Daughter and an Insanely Jealous Boyfriend

Visitor's Question from a 31-40 year old Female
My 16 year old Daughter has been dating her boyfriend for 7 months.He is 17.
He is extremely jealous and they have had many "fights" where she comes home from school crying, angry and frustrated. For example,one of their fights was over a note a guy in her class had written her and he saw it. In the note was a question pertaining to the subject they were discussing.

In the end (after a "talk" with her boyfriend) my Daughter came to the conclusion that it was wrong for her to answer and it was like cheating. We told her that was ridiculous. She hadn't felt that way prior to talking with her boyfriend. Somehow he got her to believe she was in the wrong and she apologized over and over for it.

Just yesterday her boyfriend was walking past her classroom and saw her look up at another guy. She says the guy had gotten up from his seat and she just happend to glance at him. They had a huge fight on the way home in the car where she attempted to give him his ring back but he wouldn't take it. The arguement continued on the front porch with her sobbing for half an hour. I intervened briefly just to ask my Daughter if she was OK and had something happened at school. She said she was fine so I let them work it out. She's knows he has a problem with anger and jealousy but think he "just needs to grow up." I told her that someone who is that jealous will not change and it will only continue and could escalate into something worse."Oh he's not like that" she says.

In the meantime, her Dad and I are devastated to see her treated like that, and are beginning to see this as emotional abuse and quite honestly if she were to wise up and break up with him, we don't think he would leave her alone. She's knows we don't like him and even though she see's that his jealousy is out of control she gets defensive and protective of him. We also believe that forbidding her to see him is not the answer as she may rebel and it might actually push her away from us and the open communication we have with her.
Is there some other way we should be approaching this issue?

RomanceClass.com Advice
Oh boy, as if it wasn't hard enough to be a parent. If you two were friends of hers giving her this advice she might listen. But because you're her parents, and she feels that she has to be loyal to her boyfriend, she's going to block out anything you say. Which is a real shame. Maybe you can chat with her friends somehow and get them to help out in this?

You are quite right, guys don't tend to 'grow up' in this situation. I know many adult men who are just as militantly jealous as this guy is. If anything, the longer it goes on, the more "normal" they feel it is, they sort of settle into their role and keep pushing the girl/woman to toe the line. So the longer this goes on, the more the girl feels it is her fault for stepping out of line since the guy has made it so plain what is "appropriate behavior".

It all comes down to controlling. He wants her on a leash, to be his possession. This is NOT a sign of love. It is a sign of ownership, of power and control.

Probably the best you can do is offer to pay for some therapy sessions. Tell her if he is WILLING to change, that you are willing to help him change. But that if he is NOT willing to change, that this is completely unreasonable behavior from a man of ANY age - be it 5, 15, or 35. It is not something that any woman or girl should put up with for 1 day, never mind an entire relationship. Either she actively help him to get over this now, or she is actively enabling him in his behavior. Which is bad for her, for anyone else he deals with, and for his future as a human being.

-- from Jenn
One of Your Friendly Advisors at RomanceClass.com

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