The first time I felt Hulk-like jealousy wash over me was the morning after prom night.
All my friends crashed at my best friend's house except me, since I'd passed out on the dance floor and was rushed home. The next morning, I headed to my BFF's house early to get a recap of the night's events, but all I found was my high school sweetheart snuggled up to a close acquaintance on the couch. They weren't naked or purposefully spooning, but none of that mattered as my suspicion boiled up.
Next thing I knew, I was hot with rage and screaming to wake them (and the entire house) up.
From that moment on, I became obsessed with knowing every detail of his whereabouts. The FBI could've recruited me from the way I interrogated him after a party he attended solo. He was no saint by any means, but my jealous behavior played a major role in our epic breakup.
Suspicion is a normal part of relationships, especially in the beginning. However, that hint of "crazy" can turn into straight-up delusion if gone unchecked.
We've all been paid a visit by the green-eyed monster, but hopefully this jealousy chart will help you gauge when it's time to reel in your resentful, petty ways.
So, how far overboard is your envy?
Level 1: The Social Media Stalk
Once a week you check out his social media. It's nothing more than a necessary precaution, though. You've got to know the man you're dating isn't chatting up secret girlfriends, right?
This is something you'd do even if you trusted your man completely, so it barely ranks on the jealousy scale.
Level 2: The Rational Concern
When he flirts with your waitress the first time you two go out to dinner, you don't jump to jealous conclusions. Instead, you sit back and scope the scene.
Before overwhelming him with unnecessary questions, you try to figure out whether it's his natural demeanor or if he's truly a f*ckboy. You share your concerns with your girlfriends to keep your jealousy in check.
Level 3: The Constant Questioning
So, you can't let that initial hint of jealousy die, and the advice from your girlfriends is failing to soothe your relationship anxieties.
You're constantly wondering if he's being faithful, so you pass off your stream of questions as small talk. He doesn't pick up on your jealousy yet, but it's slowly becoming the third party in your partnership.
Level 4: The Phone Snoop
Your jealousy is now palpable.
Your mission is to find dirt on him by any means necessary, even if there truly isn't any. You wait until he heads to the shower or pumps the gas to grab his cell. Not even a lock code can stop you from finding out who he's talking to on the side.
Level 5: The Unnecessary Critique
By this point, your jealousy has transformed into meanness.
You used to love how often he dressed up, now you're wondering who he's dressing so nicely for. You shoot him backhanded compliments about his new haircut and question why he got his new job promotion. The jealousy is all too real and you're contemplating confronting his work wife.
Do not mistake this level of jealousy as normal behavior. You've lost it.
Level 6: The Social Spying
There's no turning back now. You're officially the jealous girlfriend. You show up to every party he's at and play it off as an accident. You got the party location from his Twitter page and attend to make sure he's not talking to other girls, but he doesn't need to know that.
At this point, his guys are trying to convince him you're nuts.
Level 7: The Stage Five Clinger
In a matter of months, you've missed countless brunch dates with your friends because of your stalking habit.
He wants to fly solo for a guys' weekend, but you're adamant about tagging along. You barely allow him to leave the room on his own, ensuring he's never alone within 50 feet of another woman.
Level 8: The Validation Obsession
You're insecure and your grip on reality is completely gone.
Girl, you're psychologically warped, but what keeps you afloat is his feelings for you. You guilt him into expressing his love almost every day -- though, at this point, they're waning.
Level 9: The Calls To Other Women
If he's smart, he's begun to pull away from you.
You don't even care, though. You just call his female bestie and question whether she's sleeping with your man.
Level 10: The Green-Eyed Monster
That's it, the green-eyed monster is out and ready to play.
You've gone full-blown "Fatal Attraction," raging for no reason and popping up at every location he's at. You don't even love him at this point, you just don't want anyone else to have him.
There's no winning in the game of jealousy, though. Good luck avoiding a restraining order.