5 Important Things That Cause Jealousy In Relationships
Jealousy is such a common and natural emotion, which when uncontrolled can spiral into something toxic. In fact, I would say I am much more secure now than I used to be. Today when I look back at times when I acted out like an over-jealous girlfriend, I am quite embarrassed. I also wondered why my exes entertained that. Maybe because we were all younger back then and functioned like the pilot version of an operating system.
I also realised when I feel secure of my relationship, I don’t quite get jealous. So after growing up, realising a few things and cutting through the culture that portrays possessiveness as love, I am much saner now.
But oh boy, this jealousy thing is such a demon! It not only harms the relationship and makes you look insane but it also makes you feel like there’s a knot in your stomach. Your heart begins to sink, your hands start getting cold, you feel hurt and angry all at once and you just hope that your jealousy is baseless. More often than not, it is. So what is the point of making your heart slow down? What is the point of feeling like shit?
Even if it turns out that your jealousy is justified, why would you want to feel possessive for a man who isn’t yours to own? You want to flirt with other women, go ahead, I will not compete for your attention. If that’s how a guy is, I will happily let him go. Of course, it’s easier said than done.
However, since jealousy is such a shit emotion and is often always attaching itself to our relationships, maybe it’s time to get to its roots. Find out what causes jealousy and cut it at the source.
“Although jealousy is a painful emotional experience, evolutionary psychologists regard it not as an emotion to be suppressed but as one to heed—as a signal or a wake-up call that a valued relationship is in danger and that steps need to be taken to regain the affection of a mate or friend,” says Psychology Today. As primal as it is to feel jealous, it often stems from insecurity. It can be related to your own self-esteem or to your partner’s behaviour. I know I can’t be secure without a commitment because I fear losing the person.
Even when you know it’s inevitable, you hope it happens not so soon. Even if there is a commitment, a relationship needs that kind of affection and emotional support without which we can’t be as secure. In reality, you just need attention and somehow your mind starts playing tricks and making you believe that you are not getting it because he isn’t into you anymore.
Lack of trust
It’s your perception of your partner that matters too. Like do you think deep down that your partner can get carried away easily? In fact, experts say that when you don’t trust yourself to remain faithful, you tend to doubt your partner as well. Honestly, trust is important and if you are still doubting someone, don’t be with them. Those feelings are usually right unless the issue lies with you. Either way, it’s important to pay attention to what’s causing you to not trust them and then talk it out.
Fear of abandonment
“Margot’s deep-seated belief that she was inadequate and undeserving of love motivated her to seek male attention and at times intentionally act in ways to make her boyfriend jealous and more eager. Her insecurity also made her jealous. She imagined that he desired other women more than her, when that wasn’t the case. Her beliefs reflect toxic or internalized shame common among codependents. It’s caused by the emotional abandonment in childhood and leads to problems in intimate relationships,” reports Psychcentral.
Some of us have a fear of abandonment which makes us hold on to our partner like they can walk away any minute. Because they mean so much to us, we are afraid of losing them. Instead of feeling threatened by another person he is talking to, it’s advisable to focus on healing your abandonment issues. It will help if he supports you in the same trying to not step on any emotional triggers. But then again, it’s for both of you to work on. You can’t make him walk on egg shells for life.
Lack of mindfulness
Psychology Today says jealousy is “a natural, instinctive emotion that everyone experiences at one point or another.” It further adds, “The problem with jealousy is that it masks other feelings and attitudes that are even more hurtful to us and those closest to us.” However, this doesn’t mean that we let it grow and develop into the fuel and fire that will burn our relationship down.
We can use mindfulness to control such toxic behavior and communicate openly about our feelings instead of bottling them up. Communication is required to rationalise and figure the reasons behind the jealousy. So don’t give in, we are humans and we are blessed with mindfulness so we can choose what to feel and do.
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Anxious attachment style
According to a study, “Anxiously attached individuals are more likely to become jealous, snoop through a partner’s belongings, and become psychologically abusive.” In fact, Psychology Today says that people with anxious-preoccupied attachment style “are the most likely to engage in surveillance of their partners. They also feel worse when they’re experiencing jealousy than people without this attachment style.” In fact, people with insecure anxious attachment style tend to make their partner purposely jealous in retaliation too.
What causes an insecure anxious attachment style? “A parent with inconsistent parenting behaviors may be nurturing and attuned at times, but insensitive, emotionally unavailable, or antipathetic (cold or critical) at other times,” reads Healthline.com. It all comes down to our childhood! However, being aware of what causes you anxiousness and being mindful of those things will help fix your attachment style. Here are signs that you have anxious attachment style!