Friday, April 11, 2014

Blogging from A - Z Challenge: April 11 J


Jealousy

According to Anias Nin, Jealousy is part of the pleasures of sex and love - or at least part of the intensity. the jury is still out on the reasons for jealousy, with some thinkers arguing it is a completely natural phenomenon and others stating it is culturally specific. We don't know for sure, but we do know it occurs in many different forms, even in infants as young as five months old who feel possessive toward a parent.

Sexual jealousy involves desire for another person. it is entirely subjective, that it, it is judged solely on the rules and values of the jealous person. It involves a person you feel passion for acting in a way that implies infidelity, although as I said it is connected to the values the jealous person is placing on their behaviors, not on the behaviors themselves.

There are many attempts at biological explanations for jealousy, ranging from the male's need for paternity rights to the females role as discriminator (the one who chooses the mate) fighting to have her rights upheld, but there aren't really any explanations for manipulative jealousy, when one member of a couple will use jealousy to solicit a response in their partner. This sort of behavior doesn't wait for a real threat to enter the equation - it creates them, and is therefore difficult to explain in terms of biological patterning.



Another problem with the biological approach is that women and men with low self esteem experience more jealousy than women with strong self esteem. If jealousy was a protective strategy to preserve the sanctity of the biological placements, this wouldn't be the case.

I have been a very jealous woman in the past, and I found that it related to two things. One was my low self esteem, and the other was a deep understanding of my partners motivations and the experience of rejection when they felt the need to go somewhere else for the thrill and ego boost of romance. For me it was always centered around betrayal. I could never understand why my partner would indulge in flirtatious sort of behavior, rather than take responsibility for their feelings, communicate with me and deal with it within the relationship.

What I found, was in almost every case where I expressed jealousy, the person I was in a relationship  with would use it against me, taking many opportunities to deliberately evoke my jealously. Obviously these were not great relationships, but I was often shocked to find the more vulnerable I allowed myself to be, the more I confessed to my jealousy, the more these people would work to keep it alive.



For me, the only thing that rescued me from the jealousy merry-go-round was self esteem. Realizing that I am determining my fate and that I can genuinely choose to not be jealous, and take practical steps that prevented me from obsessing about a partner. I "just don't think about it" anymore, which is, ironically part of what keeps the fidelity strong in my relationship. I can definitely let myself get jealous of my husband, but I won't, and he seems to respond well to the maturity and respect.



8 comments:

  1. I'm not a jealous person, and wouldn't mind if my spouse had a 2nd partner for fun and pleasure. I think sex and love are (or can be) different things that are not necessarily correlated >:)

    Cold As Heaven

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    1. Yeah - I may sound really fussy, but I was in relationships that were open, and I didn't enjoy that either. For me, the loves when it was ok for them to see someone else were a bit dull.
      I'm sure that isn't your experience, but I love the radical, subversive nature of monogamy.

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  2. Jealousy, one of the 7th deadliest sins. Great post!

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    1. I think it is called a "sin" for a good reason. Thanks Krystol.

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  3. I think every person has felt jealousy at one point n their life. It becomes too painful when it is the only thing that often guides you.

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    1. yes, I think you're right Birgit. It's all about degrees isn't it - not too much, not too little.

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  4. Hi, I'm Amber, part of co host Pam's Unconventional Alliance. Dropping in from the Blogging from A to Z challenge. Good luck!

    http://neversquatwithyourspurson2014.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Amber.
      I'll go and check your site out.

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