When Does Jealousy Go Too Far?

Life & Love | Gerren Keith Gaynor | 12/11/2013 | 12:00 PM EST

Hypothetically speaking, would Michelle Obama be wrong?

The world is chattering about photographs of First Lady Michelle Obama looking peeved over President Barack Obama taking a selfie picture with Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt during Nelson Mandela’s memorial service in Africa.

Pics of Mrs. Obama looking less than happy with what many believe looked like the president flirting with the blonde world leader (not to mention she eventually switched seats with the president) has caused a firestorm of speculations and social media memes suggesting that she was getting a little jealous of the Thorning-Schmidt’s girl crush on the president.

Of course, it’s unlikely that First Lady Obama’s less-than-enthused look had anything to do with the president’s friendly encounter. Hypothetically speaking, of course, would she be wrong?

Many relationships and marriages come across that speed bump known as jealousy. It come as the result of insecurity or even a partner being cheated on and consequently ruining the trust factor in the relationship. Many fall victim to the pitfalls of jealousy. It’s a human reaction. The old saying, “you can’t put anything past anyone” is quite true, considering we’re all human and are capable of making mistakes

But there’s a huge difference between being cautious or suspicious, and out-right jealous - particularly in the Obama’s scenario where your partner is sitting right next to you. Sometimes a harmless gesture is just that: harmless. Now, of course, sometimes men in particular are not the best at recognizing when they’re in a messy situation. Unintentionally flirting with someone else can be just as harmful as doing it purposely.

To avoid situations where your partner feels slighted or disrespected by what appears to be a flirtatious interaction, it’s important to include him or her in the conversation so that your actions and body language is indicating that you’re with them and you’re very much in love. Making your partner feel secure is a major part of keeping your relationship strong.

However, enabling a jealous partner can sometimes go too far in the case that they constantly need reassurance. If your mate is consistently jealous or shows signs of insecurity, it’s a sign that you two need to sit down and iron out the wrinkles in your relationship...or give that partner time to sort out their issues on their own outside of the relationship. There’s also couple’s counseling.

Jealousy can destroy a relationship, but the best way to combat it is to show a lot of love.

(Photo: Simon Watson/Getty Images)

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