My friend is jealous of everyone, probably even me even though she says she’s not. But she’s jealous of weird things because she doesn’t need anything, or not have anything.
I met her in first year university; we shared a bathroom. Her room was totally decked out with everything brand-new. Her dad even switched her overhead room light to a pink chandelier (not a proper one, but still). Her parents paid for a cleaning service once every other week, as opposed to the rest of us who got generic room cleaning monthly.
She went home whenever there was any “reason,” from an actual school holiday, such as Thanksgiving, to her little brother’s birthday; and ordered Uber Eats more than anyone I knew. No shortage of expenses paid.
So, money can’t be the issue because she’s never had to work or pay for anything on her own and she has a very sweet life. She’s not that smart, but she works hard in school and gets pretty good grades, so academics shouldn’t be an issue.
And she has plenty of friends, boys and girls, and is always invited out to fun stuff – so she can’t be jealous of someone else’s popularity.
But she is jealous of everything I’ve mentioned. She’ll tell me, “Suzie has the nicest car. I’m so jealous; I wish I had that car.” Or, “Maddy went to that party last night and I’m so jealous because she said it was awesome.”
I don’t understand it and I also don’t know what to say. I don’t have half of what she has – in any area. I’m not sure why she’s complaining to me!
I’m not sure why she’s complaining either, from the sounds of it. Perhaps she thinks that it makes her seem as though she doesn’t have all the things you mentioned. I can’t tell from your letter whether your friend is actually serious, and looking for the attention it brings; or if she’s half-joking, in a spoiled way.
I also can’t tell if you really want her to stop. I get the feeling you enjoy the attention she’s giving you – and maybe it’s the only way she knows how to connect with you. Either way, next time she starts complaining, brush it off with a comment such as, “Oh, who cares about Maddy’s car? Let’s go do something fun.”
If you stop showing interest in her complaints, she’ll stop complaining. And then you can cultivate a real friendship.
I met a guy last week who really set my soul on fire. I don’t know what it was about him, but I was instantly smitten. We chatted aimlessly for 20 minutes before we reluctantly said goodbye. It was clear the feelings were mutual.
I couldn’t stop thinking about him, nor could I stop myself from going back to the exact place where we met, at the exact time, the following week.
And yes, he was there. “What a coincidence,” we both exclaimed, but I’m guessing his presence was as much planned as mine. This time we chatted for an hour, and exchanged details.
The problem is that I have a serious boyfriend who I love, and we don’t have any issues. We’re happy and enjoying life. Now I’m confused.
Out of the Blue
You need to tread carefully, my new friend. A hot guy who gets your blood flowing is not the same as a steady guy you’re thinking about spending your life with.
Take a step back. Don’t connect with hottie on social; don’t engage. Figure out whether you’re actually willing to give up everything you have with Mr. Long-term for this Mystery Man.
FEEDBACK Regarding the lawyer friend who often gives unsolicited advice (Aug. 17):
Reader – “One thing I have learned in life is to listen to everyone and then curate the information after. Could there be helpful information in what she said? Why were they so defensive about hearing an alternate perspective? They don't have to take her advice.
“It sounds like their friend is really wrapped up in her identity as a lawyer and maybe thought this was one place that she could offer assistance to them. It may also reveal her insecurity in adding to the conversation.
“Maybe this is an opportunity to be kind friends.... to ensure that she is not spending so much time submerged in her career that she has lost her ability to connect with others. Maybe a few other short outings with no reference to anything that requires a legal opinion would lighten the mood.
“Friends listen to friends....”