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Sunday, January 27, 2008

Jealousy, the two headed monster.

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I believe that for success in a relationship, honesty is king/queen. Once that's established, communicating that honesty with your partner is the path to success. I may be wrong, but it just seems like common sense to me. Of course we have to know ourselves and be honest with ourselves as the baseline, but I'm assuming that we recognise this.

Now I believe that if we follow this line of thought with our utmost sincerity, we have a better chance at having a strong and lasting relationship. But, I have seen on many occasions an unbridled power that if not put in check right away, will rip the flesh from the living, breathing relationship. I'm talking about jealousy.

Jealousy, in the word itself, may have a negative connotation which, for the most part, may be well deserved. It is however, for most, if not all of us, a part of the relationship experience. I believe it's also a normal part of each of us. How we deal with it or what we do with it gives rise to me calling it a two headed monster.

Years ago I had hung around with a large group of friends. Laura, not her real name, was considered the most gorgeous girl most of the guys in the crowd had ever seen. Now Mike, not his real name either, was the male version of Laura. They hooked up with each other and seemed to have a strong relationship. Until Laura started thinking that Mike may be cheating on her. Most times they were together so it would be a magic act for him to cheat, although possible. She seemed to get this idea from the way he flirted with the ladies and from what her girl friends told her.

Well, Laura confronted him about it and Mike just seemed to find it so ridiculous. He reassured her that she was the one and only for him and that it's just talk with anyone else. He did however give her the impression that she was being silly and that he'd continue to be himself. So Laura took action.

She decided that she would also take the time to talk to the guys when they approached her. To flirt with them just like Mike did with the ladies. She took his philosophy that it was just all Innocent fun. Well, the ugly side of jealousy reared it's head one night when Laura was flirting with some guy. He almost got into a fight with the guy (who didn't know at that point that Laura had a boyfriend), and Laura and Mike had a big argument about it.

They seemed to resolve the problem by admitting to each other that both of them weren't comfortable with the idea of their partner flirting with someone else. Well, seems that Laura and Mike are still together after many years and as happy as ever. They're both fairly successful and are raising a family together.

Laura and Mike are the only couple that I've ever known to have dealt this well with jealousy. Every other couple through the years, I've known many, haven't fared as well. In other words, jealousy seemed to ruin most relationships. So, this brought about a question in my mind about this two headed monster jealousy.

Can jealousy be used as a tool to better a relationship? And if so, then how far should it be taken?


  1. Oh boy, that's a loaded question!

    I think many couples try to use jealousy to effect an outcome that they believe will better their relationship. Whether it actually does or not is questionable.

    In the case of Laura and Mike, I don't think it was jealousy that improved their relationship so much as the way they resolved that jealousy--by identifying and eliminating its root cause.

    Laura's flirtation was a wake-up call to Mike, but for many couples, that kind of tit for tat game playing only entrenches a vicious cycle. They handled it well in the end, yes, but I have to think they could've handled it better if Mike had been more responsive to Laura's feelings and Laura had been more insistent that he respect them.

    Btw, thanks for the blogroll add! I'm adding you to mine, as well.

  2. Well said Elsie! There is so much more to this that can be discussed. I just wanted to touch on the issue because I believe it is a major factor in relationships in many ways. As I learn to write better, hopefully I will be able to articulate them.

    And you're most welcome for the blogroll add, it's a great blog!


Thanks so much for your comment and input! :)

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