In today’s video, I’m answering a question that I get on a surprisingly regular basis.

“Does my girlfriend’s number matter?”

In a sense, the question boils down to, “I’m considering sleeping with other people and cheating on my partner, in order to even the score. Do you think this is a good idea? Do you think doing this will lessen the severity of my retroactive jealousy?”

Zachary Stockill: In short, no, absolutely not. There’s a bunch of reasons but I’ll give you a few.

Cheating is wrong, it is something that you shouldn’t do. It lacks integrity. It’s hurtful and cruel. And, it’s destructive to your partner’s self-esteem, and ultimately, your self-esteem.

There’s a lot of reasons why this is a bad idea. So aside from the moral issue, aside from the fact that it’s just wrong, it’s also really impractical.

does my girlfriend's number matter

I’m a firm believer that 99.9% of cheaters ultimately get caught, your partner will eventually find out. And, if you’re struggling with retroactive jealousy, you already have enough drama, enough complications, and enough problems in the relationship.

So if you cheat, that’s only going to make things much worse. It’s not going to help.

So, does your girlfriend’s number matter?

Another thing I can tell you, in terms of who slept with more people, or if your partner slept with 20 people and you slept with 10, the numbers don’t matter nearly as much as you probably imagine they do.

I’ve received emails from people, retroactive jealousy sufferers who slept with like 100 or 150 people, and their partner slept with 10 or 15 or something, and they’re still struggling with retroactive jealousy.

I’ve received emails from famous athletes, prominent entertainers, lawyers, and people of the absolute height of their profession who have no problem finding partners, and had a lot of past partners, and sexual experiences, but they’re still struggling with retroactive jealousy.

Again, the question is does your girlfriend’s number matter?

does my girlfriend's number matter

The numbers don’t matter as much as you think they might say.

If you’re going to cheat, if you’re going to go behind your partner’s back, if you’re going to do that in an attempt to maybe even the score, or you feel like this will make you feel better about yourself, it’s not going to happen.

The odds of that being successful are extremely low. I think the risk-reward ratio is way off. There’s way more risk than the potential is there for reward. And, it’s probably just gonna end up blowing up in your face and causing a breakup anyway. It’s not worth it.

And again, to be absolutely clear, it’s not going to help you overcome retroactive jealousy.

Overcoming retroactive jealousy takes a real commitment to change. A real commitment to growth. Owning this problem, not putting on your partner to solve, taking the necessary steps to heal, and then making a decision.

If you need more sexual experience, the first thing you should do is start to get a real handle on your insecurities. Get a handle on your retroactive jealousy. Start to heal, and then you can make a decision regarding whether or not to stay with your partner. Whether or not you need more sexual experience and what’s the best course of action for you moving forward.

Zachary Stockill
Zachary Stockill

Hi! I'm a Canadian author and educator whose work has been featured in BBC News, BBC Radio 4, The Huffington Post, and many other publications. I'm the founder of, the author of Overcoming Retroactive Jealousy and The Overcoming Jealousy Workbook, and the host of Humans in Love podcast.