Q&A with Dr. Carletta Perry: Jealous girlfriend

Published 9:50 pm Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Q: Why is my girlfriend jealous of me offering counsel to other women?

A: Now, this is one of those simple questions, yet it is complicated.

I am sure you are aware that men and women are different. Well, men and women also see intimate relationships through different lenses sometimes.

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Particularly in our society today, you will find varying definitions of what it means to be in a relationship. Monogamy, for some, is an option, rather than the expectation.

Your question is related to the fear of infidelity that many men and women are not even aware of. I have found that many men and women define infidelity, or cheating, differently. More important, they have different ideas of what is considered cheating.

First, let’s be clear that no one likes to be cheated on in any form or fashion. However, research has found that women fear emotional cheating and men fear physical cheating.

Men believe in their position as a partner and that it is stable; she loves me and no one can take her away. Therefore, typically a man does not care if his partner talks to another man or listens to another man. This is true as long as there is no touching, flirting or physical cheating.

Women, on the other hand, need some time to pass to truly feel loved, and every interaction with her partner is an opportunity to build trust. In addition, women create multiple emotional connections but only one physical connection (well, some women).

Men do not typically create multiple emotional connections like women. Therefore, when a man makes an emotional connection with another women, it is assumed that he must be interested in this other woman, because now he is talking to her, listening to her, giving advice and counsel, and feeling something (happiness, gratitude, or sympathy) for this other person.

He just made an emotional connection … to someone else of the opposite sex.

Jealousy is simply the fear of losing the one you love. Don’t waste time saying: “Trust me, I’m not interested in that person.” Don’t argue over insecurities, because everyone has them.

Trust must be earned. Be trustworthy and show her that you can be trusted.

Then, dig deep and answer these two questions: (1) Why did she choose you to confide in? (2) What is it in you that compels you to be her counselor and to be there for her?

In closing, we often think that we are good multitaskers, but we can never give 100 percent if we are juggling more than we can handle. Relationships, like multitasking, are a lot to handle. When you split up our time among multiple relationships, you are not invested at home.

Ponder this: Is counseling other women worth losing what the two of you have survived, what you two have created, and the love you share with your partner?

Dr. Carletta N. Perry offers therapeutic life, relationship and career coaching. Catch her television show, “It’s Life Changing with Dr. Carletta Perry,” Sundays at 11:30 p.m. on WSKY/SKY-4 and on YouTube. Email her at contact@drcarlettaperry.com.