- 2 weeks ago
- Wedding: April 2020
I found the advice of everyone here very helpful in my one previous post. I read these boards often and feel like a lot of good advice is shared….I’m in my late 20s and getting perspective from indivuals that have a lot of experience with life and relationships is helpful! I tend to overthink.
My bf and I have been dating for about a year and so far are incredibly happy. We argue sometimes like any couple but we both help each other to approach disagreements with a pretty level head, and to see both sides and work things out quickly. We respect each other a lot because each of us works hard in life and puts equal effort into the relationship, emotionally, financially etc.
This guy is by far the kindest, most thoughtful, motivated and invested man I’ve ever dated (also in his 20s). IMO, he’s also the most attractive, physically and personality-wise. I’m 100% all about him and haven’t had eyes for anyone in the room since we got together. He’s the one that’s always there for me and I am well aware of this – I have male friends but it’s all strictly platonic and they are respectful of our relationship. He’s protective, attentive and very affectionate in public…I don’t mind this at all. I appreciate it and return the affection, compliment him all the time on his looks. He’s very funny and I tell him this often. He occasionally gets a little jealous of other guys when I’m paid attention but he laughs at himself for it. He lets me be myself and I never feel controlled or feel guilty interacting with anyone else.
The weird thing is, our only real point of repeated contention is my past relationships. I’ve only had one other long, serious relationship, but an average list of dating experiences that lasted anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, and that involved some sexual/physical encounters. Sometimes our conversations have led to talk of exes; he will ask questions about past relationships I’ve had and and he always gets upset (which for him usually means emotionally down, frustrated, etc.) after getting answers to these probing questions. I am a terrible liar and so if he asks about an ex, I’ll try to oblige without too much detail. I learned quickly to try to re-direct the conversation when these things come up, but if I ask him if we can talk about something else, he gets weirded out that I don’t want to answer the questions.
I ask why these things matter – exes are in the past, I don’t interact with any of them now aside from being facebook friends with a few where the relationship ended cordially – and he says he knows they shouldn’t matter, but admits that he has a sort of weird and painful jealousy of my exes and wishes I were never with any of them.
According to Google, retroactive jealousy is more common than I thought. He’s had many relationships in the past, and I try not to think about it (his ex wife is the hardest to forget because she still contacts him sometimes, and I’ll admit I get annoyed with all that but we’ve had to interact with her some). He dotes on me, so he never leaves me feeling insecure and I consider envying past exes as a waste of energy.
Just to be clear, also: these never turn into BIG fights, just sort of contentious verbal exchanges where I feel like I’m kind of defending myself and he’s getting upset over something that has no bearing on the present or on our relationship (from my perspective anyway).
Has this sort of jealousy ever existed in any of your relationships? Is it just insecurity? Is it a big deal or no? Did it fade away with some time and consistent reassurance, or no? I know 1 year is not long, so maybe someone with some more experience can advise whether this should be of any concern. Any advice appreciated. Thanks for reading…