What are its normal limits and when does it become toxic?

What are its root causes, what triggers it and how does a person behave when he gets jealous.

Jealousy is a normal emotion, but if it goes beyond a certain limit and becomes obsessive and jealous, it can be toxic if it affects a person’s behavior and daily life, says a Greek expert.

Jealousy is a universal emotion, as explained by Ms. Smaragda Christakis, psychologist – psychotherapist, Mega and “All about our Life Vita” show. “There isn’t a person who hasn’t felt like they wanted to have something nice that someone else had, or wondered where their partner went and what might happen there,” she said. he said.

Jealousy, he explains, can be the pretension to possess a partner or other person of gifts, material goods, virtues, or social interaction that we wish to have.

The question is how far he reaches, which depends on his background. Is he “resting” on insecurities, or perhaps something deeper and psychopathology with other consequences? Is it jealousy or envy?

“It’s normal to have some dreams for myself, to want some things. It’s normal to say, “that’s nice, I’d like to get there, I’d like to buy that,” when I see someone else has them around me. That’s expected for most people,” Ms Christakis said.

However, if a person does not stop at this thought, but continues to decide to buy or destroy the object of jealousy because he cannot get it himself, then he has crossed the line. “This is not a healthy reaction of a balanced, healthy person. This is toxicity and psychopathology,” the expert clarifies. “Because constantly, obsessively following someone else is a sign of psychopathology.”

And the age thing

Jealousy is not the same at all ages. There is a big difference, e.g. To the jealousy we felt at 18 and at 38. And that’s because everything has a different degree of awareness and empathy. “Your experiences are different and you approach things differently,” Ms. Christakis said characteristically.

That’s why we perceive betrayal by a friend or partner differently when we’re 15 or 17 than we do as adults.

This difference is also reflected in the causes of jealousy at any age. Most people envy one or more of four things:

  • The appearance of other people
  • Personal success
  • Professional recognition
  • Financial comfort

Teenagers are most envious of other people’s appearance, and the second is material comfort. Adults are mainly envious of material comfort. And this is because most people believe that money is the main ingredient of success and happiness.

How does pathological jealousy manifest itself?

When a person reaches envy, there is a great tension in his behavior. A person who reaches this toxic jealousy can become aggressive in many ways, practical, verbal and even indirect.

He can, for example, slander the object of his jealousy. Or it can create negative situations for him. His extreme jealousy shows in the way he talks to her and reacts to her.

Intense jealousy can often give him physical symptoms such as headaches. These symptoms are related to the extreme stress he feels and, for example, anxiety until he learns. where and with whom was his partner.

“Jealousy cannot be easily covered up,” Ms. Christakis stressed. “Those who experience this should look for themselves a little, see why it happens to them.”

So why are we jealous? He explained mainly from insecurity. More or less, we all think that we are somehow left behind or that someone is going to take from us what we want and have. But it is not easy for someone to admit it, especially when it comes to toxic jealousy and envy.

Social Media

The truth is that jealousy has always been there. But now it’s intensified because it’s so easy to compare ourselves to other people. As Ms. Kristakis characteristically says, “until a few years ago, the comparison was made with the neighbor’s daughter. Now it’s happening all over the planet.”

The role of social media is crucial in this, where there are endless opportunities for comparisons. Parents are called upon to give children and adolescents the right tools to understand themselves and their abilities and to filter what they see.

For adults, things can be more difficult. People with pathological jealousy rarely admit it, especially when the jealousy is related to a romantic relationship. As a rule, they give themselves an alibi. Constantly “you don’t see what he did, you don’t see how he treated me, it’s not my fault.”

“In this case, there are big gaps in terms of personal value and sense of approval,” the expert said. “Thus, we are forced to ‘draw’ our energy and need from the other, but this is impossible.”

The role of relatives and friends

These people can be greatly helped by the environment they live in. Either a family environment if there are close relationships, or good friends with whom the sufferer has a positive attitude and will not take their words negatively.

These people may slowly begin to show him some of the mistakes in his behavior.

But intense jealousy can’t always be resolved with a simple conversation. “You cannot change the mind of a person who is addicted to something with just good-natured dialogue. This person needs a lot of time and hard work to be successful,” Mrs. Christakis said.

Therefore, although not all patients need the help of a specialist, people suffering from obsessive jealousy should consult them.

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