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Crazy-Makers: Dealing with Passive-Aggressive People

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7 Rules and 8 Methods for Responding to Passive-aggressive People

What to Do When Your Jealousy Threatens to Destroy Your Marriage

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Audio Version of Article: Crazy-Makers: Passive-Aggressive People

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Jealousy Assistance

If you use these audios, please support their development. Just $1 for each audio you use could greatly help with creating more audios!

Learning to Control Jealousy

When Is Jealousy Irrational? All emotions are normal. An emotion in and of itself is not irrational. However, what we decide based upon our emotions can be irrational and lead to destructive behavior. Although certain behaviors related to an emotion can create problems, the emotion itself may have some validity. The purpose of emotions is to provide us with information. Once we have the information, we may then choose appropriate action. However, as with any information, emotions may be misunderstood. How we make sense of an emotion may not always lead to the accurate meaning of the emotion.

Therefore, our chosen actions may not resolve the problem the emotion brought to our attention, or make even create additional difficulties. For example, let's look at the emotion of anger. Let's imagine a situation where a person is excluded from some event such as not being invited to a wedding. In that situation, it may be normal for the person to be hurt and angry. "How could she not invite me? I've always been there for her." Thus, the information the anger provides is that the friend feels rejected and left out of an important event. If the person recognizes this information, he may decide to respond by contacting his friend and communicating how he feels: "I don't understand why I wasn't included." In which case it is possible he might find out that the slight was unintentional, or there was a reasonable explanation, or maybe his friend has a problem with him that she hasn't addressed. No matter what the situation, it gives him an opportunity to confront the situation and try to resolve the problem. However, what if he misinterprets the anger: "She's always leaving me out. She doesn't really care about me" and convinces himself to reject her in turn. What if he decides to go as far as writing a scathing letter about how ungrateful and inconsiderate she is and sends it to her right before her wedding?

The first reaction to anger was based on rationally interpreting the anger and responding reasonably. However, the second response was an irrational interpretation which may lead to damaging the relationship beyond repair. In this article, we will examine the emotion of jealousy similarly and identify when it is irrational. In addition, we will look at other meanings of the emotion of jealousy and how to determine what the feeling is indicating. Finally, we will examine the causes of irrational jealousy and focus on methods of learning how to handle jealousy when it is irrational.Read more...
What to Do When Your Jealousy Threatens to Destroy Your Marriage Frequently, I am asked how to handle irrational jealous feelings. Usually, the individual recognizes that her feelings are unreasonable with no valid evidence but feels incapable of controlling the jealousy. In addition, the person usually recognizes the destructive nature of indulging in the feelings and the resultingbehavior. Such behavior typically involves excessive questioning of her spouse, suspiciousness, and accusations. Many spouses become extremely frustrated with this behavior because they have no way of proving their faithfulness. This leads to an escalating cycle of anger which is used as further evidence by the jealous spouse that her suspicions are correct.

The jealous spouse often desperately wants to stop the behavior but finds that he can't control the thoughts which makes him feel miserable. He believes that if he can just prove his suspicions one way or another, he will feel better. The unfortunate fallacy in this thinking, is that trust can never be proven; it can only be disproved. The definition of trust is the belief that something is true. Therefore, without evidence to the contrary, if we want a satisfying relationship, we have to choose to trust the person we love. Read more...

Rejection Sensitivity, Irrational Jealousy and Impact on Relationships As a child Cynthia's hyperactive behavior often annoyed others.  Her teachers frequently reprimanded her in school.  The other students called her "stupid" and refused to let her join them in activities.  At home, her father criticized her and beat her with a belt whenever her parents received a negative report from school.  Due to depression, her mother tended to ignore Cynthia's needs for emotional support and attention.  As a result, she grew up expecting rejection from others.  It seemed that no matter how hard she tried, all she experienced was rejection.

As an adult she had numerous unsuccessful relationships.  She desperately wanted the acceptance to be found in a relationship; however, she perceived her partner's behavior negatively often thinking about how he wasn't as committed to the relationship and that she was just good enough until someone else came along.  These thoughts led to hostility toward him and accusations "You don't care about me!"  Due to her focus on her worries about losing him she did not focus on his needs and provide him with emotional support.  Her partner tried to reassure her and comfort her at first but the constant negativity and hostility drained his ability to respond to her needs. Read more...

Jealousy Assistance Audio Download

Audio that helps you cope with an episode of jealousy. When you are caught up in the obsessive jealous thinking it is difficult to talk yourself out of it. This audio helps you challenge the jealous thinking and to remind you that the jealous behaviors only make the situation worse. The more you listen to it, the more you will be able to challenge the irrational jealous talk yourself.

NOTE: This audio is to help those with irrational jealousy. It is not for rational jealousy (when an event has actually occurred) nor is it for psychotic jealousy (when a person can't distinguish reality).

Jealousy: When the Damage is Done An internet reader, "Mike," wrote about a jealousy situation that he has begun to recognize but that has already caused extensive damage to his relationship: "Now, my spouse is hiding everything and refuses to discuss the topic. My gut feeling is that my spouse is out to get revenge, lying and is maybe now really cheating." He indicates that his wife has informed him she has the right to hide the cell phone bills, change e-mail passwords, and erase internet history because of his past behavior. He states,"I tried to explain what is causing my jealousy, yet I feel I'm not being heard or understood. Now, I feel like the one being "abused" because my spouse acts hostile to me and defensive whenever this subject...is brought up." Read more...

What to Do When Your Partner's Jealousy Threatens to Destroy Your Relationship I had some good questions on my website regarding handling a partner's irrational jealousy.  The reason I wrote the article What to Do When Your Jealousy Threatens to Destroy Your Marriage for the individual with the problem jealousy is because until that person decides to make changes nothing can be done to eliminate their jealousy.  That article has been very popular and many people have indicated to me that they are trying to change their behavior after reading it.  However, there are many other people who are not recognizing their jealous behavior and so their partners are writing to me asking what to do.
     Just because the person with the jealousy problem is the only one who can change it doesn't mean that there is nothing that you, as the partner, can do about your partner's jealousy.  However, the steps you can take may be very challenging and don't come without risk.  If you truly want a chance for your partner to change, the best place to start is with yourself.  By changing how you respond to your partner's jealousy you will develop a greater understanding of how difficult it is to make changes.  This increases your empathy for your partner especially if he/she is trying to make changes.  However, it may also make you less tolerant of someone refusing to recognize their problem or do anything about it.  This could be a healthy thing for you because you are less likely to remain in a destructive relationship.; Read more...