Age gap worries
Can anyone help with my problem? My partner of 18 months and I have been through a really rough patch recently, as we have had to spend some time long distance due to work. We are just starting to come out of this difficult time, but I have a concern hanging over my head. My partner is 22 (male) and I am 30 (female).
After a particularly bad patch of arguing between us, my partner confessed he had become confused that he had started to have sexual thoughts about other women - noone either of us knew, but people we might pass in the street etc. He told me (after probing - curiosity got the better of me :() that he has short lived sexual thoughts and desires, but no crushes or any real feelings for anyone else. He says he really loves me and wants us to be together and would never act on those impulses. I believed this behaviour to be fairly normal and healthy in a young sexually active man (early 20s), but a comment from a therapist (who we spoke with briefly), that if a man is in a happy settled relationship he should not be sexually attracted to anyone else even on a passing level, any further than objectively acknowledging their beauty.
I am now in two minds about how far these passing attractions go before they signify a problem in the relationship - ie that the fantasiser is not ready to be in a settled relationship, or to stay with just one person.I know almost all men...in fact, all people, will notice a very beautiful person of the opposite sex. But is it normal to then go away and imagine sexual activity with that person, whilst in a happy long term relationship? Is this a sign my boyfriend is not ready to settle with one person, even though he says he is? It is hard because I know he is still very young and has not previously had a long term relationship, whereas I have. We really love each other, but I am worried his desires are a subconscious sign this is too soon for him. Or am I worrying about nothing – something which all men, and many women do? I should add that I do not do feel sexually about anyone other than my partner at the current time and am still very much in love with my partner.
Thanks so much in advance, I would really appreciate your help.