M: Somebody asked this question: “Why do I get so jealous when my partner accepts friend requests from exes?” I read an article where it answered that it’s probably a sign that you don’t have enough trust in your partner that he or she is being faithful to you.
DJ: Times have changed. The market is so open and it is so easy to connect or reconnect. Balance is important in a relationship. The question here isn’t just how trustworthy is one’s partner. Because the reason why the relationship is always hanging on for dear life is really insecurity. Plus, it’s further magnified by the real or imagined threat of losing the object of one’s affection. It’s important to understand why she’s drumming her fingers on the table when he talks to other people or him surreptitiously checking her phone. Is it preservation of the relationship or to seize control?
M: That lack of trust may be prompted by one of several factors: You may feel insecure about your self-worth. In this case, either you’ve been raised to believe, or some part of your inner self feels, that you just don’t measure up. Because you don’t love yourself, you can’t believe that others would love you. Or you’re prone to cheating on your partner — maybe even have done so. Knowing what you’re capable of, you project that behavior onto your partner.
DJ: Jealousy can be frustrating, annoying, painful and even embarrassing. Elaborate loyalty tests such as checking cell phone messages, social media accounts, e-mails, following or spying often backfire and may provoke self-fulfilling prophecies. Others also become withdrawn and resentful in a pattern that can undermine the valued relationship. It is important that a person knows where these jealous feelings are coming from. Important questions to ask one’s self: What behavior traits signal one’s insecurity? What happened in the past that made him or her insecure? What are one’s beliefs that account for one’s insecurity?
M: It can also be that you and your partner haven’t yet figured out how to establish safe boundaries within the relationship. Because you don’t know what’s permissible within the relationship and what’s not, you’re constantly on your toes. This usually happens to those who rarely make strong emotional connections. A couple might find it helpful to agree that efforts will be made to introduce to each other any friend that becomes important in each of their lives. Communication and reassurances are often keys to establishing and maintaining trust.
DJ: It is also possible that your partner has been cheating or has cheated on you in the past. Sometimes it’s not sexual but it often has to do with making emotional connections to others outside the relationship. And if that happens, it makes you vulnerable. Whatever the case, jealousy or any negative emotion in a relationship must be remedied fast. Attractions to other people can be a real threat to a relationship. So try not to withhold information that may threaten the security of the relationship. Who knows? This can even enhance the level of trust. Handling life with integrity and living up to the values and standards one has for oneself is certainly something to feel very good about.