Preoccupation with someone else’s past relationships is a syndrome called retrospective jealousy. They usually arise from anxiety, mistrust, or fear of losing a loved one. Suffering from jealousy is a prevalent evil, which constitutes a negative emotional response. They happen when it is perceived that a loved one does not give her all her attention. However, in retrospective jealousy, an affair with a partner is suspected concerning past relationships.
This type of disorder makes the couple feel completely unfaithful. As mentioned earlier, it means showing sickly jealousy of your current partner’s previous sentimental relationships. If you suffer from them, what can you do to overcome them?
What is retrospective jealousy?
This behavior consists in clinging to the exclusivity of a loved one and fearing losing control. This type of jealousy draws a line between the normal and the surprising. Like many others, they are usually characterized by a lack of control and change in a couple’s life.
Under certain circumstances, jealousy is accepted in society. However, when these get out of control and become the centerpiece of a couple’s life, it is detrimental to your health.
Pain and instability destroy human relationships. Retrospective jealousy is an imagination based on past events. These obsessive thoughts and painful feelings appear after you become aware of your current partner’s previous relationship, whether sentimental or sexual.
Jealous people focus only on their partner’s past relationships. These situations cause pain and emotional instability and can also cause distrust and the need to control the other person.
One of the main characteristics of retrospective jealousy is the need to know everything about past relationships. People need to understand what their current partner’s ex was like, how she looked, and how she felt. All this information tries to calm the unnecessary anxiety and anguish they feel.
These settings lead to an irrational or disproportionate fear of losing a loved one. Outcome: Everything they experience is not unique or special but rather complex and conflicting. Retrospective jealousy can cause significant conflict in a couple.
Result of jealousy
Frequently experiencing jealousy about your partner’s past is detrimental to the relationship. Some of the results are:
Instability: Accusations and arguments increase for several reasons. This will cause the victim of jealousy to begin to feel repulsed by the jealous person.
Emotional distress: This affects your daily life negatively and affects your family, work, and social spheres.
Arguments and fights: Excessive, sickly jealousy can easily lead to conflict and end a relationship.
Physical violence: An increased pathological jealousy can make a person suffer from it violently.
Psychological problems: They may appear in couples due to the anguish and sadness that arises from the situation.
“Reminiscences of jealousy make us think that the couple is utterly unfaithful. It consists in feeling unhealthy jealousy over your current partner’s previous sentimental relationships.
Traits of a jealous person
People who feel this type of jealousy have pretty low self-esteem. They do not live in the present, are melancholy and jealous of the past, and always think of it as a fear of the future. They are dependent and therefore possess a partner to be happy.
For this reason, they are full of questions on the same subject. They do not tolerate frustration. They also have false expectations when it comes to love and relationships. They believe that love is always something they want to do together, and they misunderstand the healthy behavior of the couple.
What is Behind Retrospective Jealousy?
Well, this depends on each case and person, but in general, a person who suffers may experience the following:
- A strong sense of insecurity about yourself, an intense desire for confirmation and confirmation from the outside, will fall on your partner.
- Low level of self-esteem.
- The tendency to build emotionally dependent relationships.
- Fear of abandonment may be associated with emotional deficits at an early age.
- Fear of betrayal or fear of loneliness.
You may have had one or more experiences of disloyalty that left emotional scars that have not healed yet and regulates how relationships are perceived.
How to end retrospective jealousy
A jealous person tries to protect the couple and their relationship, but the method is exaggerated and counterproductive. “The degree of control already creates distrust in the other person and directly attacks the relationship,” added Martinez Selva.
However, experts claim that it is possible to overcome jealousy disorder. To this end, the University of Murcia professors emphasize the importance of communicating with partners and setting specific limits. Martínez Selva says, “The best thing is to talk about it and tell your ex-partner what action to take.”
Duration is usually indicated by jealousy and how it affects the couple’s life. Sergio Lara said, “Obviously, jealousy makes relationships worse and breaks them in many cases, but you can overcome it through therapeutic efforts and the good character of those who suffer from it.”
Answering questions about ex-partners does not end the problem but instead increases anxiety.
Faced with the allegations of jealous questions, psychologists say couples should not play with the past. Martínez Selva said, “Everyone has a right to the realm of privacy, and there are personal details that some people can cling to without resistance. It only makes things worse.
Psychobiologists summarize the essential five tips for dealing with retrospective jealousy by focusing on your current relationship, enjoying your current relationship, and indicating your current commitment. She also said it was vital for her to be in the position of her husband because, according to the writer, she “is unfair and irrational to her.” If this is not enough, you should consider seeking professional help. The five tips are given below:
Recognize your jealousy is excessive or irrational: Remember that your partner, just like you, lived a sentimental life before meeting you. You have nothing to complain about. Do an objective analysis to find out where that jealousy is coming from.
Use empathy: Imagine yourself in their situation and how you would feel when asked to describe a past relationship. Think about what you would do if you were unfairly criticized. This will help you focus on your partner and how upset they are with the situation.
Focus on the present: Your suffering is caused by your thoughts about the past. It comes from situations you have not experienced. Because you did not know your partner for sure at the time, when your thoughts start floating around past events, bring them back to the present. Then focus on what you are doing right now. What will also help you is a meditation technique that can help you freeze your mind at that moment.
Communication: Tell your partner how you feel, but do not say it in a claim. Express to him the reasons that lead you to this jealousy and the desire to get rid of it. This allows the communication line to remain open.
Seek professional help: Even if you have done your best and feel like you cannot avoid flashback jealousy, you can still do something. It may be time to seek professional help. It would be best if you examined what is going on with your self-esteem and confidence, then move on to finding the emotional well-being of your relationship.
Retrospective jealousy affects a couple’s life, damages, and sometimes even wholly breaks the relationship.
Retrospective jealousy should be treated as an obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Avoiding coercion requires removing dependencies and controlling your thoughts. Also, people who suffer from it will have to work hard through treatment, so they can overcome it with a desire to improve.