I’m listening to Mr. Brightside by The Killers to get in the mood for this blog post.
I don’t know why, but I’ve been thinking about jealousy for the past few days and its role in relationships. Let me preface this by saying that I’ve never been a particularly jealous person when it comes to relationships. In high school I had a thing with this guy and one day I caught him at lunch sitting on another girl’s lap. He claimed it was completely innocent and honestly, I didn’t feel jealous. I felt relieved. Because I had an excuse to end it. And with my most recent boyfriend, he’d often go to a bar or a club with a girl friend and drunk text me. There was only one point where I felt a twinge of jealousy. But most of the time, a part of me hoped he’d cheat on me. I even told one of my friends (Brittany I think?) that I hoped he’d cheat so I could end it and be free. Which seems ridiculous and it’s one of the many reasons that I’m glad I finally ended it. It’s more likely for me to get jealous over guys I’m crushing on than guys I’m actually dating.
I think you can determine when you’re ready for a real, grown up relationship through jealousy and how it affects your relationships. My ex was extremely jealous. I have a guy friend who I talk to often and that upset him. The guy lives thousands of miles away so it was completely insane to be jealous of him. The way that I could tell that I am ready for a grown up relationship was by my reaction to his jealousy. When I was younger, I’d want to make guys jealous. I’d go out of my way to flirt with or be seen with other guys in order to stir jealousy within the guy I was talking to or dating. It was silly. It was immature. And it’s not something you do when in a healthy relationship. But I don’t do that anymore, so when my ex got jealous, it just annoyed me. I didn’t find it cute or think wow, he likes me so much he doesn’t want me to talk to other guys. Because that’s crazy! That’s not love. That’s being possessive. I’ve known plenty of girls to try this same thing. Guys, too. Because it makes us feel wanted. That’s not healthy and it only leads to distrust in the relationship.
I know it’s cliché to say that trust is one of the most important factors in a relationship, but it’s true. My jealous ex admitted on more than one occasion that he didn’t trust me. And toward the end when I expressed concern over his distrust, he tried to act like he did trust me. But a few days after we broke up, I was going to a party and he texted me and told me not to get drunk and have sex with some random guy. And that was the moment I knew I’d made the right decision. It was such a petty and rude comment made out of jealousy and spite. Clearly, he wasn’t ready for an adult relationship. But I’m not excusing myself in all of this because I didn’t exactly trust him either and even sort of hoped he’d cheat. So while I may be ready for an adult relationship, I was not ready for one with him.
If you are constantly jealous when in a relationship, maybe you’re not dating the right people. Or if you’ve just been cheated on in the past and that affects all your other relationships, it’s time to move on, or at least try to. Living in constant fear that your partner will cheat could also be a result of not feeling good enough which has to do with self esteem issues and those suck too, and they can ruin relationships. If that’s the case, maybe take some time off to work on you and being happy with yourself. I’m not on board with the whole “no one will love you until you learn to love yourself” thing, because that’s not true. People will love you. You just won’t believe them.
I know I talk a lot about relationships and my exes (the most recent one in particular), but it’s mostly for me. I want to work through mistakes I’ve made in the past and figure out what works for me, what doesn’t, and what it is that I’m looking for so that next time I’ll be ready. Feel free to comment with any fun jealousy stories you have!