Alright, this question's kind of a doozy, so I'm going to be a little vague on the intimate details (so as not to upset anyone else, yanno?)
Essentially, thanks to bad experiences I've had with dealing with people online a few years ago (along with discomfort and fear being present already) a few common fetishes in the fur fandom have developed into a psychological trigger for me- I get incredibly nauseous and have a panic attack if I run across it or someone talks about it (unless they're making jokes) or tries to push it on me. (I'm not going to name which ones, again, so I don't offend people who do like them, as that's not my intention)
That said, the guy I've been dating the past few months knows about this. I told him from the start how much of an impact they had on me and he said, essentially, 'I don't really like them anyway so its not a big deal at all, so staying away won't be an issue'. Well. Last night he confessed to me some friends had been trying to push him into roleplaying one of them (he does character roleplay in a non-sexual manner- rather than the stuff most furries do) and he went along with it a few times for s**ts and giggles and now he says he likes it but didn't want to say anything to me because he knew how much it affected me—so he did it behind my back and just hoped he'd never have to tell.
I love the hell out of him, but telling me 'I didnt think there would be consequences' when I out and out explained how even talking or thinking about it affected me so negatively is kind of a terrible excuse, you know? He felt really horrible and was panicking that he'd ruined our relationship and promised it'd never be a thing again- and I believe him when he says it- but I'm having issues dis-associating him with the things that trigger me. I don't even want to THINK about breaking the relationship off—he means way too much to me and I really do love him—but, for my first question, do you have any advice with not associating him with the thing that makes me have panic attacks?
The second question is that my best friend, a very good friend of his as well (who I used to date, months ago, but we agreed that we were looking for different things in a relationship and it wasn't going anywhere as long as we stayed together—we used our bond to form a strong friendship that I'm thankful for on a constant basis) is upset with me and saying I'm 'stifling his interests' and 'being insensitive to the fact he likes something' when...I can't really help the fact I get triggered by this. If it was just a simple dislike, then sure, I'd understand, but my boyfriend should've considered 'hm, this thing really upsets the guy I love to the point it causes physical symptoms, maybe I shouldn't get involved' and I'd like to think that its justified that I be upset, under the circumstances. Your take on how I should handle this?
I know if the roles were reversed I would've stayed far, far away from it as a whole, or at the very least brought it up going 'I'm curious about this, would it upset you if I looked into this?' and sparked a discussion about it where he could say 'no, I don't like you looking into this because of how it affects me and it'd most likely cause problems later on, so please don't' if he felt that way.
Any advice you can give would help a ton!
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Sexual compatibility is an essential feature of any healthy romantic relationship. The two of you need to sit down and come to an agreement of what is and isn’t okay. Just because you wouldn’t do what your partner did and would have “stayed far, far away” is not really fair because you are not him.
Sex is important. If either one of you is not sexually satisfied for some reason, then there is a problem. You might need to explore an open relationship of some kind. On the other hand, perhaps the guy you are dating just wanted to find out what that little fetish was about and now has it “out of his system” and doesn’t feel the need to do it anymore. That is something you need to find out and clear up while the two of you are just in the dating phase of the relationship. He said he understands the problem you have with fetishes, and he needs to decide whether or not he is willing to respect that demand on your part or not.
Go talk to him. And good luck!
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