Low Self-Esteem and Jealousy; Two Things Hurting my Relationship with an Amazing Man

Low Self-Esteem and Jealousy; Two Things Hurting my Relationship with an Amazing Man

Having low self-esteem sucks, and let's face it, a lot of people do. But when it is so bad that it causes you to constantly critique yourself, compare yourself to others, and force your partner to reassure your looks more than he should, its a problem.

I used to be quite overweight, but I was happy with who I was so it never bothered me. Once sophomore year of highschool came around, I started to feel more self conscious about my appearance and wanted to change things. In a little over a summer, I managed to lose 50 pounds and was in the best shape of my life. The problem was that since I was always the bigger kid, I still saw myself as bigger than I was. Ever since losing weight, I have never been very confident in my appearance. I would find things that I wanted to improve or "could be better" no matter how many times people told me I looked great. It never turned into an issue until late Senior year of highschool when I got an eating disorder. I began the habit of eating until I was stuffed, and forcing myself to throw up. This disorder is commonly known as bulimia. I managed to stop this awful habit, but my constant worries about my appearance never left, in fact they got worse.

Now, about to begin my Junior year of college, my self image issues are worse than ever. I am in the best shape of my life, and I know that. I work out at least 5 times a week and I eat as healthily as I can. The one problem I have, although I do think im attractive, is that for some reason I can't be happy unless I think Im the most attractive. I have this strive for perfection, which is sad and unachievable. The way I see myself changes every hour; I can think I look great one minute and then the next im almost in tears about how awful I feel about myself. All of this has caused me to become and extremely jealous person. This jealousy has made me act like a mean and judgmental person when im naturally very kind and accepting. I hate the way I am when i'm jealous and I know my boyfriend does too.

Most women want a man who won't look at any other women, but lets face it, 99% of men just dont have the self control to do that. (And yes i know women look at other men too.) The honeymoon phase in my relationship just recently ended, and it opened my eyes to some of the things my boyfriend does that I dont particularly like. For example, we were on vacation in cabo san lucas a couple weeks ago, and while we were laying out by the pool, I looked over at my boyfriend to notice him staring at another women in a bikini. And this wasn't a glance, it was a full on stare. This was the first time I've ever caught him staring at anyone and the jealousy was so overwhelming that I stood up and whipped him in the leg with the towel I had left over from lunch. This was so unlike me, because I never imagined myself ever getting physical with an SO, but my jealousy is so out of control. I know it didn't really hurt him, and my intent wasn't to hurt him, but my action was still wrong. Later that day I talked to him about it, and he said he would try his best not to do it again, but it didn't seem to stop. After that first time catching him, I couldnt stop catching him looking at other women. This made me furious, and I told him he was a dog, a typical man, and all sorts of names that I know I shouldn't have. Ever since that vacation, I can't stop thinking about him looking at other women, and I have reminded him of it many times.

After doing some research and some major thinking, I've realized that yes, he is partly in the wrong, but I am the one who is mainly in the wrong. I need to work on myself more than he does. If I was more confident in myself, I wouldn't feel so hurt by him looking at other women. I know he doesn't do it to hurt me, and I know he wouldn't do more than look, but my own insecurities and jealousy are so strong that I have a very hard time not getting upset. I have realized that I need to just accept that it is going to happen, and there's nothing I can do to change it. I need to become confident enough in myself to think "yeah he may be looking at that other girl but im more attractive and he is with me, not her" or even if she is more attractive than me, just accept it and move on. Confidence is extremely attractive, and I need to remind myself that if he looks at another women and I dont react poorly or even agree that she's attractive, he will see me in a better light than if I got upset. Hope you enjoyed my story.


Most Helpful Guy

  • Firstly, and most importantly, congratulations on getting in shape and beating bulimia. Those are two things that drag a lot of people down.

    Secondly, congratulations for getting it that jealousy is not a desirable behaviour, and seeking to get on top of that one, too.

    Some people here might dismiss your concerns by remarking that you're very attractive, and have nothing to worry about, but the fact is that we all have our insecurities, which are very personal to us, and may not be rational.

    I absolutely get your boyfriend. I check out other girls all the time, and once they're out of sight, they're out of mind. It doesn't mean I want a relationship with them, or even that I want to sleep with them. They're nice to look at, and that is all. My gal knows this, and doesn't seem to care. She'll even point out the odd one.

