The Fine Line: Possessiveness v/s Jealousy

Possessiveness and Jealousy both are two sides of the same coin. One stems from insecurity and the other from personality. Hence, a lot of times they are mistaken to be the same. Let's understand the difference between possessiveness and jealousy.

Jealousy Or Possessiveness?
Jealousy or Possessiveness?
"Like love itself, jealousy is multi-dimensional, involving emotions, thoughts and behaviours"
-Noam Shpancer, in Jealousy, hurts love, or does it?

Are Jealousy and Possessiveness The Same Thing?

Possessiveness and Jealousy both are two sides of the same coin. One stems from insecurity and the other from personality. Hence, a lot of times they are mistaken to be the same. But if we delve further it can be analyzed that jealousy is a short or long-term mental condition and if prolonged can also lead to negative repercussions in a relationship. On the other hand, possessiveness is an embedded personality trait in an individual. If dominated by a person he or she can go to an extent of objectifying their partner. So, the major difference between the two is merely that the former is rational and emerges from a sense of insecurity backed by certain events, whereas, the latter is more irrational and quite subjective to individual experiences.‌

Often jealous and possessive behaviour are treated as negative and toxic emotions. However, it isn’t the truth. As we funnel down the insecurity and possessiveness, on the grassroots level they are not at all negative. Envy and possessiveness a lot of times cement a relationship. As humans are structured in a way that it’s natural and normal for them to feel insecure. And, psychologically as well there’s nothing wrong with that. For eg:- A husband can feel a bit jealous when his partner’s attention and love are divided between him and their newborn child. In such cases, jealousy can also reflect an immense amount of love between a couple!

Whereas, in the case of possessiveness as well, two people feel that they are each other’s genuine priority. For eg:- they can have certain nicknames, gestures, couple of songs solely attached to them and their feelings. So, being possessive can also let a couple share a unique and unexplainable bond. However, there’s another feeling that often runs parallel to jealousy. That emotion is when you are happy for your partner but often feel bad for yourself and this is often characterized as jealousy or insecurity. For eg:- If a husband is not able to get a job and a wife gets a promotion. There’s a good possibility that the husband feels bad for himself but he is often mistaken as a conventionally insecure and jealous husband who isn’t happy with his wife’s success. Also, love brings a lot of positive, negative, reasonable, and unreasonable emotions on its tail. Therefore, it is significant for couples to have a balance of all. Excessive emotions can surely become toxic someday or the other because in a relationship everyone wants to be loved and desired but no one wants to be objectified.

Assuming Jealousy Is A Sign Of Love?

Another common mistake is assuming that jealousy is a sign of love. Our society has glamourized jealousy as a sign of love. While it’s true that jealousy can sometimes be a sign that someone cares deeply about their partner, it’s important to recognize that it can also be a sign of insecurity, possessiveness, and even emotional abuse.

When enviousness becomes an agent to control or manipulate a partner, it can harm the relationship. Such type of insecurity can surely eat away a relationship and its charm. It’s important to communicate wholeheartedly and honestly with your partner about your feelings of insecurity without any filter and to work together to find healthy ways to address those feelings.

Hence, it is not limited to events; rather it’s backed by a whole tapestry of events, emotional insecurity and psychological conflicts which leads to such a state of mind.‌‌

Jealousy being assumed as LOVE
Jealousy being assumed as LOVE

Are You In a Relationship And Often Have A Rift With Your Partner For Being Overly Possessive?

If jealousy and possessiveness are becoming an obstacle in your relationship here are a few tips for you to follow:-

  1. Have a conversation:- Conversation is the key, even if you feel insecure and you feel like restraining yourself. Still, you should have a deep and wholehearted conversation with your beloved. Share the rational or irrational reasons behind your insecurities. Instead of “getting over your emotions” you should strongly advocate the policy of “getting through emotions”. This helps a person get rid of all those pessimistic characteristics that make your love life quite toxic.
  2. Prioritize yourself:- It’s very essential for a couple to practice self-care, and do the stuff they love to do. Spend ‘me time’ and live your own life other than your relationship. If you’ll work on yourself you won't be affected by negligence or divided attention of your partner so there will be no space for insecurity. However, prioritizing yourself doesn’t mean that you are supposed to avoid spending time with your partner.
  3. Rationalization of events:- It’s very crucial to analyze all the events that are causing any sort of insecurity to be judged with a calm mind and with an objective approach. This rationalization helps couples understand the situation much better.
  4. Be in your partner’s shoes:- Perspectives play a major role in drafting emotions. So, it’s very significant for couples to understand each other and the reason behind their respective actions and reactions. This makes them more understanding and it surely eliminates stress and insecurity from a relationship.
  5. Consulting a Therapist:- If, in spite of multiple efforts taken by a couple to make their relationship healthy. Then consulting a therapist is absolutely unavoidable. The same goes for overlove and insecurity as well. Although they stem from insecurity if prolonged it can become a very dangerous personality trait. So, if possessiveness and jealousy have become limitless in your relationship it is necessary to take help and consult a psychologist or psychiatrist accordingly. Such steps are often avoided by couples thinking about society. However, it’s important to unmute yourself and discuss the mental turmoil faced by you or your partner.

How To Rejuvenate Your Relationship And Prevent It From Toxicity:-

Tips of Rejuvenation!
Tips of Rejuvenation!

Any toxic relationship can be prevented from being so. It can easily be altered if both partners willingly want to do so. To accomplish this immense effort and love.‌‌

  1. Seek for the problem:- If your partner is very possessive so rather than ending your relationship you should seek for the problematic aspects and they should work together to resolve them. Their united efforts will surely be fruitful and rejuvenate it to the fullest.
  2. A new beginning:- Restarting your relationship is not a bad idea if you really want to save it. Learning from your mistakes and initiating a new voyage will be the best. Promises of improvement can be a key to a new and healthy relationship!
  3. Fun dates:- Fun dates are a universal remedy. A small outing or movie date can always help. It makes a relationship fresh and vibrant. Fun dates always eliminate insecurity and can include plenty of options such as:-
  4. Revisiting:- Traveling down memory lane and revisiting your partner’s favorite restaurant, cafe, or mall can spark life in your relationship and make your partner feel desired and special, which might be lacking for a long time.
  5. Couple Diary:- When we are not able to express ourselves through words or are afraid to feel insecure or jealous in front of our partners. So, writing it down is the best option. As well said ‘Pen has more patience than paper’ it helps a couple to express whatever they are feeling without any sort of stress or fear of judgment. A Couple Diary can also express couples to pen down their moments of mirth as well as disappointments! This helps couples to have a better understanding of each other's point of view.
  6. Couple Therapy:- In case any of the methods aren’t working well to make a relationship get rid of resentment and possessiveness then couple therapy is the best option. As it gives a person expert advice.‌‌


To conclude, this can be analyzed that no emotion can ever affect a relationship unless and until it exceeds its limits. As it involves a great amount of labor and effort to maintain and enhance a relationship with every passing day. Any obstacle can be dealt with when both partners invest their hundred percent efforts in doing so. It is easy to have a relationship but quite difficult to maintain one. But, at the same time, it doesn’t mean at all that it is right to stay in a relationship that is overpowered by such insecurity and toxicity. All a couple should do is try their best to stay away from both enviousness and possessiveness and to make the smallest of efforts to rejuvenate your relationship!

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