Feeling jealous of unwanted attention that your partner gets sometimes, others cozying up to them and flirting with them can easily make one jealous. Occasionally, it’s okay; because it’s natural and even healthy to feel jealous sometimes. But when this jealousy begins controlling you and your relationship, that’s when it becomes a problem.
This is when it becomes necessary to learn how to deal with jealousy in a relationship to save yourself and others involved from emotional pain and heartache.
Most of us are unaware of how jealousy destroys relationships so easily. It begins as a tickle; just an uncomfortable tickle. But if left to foster, it can easily morph into something toxic and disastrous.
How Jealousy Destroys Relationships
Jealousy is usually the main culprit behind the downfall of most relationships nowadays. It is a strong and powerful emotion. Strong enough, in fact, to make people act recklessly.
Some people become obsessive and controlling and get upset if they’re not kept aware of the what’s and why’s of every single thing and every single person that their partner encounters. It limits independence and fosters distrust in a relationship.
There are several ways of how jealousy destroys relationships. Some of them include:
- Making one or both partners insecure and doubtful.
- Causing one or both to be absent in the relationship.
- It destroys trust and creates distance.
- It makes you want to micromanage and control everything.
- Jealousy, if not dealt with, can even lead one to become abusive.
Read more about things that can destroy a relationship: 7 Actions That Could Destroy A Relationship.
Effects of Jealousy in a Relationship
I think a lot of us misunderstand just how powerful this emotion can be. It can turn life into hell, hurling your relationship into rocky waters.
Understanding how jealousy destroys relationships and the effects it can have on you, your partner and your relationship can encourage you to work on eliminating it.
The effects of jealousy in a relationship can be mild to extreme. Some of the major effects of jealousy in a relationship are:
Jealousy strikes where it hurts the most. It begins with attacking the trust you and your partner might have spent years building.
Relationships are based upon trust, in addition to love and affection. When jealousy makes its way into the equation, the trust deteriorates as partners begin to doubt each other’s every move. It leaves you in a constant state of unfounded suspicion with agonizing questions eating away at your mind all the time. Destroying trust is one of the major ways of how jealousy destroys relationships.
Independence is something no one is willing to give up, nor should anybody ever be forced to lose their individuality. Sadly, one of the most toxic effects of jealousy in a relationship is when it reaches an extent where the person feeling jealous begins to limit their partner’s independence.
As a result, it can make your partner develop ill feelings towards you for limiting their independence which can eventually make them want to part ways.
A healthy relationship includes personal boundaries that both partners must agree on respecting.
Since jealousy is such an all-consuming emotion, it often leads the jealous member to overstep them. Constant invasion of privacy, not letting their spouse hang out with friends, immediately jumping to the wrong conclusions when seeing their spouse being friendly with someone else are all toxic behaviors that stem from jealousy.
Endangers Your Health
Being jealous means being in a constant state of stress. It leads to overthinking every single detail of your life and your spouse’s, wondering what your partner might be doing every second of the day they’re not by your side.
Over time, it can lead to chronic mental health issues like stress, anxiety and depression including the physical symptoms that come along with these issues like headaches, high blood pressure, stomach problems and more.
Makes You Miss Out on Being Present
Being jealous is a full-time job. It keeps you so busy overthinking and stressing over little things that you may often end up missing out on all the fun, romantic and cute moments with your significant other.
All it does is the distance you from your spouse, making them wonder if you’re even invested in the relationship anymore.
How to Deal with Jealousy in a Relationship
Being human means making errors, but it also means rectifying them. If you feel like you or someone you know — maybe your partner — has been dealing with jealousy lately, it’s never too late to try to fix it.
Just how jealousy destroys relationships in the blink of an eye, you can fix them just as easily with a little bit of effort and support from your partner. Here are 7 strategies on how to deal with jealousy in a relationship:
1. Acknowledge Your Feelings
The first step is always acknowledging and validating your feelings. Trying to run away from them will only provide them with enough time to sink their claws deep inside of you.
Whenever you’re feeling even slightly insecure of perhaps, a co-worker of your partner or a friend may be, acknowledge that you’re being silly and it’s just jealousy that’s making you feel this way.
Remind yourself that he or she has never done anything to make you feel suspicious and tell your ‘jealous self’ that you trust him or her enough to know they will never do anything to break your trust.
2. Talk to Your Partner
Admittedly, it’s not easy acknowledging and admitting to yourself that you’re jealous, let alone someone else; but it’s a huge step towards ridding yourself of such a destructive emotion.
Speak to your significant other about what’s been bothering you and devise a way to work out your problem together.
3. Don’t Overstep Each Other’s Boundaries
Your jealousy might push you to overstep boundaries that your partner expects to be respected.
You might be compelled to invade their privacy and want to snoop through their things but… don’t do that. Just don’t. All it will do is disappoint your partner that he or she couldn’t make you feel safe enough with them.
4. Build Self-Confidence
Don’t jump right to conclusions and leave out the part where you accuse your partner based on baseless evidence.
Instead, focus on self-care. Meditate, do stuff that makes you happy, go out with friends and work on strengthening your confidence in yourself and in your partner.
Here are some self-care tips for you: Transform Your Life: 7 Steps to Self-Care.
5. Overcome Your Insecurities
Feeling insecure is among the biggest effects of jealousy in a relationship. Insecurities can make you paranoid about your partner leaving you for ‘perfection’ because you feel like they may think you’re not enough.
Reassure yourself that your fears are unwarranted and that nobody’s perfect. List down all your insecurities, go through them, acknowledge each and every one of them and try to overcome them one by one.
6. Be Realistic
There’s no good in holding on to unrealistic expectations. Be realistic and relearn how a relationship is supposed to work. Tell yourself that you cannot control everything, especially not your partner. Because they are human, and they deserve to live independent lives outside of the relationship.
7. Get Counselling
If you feel like your jealousy is getting out of hand and you fear that it may destroy your relationship if not curbed, counseling is a great option that may help you overcome your jealousy issues. You can even chat with a friend about it. You never know, maybe they can teach you a few tips on how to deal with jealousy in a relationship.