Advice Male Perspective

When Jealousy Has Gotten Out of Hand

In every relationship a little bit of jealousy can be a healthy thing as it shows a continuing sexual interest in your partner.  It’s the other side of passion and as long as it doesn’t get out of hand it can be a healthy aspect of any romantic relationship.  Yet, there are times where the jealousy has become a destructive force and threatens the future of the relationship.  When that happens if the relationship is to continue you need to take action.

A very common case of where jealousy has gotten out of hand in a relationship is when you or your partner continually brings up your interactions with members of the opposite sex.  This could include friends or strangers; it doesn’t seem to matter.  The jealousy will manifest in any case, and usually results in accusations of either sexual interest in other people, or cheating, and large drawn out fights on a regular basis.  If you or your partner has in the past cheated on the other this is caused not so much by jealousy and more caused by an inability to put the cheating in the past and restore trust between the two of you in the relationship.  In this case, you should either seek out counseling or ending the relationship.  However, if no cheating has occurred the jealousy is probably being caused by two things; you or your partner’s behaviour when you’re around the opposite sex and you or your partner’s own insecurities.  To ensure that the jealousy is dealt with in a healthy manner you may need to take a break from the relationship, go for counselling, change your behaviours, and learn how to be more sensitive to each other’s feelings and more effective communication methods, or a combination of all of the aforementioned.  If after all of those things the jealousy keeps manifesting you may have to consider ending the relationship for both of your sakes.

Another way that jealousy can manifest is where either you or your partner wants to know where the other is at all times.  This takes the form of not only verbal requests, but multiple phones calls, text messages, emails, showing up at the person’s work, following the person, coming by the home at various hours, and constant questioning.  Sometimes it’s explained as simply you or your partner wanting to know the other is safe and if there is a phone call once or twice a day that’s all it may be and there’s nothing wrong with that.  It’s when it reaches the point where calls are coming multiple times every hour that things have gotten out of hand.  This is again jealousy caused by insecurity, but also a case of the person having severe trust issues.  While there may have been no cheating in the current relationship the person may have experienced it in a past one.  To deal with this sort of jealousy the person will likely have to go for counselling to learn how to put what happened to them in the past where it belongs, deal with their insecurities in a healthy way, and trust again; otherwise this behaviour will eventually destroy the relationship.

The treatment of a partner as a possession or a thing is another unhealthy form of jealousy that is not only damaging to the relationship, but extremely damaging to the other person as well.  In this case one person is oppressed and controlled by their partner.  Their partner’s rationale for this behaviour is the belief that if they allowed their partner to have any say in not only the relationship, but their own life, they would leave them for someone else.  This is an extremely toxic situation and can cause a great deal of psychological damage to the individual who is being controlled.  Additionally, it is this form of jealousy that often leads to violence against the controlled individual as the partner feels the need to reinforce their authority through physical force or the threat of it.  Just because you are in a relationship does not mean that the other person owns you and violence is completely unacceptable.  The perpetrator of the violence in relationships is not only men nowadays, but women as well.

If your relationship has become violent seek out not only counseling, but the police for direction on how to proceed.  Tell a family member or friend whom you trust.  There are many support services and other groups who will be able to help.  For your own health and safety, under these circumstances you have to do what you feel is best for you and not the relationship.

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