I often get asked in interviews how I deal with jealousy whilst negotiating infidelity. The short answer is I don’t. (Feel jealousy, that is.) But it took a lot of work on myself and even now it rears its ugly head if I’m sick or having a bad hair day or if the bf has been rejecting my own advances.
Just like dishonesty and laziness, jealousy is an undesirable feeling that is destructive to our psyche and threatens relationships. It makes us feel paranoid and suspicious. It is curable, although many will shoulder its burden their whole lives rather than consciously rewire their thinking.
Curing jealousy is a difficult process because everyone’s envy manifests itself in different ways. In my case, none of my partner’s playmates were ever good enough. I always found some reason to veto them. After a too-fat girl, a too-thin girl and someone who reminded me of my father’s murderer, I began to suspect it could be me.
Then, when I finally rejected a woman for her clothes of dubious ethical procurement, I realised it was jealousy in disguise. My way of dealing with it was to vilify innocents. (Sound familiar?)
Once I grew to recognise my jealousy’s manifestation/s, I was able to change. Call it systematic desensitization, but I gritted my teeth and plastered a smile on my face and stopped thinking this was all about me and nothing about them.
Then a strange thing happened. I started appreciating these ladies instead. They were merely taking up the slack and providing some of the services I wasn't so keen on. Their enthusiasm for my partner made him seem more valuable to me and their gratitude for the loan of such a treasured item sure beat half a cup of sugar and my True Blood DVDs.
Crawl out of the conditioning and investigate the truth. Negotiating infidelity makes long term couples go crazy with desire for each other. They want to prove themselves. They want to smell their spouse and cover them with their scent again. They want to discover their lessons and recall their triumphs.
Chalk one up for the team. Without jealousy, it is a wonderful experience to reunite with another after they have had an enjoyable dalliance. If you hold them, you can absorb some of the residue for yourself.
You have to drive a Ford to fully appreciate the Mercedes at home in the garage.
Compare a love where jealousy is acceptable to a love that replaces it with generosity. Which love would you rather have?
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