Difference Between Jealous and Possessive

Jealous vs Possessive

Being jealous and possessive are two human emotions or feelings that are perfectly normal for a person to experience as God has made us humans that way only. We humans cannot bear to see anyone being smarter, cleverer, happier, faster, richer, or even more attractive than ourselves. If you are happy to see your neighbor buying the latest and most expensive car while you continue to drive that old family car, then you are a saint and not a human being. Possessiveness is a similar feeling that has the potential to turn a relationship sour. If you feel that you are not getting the attention that you should get from your spouse or girlfriend, and she is attracted to, or admiring another man, you are being possessive. But, how do you draw a line between jealousy and possessiveness? Let us find out in this article by highlighting the difference between jealousy and possessiveness.


Remember the time when your mother brought a new dress for your elder sister and you were so angry and upset that you shouted and yelled at your mother and did not even eat your dinner? Or the time when the teacher praised the project of your friend and just gave a passing look to your model? You had feelings during these times that are best described as being upset on favors being shown to another person and not you from a person who is important in your life. You are jealous with your friend, not with a person on the road whom you do not know. You are jealous with your neighbor when he buys a new car though you congratulate him on his new possession with a big smile on your face. You are jealous when it is your best friend who gets the attention of a beautiful and sexy girl at a function in the school. Jealousy is a feeling that is one of hurt, dejection, anger, and sadness though you are not supposed to exhibit it.


Possessive comes from possession and reflects the tendency of human beings to accumulate and feel proud of things they own. These could be buildings (homes, properties), machines (gadgets and cars), valuables (ornaments made of gold and diamonds), and even people. It is possessiveness in the case of human beings that works like a poison in a healthy relationship. Possessiveness does not allow breathing space, a space to grow, in addition to remaining committed to the person in the relationship. A person who is possessive about his girlfriend or spouse would express his feelings by calling up many times in a day to enquire about the wellbeing of the friend (when he is actually snooping on her and desirous of knowing whom she is with and where). A possessive individual seeks reassurance from his partner all the time that he is liked and loved by her. A possessive person is very suspicious by nature, especially in the matter relating with a potential rival or another male. Such a person demands a lot of attention from his partner or spouse and, in fact, kills a healthy relationship by not allowing breathing space to the partner.

What is the difference between Jealous and Possessive?

• Jealous means you are upset about another person getting attention, respect, or love of the person who matters.

• You are jealous when it is your friend or brother who gets ahead of you in life.

• Possessive means undue liking for things you feel you own.

• Possessiveness leads to jealousy in a relationship.

• Both possessiveness and Jealousy are traits that we have inherited from our ape ancestors.