Retroactive Jealousy OCD: What Is It And How to Stop Feeling Insecure

Retroactive Jealousy OCD: What Is It And How to Stop Feeling Insecure

Do you constantly worry that your partner is cheating on you? Do you feel like you can’t trust them, even if there is no evidence to suggest that they are being unfaithful? If so, you may be suffering from retroactive jealousy OCD. This condition can be extremely debilitating and can cause a great deal of stress and insecurity in relationships. In this blog post, we will discuss what retroactive jealousy OCD is, as well as some tips for how to stop feeling insecure and start living a happier life.

What Is Retroactive Jealousy OCD?

What Is Retroactive Jealousy OCD?Retroactive jealousy OCD is a form of OCD that is characterized by excessive focus on a partner’s past sexual and romantic partners. People with this type of OCD may experience intrusive thoughts, images, and doubts about their relationship.

They may also engage in compulsive behaviors such as checking their partner’s phone or social media accounts, interrogating their partner about their past relationships, or avoiding situations that trigger their jealousy. Unlike normal jealousy, which is a natural emotion that everyone experiences from time to time, retroactive jealousy OCD is excessive and intrusive.

It can interfere with your ability to enjoy your relationship and can cause a great deal of distress. More often. It is women who suffer from retroactive jealousy OCD, but men can also be affected. There are several possible causes of retroactive jealousy OCD. It is important to remember that retroactive jealousy OCD is a real disorder that can be treated.

If you think you may be suffering from retroactive jealousy OCD, please reach out for help. There are many resources available to you. With treatment, it is possible to reduce the symptoms of retroactive jealousy OCD and live a happy and fulfilling life.

What Are Some Signs And Symptoms?

It might be difficult to identify Retroactive Jealousy OCD because the symptoms might be chalked up to regular jealousy. However, there are some key signs and symptoms that you might have in retroactive jealousy OCD. These include:

A preoccupation with your partner’s past

This is one of the common and very key symptoms. If you can’t stop thinking about your partner’s past, this is a sign that you have retroactive jealousy OCD. More often than not, people with this disorder will ruminate on their partner’s past relationships or sexual encounters. This can lead to a feeling of insecurity and low self-esteem.

Intrusive thoughts

Another key symptom is having intrusive thoughts about your partner’s past. This can include thinking about them being unfaithful or imagining them with someone else. These thoughts can be very distressing and can cause a lot of anxiety. For example, you might have thought that your partner is cheating on you even though there is no evidence to support this.

Excessive reassurance

Excessive reassuranceThis is one of the most common things people with ROCD do. They will repeatedly ask their partner questions like, “Do you still love me?” or “Are you sure you’re attracted to me?” They might also fish for compliments, constantly seek reassurance that their relationship is solid, and look for reasons to be jealous. All of this seeking reassurance can take a toll on the relationship. It can make the partner feel like they’re not good enough, or that their love is not genuine.


This is one of the key signs and symptoms of Retroactive Jealousy OCD. You start to avoid anything that might trigger your jealous thoughts and feelings. This may include avoiding certain TV shows, music, or even people. You might find yourself making up excuses not to go out with friends or skipping social gatherings altogether. The problem is that avoidance only reinforces fear.

Compulsive stalking your partner

When you have Retroactive Jealousy OCD, your mind becomes consumed with intrusive thoughts about your partner’s past. This can lead you to compulsively stalk your partner in an attempt to quell the anxiety and insecurity you’re feeling. You may find yourself repeatedly checking their phone, going through their text messages and social media accounts, or even following them around.

Intense feelings of jealousy and insecurity

It is believed that Retroactive Jealousy OCD is fueled by intense feelings of jealousy and insecurity. These feelings can be so strong that they interfere with your everyday life. You may find yourself obsessing over your partner’s past relationships, wondering if they are still attracted to their exes, or feeling that you are not good enough for them.

Difficulty trusting your partner

When your jealousy is heightened, it may be difficult for you to trust your partner. This is especially true if your partner has done something in the past that has caused you to feel jealous. If you are constantly questioning your partner’s whereabouts or what they are doing, it can put a strain on your relationship.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to seek help from a mental health professional. Retroactive jealousy OCD can be a difficult disorder to manage on your own. Therefore, you must consider seeking out therapy or counseling. With the help of a professional, you can learn how to manage your symptoms and live a fulfilling life.

What Causes Retroactive Jealousy OCD?

What Causes Retroactive Jealousy OCD?The causes of retroactive jealousy OCD are not fully understood. However, some common causes might trigger the condition. These include:

A history of trauma or abuse

It is believed that people who have experienced trauma or abuse in their past are more likely to develop retroactive jealousy OCD. This is because they might already have a lot of insecurity and trust issues. A history of trauma and abuse works in a way that makes a person more prone to developing mental health conditions like OCD.

A history of cheating

If you have been cheated on in the past, you might be more likely to develop retroactive jealousy OCD. This is because you might be more prone to feeling insecure in your relationships. If you have a history of cheating, you might also be more likely to develop retroactive jealousy OCD. This is because you might be more likely to feel like your partner is cheating on you.

A general feeling of insecurity

When you have a general feeling of insecurity, it might further cause you to develop retroactive jealousy OCD. This is because you will be more likely to feel like your partner is cheating on you. If you have a general feeling of insecurity, it might also be caused by retroactive jealousy OCD. This is because the feeling of insecurity can cause you to feel like your partner is cheating on you.

