If there’s anything that will always be attached to being in a relationship, it’s jealousy. It’s not a bad thing, though. It’s human nature. Everybody gets jealous, albeit for different reasons.
Where it goes wrong is when we get jealous too much and too often that we start acting out on it. Acting out on jealousy will only create problems too big, not even your love for each other could fix.
While it is normal to feel mistrustful at times, it pays to learn ways to handle jealousy in a romantic relationship.
Dealing with Suspicion: Ways to Handle Jealousy in a Romantic Relationship
Some of us love too much that we want the person all to ourselves. This puts us in a place, though, where we get jealous too easily. But overcoming jealousy is something we can learn—only if we know how. Here are some of the most effective ways to handle jealousy in a romantic relationship.
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1. Don’t let it consume you
Just feeling something won’t get you into trouble, it’s when you act on it that you find yourself caught in the middle of misunderstandings. Don’t let jealousy take a toll on you. Prevent it from taking over. A friendly advice: before you go jumping to conclusions, maybe take the time to know the whole story first. Human as they are, your partner will have to interact with other people too, but it does not always mean they have feelings for them.
Never act on your suspicions especially when it’s nothing more than just unsupported thoughts. If the gestures your significant other is showing toward someone make you uncomfortable, do not be afraid to confront your partner about it. If them meeting their ex for a drink bugs you, tell them about it. When you notice some signs that your partner’s lying to you, take these red flags as cue to strike a conversation about the issue. But remember, however you choose to react, do it with respect.
2. Appreciate yourself more
People get jealous for so many reasons, but one of the main causes is because they feel like they’re not good enough. When you start telling yourself that you’re no longer as desirable as you used to be, the more you think your partner’s trying to hit on another person, even though they’re not the least bit interested in them.
One of the best ways to handle jealousy in a romantic relationship is simple: enough with the low self-esteem. They may not be the type to tell you every day, but there’s a reason your partner’s with you; and unless they tell you otherwise, that will never change. If you need reaffirmation, make them feel that or maybe ask for it. Stop treating yourself like a pair of worn-out shoes, you’re more than that and your partner knows it—and you should too.
3. Trust your significant other
When people say the secret to a happy, long-lasting relationship is mutual trust, they’re not lying. If you come at your partner every time they interact with people and get suspicious over the littlest things, you are only creating an environment that is toxic and suffocating.
They are your significant other, but they are not your property. You have to let them be and you have to let those jealous feelings go. To go about that easily is to trust them fully. If you think it’s not there anymore, think of ways to rebuild trust in a relationship. Work things out. Only then will you be able to get rid of persistent doubts and negative thoughts.
4. Have faith in your relationship
To maintain a healthy bond with your partner, it’s not enough that you trust them, you need to have faith in the relationship as a whole. If you don’t believe that what you have will last, doubts come more often, and it will eat you up. Instead of dwelling on those negative thoughts, think of ways you can create a more honest atmosphere between you two.
5. Acknowledge the feeling and learn from it
Jealousy is not bad. If anything, it tells you that you really love the person because you dread the idea of them getting taken away from you. It says that this relationship actually matters and that’s something.
According to Christine R. Harris and Ryan S. Darby in their work Handbook of Jealousy: Theory, Research, and Multidisciplinary Approaches, while jealousy is indeed a “source of great personal misery,” it has its positive effects too. For one, “it alerts one to relationship threats and can motivate behaviors that protect the relationship.” So you don’t have to ignore these jealous outbursts. Recognize it. And after learning to do so, use it as an inspiration to do better as a person and as your partner’s other half.
Sometimes, we get too invested in a relationship that we just want our partner to give us all the attention, not leaving anything for anybody else. Jealousy, however, can ruin things. So before you find yourself dealing with a bigger issue, try to overcome it.
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