In today’s video, I’m going to answer a question relating to whether or not you should break up with your partner to overcome retroactive jealousy in a relationship.

Or, whether you should try to get over this stuff while you’re single. So, what are the right things to do when it comes to a retroactive jealousy break up?

Today’s email viewer comment comes from someone we will call G. G asks

What should you do if you feel like you need to break up with your partner and get over your retroactive jealousy while single?

This one, I get on a pretty regular basis, people writing to me and asking me basically if they should break up with their partner or not. Or if retroactive jealousy is easier to get past when they’re single as opposed to being in a relationship.

So my first question, are you sure that you’re not using retroactive jealousy as an excuse to push your partner away because you’re already unhappy in the relationship? Do you feel like fundamentally you and your partner are not a good match for each other? Do you feel like you belong in a different relationship? And, are you using retroactive jealousy as a bit of an excuse to push your partner away?

The fact that you’re asking me this question, there’s probably something amiss in the relationship that has nothing to do with retroactive jealousy.

If you’re asking me this question, as opposed to being really committed to putting in the work to beat retroactive jealousy, and saving your relationship before it’s too late. That’s often the main response that I get from people who are new to my work. They’re very excited about saving their relationship. Discovering the tools to save their relationship. Put in the work and level up their lives and commit to personal development. And, the work of overcoming retroactive jealousy, in some ways as a vehicle to save their relationship. That’s often people’s initial response when they find my work.

Retroactive Jealousy Break Up

And if right off the bat, you’re asking me if it’s a good idea for you to break up or not, that means you might be in the wrong relationship.

So before you make any decision, I would simply take a moment, pause, and check-in with yourself. You can work with a therapist or a coach or you can simply reflect by yourself.

But make sure that there isn’t something in the relationship beyond retroactive jealousy that needs to be addressed.

Secondly, be sure you aren’t falling into the trap of thinking that if you break up with your partner, that’ll automatically solve your retroactive jealousy. This issue doesn’t usually work like this.

Often, retroactive jealousy sufferers, think that if they eliminate that person, that’ll solve their problem. Unfortunately, retroactive jealousy has a habit of following people into consecutive relationships. This issue has a habit of continuing to reappear in one’s life over and over until they finally put in the work to beat it.

So, if you’re considering breaking up with your partner, be sure that you aren’t doing that as a way to overcome retroactive jealousy. And, thinking this will automatically solve your problem.

Sometimes retroactive jealousy is absolutely about an incompatibility in values, in their vision of a shared future, etc. Sometimes, retroactive jealousy is absolutely an indication of mismatched values. And, a glaring red flag you should probably be aware of. Retroactive jealousy is absolutely an indication that you’re in the wrong relationship.

This issue is not going to be solved simply by breaking up with someone. You need to put in the work to put this issue behind you for good.

Retroactive jealousy can be an incredible gift.

So it’s not so unfortunate, but it is a bit of a pain. At least when you’re first getting started putting in the work to put this problem behind you.

In addition, I’ve recorded a number of videos on retroactive jealousy and values. If you just go to my YouTube channel and search for any of the keywords that might be associated with that values. A number of videos should come up and I think you’ll find those videos very helpful.

But if you go through my work or someone else’s work, or if you do the soul searching and at the end of the day, you really think you need to break up with your partner and handle some of your issues while you’re single, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with taking that approach.

And as you do that, it’s a great opportunity for you to double down in your personal development. To get clear about your relationship goals, values, and deal-breakers. To get clear on what you want from an ideal partner moving forward. And, the kind of person you want to bring into your life.

Retroactive Jealousy Break Up

All this stuff is in some ways easier to do when you’re single.

Easy to think a little clearer when you don’t have someone in your life, who you really care for. Because all of a sudden, you have all this more time, space, and energy that you can devote to your own.

Clarifying about your life mission, your goals, values, and most importantly, what you want in a relationship moving forward.

So whatever you decide, I wish you luck, strength, clarity, and Godspeed. This is an exciting journey that you’re about to go down.

People ask me all the time, “Why are you still doing this after eight years? Certainly, there are better uses for your time. Or, a certain subject matter that has broader appeal than this little niche issue of retroactive jealousy.”

And while that might be true, it’s really rewarding working on this particular issue of retroactive jealousy. One of the best compliments I’ve ever received from a student of mine, in my premium course, Get Over Your Partner’s Past Fast, he said that my work was like a gateway drug to personal development. A gateway drug to learning more about relationships and having a much better relationship and etc.

So what I’m saying is not trying to put myself up and say, how great I am or great my work is. I’m saying that putting in the work to overcome this issue is so incredibly worthwhile. And, it will change your life for the better as long as you put in the work.

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.