signs of jealousy in relationships
If you’ve acknowledged that extra bit of crazy in you and are wondering, “How to stop being a jealous girlfriend”, you’ve come to the right place. First of all, good job for being honest with yourself and making it here. The first and foremost step is realizing that there is something about you that you need to change. Second of all, don’t you worry or overthink this at all – we’ve all been there in some relationship in our lives or the other, so join the club!
Jealousy is something which, in meagre amounts, can actually help your relationship grow and even bring you two closer. But the moment your pot overflows and you’re on the verge of losing it, it may be time to address that there is an issue on your hands.
That being said, don’t let men frivolously blame your jealousy on your hormones or call it your ‘monthly mood swings’. Being jealous is very, very human and certainly one of the most natural emotions there is. Don’t let anyone pin it on you in such a way as if to say that you aren’t actually allowed to be that way. However, before it really does become a troublesome component in your relationship – it is good to learn how to get a grip on your feelings of jealousy.
So if you have been more than a little skeptical about your boyfriend than usual, you may want to read ahead. As we uncover where jealousy comes from in women and understand it’s negative effects, we will also learn how to correctly deal with the same. With counseling psychologist Kranti Momin (Masters in Psychology), who is an experienced CBT practitioner and specializes in various domains of relationship counseling, your ‘How to stop being a jealous girlfriend’ dilemmas will be addressed in this article.
Why Am I So Jealous And Insecure?
When yet another phone call goes unanswered, or even if he does call you back after his party, he actually goes on to elaborately describe his randomly bumping into his ex-girlfriend there. If a story like that doesn’t make you worry even a little bit, then you’re way ahead of the curve. Because something like this would make any woman shift uncomfortably in her seat.
But shifting in your seat, and turning that incident into a full-blown investigation are two very different things. So don’t start barraging your boyfriend with questions and start acting like a crazy wife just yet.
Being an insecure woman is not all about how your partner treats you or makes you feel. It’s also dependent on the way you see your own self. Jealousy in a relationship is most often an indication of low self-esteem or poor image in the case of yourself. That, combined with a lack of trust, can truly have disastrous consequences for your relationship.
Why am I so jealous and insecure? Look inwards and ask yourself this question. You just might have a few things to work out on your own. Before you dive into ‘How to stop being a jealous girlfriend’ it will be helpful to first understand the negative effects of your jealousy and how they will impact your relationship.
Related Reading: 9 Reasons You’re So Insecure In Your Relationship
Top 5 Negative Effects Of Jealousy In Relationships
It’s no secret that jealousy can be a major deterrent in your relationship, so if you’re starting to see these negative effects in your own relationship, then it’s time to do something about it.
Jealousy not only has negative effects on yourself and your partner, but can put a real strain on your relationship overall. Let’s see the top 5 negative effects of jealousy in relationships.
1. Constant skepticism leads to a distressed mind
And not just for you, but for him too. If he knows you’re going to flip every time he mentions hanging out with another girl, he will constantly worry about how you will react and therefore what to say to you that won’t make you angry at him. This tension will further stress him out and cause your relationship to become weaker.
Not just, but you will constantly burden yourself with thoughts and questions regarding his whereabouts and who he’s hanging out with. This way, you might never be able to fully focus on your own self or your own life’s pursuits. Believe me when I say, this situation couldn’t possibly end well for anyone.
2. You will develop trust issues (in other relationships too)
Trust is not something that should be taken lightly as it is a major aspect in all loving relationships. Whether it’s with your friends or your family or your life partner, a good deal of trust is essential to sustain happiness in that relationship. But with a constantly suspicious outlook on things and major trust issues, it is only a matter of time until that problem grows bigger and even creeps into your other relationships.
Worst case scenario: you might just end up entertaining a delusion that everyone you love is somehow out to get you and cannot be trusted. This could even turn into a state of depression or something worse if one does not seek help early on.
3. Communication becomes messy
Good communication is crucial to any relationship, whether a serious problem of jealousy is in the picture or not. But the moment something as massive as feelings of jealousy start skyrocketing, all communication lines start to become blocked. Most communication then is restricted to high pitched shrieks of, “Why did you meet her?” or “I know that you’re lying to me!”
And everyone knows, that none of these conversations ever are constructive. Hiding feelings, saying hurtful words, sitting on your feelings of animosity – all this becomes routine when you become too jealous and insecure in a relationship.
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4. It becomes suffocating for both partners
The person on the receiving end suffers more because they feel like they can’t be themselves with you. Constantly walking on eggshells around someone you love is no way to be in a happy relationship. Your partner might start feeling uncomfortable around you and could even start keeping information for you.
You too will start feeling suffocated as this relationship is the only thing that will circle your mind constantly. With no time or energy to spare for anything else, you will be consumed in this relationship that will eventually feel stifling. It will eventually come to a point where both of you will just push each other away.
5. Your self-worth plummets even more
Leaning over his phone and thinking, “Who is he texting when I’m sitting right here?”, will only lead to the next thought of, “Am I not pretty enough for him?”, or “Does he think I’m boring?” Even though you may have no real reasons to believe any of these things, this dance of insecurity and jealousy in your own head will make you feel neglected in a relationship.
Not only in your relationship, but such thoughts will further pervade in other spaces of your life as well. From boardroom meetings to shopping mall trial rooms with your girlfriends – you’ll constantly be wondering if you’re good enough or not, and these thought will start affecting all the other aspects of your life.
