Becoming possesive of somebody

Discussion in 'English Only' started by A-friend, Oct 13, 2013.

  1. A-friend

    A-friend Senior Member

    Persian (Farsi)
    In our culture we have a concept to indicate a moment when a man or a woman has a special feeling regarding their partner. I have seen this reaction in many countries when for example a woman draws a man’s attention when the man is walking with his wife or girlfriend and vice versa and that man’s partner becomes very annoyed and even I have seen that such things in many cultures can cause many deep problems in families. All people like to have a partner who belongs only to them and cannot accept that their partner have a relation with others too at the same time with being with them. As far as I know, the only infinitive which can convey the matter in my question is “to become possessive of somebody”; but what do you name such a sensation? “fanaticism” or “passion” or “zeal” or…?
    For example do you say: “His husband is very passionate and has a lot of passion over his wife” or something?
    I wonder if you help me to find my needed word family; I have searched a lot but I have found nothing.
  2. Ania R. Senior Member

    Poznań, Poland
    Polish (Poland)
    Like you said, "possessive" is the best way to describe it, so why not simply "possessiveness"?
  3. waltern Senior Member

    English - USA
    Look up "jealousy" and see if it fits the situation you are trying to describe.
  4. Biffo Senior Member

    English - England
    The word used to be jealous. But the words 'envious' and 'jealous' have become conflated in everyday language.


    John is very envious of his neighbour who has an expensive car. [John covets his neighbour's car]

    John is very jealous of his wife. [In its original sense, this means exactly what you are asking about - John does not like other men to show interest in her. Unfortunately in English many people would understand this to mean "envious of his wife"]

    Maybe you could say, "His husband is very passionate and is very jealous about his wife”

    I'd be interested to hear from others about this.

    (posted before I saw waltern's post)
  5. A-friend

    A-friend Senior Member

    Persian (Farsi)
    Thank you all dears; but I was wondering if I could provide any other suggestion! For a long time I was looking for this word family; as dear Biffo mentioned, "jealous" and "envious" can work, but to avoid misunderstanding, you have to describe it or at least bring it up in cominatory form and by adding some other words (as Biffo mentioned in #4: passionate and jealous) to be able to indicate the matter in your question. I need to know how natives convey such a concept? I really need to know the word family of this concept [noun - the adjective for a person who shows such a zeal or even maybe "fanaticism" or "passion"; PLUS the opposite adjective and finally the verb]. Anyway I guess the best answer was Ania's (#2); in the manner that:
    Noun: Possessiveness - Zeal - Passion
    Adjective: Possessive - Zealous - Passionate =/= I did not found any opposite for this adjective! Maybe "overzealous" or "passionless"; anyway I am not sure.
    Verb: to become possessive of someone
    any other contributions? :)
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2013
  6. Maggŭs Senior Member

    Raji; Farsi
    It's really culture-specific!
    How about "honor"? It may roughly describe a man who is highly concerned about reputation, family and his wife!
  7. If we have a male and female in that relationship, I believe that such a construction should be- her husband.

  8. akhooha Senior Member

    English - USA
  9. A-friend

    A-friend Senior Member

    Persian (Farsi)
    Thanks dear Akhooha
    I read out your mentioned link; now I doubt between the following words:
    Noun: Possessiveness - Jealousy
    Adjective: possessive - Jealous
    Infinitive: to become possessive of somebody - to be jealous of somebody
    anyway both of these families, have a negative connotation; while in spite of its English equivalents, such a cultural concept, often bears a positive one!
    Nevertheless I would be thankful if you let me know, as a native, which one of these words (possessive and jealous) would be your pick out?
    [In my view, both mean exactly the same thing]
  10. rusita preciosa

    rusita preciosa Modus forendi

    USA (Φιλαδέλφεια)
    Russian (Moscow)
    I read the whole thread and I'm not sure what you are asking...
    Are you looking for words that express the idea of 'being possessive' / "being jealous", but have a positive connotation?

    I'll wait and see what else the natives say, beacuse I can't imagine there could be a positive spin on something as negative as being possessive/jealous of one's partner... Protective may be?

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