Jealousy: When It's Warranted, When You're Being Silly

As with other emotions that have the power to make us nauseous, terrified or enraged, jealousy can be complex. Knowing when it’s warranted can be equally complex, as well as dependent on numerous factors. Let’s say your guy is chatting sweetly with another woman at dinner time. Factors to Consider a) Guy’s history b) Your relationship history c) Your history and mindset with deception d) The target of his attention e) Scene and location f) How drunk he is The Waitress in Front of the Restaurant You return to the restaurant table after a bathroom break and your guy is nowhere to be found. You finally spot him outside, smoking and chatting it up with the blond waitress who had been shoving her cleavage in his face while waiting your table. Yes, this jealousy would be warranted, especially since your guy’s history and your relationship history are, well, crap. When you first met he actually admitted he went through women like water. One of his friends actually called you “The chick of the week.” And you're pretty sure his neck will one day break due to the way he cranes it to ogle at every woman walking down the street. We can waste time being jealous over just about every day with this guy, or we can cut to the chase and dump him for someone who treats us with respect. A Friend’s Wife at a Dinner Gathering You and your guy are having dinner at your house with another couple in tow. While playing cards after dinner, your guy goes out of his way to seemingly pamper the other man’s wife. He quickly clears off the table in front of her, moves the outdoor lantern away from you and closer to her and brings her a big chuck of pineapple upside down cake. You’re still busy putting away the leftovers. Jealousy would not necessarily be warranted in this one, especially since your guy has given you no past reason to doubt his love is focused on you alone. He’s also proven he can be pretty clueless when it comes to hurting people’s feelings without realizing it; in this case those are yours. We can stick with this guy, sans jealousy, but with honest discussions about behaviors that make you feel bad. If he loves as much as he says, he’ll make a point to try to change them.

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