Green eyed monster
I've been having lots of conversations about jealousy this week. I think it comes up more often than we think and that it is useful to learn how to deal with it.
In conversation with a friend, we discussed her mother's struggles with jealousy of a couple who regularly help my friend and her partner with their children. We think the mum finds it hard because she feels that they take some of her place as grand parent. This has led to fights and secrecy in the family.
We talked about how my friend could help her mum to feel less worried.
Then later in the week, C and I had a night out with my partner and some of his work colleagues. Being able to have a dog in the pub who enjoys being with people is lovely and useful for folk I think. One of the people there noticed that C was being affectionate with lots of people and that sometimes folk would come over and feed him a biscuit.
She asked about it. Told me that she has another friend who absolutely doesn't encourage her 2 dogs to be affectionate with anybody other than her.
I think it's common. People worry that if they allow their dog to show affection to others that they will be less important in the dog's world. Of course, this isn't true at all. Dogs who have nice lives with people who they love don't want to replace them. However, they are, on the whole, sociable creatures and if given the opportunity they enjoy having more than one human friend.
I'd guess that even for people who never ever consider polyamory, learning to deal with jealousy is an important thing to do. For ourselves and our loved ones. C's life would be very diminished if I refused him the opportunity to make new friends and show affection to lots of different people.