Hi, Papa bear,
I’m a 35 year old in a relationship with my mate and she is 23. Here is my question.... How do I control my feelings and my jealousy when my fiancée talks to other men when I have been hurt so many times? I don’t know what to do or think. Please help me with this situation.
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Good question. Though it’s too late now, Papabear has always thought it was rather ill-advised for an older man to date or marry a woman in her early twenties for just this reason. I have a friend who is my age and, for the longest time, he kept dating women in their twenties when he himself was middle aged. He had several relationships like this and they all failed. Eventually, he found a lovely woman his own age and they are now happily married. Why the lack of success with younger girls? Well, mostly because I believe couples with this big an age gap have trouble relating to each other. Secondly, there is this jealousy thing. I’m not saying this is necessarily true with you, but most men your age or older who get involved with young ladies do so for one reason: they are pretty, vivacious, and energetic in bed. Shallow? You betcha. Because the man knows that he is involved with his young woman because he wants her for sex, he naturally translates this motive to all other men who are potential competitors and emotions are stirred in ugly ways.
So, the first thing you do is examine your own motivations for being in this relationship. Are you in it for the sex and because she’s good looking (aka she’s a “trophy”), or do you have deeper, nobler reasons for being her partner? If the reason is the former, then I explained why you are jealous and you kind of deserve it. If the reason is the latter, then more advice follows.
If your love for her is genuine and deep, then you have to understand that the essence of any good relationship is trust. You also have to remind yourself that this woman is not the person who hurt you in your other relationships. If she has done nothing to cause you to be suspicious other than have a friendly chat with people of the opposite sex, you need to cut her some slack because half the population is male and there’s no way you can isolate her from interaction with other males. Realize that that would be an unrealistic goal, and you’re half way to getting over your jealousy.
The next thing to do is to give her every reason to love and adore you so she has no reason to stray. This is actually easier to do with women than with men, as women are naturally more monogamous than men (not to say some women don’t stray, but they tend to be more faithful). Treat your mate well. Spend time with her, care about her interests, listen when she talks to you (I mean LISTEN, don’t just nod your head), don’t ignore her by spending long nights out “with the guys,” and value her as an equal partner and you will help solidify your bond, making it much less likely she will look somewhere else.
Lastly, have confidence in yourself. A big part of jealousy is not the suspicion that one’s mate is unfaithful but, rather, that you are not good enough for her and because you think you are undeserving you fear she will want to find another guy. Your ego has been bruised by past relationships, so you need to give your ego a boost. This might sound a bit shallow, but one way to boost your ego is to take care of yourself: good grooming, wearing nice clothes that show you care about your appearance, taking care of your health, eating well and exercising all go a long way to making one more confident. Even little things like improving your posture and walking with more confidence can help. In addition, play positive music when you listen to tunes and do fun, active things like dancing with your mate.
When you do all this, you will be having so much fun and having such a good time with your mate that jealous thoughts won’t keep plaguing your mind.
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