10 Causes of Jealousy in a Relationship

10 Causes of Jealousy in a Relationship

Jealousy could result from being suspicious towards your partner; resentment towards someone for a perceived advantage or superiority they hold, and envy towards another’s possessions, or a close concern for someone. Arguably, jealousy is something everyone is born with; it is one’s inert ability, funny. In some cases, jealousies are advantageous while in some cases, problematic, which could even result in a breakup. There are different reasons or causes of jealousy in a relationship, some of which are: 

Causes of Jealousy in a Relationship

1. Keeping in Touch With Your Ex

Some relationships end between partners due to incompatibility, disagreement, infidelity, and the likes, while some are as a result of external forces outside of those in the relationship. If the latter is the case, there is a proclivity that one will feel the need to see, talk to, or mingle with their ex because the love is still there. Now when this happens, the present partner, be it the guy or the lady will start to feel jealous.

Also, in a situation whereby a couple is divorced and both are happily married to different people, there is a need for the ex to communicate with each other most especially if there are kids in between; the wellbeing of their children is their responsibility. Now as a partner of either of the two, jealousy is something you will feel. You can’t help it.

2. Having Friends of the Opposite Sex

This is one of the common causes of jealousy in a relationship, only a few persons will disagree. Most people like the feeling of “I am the only for my man/woman and so, no one from the opposite sex should come close to my man/woman”. 

In Northern Nigeria, it is evident that men and women hardly engage in boy/girl friendship and so, when you see your partner with the opposite sex, jealousy will set in. On the contrary, this is not true among the educated Northern Nigerians, majorly.

3. Inadequate Attention

Everyone by nature needs attention – attention from the opposite sex, be it your boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, or wife.

When you care about someone, you will require lots of attention from them. If that attention you crave is channeled in a different direction, jealousy will set in. In the case of a boy/girl relationship, a partner (married couples including) feels jealous when the other is busy concentrating more on other stuff or devoting most of their time in, maybe sports, work, studies etcetera.

Married couples, especially husbands, complain a lot. Most women tend to give more of their attention to their children than their husbands. The attention decreases as the number of children increases. They kind of feel their husbands are grown-ups and so can take care of themselves, but their kids are vulnerable. This results in jealousy on the side of the husbands.

For instance, I once read a story online by a whore saying, a man asked for her hands in marriage simply because he doesn’t get the attention he wants from his wife. She (the whore) eventually turned him down because she doesn’t want to be in any committed relationship. How absurd!

4. Feeling Insecure

This is the fear of been replaced due to one’s incompetence, complacency, or inability to do certain things for their partner. This comes into play when you feel you are not exactly what your partner wants in a man or woman, or when you are not self-confident.

Insecure feeling tends to make you feel jealous whenever you see your partner with someone who has what they want or need that you don’t. This feeling can be blood-sucking; one needs to find a way to do away with it.

It might interest you to read on Improve Your Self-Confidence With These 6 Proven Ways and The Feeling of Insecurity and How to Avoid It.

5. Competition

In the Northern part of Nigeria, sometimes siblings find themselves living in the same house or compound with their wives.

Oftentimes, women tend to disagree on things amongst themselves by default – things that may not even matter at all. This causes jealousy in a situation whereby one of the siblings happens to be richer, more handsome, has a sense of dressing, etc. than the other. The latter’s wife may sometimes get jealous of the former’s wife. This gives birth to an ‘unhealthy competition’. In some cases, this jealousy or rivalry is stronger and fiercer than one between or amongst co-wives.

6. Trust Issues

Trust is something partners need to earn between themselves, not demand. In a situation where a partner is making frequent calls or being visited regularly by a colleague of the opposite sex from the office or workplace, this causes jealousy; or a situation where partners have been engaged in pre-marital sex (in the case of married couples and boy/girl relationship), it is easy for jealousy in regards to that surface.

Whenever your partner is not with you, you feel they are with someone else. Avoiding premarital sex and unnecessary communication between you and the opposite sex will play a huge role in eliminating jealousy between partners.

7. Perfectionism

This is one of the causes of jealousy in a relationship. Perfectionism is an unwillingness to settle for anything less than perfect. Some people are perfectionists; a brother of mine is like that too. Everything and everyone has to be perfect or else, not significant.

People like that get easily jealous when they see you (their partner) with someone better than them.

Loosen up a little, and you will find everyone perfect in their own way, you perfectionist! Lolz.

8. Stalking Your Partner

Another cause of jealousy is when you keep following or stalking your partner; knowing his/her every movement, monitoring their phone calls or text messages, unnecessarily meddling in their affairs, and the likes.

No one is perfect; we all make mistakes. By so doing, you will find things that are hurting and make you jealous – things that you will later wish you never saw or heard.

