I’m suffering from morbid jealousy

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

From Turkey: I’ve been married for 3 years and the only thing I’ve expected from a relationship is being the only beautiful, attractive, etc. person for my partner because my husband is the only person I can see in that way. My husband has always told me that he wants the same and he feels the same towards me, but I can’t stop questioning him about it. Every time I ask a question and have the answer, I feel relaxed and trust him. Then, some time passes and his answer invokes another question in my mind or usually when I compare his answers now and before, I find conflicts so I need to ask him another questions about these conflicts. I limit his social life, etc. and ask all the time. I know over-questioning and over-thinking is not healthy. but I have no doubt about what I believe, I have to be the only one for him in every way. I can’t change this opinion, but I want to change my way of always asking & thinking. I want to be sure that I’m the only one and be happy with it and live with it without asking, thinking or doing anything unhealthy. Please care about my problem and give me an advise. I’d be grateful for every word you will say. Thank you.

A: I’m very glad you wrote. You are right to be concerned. This isn’t healthy. You don’t want to live a lifetime with doubts like these. Your husband doesn’t want to live a lifetime responding to your insecurities. This is the kind of behavior that can wear out a marriage.

Unfortunately, I don’t have an easy answer for you. Some people who behave in this way have been terribly hurt by someone in the past and need repeated reassurance that it won’t happen again. Others suffer from an anxiety disorder. Still others have a personality disorder. And sometimes what seems to be just one person’s insecurity is actually a signal that something larger is amiss in the couple’s relationship. Without more information, I can’t help you sort this out. I also don’t know enough about the available resources in your country to give you guidance about who to contact for help. Your physician might be able to make suggestions.

What I can do is strongly suggest you and your husband see a mental health professional for an evaluation. An experienced counselor can help the two of you understand what is causing your behavior and can help you learn some new ways to interact that will help quiet your jealousy.

Please do follow through. It sounds like you and your husband have the potential to have a happy life together. Get the help you need so that potential can be your reality.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 24 Jul 2011

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2011). I’m suffering from morbid jealousy. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 23, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2011/07/24/im-suffering-from-morbid-jealousy/