Dear Straight Up!
I am from Europe and I visited Tamil Nadu twice now as my fiancé is from there. We met each other via social networks and a Christian organization, as I support a Christian organization in his town.
I met his parents and they are very conservative Christians with strong beliefs (at least from what they portrayed to me). However, his parents have no issue with me and accept me.
During my first visit there, we traveled and stayed overnight in hotels and in that time we had sex. Because we weren’t married and he comes from a conservative family, I asked him why his mother allowed him to travel and stay with me when she clearly doesn’t agree with sex before marriage. His answer was that because they have known me for a long time and know that we are going to be married, they have no problem with it.
The truth is I don't know much about Tamil traditions, culture, the caste system and so forth. I only came to know about how conservative India is when I met him. As a European, I am very confused because I had relationships before but they didn’t work out. However, he says Tamil guys aren’t so sexually active before marriage. To be honest, I don’t believe this. He claims that he was a virgin before he met me, but whenever I try to start a discussion on this topic of him having sex or relationships prior to us he gets angry.
What do you say to this ? Is he being truthful and honest, as of course we talked about what we were before we met. He says he was a "virgin", which to be honest I now doubt!
Now we have some difficulties as I don't want to think that he is hiding things from me. I believe that all things can and should be discussed openly, especially with someone who will be my life partner.
I would love to hear your input on this.
South Asians can be pretty conservative, and I would guess all the more so if he is from a smaller village or town. This is not to say that everyone is, but a good number for sure. Topics like sex and dating are still very much a taboo, regardless of how many people may be sexually active with both males and females. Being in a relationship is not openly advertised, especially if you are sexually active because of the stigma associated with it.
Having said that, I don’t know your fiancé so I can’t really say if he’s lying. He might very well be telling the truth. Maybe he’s part of a group that abides by the social norms and held off from having sex until he met the person he was going to marry. There are people like that so it’s not a far-fetched thought.
Whatever his past may be, my question to you is why the need to bring it up? If he is committed to you, then let the past stay in the past regardless of whether you know what it is or not. Should you choose to go forth and marry him, you need to understand the cultural difference that keeps him from being open or even accept that maybe he is telling the truth.
If you are with him expecting that he will change and become more "liberal and open-minded" then you will be in for a bitter disappointment. If you cannot take him at his word about his virginity prior to you two being together, then you really need to consider if you want to have a marriage where you constantly second guess his honesty.
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