Jan 11, 2010, 2:37 PM
Anyone who has ever been in a serious relationship probably felt the green-eyed monster creep into his or her thoughts at one time or another. Ah, jealousy! It can cause insecurity, detachment, and more often, just plain immaturity.
No one wants to admit that they are a jealous person and, admittedly, some people are better at curbing their jealousy than others. Inasmuch as we try to fight against it, sometime one can't just help but feel it.
What's worse is that jealousy can often make a person act out against one's partner even if his/her partner is innocent and has no idea why he/she is angry or, worse yet, it can foster one's own low self-esteemed.
Whatever the reason, whether valid or not, jealousy can be a huge factor in disconnection between couples. Sometimes it is flattering when a relationship partner gets a little jealous, but a boost to the ego is a far cry from the fight and resentment that can come from real, hidden jealousy.
This sort of jealousy is never a good thing for a relationship, and communicating one's own jealousy to a partner without sounding irrational can be tricky.
The question remains: How can one learn to recognise jealousy and deal with it without jeopardizing one's relationship?
The closer you become with your partner, the more you have to lose by breaking up. If you are not aware of your own qualities or not confident in your own attractiveness as a relationship partner, insecurities can develop.
If your insecurities are not addressed with your partner, they only fester and grow. It is true that there is a small percentage of jealousy that comes from a valid feeling, but most often jealousy comes from personal insecurities that have grown, because of the lack of communication.
If your own insecurity or low self-image makes you think badly of yourself, you often begin to wonder what your significant other sees in you.
You will start to question why your partner would want to stay with you and fear that he or she will inevitably meet someone "better". The fear that your partner will wake up one day and realise there is someone better out there can lead to suspicion on your part.
When suspicious thoughts begin to enter the mind of an insecure person the green-eyed monster will begin to rear his ugly head. You may find yourself questioning your partner's actions or becoming too needy of your partner's time and attention.
If you don't discuss your insecurities with your partner, questions may begin to fill your head. Why does he always come home late on Tuesday nights... who is he seeing? Why does she always talk so much about that new co-worker... does she like him?
Because these questions and the motives behind them (your own insecurities) are not brought to the forefront, you may start to see problems that aren't really there.
If suppressed long enough, often a jealous person will "flip out" when, in reality, their partner has done nothing wrong. A friendly conversation can look like flirting or a hug may seem to go on a little too long even though it is innocent. And, unfairly to your partner, you will overreact in anger or heavy emotion.