9. Complementing on Other Peoples’ Attractiveness

Some people are fond of doing so, most especially men. Do not do this to your partner most especially in their presence. Not cool!

Everyone needs to feel they are the most attractive person their partner’s eyes have ever seen (even if obviously, the reverse is the case), anything short of that could be a disaster.

Guys, STOP IT!

10. Not Telling Your Partner What Makes You Jealous

If you are feeling jealous in a relationship, chances are your partner already knows, or they don’t. In either case, let them know what makes you jealous through effective communication means, and help them know how to avoid it.

Keeping it all to yourself won’t solve anything. Trust me. If they probably haven’t noticed you are jealous, telling them will be a good idea.


All the above-mentioned causes of jealousy and more could result in nullifying a relationship.

A jealous partner is oftentimes too busy to see the reality of things around their partners; they only tend to see what their hearts or minds want them to see.

The best and ultimate thing to do is to TRUST your partner more than anyone, and it’s a GOAL!

If you find the article useful, kindly comment on the comments section, and also, tell which of the causes of jealousy do you think was left out?

Related: 7 Reasons Why Relationships Fail

How to Easily Recognize and Control Your Emotions

How to Easily Recognize and Control Your Emotions

I need you to picture yourself arriving late for an appointment. Unfortunately, you lost the contract you’ve worked hard for. Heading back home in disappointment, it begins to rain, while hurrying to take shelter, a reckless driver drove past you and spilt muddy water on your outfit. What would be your mood at that instance? An ample number of persons give in to anger, transfer of aggression, retaliating with harsh words, smashing valuables, oftentimes shedding tears to let the pain out.

However, your body and mood begin to return to normality after you’ve relaxed, perhaps taken a nap. You start seeking encouragement to comfort yourself, while in that process, flashbacks on the damages you did a few hours ago start replaying in your head, and you wonder “how on earth did you do all that”? Most times you feel you’re been manipulated by an unknown force and can’t find an explanation. Well, the resultant effect of your mood at all times is controlled by your emotions. Therefore, it’s necessary to know how to recognize emotions, likewise learn to manage them to prevent hurting yourself and others.

What are Emotions?

Emotions are intense feelings with biological origin resulting from neuropsychological changes in the human body. Connected with one’s temperament, behaviour, personality, thoughts, moods, creativity, and motivation.

Where Does Emotion Come From?

Psychologists believe emotions are the results of changes within the body, derived from the heart. While neurologists proposed that emotions are produced by the brain. The brain coordinates everything within the body including emotions.

The brain contains a limbic system that houses various tissues in charge of controlling emotions, also, emotions are coded into the DNA. These issues include;

The hypothalamus which is in charge of sexual response, hormone release, and temperature regularly

The amygdala regulates responses to things happening around such as fear and pleasure.

The hippocampus is responsible for preserving and retrieving memories.

There limbic cortex controls mode, inspiration, motivation, and judgment. 

Why Are Emotions Important?

Humans rarely pay attention to their feelings until it gets out of control. The decisions you make daily are influenced by your emotions. Likewise, Our response to our environment and situation around.

Mastering your emotions prevents hurts and enables you to coordinate yourself. If your emotions control you, definitely your entire life becomes disarranged. How to recognize emotions are necessary to aid you to control them and channel your energy in the right direction.

Categories Of Emotions

1. Negative Emotions

These are sets of feelings, behaviour, and response which inflict discomfort, pain, and damages on the initiator and those around. Once these emotions begin to control a person, his energy is channelled in the wrong direction.

Furthermore, staying on negative emotions for long increases stress hormones and eventually affects your health negatively. How to recognize emotions with negative effects are easy to spot on the surface and is controlled majorly by the amygdala. There are so many types of negative emotions;

1. Anger

A state of displeasure and hostility. Control by the amygdala in the brain. There is a release of a chemical known as catecholamines which leads to an outburst of energy. Signs of anger include;

  • Sweaty palms
  • Frown looks
  • Forming fist
  • Increase in heartbeat
  • Grinding of teeth
  • Clenching jaw
  • Shaking and trembling
  • Sarcastic responses
  • Yelling and shouting
  • Depression
  • Absence of humor.

2. Fear

This is a state of being terrified and uncomfortable induced by someone or something. To recognize fear lookout for the following;

  • Rapid Heartbeat
  • Sweating uncontrollably
  • Raised of eyebrows
  • Discomfort in the stomach
  • Trembling
  • Nervousness
  • Short breath
  • Quick short movement.