Anxiety or depression

This might be the cause of your retroactive jealousy OCD. Anxiety and depression are both common mental health disorders that can cause a person to feel insecure and jealous. For example, your anxiety will make your normal worries about your partner’s fidelity seem much worse than they actually are. If you’re depressed, you might have a hard time enjoying anything in life, including your relationship. This can make you more likely to be jealous of your partner and to worry that they will leave you.

Obsessive personality traits

Obsessive personality traitsIt is often believed that these traits are common and key causes of retroactive jealousy OCD. Individuals with this disorder generally tend to be perfectionists, extremely jealous control freaks. They are also very insecure people who have low self-esteem. Moreover, people with retroactive jealousy OCD are usually preoccupied with the past and have a hard time trusting others.

These are some of the common causes of retroactive jealousy OCD. If you or someone you know is struggling with this disorder, it is important to seek professional help.

How Does It Differ From Normal Jealousy?

It is believed that retroactive jealousy OCD is a subtype of OCD, and it shares many similarities with classic OCD. However, there are some key differences that set retroactive jealousy OCD apart.

For example, people with retroactive jealousy OCD are fixated on a past partner’s sexual history, whereas people with classic OCD are more likely to be obsessed with cleanliness or symmetry.

Retroactive jealousy OCD can also be distinguished from normal jealousy by its intensity and duration. People with retroactive jealousy OCD will often obsess over their partner’s past for hours at a time, and this obsession can last for months or even years.

Normal jealousy, on the other hand, is usually short-lived and does not consume a person’s thoughts to the same extent. Moreover, this type of jealousy is often triggered by a specific event. Such as seeing your partner flirting with someone else.

It is important to understand the difference between retroactive jealousy OCD and normal jealousy, as this can help you to better cope with your condition. Otherwise, you may find yourself feeling needlessly guilty or ashamed of your thoughts and behaviors.

How To Deal With Retroactive Jealousy OCD?

It is difficult to deal with any kind of OCD, but there are treatments available that can help. The first step is to seek professional help from a therapist or counselor who specializes in OCD. They will be able to help you understand your condition and develop a treatment plan. Some of the common things that are done in treatment for retroactive jealousy OCD include:

Exposure and response prevention therapy (ERP)

Exposure and response prevention therapy (ERP)This is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy that focuses on helping you face your fears and learn to cope with them. This can be done through imaginal exposure, which involves imagining the feared situation, or in vivo exposure, which involves going out and doing the things you are afraid of.

A common method used in exposure therapy is graduated exposure. This means starting with the least feared situation and gradually working up to the most feared. For example, if you are afraid of your partner talking to an ex, you might start by imagining them talking on the phone. Then you would work up to imagining them having a conversation in person. The goal is to help you get used to the fear until it no longer bothers you.

Consider couple therapy

Couple therapies are a great way to help you and your partner communicate better about your insecurities. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by retroactive jealousy, couple therapy can provide a space for you to share your feelings and learn how to manage them healthily.

Couple therapy can also help your partner understand your condition and how it affects you. If they are feeling frustrated by your insecurities, couple therapy can help them learn how to better support you. There are many different types of couple therapy, for example, cognitive behavioral therapy or emotionally focused therapy. With the right therapist, you can find the approach that works best for you and your relationship.

Talk to your partner

Talking to your partner about your feelings of jealousy is important. It can help you to understand why you’re feeling jealous and what, if anything, your partner can do to help you feel better. Your partner may not be aware that their words or actions are causing you to feel jealous. Once they know how their behavior is affecting you, they may be willing to make some changes.

More often, you should give importance to how you feel, rather than being consumed by what your partner is doing. If you find that you’re constantly worrying about your partner’s past, it may be helpful to talk to a therapist. They can help you to understand your jealousy and work on ways to manage it.

Reframe the situation

This is one of the most difficult, but important steps you can take to ease your retroactive jealousy OCD. When you start to feel those familiar pangs of insecurity, take a step back and remind yourself that your partner is with you now. They chose you, out of everyone in the world, to be with. Your partner is probably just as worried about you leaving them, as you are about them leaving you.

For example, let’s say you’re obsessing over an ex-girlfriend of your partner’s. Yes, she was beautiful and probably had a great time with your partner. But she’s not with your partner anymore. She’s in the past, and you’re in the present. Your partner is with you now, and that’s all that matters.

Practice healthy coping mechanisms

Practice healthy coping mechanismsHealthy coping mechanisms are always a great place to start when you’re feeling overwhelmed with anxiety and insecurity. Some people find that journaling, yoga, or meditation help to ease their anxiety symptoms. Others find that therapy, support groups, or medication are more effective treatments. Experiment until you find what works best for you and stick with it.

These mechanisms won’t work overnight, but they will help you gradually ease your retroactive jealousy OCD symptoms and start to feel more secure in yourself. Remember that you are worthy of love and don’t let your disorder control your life.

Overall, these tips will help you to deal with retroactive jealousy OCD more effectively. If you find that your symptoms are impacting your quality of life, don’t hesitate to reach out to a mental health professional for assistance.


To conclude, retroactive jealousy OCD is a form of OCD in which sufferers become extremely jealous and insecure about their partner’s past relationships or sexual experiences. While it can be a difficult condition to deal with, there are ways to manage and overcome it. With the right treatment and support, you can learn to control your OCD thoughts and stop feeling insecure.

If you think you may be suffering from this condition, please seek help from a mental health professional. There are many resources available to help you understand and manage your condition. Remember, you are not alone in this. With the right support, you can overcome retroactive jealousy OCD.

For more information and tips you can contact Therapy Mantra. We have a team of professional therapists who can provide you with the support and guidance you need to recover from this condition. Contact us today to learn more about our services. You can also book an online counseling and therapy session or download our free OCD treatment app on Android or iOS.