In today’s video, I’m responding to an email from Bobby.

Bobby wrote a long message, but the basic gist of it is, how do you beat retroactive jealousy for good?

How do you know you won’t date someone who will spark your retroactive jealousy going forward? What makes you so confident retroactive jealousy won’t ever return?

Zachary Stockill: Okay, Bobby, my answer is, I don’t know. I can’t guarantee you, myself, and I can’t guarantee anyone who has ever dealt with retroactive jealousy, that they might not have another pang of it moving forward.

And when I say pang, I mean, a feeling of maybe curiosity about your partner’s past. Or, a moment when you feel that feeling in your gut where there is settled tension that maybe you’ve dealt with years ago. I can’t guarantee that anyone will never get a pang again.

There’s no exact answer on how to beat retroactive jealousy for good.

beat retroactive jealousy for good

I’ve spent years and years of my life, trying to understand this retroactive jealousy. I dealt with it in my personal life. And in the many years since I dealt with it, I’ve had the occasional pang. And, when I say occasional, we’re talking years apart in different relationships.

But when I say pang, I don’t mean going down the retroactive jealousy rabbit hole, and a full-blown relapse. I haven’t dealt with that, ever since I wrote my first guidebook, Overcoming Retroactive Jealousy. Because I can immediately identify these pangs for what they are. It’s ancient remnants of a very painful period in my life, a very old pattern that I once dealt with. I spent years of my life dealing with it.

And, I feel like my body’s still kind of working through some of that trauma. To some of you, it might sound hyperbolic to call it trauma, but others listening to this and watching this, that’ll probably be sound pretty spot on because retroactive jealousy can be quite traumatic for our bodies, minds, and spirits.

So my theory is, it takes a while to completely cleanse that entirely out of our system, to beat retroactive jealousy for good.

But I haven’t dealt with anything even remotely close to what I went through years ago. And by the way, I started Retroactive and wrote my first Overcoming Retroactive Jealousy guidebook back in 2013. And since then, over seven years now, I’ve received many emails from people, retroactive jealousy sufferers, who just shoot me a line every now and then, as a way of checking in.

This seems to be the common pattern. The people who get serious about doing all the exercises and practices in my online course, Get Over Your Partner’s Past Fast. People who take the work in my guidebook seriously, the people who really make a serious commitment and put in the work, either retroactive jealousy is just never an issue for them ever again, or when they get the occasional pang, they immediately identify it. They know what they’re dealing with.

And they know exactly what to do in that scenario. Using all the methods that I talked about some of them on this channel, in my guidebook, and online course.

But the bottom line is, I can’t predict the future.

beat retroactive jealousy for good

And I can’t know for 100% certain that I’ll never meet anyone ever again, a potential partner or a partner, who will inspire my retroactive jealousy.

However, one thing I think that really helps is, as I speak to you today, recording this, I’m about a month away from my 33rd birthday. And I know my values pretty darn well. I’ve spent a lot of time considering what is important to me, in women, dating, and relationships. What is acceptable, not acceptable, what I can deal with, what I don’t want to deal with, what’s a red flag and what’s not, etc, etc.

So if I’ll be in the same situation in the future, where there were some genuine red flags in a partner’s past, I think I could identify them very quickly. So that immediately eliminates more values-based retroactive jealousy, which is very clarifying and frees up a lot of mental ram for me.

And thus, that means I’d only be dating people who I know there’s no conflict and values.

So if I ever had another pang of retroactive jealousy, I would immediately identify it. I would know that this is not about a genuine values question. This is my ego and insecurity.

These are biochemical imbalances in my brain, an old pattern and etc. I’d know what I’m dealing with. And I’d be able to proceed through my day pretty quickly. I’ve got all the tools, perspectives, and all practices I need.

All that’s left is me implementing them and I’m sure that I could proceed through it pretty quickly.

So hope this helps answer your question.

Zachary Stockill
Zachary Stockill

Hi! I'm a Canadian author and educator whose work has been featured in BBC News, BBC Radio 4, The Huffington Post, and many other publications. I'm the founder of, the author of Overcoming Retroactive Jealousy and The Overcoming Jealousy Workbook, and the host of Humans in Love podcast.