His Baggage, Your Jealousy

What should you do if you're in a relationship with the person you see as "the one", but he carries around all of the hurt from past relationships...making you jealous of those girls...

asked by emsly85 4 days ago

emsly85, the key to what your asking is revealed in your question.

It's part of the natural course of a good relationship that ex's and past loves come up from time to time. You had a life prior to this relationship just like he did. It's perfectly normal that you share yourself, and talk about the experiences that made you who you are today.

But when someone has been hurt in a past relationship, those experiences can be toxic. Instead of recalling a time or a place in the normal unfolding of conversation, it's a painful process.

But emsly85, your question involves multiple past relationships. You said, he carries around the hurt of past relationships. He's been hurt more than once.

And the kicker to your question is how you ended it: "Making me jealous of all those girls."

Has he been hurt multiple times? Why is that? Were all his ex's really bitches, or does he have a habit of repeating the same patterns and making the same mistakes?

And if you're jealous, is that something he's aware of? Is there any chance he's kind of into your jealousy? It can be flattering.

But what I'm really wondering about here, is why you are jealous. And I think the answer to your question will be revealed when you figure this part out.

People can feel jealousy for an array of reasons. Maybe you love your partner so much that just the idea that anyone ever had him before drives you nuts. Maybe you feel jealous for good reason: maybe you know in your heart he hasn't fully closed some of those chapters and this makes you nervous.

Maybe you're envious of the power. If he is still carrying pain from these past relationships that suggests a certain amount of control that they still have over him. Maybe you want to be the one with the power, with some real control over the way he feels.

Another possibility is that this is your issue, not his. Maybe he has had some hurt in the past, but has moved on in a normal way. Maybe it's you that hasn't. Maybe you're projecting, or for some reason when he mentions a memory, you're processing it in a way that it really wasn't intended.

emsly85, I wish I could give you a solid answer on exactly what's going on with you and your partner. Unfortunately, with the little bit of info you were able to share, I can't do that. However, I hope I was able to frame for you some questions and thought processes that will help you figure this out.

There should be a healthy amount of balance in the way someone feels and shares regarding their former relationships. I say this in all of my hubs - communication and honesty are really so important in the success of any relationship. If he's communicating, and being honest with you about ex relationships and past heart breaks, it could be a very positive sign of how much he trusts you, and how much he wants to share with you. On the other hand, if you feel he's giving you more than a normal balanced share of information, you have to consider that he's feeding your jealousy because he's enjoying it.

Try to listen openly to those moments where you're feeling jealous. Be honest with him about what you're feeling and be honest with yourself. Try to be clear - is he sharing and letting you see the vulnerable parts of him, or does he like making you jealous, or is he obsessing on past hurt and stuck in an unhealthy cycle of thought because of it.

Best to you. Keep us posted.

All test is original content by Veronica

All photos are used with permission.

All videos are courtesy of Youtube.com

If you liked this hub, please give it a Thumbs Up. Thanks!

More by this Author


Comments 15 comments

Gerg profile image

Gerg 7 years ago from California

Nicely expressed, Veronica - a lot of wisdom here.


white atlantic profile image

white atlantic 7 years ago from INDIA

good writing


emsly85 7 years ago

Veronica,

Thank you very much for answering my question. I'm sorry it doesn't give much room to explain the whole situation. I'll fill you in...

The problem is that he has been hurt by many girls, but by his own admission, there were things that he did to cause the relationships to end as well. He has been cheated on (the last one getting pregnant by his best friend)...etc....and so he definitely has trust issues. I always tell him that I wish I could fix his heart...and he knows what I mean. He still "carries" some of that with him in the way that he's not so quick to trust or think about the future with someone because he's always waiting on someone to betray him.

I think my end of it is a mixture of the things you addressed....it makes me so angry that women treat men the way they do (and vice versa). I would never dream of treating someone I loved and cared for in that way. I definitely get angry when I think about it. He's precious sweet and daily tells me that he had to go through them to get to me...and maybe he wouldn't have appreciated our relationship otherwise...and I know he's being honest. The other part is that because he carries that hurt, I do sometimes wonder if he's completely over it all. We talk about it though and he says that he has no feelings for them one way or the other...he's not even angry at them. I think that I'm jealous of those girls because they had such a hold on him and misused that trust he had in them....so now I already start at a disadvantage because eventhough I've never done anything for him to mistrust me, he doesn't completely trust that I'm on his side or looking out for his best interest.

