Wednesday, March 31, 2010

What Kind of Jealousy Do You See?

posted by: Michele Olson

Looking into Steven Stosny’s article on I learned something. There are two types of jealousy.

Simply jealousy and complex jealousy.

While one might argue that all jealousy is a little complex, each type of jealousy has a different outcome. Simply jealousy kept on a leash can be a good thing. Complex jealousy devalues and leads to control and punishment. Understanding that one is healthy and one is not makes looking at our types of jealousy worthy of a few moments of our time.

Here’s an overview of both, but I encourage you to read the article in its entirety and measure your jealousy level.

Simple Jealousy highlights from the article:
Starts as a feeling of discomfort at the prospect of losing reward or affection to someone else.
Motivates reward/affection seeking behavior, you try harder to act right.
Functions as a kind of distance-regulator. The feelings can motivate more connecting behavior.
Raises the value of the loved one, you want more time.

Complex Jealousy highlights from the article:
You become smaller and less valuable because someone is manipulating or betraying you.
Motives attack either overtly or in your head. You devalue and try to control others.
Becomes problematic because of a poorly-integrated sense of self.
Devalues the loved one, you want to control, punish or avoid.

Complex jealousy has an obsessional quality to it according to Steven. You can wreck your reality if you keep going down this road.

What about you? Which type of jealousy do you deal with? In tomorrow’s blog we’ll look at the article on how to regulate complex jealousy before if ruins you and your relationship.

Let us hear your feedback on jealousy in relationships.

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