I have met the greatest guy! We have so much in common, we laugh a lot together and I think he’s the one (finally). My concern is that I’m not sure when or how much of my past life I should share with him. I’m afraid it might scare him off, even though it’s all in the past. Do I need to be completely honest right up front or should I just keep my past to myself?

Signed –

Is Honesty Really the Best Policy?




Dear Honesty –

First, I’m so excited for you. That’s awesome!

Second, I’ve never seen a relationship that could withstand secrets better than honesty. Keep in mind that every bit of good, bad and ugly you’ve forged through are parts of the person you are today. I’m guessing, no, I’m positive the same can be said of your new beau. His past likely isn’t perfect either.

My suggestion would be to plan a quiet dinner at your home some evening and just talk. You can be open to whatever the conversation turns to or start with a couple of specific issues of concern. Some of the best conversations between me and my partner have happened this way, or when we go on long drives.

Be gentle, though. Don’t just blurt something out. Here’s an example. If you are a recovering drug user or alcoholic, you might start with, “In my younger, rebellious days, I did some things I’m not proud of. While I’ve definitely moved far past those things, I’d like to share them with you. Would that be okay?” More than likely, that will lead to an open, honest conversation that will shed light on both your lives. If you guys are meant to be, it will serve to strengthen the bond you have started. If not, wouldn’t you rather know up front?

Cheers to honest next steps –



Ms. Shrefler’s opinions do not reflect the opinions of this publication, or any organizations or agencies referenced within her comments.

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