Dear Dr. Frankie,
I entered my first lesbian relationship about four months ago. I care a lot about my girlfriend and I enjoy all the time I spend with her…but recently I’ve noticed some new feelings. I’d like some advice on how to control and avoid them, because I foresee them being dangerous to our relationship.
Girls can be naturally insecure and jealous, and I’ve noticed I’ve started feeling threatened because I consider my girlfriend to be much more attractive than I am. (In the same way that other girls may be jealous of celebrities or girls they deem more attractive/smart/funny than themselves, I am noticing these feelings towards my own girlfriend.)
It’s bizarre because even with friends etc, I don’t tend to have these sentiments. So in a weird way, I think it might have to do with the fact that she is the most important girl to me. I don’t want my feelings to jeopardize our relationship but I’m not sure how to deal with them. I don’t want to express them in the wrong way and portray them as jealousy towards her, because she has done absolutely nothing wrong. I don’t want to confuse them with possessiveness or enter into a dangerous aspect of the relationship. I don’t want to hurt her.
Do you have any tips?
What a really wonderful and insightful question. First and foremost you need to remember that she’s choosing to be with you because she finds you attractive. No couple is equally attractive or equally anything for that matter, because attraction is subjective. In many of the happiest and longest lasting relationships, there are significant discrepancies in age, perceived levels of attractiveness, introversion and extroversion, income levels, etc… My point is that physical attractiveness is just one of many factors in a relationship. You should also take into consideration that you probably aren’t the best judge of your own attractiveness. We all see flaws and “problem areas” on our own bodies that in reality, no one else sees. You might be the only one in the world who thinks your girlfriend is more attractive than you are (however I’m not trying to imply it’s a contest by any means). It’s very important for you to recognize what positive qualities you possess and add to the relationship. I recommend taking some time to do a writing exercise where you list these positive qualities. If you find yourself at a loss, ask your friends and family for feedback about how they would best describe you. Use their responses and feedback as a starting point to get you thinking more honestly about your strengths and contributions to the relationship. It’s extremely important that you value yourself and feel you have something special to offer your girl.
As you already know and have insightfully stated, showing insecurity is going to make her less attracted to you. Unless she gives you a reason to feel threatened its imperative you keep your insecurities in check. The good news is you’re aware of them! Focus your thoughts and your energy on the fact that she’s choosing you as her partner because she’s attracted to you. Being possessive isn’t going to guarantee she stays with you, and on the contrary it will probably push her away. Appreciate the attention she receives and her beauty by demonstrating admiration and pride. Be proud of who she is individually and in her relationship with you. Confidence is sexy.
On a related note, consider ways to boost your self-esteem. One easy way is to engage in a regular exercise activity that will get you in shape and feeling really good in your body. There is no high in life like the one you’ve earned after a gut-wrenching, soul-testing CrossFit WOD! Endorphins = Happy Place. If you’re feeling “blah” about your look but aren’t up on the current fashion trends, consider reaching out to a fashion consultant. They are great resources who can even go shopping with you, to sharpen your style and freshen up your look. It’s amazing how a new haircut or a couple outfits can liven someone up. I’ve noticed that many women sometimes slip in this area. It’s amazing what a boost to one’s self-perception and self-esteem little changes can bring.