I feel jealous of my friend

Feeling jealous? Or is someone jealous of you? Jealousy can be triggered by lots of different things, from popularity to family life, social media, other relationships and more. Regardless of the cause, it can cause a lot of strain on the relationship. To avoid that, The Mix have put together a guide to help you understand jealousy.

A group of young people are sitting down. One of them is jealous of her friend. This is a wide-angle image.

Why your friend might feel jealous of you

Reason 1: You’re ‘poaching’ their best mate

They’re probably feeling bad and possibly worried that they’ll have no-one to hang around with. This fear of losing a close friend could end-up overshadowing any possibility that they might feel happiness for you. It might even make them act out of character, possibly taking their anger out on you

Solution: Take the high road. Try to understand where they’re coming from. Likelihood is they’ve been possessed by the green eyed monster and aren’t fully thinking-through their actions. But that doesn’t mean you have to let them treat you like dirt. If your new mate wants to stay friends with them, then try to include them in your plans. If they make plans and don’t invite you, so be it. Just try and be cordial. You should, however, start distancing yourself if they start talking shit behind your back or actively seeking to make your life hell. 

Reason 2: You’re both their mate, but recently you’ve been getting on better with each other than with them

They’ll feel left out, miss what they used to have with each of you, and worry that they’ll lose you both.

Solution: If you still like them, try to keep them involved in your plans, and also encourage them to go out and socialise with others, maybe even arrange a few group outings yourselves. Try to put their mind at ease. As long as you involve them and remind them you’re still good friends, things will probably improve.

Reason 3: You’re their best mate but you’ve got a new friend who they’re jealous of

They feel they are being replaced, their position as your best mate is under threat and that their whole world-order is crumbling.

Solution: They might just need some reassurance to stop them spiralling. Talk to your best mate, explain that this new friend isn’t taking their place, they’re just fun to be around. You can even try and get the two of them together to get to know each other. But also be sure to plan some quality one-one time with just the two of you, for old times sake. Also, try not to post too many pictures of you and your new mate on social media. That can really sting. 

When jealousy between friends goes too far

There’s a difference between a small feeling of envy and a full on jealous rage. Signs that their jealousy is starting to get out of hand include the following:

  • Constantly calling when you’re apart to ‘check up’ on you;
  • Listening in on your phone conversations;
  • Hanging out at your house when you aren’t around;
  • Interrogating other friends, lovers and family about your whereabouts;
  • Following you, or turning up out of the blue everywhere you go.

Someone who flies into possessive rages for no good reason might need professional help, especially if they are violent. If they refuse to get help, you need to get out of the friendship. Unfortunately, it’s unlikely that they’ll change (however much they promise they will) and you could be putting your personal safety in danger.

If it’s getting really bad and you need some advice about when to end a friendship, take a look at this article.

When you feel jealous of your friend

They’ve got a new friend and you’re not spending as much time together as you used to. You feel left out. Maybe you even think they’re off gallivanting with their new mate and they don’t have time for boring old you.

Solution: If you live with them or nearby, but they’re never at home or out with you, it’s fair enough to let them know how you feel. Just have an honest talk with them and say that you really want to spend more time together. If you really feel they are treating you unfairly, but they don’t seem to see it, maybe it’s time you got yourself a new mate?

But you also need to look at it from their perspective. If you have these emotions but you’ve just seen them three times in the last week compared to the usual five – it’s time to do some self-reflection. Take a moment and ask yourself WHY aren’t you happy for your friend just living their life, because odds are it’s got nothing to do with your mate. And if that doesn’t lead anywhere, the best thing to do is occupy your mind. How about trying to make some new friends or following up some of your hobbies or interests? That should help take your mind off jealous thoughts.

Next Steps

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By Nishika Melwani

Updated on 09-Oct-2021