In today’s video, I’ll talk about my personal experience with retroactive jealousy.

Read or watch below to learn more about my personal experience with retroactive jealousy.

Zachary Stockill: When struggling with retroactive jealousy, it’s too easy to feel hopeless and alone.

One thing I’ve noticed over the years is that many of you appreciate when I relate my personal experience of retroactive jealousy on this site and elsewhere.

So today, I’m going to discuss a little more about retroactive jealousy in my personal life and whether or not I still think about the root causes of my own experience many years ago.

Since 2013, I’ve been helping men and women from all over the world confront and overcome retroactive jealousy, save their relationships, and enjoy greater clarity and peace of mind.

If you’d like to work with me, or you’d like more information about my work, please visit this link.

Before diving into the core content of this video, I want to explain something to those new here. The term ‘retroactive jealousy’ describes a specific experience.

It involves persistent, unwanted thoughts and an obsessive curiosity. This also includes what I call ‘mental movies’ about a partner’s past relationships or sexual history.

And I’ll also mention that I know many of you still haven’t signed up for my free four-part video mini-course.

I recently completely re-recorded it, a completely new updated version of my free four-part video mini-course on how to get started overcoming retroactive jealousy.

Upon registering, you will gain access to all four videos. I will deliver these to you over a period of seven days. This mini-course is completely free, and you have the option to unsubscribe at any time without any catch.

So, if you’re interested in receiving a free four-part video mini-course on how to get started overcoming retroactive jealousy, please click this link.

Today’s topic comes from a question submitted by a viewer named Don.

Don asks: “Do you still think about the reasons and causes for your own retroactive jealousy?”

I was thinking about this, and I guess the answer is yes and no. So, I struggled with retroactive jealousy over ten years ago…

It’s not something that I spend a lot of time thinking about, and there are many reasons for that. Frankly, I spend a lot more time thinking about my students and my client’s experiences.

relationship problem

I spend a significant portion of my day dealing with retroactive jealousy.

This includes conducting coaching calls almost daily, participating in a private Facebook group I established for students of my online course “Get Over Your Partner’s Past Fast,” conducting research, writing articles, and recording videos like this one.

So, retroactive jealousy continues to play a substantial role in my professional life, though it doesn’t really affect my personal life anymore.

I believe a significant factor was plain old insecurity.

As a considerably younger man, I was more insecure about various aspects than I am now, including female sexuality, my identity as a man, my presence in the world, and how I compared to other men.

Although I’ve never considered myself an overly insecure person, like many young men in their late teens or twenties, I certainly had my insecurities.

Thankfully, I’ve managed to work my way through many of these issues, and in many ways, I’m now merely a shadow of the person who once struggled with retroactive jealousy.

It wasn’t solely due to insecurity.

If I were to undergo a brain scan, it’s likely that it would indicate that I am more prone to intrusive thoughts and obsessive thinking.

However, this does not mean there is an inescapable defect in my brain, as I have clearly overcome this issue over the years and have helped literally thousands of people do the same.

Nonetheless, I do believe it is likely that there is some kind of biochemical component involved.

In many people’s experiences of retroactive jealousy, some imbalance in the brain is causing them to have more intrusive thoughts than many other people.

Unhappy Woman Breaking up with Her Partner

I do think it’s very possible, although, of course, I don’t have proof. I often use the word “insecurity” on this channel, and it’s interesting to note that a synonym for insecurity could be “fear.”

When I think about my own experience way back when dealing with this bizarre issue that we call retroactive jealousy, I had certain fears that were less about me and more about the relationship and what the relationship meant in my life.

As I’ve mentioned many times, the first time I fell head over heels in love, I was absolutely smitten, completely and madly in love.

I unfortunately gave up a lot of my male friendships and I gave up a lot of my friendships in general. I wasn’t as social as I had been before getting into that relationship.

This is a common mistake many young people make, especially in love. They meet someone incredible and suddenly have a lover, a best friend, a confidant, and a therapist all in one.

This one person fills many different roles in their life.

As a result, they often neglect their other friendships and social engagements.

This can lead to some terrible consequences, such as overvaluing or perhaps overprioritizing the relationship, resulting in a relatively unbalanced life.

I think this creates what I call subconscious social anxiety, where, as I’ve mentioned many times, human beings are an extremely social species.

We need interactions with other human beings.

If you’re limiting most of your social interactions to just one person, then on a subconscious level, you’re terrified of losing that person.

This fear stems from an understanding, perhaps on a subconscious level, that their loss would have a severe impact on your social life.

If for any reason I lose this person, my social life would be in jeopardy, coming to a screeching halt due to the neglect of my other friendships and social relationships.

I believe that was definitely part of why I struggled with retroactive jealousy many years ago. These are some of the personal reasons I faced this issue in the past.

If you’re interested, I could delve a bit deeper into this topic. Moreover, if you are battling retroactive jealousy, I encourage you to take 10 seconds to sign up for my free four-part video mini-course.

This free mini-course offers exclusive videos not available on this channel or anywhere else, only to my email subscribers.

If you need help with retroactive jealousy, check out my online course “Get Over Your Partner’s Past Fast”, or consider applying for one-on-one coaching with me.


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 RetroactiveJealousy.com, the author of Overcoming Retroactive Jealousy and The Overcoming Jealousy Workbook, and the host of Humans in Love podcast.