I have been married for two years…, but because I am a professional photographer, on three different occasions my wife has been jealous of women that I have taken pictures of. It goes without saying that they are only head and shoulder shots.

I love my wife and have never deceived her or even thought of doing so. But her ex-boyfriend did betray her, and I think she is now projecting that distrust on me. We have a beautiful son, and I don’t want him to grow up in a broken home. But I’m afraid that a time could come when I would get too tired of her jealousy. What should I do so that it doesn’t happen again?

Dear Friend,

We are sorry to hear that you are experiencing difficult times in your marriage. We are sure that you understand that your wife is so afraid of losing you that she allows her fear to control her actions. Her feelings of fear overcome logic, so she gets jealous even though it doesn’t make sense.

How do you react to your wife when she questions you or accuses you? If you are like most people, you react in anger. You are offended and upset that she doesn’t trust you.

Unfortunately, reactions of anger only make things worse. The angrier you get, the more convinced she becomes that you are hiding something. Her fear increases, and your anger increases in response. A battle of emotions ensues, and each of you feels that you are the one who is being wronged. No wonder it makes you tired!

You seem to believe that there is some point in the future when your wife’s jealousy could force you to leave her and destroy your home. This belief on your part is extremely dangerous. It is almost as if you are trying to justify now that she will be forcing you to do something then that you will have no control over. That is simply not true. If you chose to leave and cause your son to grow up in a broken home, it would be because you decided not to honor your marriage vows. On your wedding day, you promised to love her and care for her in every circumstance. Her jealousy is one of those circumstances.

Instead of being tired and planning for your exit from the marriage, put your energies into extreme communication with your wife so that she can feel comforted instead of afraid. If you know who you will be taking photos of, tell her about them the night before. Call or text her at least three times a day. Reassure her that you love her and that she is the only one for you. Give her more information than you think is reasonable, and determine to try and answer all her questions before she can ask them.

Jealousy is not healthy. In fact, it is sin. The Apostle Paul lists it among other sins such as anger and sexual immorality.(1) If your wife had written to us, we would tell her that. But you are the one who has told us your story, so we are directing our advice to you. You cannot control her actions, but you can control your own.

We wish you the best,

1 Gal 5:19-21