Things definitely get better as we communicate about it....and the last time it came up we had been in a fight and he said that for a few days he couldn't get one of them off of his mind. He said it was just dreams and thinking about them....not in a longing type of way....just constantly in the back of his mind. I told him I thought that was natural when you're in a relationship that is experiencing problems to look back on old ones and romanticize them...and forget the bad and focus only on the good...because you feel like your current situation is suffering.

anyway....I appreciate everything you said....it makes me feel better about the situation as a whole...and I know that only time will heal his wounds...and only having me show him day in and day out that he can trust me will truly heal him...

thank you!


Veronica profile image

Veronica 7 years ago from NY Author

emsly85

From what you just added, I feel very strongly that his "carrying" the hurt from the past relationships is actually a good and healing thing. Much of your wording lends to this, especially that you say he admitted to adding to the problems he had in the past with his own poor actions, plus that you said the last time he brought one up, you two were in a fight. On some level, he was recalling that past failure as a learning mechanism, or a warning system, to help him handle his fight with you in a healthier way.

These are good signs!!

He is aware of his mistakes in prior relationships - and there are all kinds of mistakes: trusting the wrong person, not seeing the signs of betrayal, plus his own errors and actions that caused problems. He's hanging on to the bad seeds so that he can make sure nothing like that grows again.

There is a saying about how a dog will always return to it's vomit. Even a dog can show you where it all went wrong. He may not understand exactly what happened, or why, but even a dog can say - HERE. THIS is what happened. This is bad, and it happened.

In his own innate and purely natural way, I think your partner is doing just that. He's holding on to those things and saying - HERE. This was BAD. This happened, and I m trying to understand and learn, and not repeat this pattern.

My advice at this point for you, is to try to let go of the jealousy you feel. Try to appreciate how hard he's working to learn from those errors, try to help him out by encouraging him to talk them through. Make sure he knows you trust him, and he can trust you and he can talk to you about absolutely anything. It really is precious and sweet, like you said, that he acknowledges what he went through to get to you. Try to consciously think about that when you feel those little jealousy pangs. Try to see - those women don't have a hold on him, YOU have the hold, and he's only recalling them so he can work on his relationship with YOU. :D

I'm so very impressed with his effort, and with your total honesty. I really have a strong feeling that you two will be just fine.


emsly85 7 years ago

thank you so much :) I feel like I know you....or at least that if I did know you, you'd be a great friend!

He's really the first guy that I felt it was "right" with...so it helps to know that what we're going through is normal and necessary.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA

It was big pleasure to read this Hub. You are great counsellor! Thumbs up!


The Lonely Hubber 7 years ago

Hi Veronica

I need counseling ;C


goldentoad profile image

goldentoad 7 years ago from Free and running....

I'll say


Mighty Mom profile image

Mighty Mom 7 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

Dang, GT. How do you get these women to write about you all over Hub Pages? Did you put out some "calling all exes" memo or something?


goldentoad profile image

goldentoad 7 years ago from Free and running....

I slept around a lot, they just come out


emsly85 6 years ago

So I wrote this question 7 months ago...and at this point, I feel like he puts more energy into being angry or sad about past relationships than he does into loving me. I've told him that recently and he says that he doesn't know what to do...that he's tried to let go of everything, but it just keeps coming back. He finally admitted that he IS angry with them. When he talks about it, it's like it just happened yesterday...I just don't understand it. I'm also to the point where we've been together for more than 2 years, and in the beginning he would talk about wanting to get married and have kids and that he didn't want to have kids without being married and that he could see himself married to me...and now, all of a sudden...he says to me the other day that he isn't sure he will ever want to get married. WTF?! Am I supposed to take that as a hint? A really big hint? Since then I've been torn between just cutting ties and letting him see if he likes life better without me...or just sticking it out. I would NEVER want to get married to someone that wasn't ready/didn't want to marry me, but at the same time...I don't think he should expect me to just hang around until he makes up his mind (in my head, after 2 years, you either know or you don't...not sure what is going to change). That's one side of my thinking...the other is that I love him very much and I don't want to say goodbye to him...and sometimes I think I would wait forever for him to be ready except that I do want to have kids someday. I don't know what to do.


