Retroactive Jealousy In Relationships: This Is My Story

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by Jeff Billings in Retroactive Jealousy Blog
June 3, 2015
retroactive jealousy in relationships

Retroactive jealousy in relationships tends to start with a bang and then ebb and flow. Many people write to tell me how being jealous in a relationship comes in waves of good and bad days. 

Others ask me how long I spent overcoming retroactive jealousy (about a year) and so I thought it’d be good to take a look at my experience of retroactive jealousy ocd and the stages I went through in getting over it. So, let the fun begin.

Retroactive jealousy in relationships: This is my story

Stage 1: Too Much Info! — I found out that my girlfriend to be had slept with 4 guys in 5 months right before meeting me. 3 of whom were “friends with benefits”.

(Which to me was even worse than 1 night stands for some reason, because it meant they “had a thing going on”). I then spent a period of several months determined for some reason to find out even more about my girlfriend’s sexual past, which of course made my condition 100x WORSE.

Stage 2: Retroactive jealousy ocd (yay!) — This stage involved bringing up her past in conversation, thinking about it all the time in the form of mental images and movies, getting angry about it, causing grief with her out of the blue, surfing the internet trying to find the cure and generally driving myself CRAZY.

This also went on for months. Coupled with an extremely confusing time asking myself “just what is retroactive jealousy“?

Stage 3: Dealing with retroactive jealousy — Realizing I was getting nowhere, I decided to tackle it methodically. I discovered what was driving my retroactive jealousy disorder and what I needed to do and think to stop it i.e. the genesis of my book.

It was during this stage that I started to learn how to overcome retroactive jealousy. I learnt several techniques to refocus my mind on something else whenever the repetitive ocd images popped up, and I also learnt to not take things so seriously.


Stage 4: Learning how to stop being jealous in a relationship — I had more or less beaten retrospective jealousy and was no longer angry or snooping or bringing it up in conversation, BUT I was still plagued by repetitive irrational jealous thoughts — a repetition of a photo of my girlfriend with one guy in particular.

Now, I was suffering with this one image popping up all the time — we’re talking probably 100 times a day or more — as my mind became trapped in a “don’t think of a pink elephant” war with itself. But at least I wasn’t hurting the relationship anymore. I suffered in silence : )

Stage 5: The retroactive jealousy cure —  After continued practice of the exercises described in my book, gradually the image became less and less frequent. Of course, they still pops in sometimes, but if they do, they just pop right out again. I no longer dwell on my girlfriend’s sexual past, and I’m no longer plagued by repetitive ocd thoughts or images at all.

If my girlfriend and I were to bump into any of her ex “friends with benefits” at a bar, I’d punch his lights out — just kidding — I’d just be polite and forget about it. A year and a half ago I’d have probably wanted to punch his lights out and then descended into a jealous meltdown that would’ve dragged on for days. Luckily those days are now gone.

Put an end to your retroactive jealousy issues in relationships

Retroactive jealousy issues in relationships are very ambiguous. Being jealous in a relationship can mean vastly different things to different couples. As you can see, in my case I went through quite a long and drawn out process. Overcoming retroactive jealousy takes time, so don’t be too hard on yourself for not getting there straight away. We don’t turn into super-confident happy people overnight.

All you can do is just keep at it — doing the exercises outlined in my book — and focusing on the fact that you’ve won. He or she’s chosen you over EVERY OTHER PERSON THEY’VE EVER MET.

To learn how to stop being jealous in a relationship, click on the button below to purchase my book “The Ultimate Retroactive Jealousy Cure: How To Stop Being Jealous Of Your Partner’s Past in 12 Steps“.



— Jeff

  1. Chris says:

    Sounds just like my story Jeff. Could have written this myself.

  2. James B says:

    Hello Jeff..!! How do I go about obtaining a free copy of your book. I can’t afford it.

  3. Harvey says:

    You’re a good man Jeff. I wish you all the best with your business as you’ve already help me so much,

  4. Tomasa says:

    Did you get some of your thoughts from Eckhart Tolle? He is very good on negative thoughts and the ego.

  5. Dennis Reeves says:

    Well, having been with my wife for 20 years ( 2nd time rounders) I suddenly was overcome with RJ.
    This was due to her medication making her verbally uninhibited.
    She would just blurt things out about old relationships…one with odd shaped balls, another with a massive member….etc
    It stopped when the medication stopped
    The comments ate away in my head giving me mental movies…
    In the end I had a bit of a break down.
    We sat down and talked for 7 hours.
    I went thru what she had said and she answered all my questions.
    Turned out there were a lot less relationships than I imagained, all my demons have been put to death…it worked for me…

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