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Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5170
Experience:  Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology in private practice
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Hello I have really started to realize that my verbal and

Customer Question

Hello

I have really started to realize that my verbal and physical behavior towards my partner of six months is not healthy, and leaves me with a sick sinking feeling within me.

I am a 27 year old female and financially struggling which is why going to see a psychologist is not currently within my means.

My partner is extremely loving and supportive but its just not enough for me it seems.

I always feel the urge to know who he is messaging, who is calling and what conversation is about.
When he is looking around at other women my thoughts are that he is always getting some sort of arousal.
I feel like i cant watch certain shows or do certain activities with him because i will get angry about someone attractive being around.
I feel like im always fishing for his attention even when im not with him and trying to make him jealous in some way.
I get verbally aggressive and feel sometimes i want to act out the aggression on him even though im not sure why im even angry at him.
I say negative things to him about his family, to him.
I feel dominant and im scared that the way i am, is going to ruin his life, my life and our time together.
I cant afford professional help and i will do anything to stop this from getting worse.

thankyou

M
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 1 year ago.

Hi! I believe I can be of help with this issue.


First, let me say I can imagine how confusing and distressing this situation must be for you. You know that when you step back and consider your boyfriend, who he is and how he behaves, that he is a good and trustworthy man. But you are plagued with worries and fears. And you are now concerned this jealousy may be a self-fulfilling prophecy that might drive him away and ruin your time together. So let's take a look at these emotions and see what you can do to help yourself given that you can't get professional help at this time.

At the heart of your jealousy is a worry about your own self-worth. He might decide you are not worth being faithful to. What if he decides he wants to be with that waitress or other woman instead of you?

But let's look at the other side:

Why are you not worried that your looking at the waiter is going to make you want the waiter more than your boyfriend? Because you VALUE him, your boyfriend. You know that he is a good man, you know that he is worth your loving. That waiter is of interest to you just to look at. It's not a contradiction at all.

But when it comes to YOU, to you being valued, to you being thought of as a good woman who is worth loving, you can't quite integrate that into yourself. That other woman, even though she is just someone to look at for a minute is enough to compete with your sense of what you are worth. Or better, not worth.

All these feelings of lack of worth are the feelings that come out when you judge yourself. They are the source of the anxiety you try to subdue. I'm therefore going to include at the end of my answer a technique for you to use to help when you are worried or feeling anxious or feeling jealous. It's not a cure, it's just something you can use throughout the day to help you come back to those good feelings you want to engender in yourself about you and your boyfriend being together.


I want to focus on you helping yourself to get to those mindfulness moments. In fact, do an internet search on mindfulness meditation and begin to make this a regular part of your day. Try using some self help books to help you. Don't be afraid of taking positive steps like these. You ARE worth it.

So let me recommend some books that I think are among the best and that are readily available in libraries, stores, and online:

If This is Love, Why Do I Feel So Insecure? by Hindy, Schwarz, and Brodsky. They discuss their idea about "anxious romantic attachment" which is how they describe insecurity in relationships.

Life Without Jealousy: A Practical Guide. by Lynda Bevan. Good exercises here.

The Courage to Trust by Cynthia Wall. Gives a good understanding about what in your personality is involved in this dynamic of not being able to trust.

Okay. I wish you the very best!

Now, I want to give you a tool to use for when the jealousy is overwhelming or you have anxiety and worry. Here are instructions on a therapeutic protocol called Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR). It's really quite easy to do almost anywhere. My patients suffering from depression or anxiety, when I teach them PMR at first are amazed how simple it is and that it is a psychological protocol. It was first used in the 1920s! Since then, of course, it has been refined and many studies have been done showing its effectiveness. You will practice PMR at first when you don't wake up with an attack so that you will be familiar with it. I want you to practice the PMR at least 5-6 times before an attack or feeling acute anxiety. Why? Because when you're in the throes of anxiety, you will only remember to do something you are very familiar with it. So practicing 5-6 times is really a minimum.

