Does jealousy have a gender?
Neither men nor women are immune to jealousy, but the feeling may not be expressed in the same way by both genders...
Jealousy is that strange feeling that takes hold of a person in love when they're afraid that their partner is being unfaithful. Whether it's justified or not, this worry can escalate and violently interfere with the relationship. Each time the partner looks at someone else or meets somebody, however insignificant it may be, it triggers suspicion.
The reasons leading to jealousy are not always common to both sexes: while jealous women can be worried sick that they'll be left by the wayside, men can experience jealousy as a loss of their virility.
However, in both cases, however overly jealous people don't just go after their partners with their love-fuelled hatred, but also after the supposed rival.
Jealousy in women
Jealous women in love often ask themselves, "Does he really love me?" Resulting either from a lack of self-assurance or an inordinate desire to possess their man, feminine jealousy is built on the fantasy that all women are potential rivals.
An overly jealous woman assesses other women as they imagine their man does, while watching him intently all the time for the slightest sign of betrayal. Her fear of being abandoned is just as intense as her subconscious desire to dominate her man with her romantic needs.
Jealousy in men
Above all else, jealous men fear another man touching their partner, having her body at their disposal, in short, "possessing" her. If their partner turns on a bit of charm, they convince themselves that she wants other men to find her attractive, in addition to themselves, and they just can't bear it. They experience this attack (even if it's imaginary) as a loss of their virility.
Overly jealous men could perhaps accept their partnerss leaving them, but could never accept that it was for someone else. At the same time, they are fascinated by the "other man", whether he exists or not, as if he held the sexual power that they've been stripped of.
Jealousy harrassment by gender
Both overly jealous men and women are more than capable or tormeting their partners, but each gender uses different methods:
- An overly jealous woman will look for material proof of betrayal: unusual perfumes, a piece of paper left in one of her partner's pockets, or even going through his mobile phone text messages and calls. At the slightest shred of evidence, her behaviour intensifies to the same level as her fear of being abandoned. She'll cry or threats and can even attempt to meet her rival, as she tries to weaken and undermine her rival in her partner's eyes. She can easily slam the relationship door in the face of the man she thought she loved, rejecting him without further ado.
- An overly jealous man will keep a very close eye on his wife's appearance and control her schedule as if she was physically chained to him. If she changes any of her habits, this can provoke an avalanche of comments and questions. He'll try to curb her independence and create a vacuum around her by isolating her from her friends and family. And if he thinks he has some proof of betrayal, he can even become violent, humiliating her or physically displaying his strength. While he won't stop dominating her in any way he can, nothing in the world would make him give her up.
In all cases of extreme jealousy, it's all about a desperate attempt to find personal fulfillment and worth through an imaginary perfect kind of love, which causes an equal amount of pain for both men and women.
Copyright © 2009 Doctissimo
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