    But I don't think you're unusual in this. If you can't train yourself not to care, make yourself the most appealing centre of attention in the place. If it's a beach, rock a thong bikini, if it's a night out, get his opinion on what he likes you see you in, and wear it.

    But always remember, it's YOU he's with, and YOU are the one he's going back with at the end of the day.

    Good Take.

    • Thank you so much for taking the time to read my "my take" and replying. What you have to say totally makes sense and I will most definitely take your advice.

Most Helpful Girl

  • Thank you for sharing your story with us. It sounds like you’ve been through a lot in your life 🤗 but the most important thing is that you made it through the tough times. Maybe talk to your boyfriend about the struggles you’ve had in the past and explain to him why you act this way. Tell him you don’t intentionally want to be jealous,, it’s just happening and you want to work on it. If he’s a good guy he will help you work on your insecurities and weaknesses.

    • Thank you for your reply! I have been through a lot, but definitely not as much as some people. I plan on thoroughly describing my issues to him so he can understand when im acting a certain way. I appreciate the advice

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What Guys Said 8

  • Random thoughts here.

    When you had bulimia, did you work through it yourself or did you get counseling? I think seeing a good counsellor might help with these feelings--maybe even bring your boyfriend if he is willing. That can help you understand each other in ways that could be really helpful, especially if the counsellor is a really good one. Either way, tell your boyfriend about your insecurities if you haven't--not in general terms, but exactly what you've told us, and tell him you need his help and cooperation.

    Next, keep in mind that this is a hypersexualized society. Hollywood and Madison Avenue force sex down our throats (metaphorically) at every turn by presenting us with impossibly beautiful people that we can't help comparing ourselves to. That is a major recipe for insecurity. I do some photography and have seen models before and after makeup and styling. These supermodels are attractive, sure, but only in a "normal person" kind of way until the stylists are done with them. Only then are they spectacular. So realize that you are comparing yourself to fantasy. Your boyfriend _is_ with you because he likes you and finds you attractive the way you are.

    Next--and I don't say this to defend your boyfriend, but to help you understand him--guys are programmed to look at different women. It's our reproductive strategy that is built into our reptile brains. Women are most likely to reproduce successfully if they can keep a man around to help provide for them while they are vulnerable during their pregnancy (I am talking caveman here, but our brains are still basically caveman in nature), while men reproduce more successfully by bedding as many women as possible. I am devoted to my girlfriend, but I still find other women attractive, women of many different styles and appearances. I know this isn't fair to my girlfriend, so I try very hard to keep a tight rein on it especially when she is present. I will say I have never outright stared at another woman the way you describe your boyfriend staring because I think it's rude not only to my girlfriend (whether or not she is present) but to the woman I would be staring at. i have been around guys who stared in that way and made no secret of it, and I though it both creepy and tacky to the point that I was embarrassed to be there. So you could try telling your boyfriend that while you understand his biology, you are uncomfortable with it and hope that he can at least keep a lid on it when you're together.

    • I really appreciate your feedback and the time you put into it. I definitely will take your advice. Thank you!

  • "I can't be happy unless I think Im the most attractive."


    I salute your self awareness, Malita55!

  • This is probably gonna sound weird, but I'm actually blown away that you reflected on yourself on this. I've always believed it to be rather rare for someone to reflect on their actions. I know this isn't really the purpose for your MyTake, but I find it rather refreshing. And it makes me wonder... do you think you count your blessings? It's always good to be realistic about whether or not your actions are sound in reason, but it's also important to notice your positive features. And I mean more than just your physical features, but your personality, your humor, your intelligence, etc. There is so much more that makes you human.

    I'll tell you this, I liked a girl back in high school because she was the most gorgeous girl I've ever seen. There was one day when I had a group project with her and she drove me absolutely insane. I hated her thought process, hated her attitude, and she was far too serious. Point being, looks aren't everything. Hell, I'm sure you already know that. I would've rather date a girl that looked "ok", than date that girl from high school.

    I know it's difficult to change your mindset about something like this. I doubt reading a couple of comments will spark an immediate change. But I hope they can be seeds we can plant in your mind. And if all goes well, you'll grow to be a better you than who you were yesterday. I hope this helps :)

  • To be honest when I was with my ex I was so into her that I didn't really look at other girls in any sexual way when we traveled together. This only happens when I'm not in love and it was a short term fling

  • here's part 2


  • Difficult

  • Great take


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