O, beware, my lord, of jealousy;
It is the green-ey’d monster, which doth mock
The meat it feeds on. That cuckold lives in bliss,
Who, certain of his fate, loves not his wronger:
But O, what damnèd minutes tells he o’er
Who dotes, yet doubts, suspects, yet strongly loves!
Fortunately, I am not a jealous person… I’m sometimes a little bit envious, thinking oh I wish I had this or I wish I were that, but it’s only a passing thought, it doesn’t consume me like it does with some people. I am not vengeful either; I might find it hard to forget but I am able to forgive and I don’t hold grudges… unlike the characters in my novels!
In ‘Farholm’ Michael’s marriage will never be happy because his wife Amanda can’t forgive him – and with Michael it was an error of judgement, not even a deliberate act, but he feels responsible for his son’s disability, and his wife will always blame him. In ‘The Stalking of Rosa Czekov’ poor Melanie, Rosa’s best friend, is secretly consumed with jealousy of her which then transfers to Rosa’s cousin Tyche… poor Melanie, it doesn’t do her any good at all. In my latest novel ‘Loving Judah’ the amount of jealous and envious feelings swirling around in Part 2 can only lead one way… and it does!
In ‘Night Vision’, the book I am editing at present, the Camerons, an ordinary happy couple have almost split because of Neil’s completely unfounded jealousy. He believes that Beulah is unfaithful even though he has no evidence and a violent confrontation with her supposed lover nearly ends their marriage. Beulah thinks of ‘Othello’ when she tries to understand her husband, she doesn’t use the phrase ‘green-eyed monster’ but I think many readers will have it pop into their heads when Beulah mentions Othello and Desdemona.
Jealousy is a common theme in literature and drama… not that I’m comparing myself to great writers! In ‘The Winter’s Tale’ Leontes acquires the “diseased opinion” that his innocent wife Hermione is unfaithful to him with his dearest and oldest friend Polixenes… a double betrayal! He sees ‘evidence’ of their infidelity everywhere, “is whispering nothing? Is leaning cheek to cheek? is meeting noses?”
Affection between people of the opposite sex does not necessarily mean they desire each other… many of my closest friends have been men and I certainly had no sexual interest in them, even though they are the finest and dearest fellows!