While it may never be possible to completely avoid having jealous feelings, experts do believe it is possible to control jealous behavior. For example, experts recommend that friends and lovers alike avoid the pitfalls of jealousy by being honest with each other to avoid a build-up of unspoken emotions. Negative feelings tend to ferment over time and present themselves in an unflatteringly jealous way. Keeping and maintaining trust is also a key ingredient to avoiding jealous situations. Lastly, sensitivity is vital to recognizing the cues that upset and worry other people.
The negative aspects of jealousy are obvious, but can it ever yield positive results? Thomas Jefferson, for one, believed that a truly free government must be founded in jealousy to protect it and help it thrive. Dr. Hupka notes that normal jealousy is a sign that one partner cares about the other and values the relationship. In short, when jealousy is kept in the bounds of normal behavior it can be a good thing. The minute someone’s pet bunny is threatened, however, take it as a sign that the green-eyed monster has gone too far.
For more information on jealousy and related topics, steal a glance at the links below.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
More Great Links
- Buunk, Abraham P. et al. "Height Predicts Jealousy Differently for Men and Women." Evolution and Human Behavior. March 2008. http://www.ehbonline.org/article/S1090-5138(07)00120-1/abstract
- "Competition." PBS Kids Online. http://pbskids.org/rogers/parentsteachers/theme/1481.html
- "David -- Biographies." History.com. http://www.history.com/minisite.do?content_type=Minisite_Generic&content_type_id=992&display_order=2&sub_display_order=4&mini_id=1051
- Dittman, M. "Study Links Jealousy With Aggression, Low Self Esteem." APA.org. 2 Feb 2005. http://www.apa.org/monitor/feb05/jealousy.html
- Easton, Judith A., Lucas D. Schipper and Todd K. Shackleford. "Morbid Jealousy From an Evolutionary Psychological Perspective." Evolution and Human Behavior. 9 July 2007. http://www.ehbonline.org/article/S1090-5138(07)00049-9/abstract
- "Hera." Greek Mythology Link. http://homepage.mac.com/cparada/GML/Hera.html
- "'Last Word'-Money Madness." Nightly Business Report. PBS Online. http://www.pbs.org/nbr/site/onair/transcripts/080220g/
- "Liberating Women from Freud." Time.com. http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,918601-1,00.html
- "Mammals: Chimpanzee." PBS Online. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/animals/chimpanzee.html
- "Mammals: Elephant." PBS Online. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/animals/elephant.html
- "Penis Envy." Online Medical Dictionary. http://cancerweb.ncl.ac.uk/cgi-bin/omd?penis+envy
- Ralph Hupka, Professor of Psychology, Emeritus at California State University at Long Beach. Personal interview conducted by Alia Hoyt. May 15, 2008.
- Schutzwohl, Achim. "Which Infidelity Type Makes You More Jealous?" EPJournal.net. 21 July 2004. http://www.epjournal.net/filestore/ep02121128.pdf
- "Sibling Rivalry." KidsHealth.org. http://www.kidshealth.org/parent/emotions/feelings/sibling_rivalry.html
- "Social Freedom." PBS Online. http://www.pbs.org/jefferson/enlight/social.htm
- "When Friends Fight: The Girl with Two Faces." PBS Kids Online. http://pbskids.org/itsmylife/friends/friendsfight/fable2.html