After a painful breakup, thinking and talking about your ex will only keep you in pain. Additionally, you have to go through the 5 stages of grief before you can move on and date again. If you’re not capable of being in the moment, enjoying new experiences without comparing everything to your ex, then you need to stay single to heal. You’re energy is pushing everyone away anyway.
You should never talk about your past relationships on a first, second, or even third date. I can’t stress this enough! All he or she needs to know is who you are now. Do not define yourself by your past partners. Hopefully, what you learned from previous relationships has prepared you for an even better outcome in this one. But that doesn’t mean you have to share the details.
Any negative thing you bring up will cause him or her to think you’ll repeat it again with them. It won’t help your cause to badmouth an ex. That’s giving away your power. It makes you sound bitter and suggests you have lousy taste in lovers. Your date will wonder what you’re doing with him, and what you’ll be saying about him to the next guy.
Any past lover that you bring up, for whatever reason, waves a red flag in his eyes. He’ll think you’re not over the guy yet. There is probably some truth in that. If any other man or woman is on your mind enough that you need to talk about him or her, you’re not ready to date. Go home and heal.
If you constantly talk about past lovers, then that red flag is saying you’re codependent. It says everything you do is about the person you’re with; you don’t experience things as an individual. Of course, you can tell good stories, just leave out the other person. Most men have very fragile egos. He’s the one you’re out with; he wants to be the center of your attention.
If your date asks about your past, keep your answers brief and positive. If he pushes to know anything deeper than that, politely tell him it’s none of his business. The past is the past, and you want to look forward. Equally, his past is none of your business. You’re better off not knowing. Until you are in a committed relationship where trust has been established, you should not reveal or ask about any deeply personal issues.
Read more about how to create a healthy, long-lasting relationship in my book Giving Up Junk-Food Relationships: Recipes for Healthy Choices