3. Sadness

A mental disorder with a feeling of depression, unhappiness, and worthlessness. Oftentimes, when things don’t go as planned sadness steps in. Likewise, when one experiences a loss. Methods use in recognizing that one is sad includes; 

  • Self-isolation
  • Lack of focus/concentration
  • Unenthusiastism
  • Tiredness
  • Moody looks
  • Despair
  • Too much sleep or lack of sleep
  • Quietness
  • Loss of interest
  • Emptiness
  • Tearful 

4. Jealousy

It’s a feeling of resentment, envy, fear, and insecurity towards someone or something. This is caused by low self-esteem. Signs of jealousy include;

  • Giving of false compliment
  • Hatred
  • Quick to criticize
  • Judgmental
  • Unnecessary show-off
  • Unhealthy comparison
  • Celebrate failure
  • Ignore achievement

5. Loneliness

Research shows that adults above 65 years feel the heat of loneliness more. Loneliness is a feeling of separation and abandonment. How to recognize emotions displaying loneliness include;

  • Sleeplessness
  • Unproductiveness
  • Drawn to possession
  • Negative thought system
  • Easily gets annoyed
  • Frequent illness
  • Tiredness
  • Cut-off from others.

2. Positive Emotions

These are sets of pleasurable sensations that are always desirable. Once activated it brings peace and enthusiasm. It erases a pessimistic attitude, gives your reasons to live, reasons to help others, and guides you to make profitable decisions. Also, it’s a feeling of gratitude, influenced by the amygdala in the limbic system. There are so many types of positive emotions.

1. Happiness

I honestly think happiness is being present and finding joy in every moment

Aimee Marino

Therefore, Happiness is a choice to maintain inner peace despite your current circumstances. How to recognize true happiness entails;

  • Open-minded
  • Worrying less
  • Thankfulness
  • Supportive/Encouraging
  • Living in the moment
  • Celebrate good
  • Enjoy nature
  • Love/value yourself
  • Laughing out loud

2. Contentment

A neurological feeling of happiness and satisfaction with one’s current stage of life while hoping for something higher. Signs to note about contentment includes;

  • Being true to yourself
  • Setting your needs within your financial carrying capacity
  • Humility
  • Confidence in one strength And talent
  • Cheerful mood
  • Been realistic
  • Healthy routine
  • Lack of envy and greed

3. Love

It’s an emotional feeling of affection and attraction towards someone or something which propels you to the extent of sacrificing your all to see them happy.

Hence, they are included as one of your priorities. To tell if you’re in love or someone loves you, check out for the following signs;

  • Selflessness
  • Spending time with loved ones
  • Constant thought about what you love
  • Notice every little change about that person or thing.
  • Speak about that person/thing all the time.
  • Cherish and values that person/thing.
  • Openness
  • Feeling of happiness around that person/things.
  • Been caring

4. Trust

It’s the state of dependability and reliability on someone or in your ability. Signs of trust includes;

  • Respect boundaries
  • Commitment
  • Gratitude.
  • Confident
  • Loyalty
  • Doesn’t compromise
  • Forgives easily
  • Consistency

5. Positive Anticipation

This is an eager expectation for an upcoming event. Positive anticipation induces emotions to cope with stress and disappointment.

How to recognize positive anticipation emotions is often trickish because not everyone can differentiate between positive or negative anticipation. Signs include;

  • Hyper activeness
  • Cognizant
  • Positive thought
  • Happiness
  • Planning and orderliness
  • Been nervous
  • Hope
  • Alertness

How To Manage Emotions

In addition to how you can recognize your emotions, here are ways to control them most especially the negative emotions.

1. Give Yourself Space

The moment you discover two to three signs of your predominant emotions is displaying, deep within you, you’re aware of the usual out-burst around people.

Immediately, excuse yourself from among others to prevent further retaliation, especially signs of anger and jealousy.

2. Develop a Thankful Heart

Don’t spend your entire day complaining about what isn’t right, use that period to appreciate the wonderful things in your life, around you, and in the lives of others.

A thankful heart is an antidote to loneliness and sadness.

3. Take control of Your Emotions

Your emotions are subjected to your will depending on how you use them. For instance when the light goes off, usually you begin to panic due to darkness.

However, don’t give in to fear, decide to take control and search for the nearest source of light, probably your phone. By so doing your bravery and courage comes alive.

4. Generating Positive Energy Helps Manage Negative Emotions

To trash out, negative emotions surround yourself with Positive personalities. Who would encourage you to live out your best version?

Also, read, watch, and listen to something that fills your mind with positivity and hope.

5. Consider Others Before Giving in to Negative Emotions

Your emotions may appear superior to your will and you assume you can’t control it. That’s when you should reflect on the effect the outburst of your emotions would have on others. Hence, calm down and subject your emotions to your will.


The signs on how to recognize emotions are useful in detecting our personal feelings at all points in time and telling how others are feeling. From a psychologist’s viewpoint, our environment influences our emotions. Hence, become conscious of the things surrounding you, which your mind is exposed to. Take charge of your emotions.

 Perhaps, you have experienced the effect of negative emotions, do well to share in the comment section below.

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