1. Your partner’s sexual prowess partly stems from experiences they’ve had with other people. Because unless you’re both extremely pure, or you’re dating your high school sweetheart, you’ve both had sex with several other people.
2. That means your naked bodies have rubbed against others’, your mouths have engulfed others’ private parts, and you’ve whispered intimate sweet nothings into other people’s ears.
3. Some of your previous sexual experiences were “firsts” that can never be relived.
4. Others were incredibly memorable and/or formative for other reasons, like the time you gave your first blowjob in the backseat of a taxi, or the time your ex made you orgasm multiple times while you hallucinated on mushrooms.
5. Worse than all the sexy stuff, maybe, you once fell for other people. Chances are, you’ve both had butterfly-in-the-stomach moments with former boyfriends or girlfriends and crushes that never materialized.
6. You’ve both experimented and gone a little wild with another special partner in crime.
7. Over the years, your partner has pined for people who rejected them outright. There’s no way around it: You’re dating someone else’s leftovers.
8. From the time your partner was a teen, whether successful or not, they’ve been wooing extensively. They’ve spent time strategizing about how to ask someone else out and/or agonized over how to reply to flirtatious text messages you didn’t send them.
9. They’ve likely said “I love you” to someone outside their family and friend circle who wasn’t you.
10. Not to mention, envisioned building a life with that person, maybe even dreamed about what they’d name their kids together.
11. Even if you legitimately hate your exes, you both harbor precious romantic memories starring those loathsome people that your minds won’t erase.
12. There’s even some physical evidence of those past passions buried deep within your online presence, or in a shoebox of keepsakes tucked beneath your bed.
14. As awesome as things are, you’re each probably nurturing a few harmless crushes—on your personal trainer, a colleague, or a good friend of the opposite sex. You flirt with these people behind each other’s backs—because it’s fun, but mostly because you’re human.
16. In that vein, not every compliment you give each other is authentic. Sometimes, you tell your partner what they want or need to hear. So you might not look awesome in that hot pink halter top after all, but if your partner had been honest, you would’ve been late that night.
17. There will be times when you consider a life without your beloved—because you get into a terrible fight, or because you can’t help considering the morbid possibility that you’ll outlive them.
18. No matter how great your sex life is, not every orgasm will be mind-blowing.
19. Occasionally, you’re both bound to sleep with each other out of a sense of obligation more than anything else. You’ll go through the motions, faking enthusiasm while thinking about your to-do list.
20. There’s no guarantee that any two people, including you and your partner, will always love each other.
21. No matter how strong your current relationship is, it will not always be easy. You will both fuck up. And the closer you get—the more in love you fall—the better positioned you are to hurt each other.