emsly85 6 years ago

I should also tell you, he tells me all the time that I'm the one...he even told me this weekend that he wasn't that hard to figure out and that I was his "one and only". My boyfriend isn't mushy...so I know it took a lot for him to say that...i just read all of these other articles saying that if he says he isn't ready, he's probably just not ever going to be ready to marry YOU...i really wish i could turn off my brain!


emsly85 6 years ago

I should also tell you, he tells me all the time that I'm the one...he even told me this weekend that he wasn't that hard to figure out and that I was his "one and only". My boyfriend isn't mushy...so I know it took a lot for him to say that...i just read all of these other articles saying that if he says he isn't ready, he's probably just not ever going to be ready to marry YOU...i really wish i could turn off my brain!


Veronica profile image

Veronica 6 years ago from NY Author

Emsly85,

The one thing that eats at me here is that he is still referring to multiple past gf's. It's not that one woman did him in, it's a multitude.

I still think he was trying, and you were right for him, and things were working.

However, I think that time has passed. 7 months and this is still going on, and now he's saying things like he doesn't "know" if he ever wants to get married. You're right about that one - that is a big fat freaking red-flag of a hint.

I don't think he wants to get better. I don't think he wants to let go of the anger and the pain of the past.

Did you ever know a girl that was attracted to the bad boys? She may have dated guys in bands, or guys that were known womanizers, or guys that were always in trouble. Elusive, mysterious, unattainable, rebels that in the end left her hurt? And then she meets a "Nice" guy. He cares, he doesn't cheat, he's actually good for her. And she tries, she gives him a real try and she knows in her head that this is the smart relationship, the right relationship. But, eventually, the heart wants what it wants, and she just can't make a go of it with a nice guy. It's like she's addicted to chaos and turmoil. She craves being with someone that isn't easy, that isn't nice or good to her.

I think your bf has that syndrome. I think the fact that it's multiple ex's reflects a state of mind he can't let go of. I think no matter what he realizes about himself, he likes being hurt and broody and angry. It's just him, it's who he is. I think he really cared about you and knew you were "right" for him. I think he wanted to have a healthy relationship, the kind that you could provide for him, and he saw his future in it, discussing marriage, and working out the "problems" and wrongs of psycho ex relationships.

But in the end, I think he's just one of those people that craves chaos. He doesn't want to be in a nice relationship, as much as he knows it's the healthy thing to do. I think that's the conflict you're seeing, as he says you're the one, and at the same time says he doesn't know if he will ever marry. He wants things to work with you, but they are never going to. It doesn't matter what he knows in his head. In the end, the heart wants what it wants.

I think your instinct to let go of this is on the money.


emsly85 6 years ago

I think you're right...I was reading another one of your HUBS about when you're basically playing house and we've definitely done that...it's like he's got everything but the responsibility of actually being married to me. We have things in both of our names, we lived together for a year (he recently moved out, but didn't want to break up...another red flag)...ugh, I just can't believe I've gotten myself into this situation, I'm a smart girl! ha...I've just seriously never been so in love with someone... and i don't mean the butterfly kind of love, but I made a decision to LOVE him...through everything we've been through, I made the choice to love him. I don't do anything halfway and I have been "all in" when it comes to our relationship, from the beginning. I feel like he's going in reverse...or he put the e-brake on...i told him that last night. he asked me to come stay the night and I got up after just laying down and told him I didn't think it was a good idea for us to be staying with each other anymore because it wasn't good for my head and I went home...it's like pretending to me...it's soooo hard for me to go backwards when I have so many plans for our future together...getting married is the least of it...if there were signs that he was thinking about us together, that would be a different story...but I don't think he is. I think i've known what I needed to do for a really long time...it's just following through with it...I just keep hoping he'll snap out of it and treat me the way I deserve to be treated.

Submit a Comment
New comments are not being accepted on this article at this time.
Click to Rate This Article
working