How To Stop Being A Jealous Girlfriend – Therapist’s Advice
Saying, “I want to stop being jealous with my boyfriend but don’t know how,” is actually a great start. As long as you are willing to make the change, consider that half the battle won.
That being said, half an uphill battle still remains which we will now cover with the help of therapist Kranti Momin. How to stop being a jealous girlfriend? Use this 9-step strategy.
1. Figure out the source of your feelings to stop being jealous and insecure
Even though your partner is the one causing this turmoil in your heart, it can still be helpful to take their help in order to map out your own feelings and understand what is making you this way. Is it a past relationship trauma or a childhood incident or any kind of emotional flooding that is constantly making you feel this way?
Kranti suggests, “If you feel that you’re jealous because your partner is speaking to others often and this makes you upset, it is important to try and understand the source of this feeling. It can even be helpful to admit this to your partner and talk it out with them.”
2. Gauge your expectations in this relationship
If your headspace is occupied with one thought, i.e. I want to stop being jealous with my boyfriend but I can’t, take some time to think about whether it’s him or you making you feel this way. Do you have unrealistic expectations from him that are constantly making you overthink his every action?
Expecting him to call you one too many times or making time for you in the middle of his busy day – while these are romantic gestures, ‘expecting’ the same on a daily basis can be disastrous. So think about whether you’ve set the bar way too high, because that itself could be the reason behind you feeling so anxious about him all the time.
Related Reading: Expectations In Relationships: The Right Way To Manage Them
3. Take the opinion of someone who knows you well
Those who know you well and love you dearly will always look out for you and try to give you the best advice they can. That’s why if you’re trying to break out of this loop of constantly feeling insecure and want to understand how to stop being jealous of a girl who is most probably harmless to your relationship, talk to someone. Spending time with friends is more beneficial than to your mind and body than you know.
A friend, a cousin, your mom or even your barista (if you have that kind of a relationship) can help you re-organize your feelings better. Try to vent, be honest with yourself and with them, and let them give you their perspective. Sometimes, an outsider’s opinion can help you see things in a way that you did not before.
4. How to stop being a jealous girlfriend? Speak your heart out openly
Bottling up your own feelings and sitting on them will truly do no good to you or your relationship. Saying ‘My boyfriend still talks to his ex‘ under your breath will only make you think about it more. If it’s bothering you that much, it can be helpful to openly admit that to your partner and let them tell you what they think. You might be surprised at how they react and it could possibly have good consequences.
Kranti says, “If you’re sad that they aren’t spending enough time with you, or they’re hanging out with too many of their other friends, then tell them the same. Share your insecurities with your partner openly so that you can work through them.”
5. Think about how the jealousy is making you bitter
Once you effectively start to notice how this jealousy is making you a bitter person, it will induce a sense of panic as you will immediately want to let go of this version of yourself. Think about all the times you yelled at your partner unnecessarily or said hurtful things to them because you couldn’t contain your emotions.
As painful as it might be to recollect all those emotions, it is essential that you see how your jealousy is ruining your relationship. Once you realize how big of a problem this can be, you might want to dial back and start working on yourself immediately.
6. Try the sublimation technique
A mature defense mechanism in essence, the sublimation can go a long way in relieving you of your ‘How to stop being a jealous girlfriend’ problem. In this technique, one channels their anger and frustrations into a socially acceptable way which allows the force of the initial impulse to eventually fade off.
For example, try that dance class that you’ve been putting off for all these months because you haven’t been able to make enough time. As Kranti says, “If any activity of your partner is distressing you, don’t sit there and just think about it. If your partner has gone out with someone you don’t like, don’t worry about it constantly wondering what they’re doing. Indulge in an activity to shift your thoughts.”
Related Reading: Is He Using Me? Watch Out For These 21 Signs And Know What To Do
7. Practice gratitude
How to stop being a jealous girlfriend? Understand that your jealousy may not be rooted in your relationship but in your life. And in order to feel more at ease in your life, it can be helpful to journal or think of things that you are grateful for. Not all your happiness has to come from your relationship and your partner. It can just come from you too.
From the stray cat that walks into your backyard every morning to the comfort that you get knowing that your mom lives only a couple miles away – there are a lot of things, big and small, to be grateful for. Once you give yourself a chance to really see how happy you can be if you just take notice of the good things, your jealousy will start seeming petty and insignificant. This is also one of the ways to keep not only yourself, but also a relationship strong.
8. To stop being jealous and insecure, find your own strengths
“Painting classes, dancing classes or anything else under the sun that seems interesting to you, it’s time to try it all to stop being jealous and insecure in a relationship. These are things that will give you time for yourself, allow you to heal yourself and also inculcate more positivity in your life,” says Kranti.
The moment you are engaged in pursuits that bring out your best self, the jealousy and the annoyance with your partner will be the last thing on your mind. The key is to find things that will naturally elevate your self-esteem and give you a better sense of purpose.
9. How to stop being a jealous girlfriend? Consider going to a therapist
You want to stop being jealous of a girl that your partner works with or sees often, but are unable to do so? If you’ve tried all the techniques mentioned above and still feel like you are stuck at square one, it might be time to bring in the big guns…in other words, therapy. There is absolutely no shame in consulting a therapist who can help you get a grip on your feelings.
There really is no downside in talking to an expert who can guide you through tried and tested methods to make you feel better. Luckily, Bonobology has a skilled panel of therapists who are all only a click away. So if you’re feeling glum and want to put an end to your ‘How to stop being a jealous girlfriend’ issue, we can make that happen right here.