Jealousy is often referred to as the "green eyed monster," and while jealousy is not necessarily demonstrated in the color green, its affects are certainly lasting and thus can be compared to a monstrous disaster. It has been said that those on your boat may not necessarily be rowing with you; they could be rowing against you, unbeknownst to you. Therefore, you may be curious as to how to identify if a friend is secretly jealous or fully supportive of your romantic relationship.
1. Consider How Supportive Your Friend Is
Friends may experience some difficulty adjusting when a variable such a new romance is added. One of the most tale-tell signs that your friend is jealous of your relationship is her response to that romantic relationship. Consider if she frequently points out the negative aspects of the relationship or is overly critical of the relationship without any substantial reason; if she is, she could be jealous. Share something small such as a random text message from your boyfriend expressing how excited he is for a date or the lovely bouquet of flowers labeled "just because." When you receive great news, the celebration that you are exhibiting should match the celebratory behavior of your friend. When it does not, this could be a sign of underlying emotions associated with jealousy.
2. Notice What Your Friend Didn't Say
Pay attention to not only what your friend says but what your friend does not say. Communication, or the lack thereof, is very significant in identifying true feelings. When a person feels a certain way about something and wants to conceal those feelings, she may go to great lengths to speak around those feelings. For example, if your new boyfriend surprises you with a candlelit dinner to the newest upscale restaurant, your friend may respond just as excited as you and say, “Wow, girl I know that you are glad that you have a man with a job now!” While this may sound encouraging, the concern is surrounding whether or not your friend is happy for you or jealous of you. In the aforementioned statement, there was no mention of being happy or excited for you, only that the new boyfriend has a job.
3. Listen to Your Friend
Notice if your friend is complaining about feeling unimportant in your life. This can show up as annoyance with your schedule, or she may remind you that she was there before your new significant other, and therefore is more important. When this happens, assure your friend that the nature of your relationship with her has not changed, and that there is no reason to feel insecure about her place in your life.
4. Reassure Your Friend
Reassure her of her place in your life with Saturday morning coffee and brunch or a biweekly movie night. Jealousy is deeply rooted in insecurity. Therefore, if you can secure the unsecured, you will indirectly address jealousy head on. Identifying jealousy will not always “fireproof” your relationships with friends. However, it can serve as a way to keep relationships from getting off track when the detour can be avoided.