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DO GAY RELATIONSHIPS POSE MORE PROBLEMS THAN STRAIGHT ONES?

I was having a very interesting conversation with a good friend of mine recently, and he inspired me to write about this topic. During our discussion, the subject of the effects of jealousy and insecurity on a relationship came up. At first we were just discussing relationships in general, but then he asked me if I thought that these issues were a bigger problem in gay relationships than they were in straight ones. Since these two issues are usually the cause of major relationship traumas, I figured this would be the perfect place to examine this. So here are my thoughts.

When he first asked the question, I was sort of at a loss. I didn't really know if I could answer honestly. But I have been thinking about it for the last couple of days, and I have to say that I am still no closer to reaching a definite answer. I have to admit that to my mind, it does often seem as if jealousy and insecurity are more of a problem in gay relationships. In my view, we do seem to be a little more possessive in relationships than our straight counterparts. Yet I cannot quite bring myself to state that as an absolute truth. After all, just because something appears to be a certain way, that does not necessarily make it true; in which case, it would be unfair to jump to that conclusion. And even if it is true in some cases, it certainly cannot be true in all cases.
But I think that the bottom line is that jealousy and insecurity are just human traits, and in the end, the issue of gay or straight does not even need to enter into the discussion. Let's face it, there are some people who are prone to jealousy and insecurity, and there are some who are not. That is true of both gay and straight people alike.

Ultimately, I think it would be of much greater value to examine the effect that these feelings have on a relationship. This issue can be viewed from two angles: from the view of the jealous party, as well as from the view of the person at whom the jealousy is directed. And I will try to examine both points of view here. But no matter how you look at it, the effect of jealousy on a relationship is always negative; nothing good has ever come from it. It is always destructive to everyone involved in the situation. Trust is an ABSOLUTE MUST in any relationship; once that trust is destroyed, it is only a matter of time before the whole relationship falls flat on its face, so to speak. That's the only thing that I CAN say with any degree of certainty. That being said, let's examine both sides.

If you are the jealous party, then you have some decisions to make. First, you have to figure out if your jealousy is warranted or not. This is often where the problem begins. When we get jealous, we don't think very clearly, and we often wind up jumping to conclusions. It is unfair to accuse someone of being unfaithful based on a mere suspicion, because you could turn out to be wrong. I think you MUST have some sort of CONCRETE PROOF before you even CONSIDER accusing your partner of wrong behavior. If you accuse your partner unjustly, then the trust between you is destroyed for no good reason.

Sometimes, however, we come to find out in the end that our jealousy IS warranted and our suspicions are true. If this is the case, then you have two choices: you can either try to work it out and trust that it won't happen again, or you can end the relationship and move on. But I think that no matter which of these solutions you choose, you must do it COMPLETELY.

If you decide to try and mend the relationship, you must devote yourself fully to doing so. If your partner loves you, then they will make the same effort. If they don't make the same effort, then they never really loved you as much as they claimed to; in which case, you are better off without them anyway.

On the other hand, if you decide to end the relationship, then do it COMPLETELY. No more discussions, excuses, phone calls, e-mails, or any other kind of contact! Make a clean break. God knows that breaking up is already difficult and painful enough as it is, so for God's sake, do not prolong the drama!

OK, now lets take a look at the other side of the issue. If you are the person at whom the jealousy is being directed, then you need to stop and take a good look at your own behavior. If you know without any doubt that you have done NOTHING to warrant the jealousy that your partner is showing toward you, then you need to decide if you want to stay with a person who is insecure, and always suspicious of every move you make.

Personally, I would not stay, but that's just me! In my view a person should not even consider entering into a relationship unless they are first happy and satisfied with the person that they are themselves, and they know what they want out of their lives. Let's face it, if you are unhappy and insecure with yourself, you don't have a prayer of ever making someone else happy in a relationship. You cannot expect your partner to "complete you."
That is not only unfair to them, but is an unrealistic expectation, and one that is impossible for anyone to fulfill.

Many may disagree with me on the following point, but I have found that most of the time when people are insecure in relationships, the issues causing their insecurities often have little or nothing to do with their partner. They can often stem from things that happened years before they even met their partners. The only way that they can become secure in who they are is to attack those issues at their source. You need to resolve all of your own issues about self COMPLETELY before you even think of entering into something as complicated as a relationship, because relationships are hard enough to handle without bringing all that extra baggage into them. That may seem unrealistic to most, and maybe it is, but it's not untrue.

