“How many women have you slept with?”
It’s probably a question that makes you cringe—and one many guys have a hard time answering, according to a recent (unscientific) survey of 1,000 Europeans and Americans from DrEd.com, a health and sexual wellness site based in the U.K.
While a majority of guys said they had no trouble being honest, 22 percent of American men with an average of 16 partners reported that they would lie and undersell the amount of women they’ve slept with if they were forced to reveal their sex number.
But more than 30 percent of both men and women stated they don’t share their sexual history with their partners because they don’t think it matters. So, how do you approach this awkward conversation? Should you change the subject? Lie? Pretend you didn’t hear her and carry on with dinner?
First of all, it depends on when she asks, explains psychotherapist Dr Leslie Bell. If you’re only on your third date, it’s reasonable to dodge the question and let her know you’d like to get to know each other a little better before you dive into your sexual past.
Plus, sharing that information isn’t all that relevant to the current relationship you’re in, sex researcher Kristen Mark, Ph.D. explained to us in the past. As long as you’re using protection and get tested for STIs, your sexual history shouldn’t really play a huge role in how she perceives her connection to you. Bottom line: It’s completely up to you if you want to share that information or not.
As for lying? Both Mark and Bell insist that honesty is the best policy. You don’t want an old fib to surface later in your relationship, which could destroy any trust you’ve built.
Nervous you've slept with too many women or maybe you're not as sexually experienced as you should be? Check out our guide on what should you have done in bed by now.
This article originally appeared on Men's Health