What Is Jealousy And How To Cope With It
Jealousy occurs when a person experiences some kind of threat to their emotional relationship with a partner. This threat comes from a partner’s real or imagined relationship with another person. However, sometimes jealousy is only related to the partner’s past. This form of jealousy is called retroactive jealousy. An online counselling & distance therapy might be the right thing for you.
How to understand jealousy related to the past?
The emotions that are triggered by the past are similar to those that could be triggered by the imagination of the future. People from the past, as well as those from the future, do not really exist together with their actions. However, this does not diminish their potential to trigger emotional reactions. The jealousy of the past, with no real rivals or threats to the relationship, is often more like sadness and fear. The ways in which a person will cope with thoughts and emotional reactions depend on the personal beliefs and shared strengths of the couple to overcome those beliefs.
What beliefs and behaviors keep the past jealousy?
A person’s beliefs that intimate experiences with a partner are less important, just repeated experiences already experienced with someone else, lead to feelings of less value, both at personal and partnership levels;
Rigid attitudes about other people’s immutability in this case are usually played out through insecurity in a partner (“Who once cheats, always will”);
Unsafe patterns of emotional attachment and strategies that are more focused on preserving than preserving relationships bring again materials that re-examine personal safety in the relationship, regardless of its history;
Ideas related to sexual relations from a partner’s past were sometimes associated with the idea that the partner was wrong, with a strong wish that it was different. The inability to accept change diminishes the importance of change and the growth of a relationship that is alive;
Thoughts that maintain jealousy are repetitive, burdensome, and are sustained through accepting and answering the questions “What if, What if when” and so on. Once triggered, they feed on further answers to these questions and act unstoppably, such as a rotten board constantly spinning in the mind, regardless of a person’s rational beliefs;
Requests that the partner reaffirm that there is a danger of the past, to assure the security of the relationship, just keep the thought, bringing short-term relief, do not essentially change anything. The need to tell the same story will be repeated endlessly and lead to both partners being exhausted.
How to break the thoughts that maintain the jealousy of the past?
As the causes may be different, it is always helpful to seek professional help. Couples therapy enables the relationship to be strengthened and avoid further injury and uncertainty. Breaking the vicious circle of thoughts that perpetuate jealousy can go through accepting thoughts as wrong, recognizing a mistake in thought, finding an alternative. Reality can help in this process: the past around which thoughts develop is not the past of the thought person, but of his partner and some other person.