What You Should Tell Your Boyfriend About Jealousy
By Reza Ganjavi
Many relationships are paralyzed by jealousy. It doesn't always start like that. Jealousy is a disease that grows and continues to infest relationships if it's not cured. The infestation mostly happens outwardly. It can also happen inwardly in the form of insecurities which are only a problem because they're not understood. Insecurity is a problem born out of search for security. Insecurity is not there because of a need. It is posterior. Needs are mainly food, clothing, shelter, which are important for physical survival. The concept of psychological need is an illusion.
When you are psychologically nothing – which sounds awful but in reality is great – there’s no psychological need; your happiness does not depend on something or someone. It’s a strange idea in today’s world which promotes egotism, pretending to be somebody, portraying your every move on social media, living one's life according to what people think, and one's image of oneself, and so on, which are all movements in the sphere of thinking, which is limited and divisive for reasons that are outside the scope of this essay.
Thought also creates the idea of the self, sense of self, “me”, “I”, which is a bundle of memories bubbling as thoughts to give a temporal sense of self. The mind connects the discrete bubbles and creates the illusion of the self being a continuous, factual entity, which it is not – it is a fictitious entity, bubbles of memories as “I”. We’re not talking about the physical self and practical ideas – purely speaking about the psychological realm. This sense of self is perpetuated, continues, promoted, sustained, in various, often strange ways, which the society and digital society (social media) promotes.
Thus, this powerful fact of being nothing psychologically, which is very powerful. Living a life that is contrary to that creates problems and complications, and thus the prevalence of so much psychological chaos, and widespread use of psychotropic medications.
So the feeling of insecurity in a relationship is not born out of an innate need for security. It's born out of movements of thinking that are not understood, are not attended to, which self-perpetuate in that realm of inattention, and manifest as tumors like jealousy.
Our educational systems mostly do not teach us to look inside, pay attention to our reactions, to stay with our reactions, to open them up, to look at them, to not run away from them, to not be so engaged in so many speedy things that one has no time to pay attention to inner movements.
That is how it was before prevalence of social media. Social media started taking more chunks of time out of people's lives, and negatively impact the most important brain cleaning process: sleep. Don’t get me wrong, I am not against social media. It's a wonderful tool, but it's a fact that it has become like conventional television or radio where you're sucked in by advertising which is carefully designed to hijack your attention or keep your attention hijacked by hypnotizing you; e.g., talk-show hosts start talking nonsense to lose your attention and get you start daydreaming, and without you knowing you're already listening to an advertisement. Let’s not talk about the quality of programming. At least with internet you have more freedom to choose what to watch, e.g. on YouTube you can block recommendations from channels you don’t like.
New Generation of social media like TikTok took the ridicule to a new level in terms of grasp. I was very disturbed by the CEO of TikTok's testimony at US Congress in March 2023. He was so incredibly superficial, unauthentic, incompetent where every other thing he was challenged with he said he will look into it. He should have already addressed those important topics like how TikTok dumps junk on Western kids but exposes Chinese kids to educational material. I also didn’t believe a word of what he said about Chinese government not having access to its systems. China is a corrupt dictatorship. What they're doing to the youth in the West is acceptable. It's unacceptable that food disorders which used to be prevalent among teenagers found their way among grade school children, and so on.
The point was between largely inadequate education which ignores attention to the inner world, and exponential prevalence of social media which leaves people with even less time, and the faster spinning of the planet Earth itself (according to scientists there is no explanation in their minds, but in my mind it seems to be because the entire planet is microwaved with millions of cell towers, and cell masts are microwave ovens, and it's well-known that microwave ovens cook food by speeding up the movement of the cells. The Planet is vibrating faster; it's spinning faster. The consequence is that people have less time. So these three factors together are all against the extremely important act of attention to the inner world/inner movements.
So back to the subject of the jealous boyfriend, or girlfriend, or when jealousy arises if there is no attention to it, it comes and goes and grows into a disease. But if there is attention to it one may realize many things such as possessiveness, where you think you own a person, or habit where the jealousy just comes habitually, or insecurity; and all of these are related.
So this is something for each person to free themselves from. It can be complicated because there are lower brain conditionings inherited from animals or shared by animals, but as humans we can be free from that to a good extent. So jealousy may not be eradicated and evaporated permanently but it stops being a disease.
I know that in so many relationships jealousy paralyzes the relationship. I’ve known cases of a woman saying the man is so jealous that she is literally unable to have any social life. Or the doctor (friend of mine) was so stressed because his wife was viciously jealous of the nurses). I've heard so many stories from people of all ages about this disease.
So what you can tell your boyfriend is that I love you and nothing can take away that love and love is not exclusive and even if I love somebody else it doesn’t mean that I love you any less because love is infinite. And if you don't want to say that much, when jealousy comes up you can tell him that this is an issue, and that for his own sake at least he should look at it and understand it, understand how people are not cows or cars to be owned, and that you don't tolerate it.
It is extremely important to draw that line that you do not appreciate jealousy; jealousy is a violation of your freedom.
Jealousy is a declaration that you are a property, and he has a deed on you, he owns you.
Some people do the opposite. They tell the other that they appreciate the jealousy, that it makes them feel good that somebody feels jealous. That’s also an illness and such a relationship is sick in my view because one person is sick with jealousy and the other is sick with psychological shortcoming that needs jealousy, needs to be owned.
Well if he is jealous you should help him grow and end his jealousy, not by giving him comfort but to bring up the subject of the importance of understanding our reactions and the entire inner world which our educational system largely ignores so people grow up without the tools, without the skill, without even knowing that it's possible to look at the inner world during daily life and learn from one's own reactions, thoughts, feelings. That learning starts with awareness.