However, if you have done something to warrant the jealousy that is being directed at you, then for God's sake be an adult. Have enough guts to stand up and be honest with your partner about it and accept the consequences for your actions. If you ever had any real and true feelings for your partner in the first place, then that is the only fair and honorable thing you can do. Yes, it will probably destroy your relationship, but after it was over, at least you would be able to look in the mirror and know that you behaved like human being instead of a louse. And with any luck, maybe you will learn from the mistake, and not repeat it in future relationships!
Well...there's my two pesos on the subject for whatever it's worth.

A repost from Stainedheart's Blog

Thank you Yffar for inviting me to be one of your authors. I am truly flattered.

Comments

line of flight said…
I would answer the question yes for a number of reasons. If we look at the long-term part of a relationship after the initial falling in love projections have receded, it is about strengthening intimacy. There is a very long well tested path for straights that has been worked out through myths, fables, fairytales, etc.,. Yet, this is not the case for gays. We haven't got many myths, fables or fairytales. Even in cinema, it is only the very very recent explosion of indie cinema where the conflicts are being worked out.

Intimacy involves trust and honesty. However, these two functions in someone who is gay can be operating at less than optimal levels because of upbringing and discrimination. How can you be honest with your partner if you could never be honest with your mother or father? Not very easy. How can you trust your partner if you could never trust your mother or your father? Not very easy.

These are things many straight people have in common with gays. However, the difference is that there is a long cultural-historical tradition of rituals and rites of passage that attempt to subvert the problems of childhood -- like civil marriage and the many many political, economic and social benefits granted to a couple. The birth of a child also has this effect.

Now, if someone is jealous, the problem to identify is not whether it is warranted or not, since that makes another person responsible for one's own feelings. Rather, the question is what is amplifying my feelings of distrust? (When was the first time I felt this, etc.,) It is likely that the relationship demands a deepening of intimacy and that something in the unconscious is panicked about trusting someone more. This is especially true at the very beginning of the relationship when we are still projecting our fantasy onto the other person and haven't really met them yet. Then, when they act as they are and it does not conform to our fantasy, our less-optimal trust function has evidence that we are being deceived. Yet, as it would turn out, it is our own ego that is deceiving us by not seeing our partner for who they really are.

It is possible that when the fantasies recede there is nothing more for the two. There should be a short while to think about how one entered into the relationship and what it all means. Then, break up. It requires a bit of self-honesty. However, this doesn't always happen. Instead, people suffer themselves and make their partner suffer through a power-complex where the fantasy recedes and then domination and control appear. In my mind, that is a total disaster for love or any two individuals. Jealousy at this point can only be resolved by breaking up and stopping the abuse.

I disagree with the blog insofar as there is a belief that jealousy is ever warranted. If someone has cheated on you and been dishonest, the question should be why did this happen? What is my responsibility in being in a relationship where infidelity and dishonesty were afoot. Jealousy can only be warranted from the perspective of possession and domination.
stainedheart said…
@ line of flight

like I said in my article, this is me....its just MY opinion on the subject...thanks for reading anyways. peace out!
line of flight said…
@stainedheart: ako rin, pare. experience ko lang!
Ming Meows said…
in relationships, honesty is still the best policy
yes.

fo lesbian relationships pose more problems than straight ones?

hmm. don't think so.
More often than not it is the guy that strays. For straight relationships that is usually the case. The excuse is usually "Lalaki lang ako e."

Now put two guys in a relationship.

For me. Understanding the basic flaw of men could help ease the burden. I would rather focus on disclosure or truthfulnessbecause when there is deceipt then the love is gone.

Jealousy is the same in a same sex and opposite sex relationship. You need it sometimes to reassure that you still have feelings for each other. Too much and it suffocates.
line of flight said…
I decided to very briefly take this topic of jealousy up further on my blog through the character of Benecio in Sa Piling Mo from a few years ago.

I do think that the differential treatment LGBT people experience does make relationships more susceptible to conflict. That being said, resolution of those conflicts makes the relationship much more dynamic and richer -- something straights as a group have no access to.
Knoxxy said…
Here in the Philippines? Yeah!

Even the concept of sexuality seems to be off a bit here. But hell, Rome was not built in a day.

Time will change. Open eyes.
Ian said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ian said…
btw cute ng graphic...
i don't believe it is true...
the problems only arise when we are not sure anymore about what we feel for our partner and that is also true to straight people...
gay relationships can be as fruitful as those of straight ones...
the thing about us gays is that we are more complicated than straights...
we have both a man and a woman in us...
men are always attracted to what they see and that is where most gay people fail the test...
and that is when relationship gets messed up...
i do not believe that the society or any external force could have so much effect on the relationship than the couple’s very own values and sentiments...
BUHAY BAYOT said…
They say we are promiscuous in nature.

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