I'm Almost Over My Ex, But I Still Feel Jealous Of His Past Relationships

by Michael Lee
Andrey Pavlov

Jealousy can be a toxic emotion, a poisonous cocktail of possessiveness, envy and mistrust.

My love for him was inordinate. I loved, I suffered and now I hate. Yet, I still find myself aggressively jealous of my now ex-boyfriend's past encounters with his former lovers and flames, even through he is no longer here to hold my hand.

I've heard of being jealous and dubious of a current partner's exes. Feeling threatened and jeopardized of a partner's past is a natural feeling, after all. But why am I jealous of my ex's past? Was it that I never felt good enough when he was in my present? Why am I still letting his past affect my present? Did his past exes have such a profound effect on me that, even after he is gone, I am still left here alone, lingering with jealously?

The nights of him wishing me sweet dreams are now beloved memories of yesterday, but the feeling of suffocating and pain-ridden anxiety tightening my chest still exists for me today. I'm lying here restless, haunted by the ghosts of his remains. I wallow in self-pity, and I can't help but feel resentful. I can no longer call him my own, but the paranoia of his past leaves me feeling nostalgically numb.

Why do I find myself pondering over past lovers of my former boyfriend, even though he is no longer a part of my life? His stubbed face and piercing blue eyes may be gone, but my possessive and green-eyed envy very much still remain. His tales of lovers and one-night stands left me feeling distressed and lost for air, as he recalled every exact kiss and position in detail, demanded by my jealous and meddlesome mind.

The problem was, I asked too many questions. I wanted to know my ex-boyfriend's lover's names, how they met, what they looked like and — most agonizing of all — what they had done together in bed. My curiosity got the best of me, and even through it killed me a little inside, I still was left wanting to know more. It's gotten to the point where when I see someone who even half-resembles one of his exes (or what I visualize them to look like), I become paralyzed in my own self-doubt and fear. I've put them so high on a pedestal that I will never be able to compare to them.

His exes, in my mind, were everything I imagined them to be and everything I was not: slim, hairless and smooth. I imagined the scruff on his face that I used to love. I couldn't let go of the image of his facial hair on their flawless skin as he kissed their smooth, beautifully perfect, little faces.

I imagined the virile sex they had and the sweat pouring from his forehead as it happened. I imagined his towering, manly body on top of them, feeling the tingle of each chest hair etched on his mainly frame, years before I was able to proclaim each strand of hair as my own.

It's taken me a lot longer to get over him than I initially imagined, but who would have thought that my ex-boyfriend's past would be the reason I still find myself belittled and grasped with begrudging jealously and pulse-racing envy?

What is it about his past that still leaves me feeling numb? And when will I be able to run away from all the things he has done?