Hi. It’s Jenny at AnxietyBoss.com. Our question today is from James in Memphis. How do I handle myself and not go nuts or crazy when my girlfriend doesn’t respond to my calls for a few hours or my messages for hours on Skype or Facebook? I get anxious; have breathing issues, and just freak out.
Well, it may help to communicate with her about your fears and identify what you’re afraid of. There are some realities that have to be accepted in life and in relationships. Are you concerned that some accident is going to happen and that you’re going to lose her? Your girlfriend is neither immortal nor invincible. Something could happen to her, so you can focus on losing her and then ruin the time that you have together with this fear.
Are you concerned that she’s cheating on you? Then you have to accept another reality. You can’t stop a woman if she’s going to do it. It’s impossible. No amount of questions or checking or monitoring can stop someone who is determined to be unfaithful. I think some people actually believe that they can prevent infidelity if they ask enough intrusive accusatory questions. If they follow their lover, check their emails, texts, journal or even hire a private investigator to follow the lover.
And here’s one that I’ve actually heard several times. When returning home, the jealous partner will demand to smell of the genitals of the other to make sure that they did not have sex with someone else or for the scent of soap that indicates that they had sex and washed. This is sick. What kind of relationship is this? It’s certainly not built on any kind of trust. What will this accomplish?
You will find out if they are cheating. If so, then it’s time to end the relationship. If there’s no evidence of cheating, then what? Continue with the intrusive questions and mistrustful behaviors? A jealous lover will never get enough evidence to be convinced of fidelity; so many couples have problems due to unfounded jealousy. One will accuse the other of being unfaithful and if the other partner is actually being faithful, this will eventually drive a wedge of mistrust between the two and could leave their relationship tattered. Accusations of infidelity are rooted in anxiety and insecurity. Constant accusations can result in what you fear the most, the loss of your lover.
A third reality, relationships go bad and they do end. You can’t stop a woman from leaving you. Again, if someone is clingy, needy and intrusive, then it will tend to drive people away. If certain realities are not accepted, then it could make your worst fears come true, so it may be time to see a professional to talk about this.