Sexual Jealousy – Why You Have It And How To Get Rid Of It

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by Jeff Billings in Retroactive Jealousy Blog
August 18, 2016
sexual jealousy

Firstly, just what is sexual jealousy? Well, it manifests itself in many different ways to different people.

In answering this question I’m going by three criteria:

  • how I felt when I used to be jealous of my girlfriend’s sexual past
  • what my clients have told me about their sexual jealousy
  • research I’ve done on the subject on and offline

Some people may suffer from sexual jealousy in the present. Say, if they’re in an “open relationship”.

But I’m focusing on jealousy of ex-lovers who’ve long been and gone.

Sexual jealousy is a nagging sensation in the mind that something in your boy or girlfriend’s sexual past “just isn’t right”.

It can take the form of “mini-movies” in which you see your partner having sex with someone else over and over in your mind.

This is also known as retroactive jealousy ocd. And yes, it sucks. Big time.

But let’s take a look at…

Why You’re Suffering From Sexual Jealousy

Sexual jealousy is primarily a form of judgment in which we believe our partner was “wrong” to engage in certain past sexual activities.

We may think they have “loose morals” and therefore are maybe not the type of person we should be with.

These perceptions of “unchaste” past behaviors are often born out of a fear that they’ll cheat in the future.

They loved sleeping around then, they’ll keep sleeping around now”, goes the theory.

And this fear of them straying in the future is often born out of a lack of self-confidence.

By comparing ourselves to past lovers we’re displaying a lack of belief in ourselves and our attractiveness to our partners.


How To Get Rid Of Sexual Jealousy

It may seem right now that you’ll never be able to:

  • remove the images from your mind
  • stop getting into arguments with your partner over their past
  • refrain from snooping through their personal belongings

But you can, and you will, once you know what steps to take to beat it.

The first thing you need to do is realize that sexual jealousy is primarily a social construct.

Not all societies around the world get jealous of who a partner once slept with (or is currently sleeping with).

To suffer from a Madonna-whore complex among Amazonian tribes, for example, is unheard of.

Once you’ve taken on board the fact that you’re buying into what society is dictating you should think about sex, you need to figure out two things:

  • are you fearful that your partner may cheat on you?
  • are you lacking in self-confidence?

Start by having a good think about your partner and the likelihood of them jumping into bed with someone else.

To suffer from sexual jealousy often means to feel that because someone has been “slept around” in the past, they must want to do so in the present. Or future.

However, if they’re saying all they want is be with you, then maybe it’s time to take their word for it.

Then, you need to ask yourself if a lack of confidence could be fueling this.

Often a lack of trust in a partner is due to a lack of self-confidence in ourselves that we’re “good enough” to be with them.

Do you compare yourself to your partner’s ex-lover(s) and come up second best?

If the answer’s yes, figure out in what areas you could be more self-confident, and get to work on them.

For more info on sexual jealousy and how to beat it, check out my book and course.

I have devised a twelve step recovery program on how to beat retroactive jealousy and helped hundreds of people from all over the world.


  1. Monique says:

    I just lose my boyfriend because I am obsessed by his ex. How do I get him back? Pls help.

  2. Ben says:

    Jeff, would you be interested in an interview on my podcast on men’s issues?

  3. Dominic says:

    I have a private issue to discuss

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