanging out by the pool on a steamy summer night, stupidly asking a guy I’d been dating for a few months how many women he’d slept with.
He was smoking hot and had lived quite a colorful life, so I figured it was more than a handful. I was curious, dammit! I can’t begin to imagine why I’d even want to know, but I asked anyway.
Was I prepared for his answer?
I was not prepared.
Here it is:
“Jodi, I’ve been up in a lot of pussy.”
And of course he had a sly grin on his face and a twinkle in his eye while delivering that line.
Oh. My. God.
But here’s the thing…I couldn’t be mad at him, because my dumb ass had asked him the question (though his choice of words could have been a bit more thoughtful and tactful, for Pete’s sake).
When I look back on that conversation, I want to kick myself because did me knowing that he’s banged half the country make us closer? No.
Did it put pictures in my head that I can’t get out of my head?
Did it make me kind of wanna kick him in the junk?
Did I then act like a child and tell him about each guy I’ve slept with?
Yes. (Though my list is significantly shorter, thank God.)
So, here’s my point:
Don’t ask what you don’t want to know.
Don’t ask pointless questions that are only going to cause pain and heartache or start a big ole fight.
With hindsight being 20/20, I should have just pulled the tongue out of my mouth before asking such a stupid, unnecessary question.
What I learned is that it’s okay if certain things remain unknown in a relationship.
Just because you are with someone doesn’t mean you have to tell them, in detail, every thought and experience you’ve ever had.
Ever heard the expression, “Discretion is the better part of valor”?
Rarely have smarter word been spoken.
While it’s important to share your life with someone and telling stories can be a tremendously fun adventure where you get to know each other on a deeper level, it’s also important to remember that you can’t un-know something.
Leaving a little mystery in a relationship is healthy.
Just like using the bathroom with the door closed is CRITICAL to a healthy relationship—you don’t want to see or know what she’s doing in there…do you?—so is keeping some things close to the vest.
Use common sense when it comes to Q&A time, especially while drinking late on a Saturday night, and it seems like no one else on Earth even exists, so spilling secrets seems like a natural thing to do.
As they say, “Loose lips sink ships.”
So let’s all keep our mouths (occasionally) shut and our boats afloat by thinking about the long-term effects of sharing too much, too soon, to someone who may not need to know about the time you had a three-way with those sexy blonde twins.
The moral of the story:
“Why must you speak your thoughts? Silence, if fair words stick in your throat, would serve all our ends better.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien
Translation: If ya ain’t got nothin’ good to say, keep your trap shut.
If you’re not sure about which questions to avoid in a relationship or if one is appropriate at the moment, just let it go for now.
As always, I wish you much love, joy and tons of happy humping!
Jodi Ambrose is our sex expert here at The Acquiring Man, author of Sex: How to Get More of It (for the guys) and Intimacy: How to Get More of It (for the ladies). She’s also contributed to Playboy radio on the topics of sex, love and relationships. Check out her blog and be sure to follow her on Twitter @JodiAmbrose.