I want to stress the importance of breathing as well. Part of the physiology of what is happening to you in anxiety states is that your breathing is getting shallower. This reduces the oxygen in your blood to your brain. That increases the anxiety reaction, which strengthens the attack and you are in a vicious cycle! Not good. So breathing is the primary tool. I have found in my practice that learning breathing techniques can be helpful. But some of my patients are not interested in learning more than one thing at the beginning, so I have found that just reminding you to BREATHE deeply at the same time you are doing PMR is almost as good. If you are willing to take a yoga class and learn breathing techniques, that's the best. But, breathing deeply with your PMR will help.

So, we're ready for learning PMR. I want you to print my instructions below my signature and have a copy in each of the rooms of your home where you may be when you have an attack. And again, you need to practice this easy technique at least 5-6 times as soon as you can. It needs to become as natural to you as breathing. Ah, remember breathing?

My goal is for you to feel like you've gotten Great Service from me and the site. If we need to continue the discussion for that to happen, then please feel free to reply and we'll continue working on this. If the answer has given you the help you need, please remember to give a rating of 5 (Great Service) or 4 (Informative and helpful), or even 3 (Got the job done) button. This will make sure that I am credited for the answer and you are not charged anything more than the deposit you already made by pressing any of these buttons. Bonuses are always appreciated! If I can be of further help with any issue now or in the future, just put "For Dr. Mark" in the front of your new question, and I'll be the one to answer it. All the best, XXXXX XXXXX


INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. After finding a quiet place and several free minutes to practice progressive muscle relaxation, sit or lie down and make yourself comfortable.
  2. Begin by tensing all the muscles in your face. Make a tight grimace, close your eyes as tightly as possible, clench your teeth, even move your ears up if you can. Hold this for the count of eight as you inhale.
  3. Now exhale and relax completely. Let your face go completely lax, as though you were sleeping. Feel the tension seep from your facial muscles, and enjoy the feeling.
  4. Next, completely tense your neck and shoulders, again inhaling and counting to eight. Then exhale and relax.
  5. Continue down your body, repeating the procedure with the following muscle groups:
    • chest
    • abdomen
    • entire right arm
    • right forearm and hand (making a fist)
    • right hand
    • entire left arm
    • left forearm and hand (again, making a fist)
    • left hand
    • buttocks
    • entire right leg
    • lower right leg and foot
    • right foot
    • entire left leg
    • lower left leg and foot
    • left foot
  6. for the shortened version, which includes just four main muscle groups:
    • face
    • neck, shoulders and arms
    • abdomen and chest
    • buttocks, legs and feet

Quickly focusing on each group one after the other, with practice you can relax your body like ‘liquid relaxation’ poured on your head and it flowed down and completely covered you. You can use progressive muscle relaxation to quickly de-stress any time.

What You Need:

  • A comfortable place.
  • Some privacy.
  • A few minutes.

Again:

My goal is for you to feel like you've gotten Great Service from me and the site. If we need to continue the discussion for that to happen, then please feel free to reply and we'll continue working on this. If the answer has given you the help you need, please remember to give a rating of 5 (Great Service) or 4 (Informative and helpful), or even 3 (Got the job done) button. This will make sure that I am credited for the answer and you are not charged anything more than the deposit you already made by pressing any of these buttons. Bonuses are always appreciated! If I can be of further help with any issue now or in the future, just put "For Dr. Mark" in the front of your new question, and I'll be the one to answer it. All the best, XXXXX XXXXX

Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5170
Experience: Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology in private practice
Dr. Mark and 2 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I have stopped wanting to go in public places with him because I know there will be girls around and ill feel sick and wont be able to take it

Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 1 year ago.
Hi. I'm so sorry to hear how despondent you sound.


Do you think it's time for you to work with a psychotherapist on this problem?


Or do you believe the problem is in him?


Dr. Mark
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

unless i date a blind man i guess the man im with will always be looking around.


 


its me

Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 1 year ago.
Well, that's true. It really is. Every man looks at women sometimes when out with his girlfriend, fiance, or wife. Every woman looks at men sometimes as well. We learn to put it into perspective. That means, we learn how to judge when it is the "natural" looking and when it's more.


So, if the self help techniques and tools I recommended, you feel, are not going to be enough, then it is time to get help through psychotherapy. Don't feel as though it's a defeat; it's a recognition that you need to work on this in a more serious, intensive fashion. That's what psychotherapy is about.


I wish you the very best!


Dr. Mark

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Dr. Mark
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Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology in private practice