Pinpointing where feelings come from is first step to address jealousy
I have always been a very jealous person and it has been a problem in every relationship I’ve had. I am deeply in love with my girlfriend and I don’t want jealousy to ruin another relationship for me. What can I do to overcome the Green-Eyed Monster?
Jealousy, or the “Green-Eyed Monster,” comes from a fear of loss, which, in turn, breeds insecurity that causes our primal protective instincts to go haywire and create the overwhelming feelings of jealousy.
Jealousy can come from a history of hurt, trauma or betrayal that may or may not have come directly from the current partner.
The point is, there is a constant fear of threats, either real or imagined that feed the monster in those that suffer with jealousy.
To start to combat the feelings of jealousy, the first step is to try to pinpoint where the feelings derived from.
If you have endured situations in your childhood, relationships or even at work or school that have been hurtful and trust-breaking, then this can leave an emotional scar on you that may travel with you to every relationship you have.
Try to process that hurt and find ways to overcome it, either through forgiveness, counseling or discussing it with someone you trust.
The next step would be to start working on taking the leap of faith to trust. Unless your current relationship is full of shady happenings, there is no reason to punish your partner with mistrust because of your own past baggage. A lot of jealousy is fed by low self-esteem. This can affect your ability to be truly secure in your relationship, and always be on guard. Stop comparing yourself to others; stop worrying that your partner is doing the same.
Jealousy can also form in people who feel entitled, and think of their partner as “property.” If you feel this way, it is best to find the root of why you feel that your partner is someone you own and control, rather than someone you care for and treasure.
Sometimes jealousy is fed by active imaginations and assumptions.
If your partner is doing things that make you suspicious, it is better to address that head on and explain your feelings rather than let your imagination go wild and your jealously control every move you make with your partner.
Relationships actually grow stronger when there is trust cultivated in the relationship, so show your partner you respect them and trust them by giving them more freedom to be who they are and by choosing to loosen your grip on them.
(Nikki Delaney is a licensed counselor and owner of A New You Counseling in Rio Rancho, which received the Marriage Counselor, Best of Rio Rancho Award in 2015. Nikki is the creator of the “Roommates to Romance” program, which transforms relationships by tailoring counseling to a couple’s specific needs. You can submit “Love Letter” questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or rioranchocouplescounseling.com)
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