I've got a jealous woman. Not the normal kind you'd find in, say, the grocery store, but the smoking-from-her-ears kind you find in a loony bin.
Guys, has your woman ever punished you for something you did in her sleep? Last week my wife dreamed that I cheated on her, and she still can't look me in the eye. She "just needs more time."
I don't know why she worries. I'm so uptight that if a woman were to ask me whether her tube top were too small, I'd have to say, "I don't know. I'm numb."
Women don't appreciate how hard it is for men to be that loyal. Ladies, if you're wearing a bikini, there's a good chance that the man you're talking to is suffering a migraine headache from trying to maintain eye contact.
My wife's jealousy may be a cultural thing: Hispanic men don't start playing the field until they get married. Yahaira has six siblings, none of whom share the same mother, a Brady Bunch gone seriously wrong. Wherever the distrust comes from, it's a deep-down, center-of-the-earth kind of place.
One time Yahaira found a sticky on the refrigerator. It read, Call back, March (shorthand, of course, for "Call the doctor back in March.") Yahaira left a second sticky reading, "Who the hell is March????" I could tell by the number of question marks that it wasn't a fleeting curiosity.
I appeared before her, stickies in hand, and confessed. "If you must know, I'm also dating April, May, and June.
I don't mind the confrontation; it beats the hell out of a cold war. Some men consider the silent treatment "free time," but I've had too many of these...
"What's the matter, honey?"
"Nothing" never means nothing. It means "something so big I don't know where to start." It is best to confront oh-nothings head-on, preferably with hugs and baby noises. And guys, when you finally get to the something, remember that even the weakest woman can double your arguing stamina.
In my home, we've got a system for ending arguments: We just talk and talk until my wife is right.
Only once did an oh-nothing turn so sour that I walked out. I spent the night at Big John's house. Now my wife isn't speaking to John because he was, like, harboring a fugitive.
"The jealous are troublesome to others, but a torment to themselves."
That was William Penn, the oatmeal guy. As you can see, this jealousy thing has been around a while. His point is that Yahaira suffers alongside me. And he's right; she hates to pain me. I see it in her eyes when they start to turn green: Save yourself, honey. You won't like me when I'm jealous.
To be fair, my wife knows that I grew up a slut. It wasn't odd for me to wake up and ask my bedmate where we were. And who she was. That sort of thing can put a woman on guard. Even when we first started dating, my wife would walk into my kitchen and say, "A melon-baller, Jason?! Who is she?"
And when Yahaira's on her period, fuh-get about it. I just lock the doors and use my stay-at-home defense. Of course, that doesn't mean Yahaira won't come home in a huff because she saw some floozy I would have liked, and so it goes.
So you must be thinking, Jason, how can you live like that?
Answer: I love her to pieces.
Yahaira touches me in places that no one else dared to explore. And she gives off the scent of ambrosia. Have you ever smelled ambrosia? When I weigh my wife's coldness against her baby voice, the brain massages, our mind-bending journeys in bed ... I'm way ahead.
So instead of fleeing in terror, I've come to see jealousy as an illness. Like retardation (kidding, honey). When Yahaira comes at me with daggers, I hug her till she drops the weapon.
I have found that beneath the cruelest assault is a simple need for hugs. Nine times out of ten, she melts in my arms, and before you know it we're back to making fun of the neighbors.
I say these things not only because my wife will read this -- or may be reading now through some spy camera -- but because I know about the need for hugs. And things are improving. I no longer have to wear blinders at parties, and she has stopped tracking me by radar.
Yesterday my wife got quiet around a Barbie blonde who had collagen lips and the waist of a ten-year-old. I whispered to my wife, "On the bright side, if she ever blacks out from hunger, she can always eat her own lips."
Yahaira laughed despite her best efforts to hate me and even had some Barbie jokes of her own.
So if you love a jealous someone, look the monster in its beady green eyes and don't back down. Eventually, they will come around and apologize. Yahaira feels horrible for her fits and often asks what she can do to make it up to me. My answer is always the same: "Oh, nothing..."