Inside: Do you suspect your friend is jealous of you? Here are the signs of a jealous person and how to deal with jealous friends. It’s not you…it’s them!
You think you have the great friends in the world. You’ve had too many fun times to count and laughed so hard, you’ve cried. They’ve always seemed so supportive of you, especially during tough times and been so loyal. Then one day, they take issue with you on trivial things and down play your success. You sense they almost want you to fail.
They start making comments that ruffle your feathers and you start to wonder to yourself. “Could they be jealous of me?” Aren’t girlfriends supposed to to be HAPPY for each other? Sadly, it doesn’t always work that way.
Jealousy can lead to fighting, exchanging harsh words and even possibly never talking to each other again.
- First, I’ll talk about the signs of a jealous person.
- Second, I’ll discuss what brings on jealousy and why friends become jealous.
- Third, I’ll help you decide if these friends are worth keeping around.
How to Deal with Jealous Friends More Effectively
Signs of Jealousy
Jealousy stems from insecurity, plain and simple. Jealous people covet desired things that others hold. It could be love, financial security, status, lifestyle, success, popularity, independence, self-control, freedom, happiness or anything held of high personal value to the person who becomes jealous.
You may be asking yourself “How does a jealous person act?” Well, they start to be bothered when good things happen to you.
Jealous people talk badly about you to mutual friends. They start pointing out all of your faults to others and persuade them to see your shortcomings. As good things happen to you, jealous friends get more resentful until nothing you do is right in their eyes.
Jealous friends will downplay your success instead of celebrating it. You’ll notice their lack of emotion or enthusiasm when good things happen to you.
I remember quite vividly how some of my friends were not so happy when I got engaged to my husband. I had finally found a good guy to marry and they downplayed it. They seemed disappointed and had a hard time not showing it.
Signs of A Jealous Person
Here are the signs a person is jealous of you.
- discounts your success.
- isn’t happy when good things happen to you.
- competes with you.
- tries to upstage you.
- doesn’t support you.
Some jealous people are busy bodies, speak negatively, often talk badly about others, are very insecure about their looks, money, and self-worth. They may have a persona that is much different than their true home life.
They act as if they have a desirable home life but, in reality, they are unhappy and possibly disgusted with their husband/boyfriend, financial status, or job. Perhaps they’re jealous that you became a stay-at-home-mom while they’re a struggling single mom. In reality, they simply want what you have. They covet certain aspects of your life, if not all of it.
Your jealous friends may be regretful of their own poor decisions and take it out on you.
Sometimes, these people rather be friends with people who they perceive as having less than them – less money, an unfulfilling job, a jerk of a husband, unmarried or unhappily married (if they want to be single again) etc. Therefore, they can pity them and in return feel better about themselves and their own lives. This is not uncommon.
These type of women (and men too) may be jealous of your wonderful husband and successful relationships you have with your family or other friends. They may show possessive behavior of your relationship and try to control you and your feelings. If you dare bring up your feelings of discontent with them, they deny ever doing anything wrong and may even tell you that you are the problem. Does this sound familiar?
Once I told my ex-best friend that I felt as though she thought I was inferior to her. Her response? “It’s all in your head.” I said to myself “I don’t think so!” It’s best to avoid confrontation with people who are like this because you’ll never get anywhere with them period!
Why Are Your Friends Jealous of You?
It is very disheartening when you feel your friends are jealous of you. Simply put, they want something you have.
- You got a job promotion.
- You met a great new guy.
- Did you just come into money?
- You just bought nice a new house.
- You recently got engaged.
- That new car you’re driving is really nice.
- You got out of debt and have extra money.
- You just had a baby.
Perhaps you worked very hard for that promotion, sacrificed time with your family, or you weathered through personal life storms to obtain the life you now have. Maybe you and your husband sacrificed a lot to obtain your financial freedom and good lifestyle.
You can not control the way your jealous friend feels.
My friends just couldn’t handle that they couldn’t pity me anymore and that our friendship was even possibly based on pity. I made them feel better about their own lives because I lost my parents while still a teen and then didn’t have a husband and kids for many years. That’s so sad… isn’t it?
There’s a great book about jealousy on Amazon (both in Kindle and paperpack) called “Jealousy: The Sin No One Talks about: How to Overcome Envy and Live a Life of Freedom” by R.T. Kendall. This book can transform the way you understand jealousy and envy and free you from it! It’s a very helpful book to get you on the right track whether you’re hurt from jealousy or if you are jealous of others.
Weddings Bring Out Jealousy
Getting engaged often brings out jealousy. Your friends are anxiously awaiting to find out who you’ll choose to be your Maid (or matron) of Honor and who’ll you’ll choose for Brides Maids or some will just assume certain positions. It’s hard to not hurt people feelings when making selections and people feel ENTITLED!
Friends are always comparing who has a better dress, wedding reception hall, bigger diamond ring, etc. Instead of focusing on the most important things like premarital counseling and things that really matter. Money doesn’t make people happy in the long run!
I’ve heard time and time again how girls have to get a certain dress because all of their friends (or their parents) spent x amount of dollars. Don’t get caught up in it. And if you’re fortunate enough to be able to afford a nice wedding, don’t let others ruin it for you by their rude comments and them telling you what to do. Sometimes, they just don’t want your wedding to be as nice as theirs.
So, when you’re getting married, just anticipate one or two of your friends will display signs of jealousy. It’s almost inevitable!
How to Decide if You Should You Keep Your Friends or Dump Them?
If your friends display jealous behavior that is minor and isolated, it may not be substantial enough to dump them. If your friend’s jealous behavior upsets you, makes you feel depressed, irritated, anxious, angry and hurt, you should really consider whether or not they deserve to be in your life. When you feel like you give more than you get all of the time, think twice about keeping these friends around. Animosity builds over time and like a rubber band that is being stretched to far, it’ll break eventually.
Sometimes friends don’t want you to be happy because they are not happy with their own lives. They don’t want you to be happy either. Have you ever heard of the cliche “Misery loves company?” It is hard to swallow and understand when they are supposed to be your friends. Would they admit that? Probably Not!!! Most likely they will deny they are jealous.
Here is a quote from the movie A Bronx Tale which, sums it up jealousy quite well.
Find New Friends, Better Friends
As our circumstances change due to marriage, divorce, become parents, relocate, etc. we will need to make new friends. It is natural for people to want to be friends with others in which they have much in common. For example, when I had my first child, I tried to make friends with other new mothers so we could talk about our transitioning to motherhood, new experiences and find solace. Some of my older friends were past this point or still in the singles party scene.
When you have jealous friends, it is almost inevitable that the friendship will perish. Losing friends to jealousy will leave you feeling as though you did something wrong when in reality you just became successful and/or happy. Unfortunately, there are people who will not be happy for you unless they are happy with their own lives.
Learning how to deal with jealous people isn’t easy. In most cases, you are better off without these people in your life. They were not friends with you for the right reasons in the first place. Don’t blame yourself and take some time to heal. Remember the saying “If you find one true friend in life, you are lucky.”
“You can’t be friends with someone who wants your life.” -Oprah Winfrey