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I Am Green with Parent Envy

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Guest blogger Georgie Hocket: Here's how to handle it when your wealthy friends have more than you do.

Two woman

I have a friend who is -- how should I say this? -- loaded. Her husband has a great job and, while she started out as a teacher, she now stays at home full-time with her kids.

It's hard to schedule coffee or lunch with her ,as her schedule is peppered with appointments I never seem to have: Meeting with the interior designer to pick out the furniture for the new house, talking to the guy at the piano store about the best piano for her daughter, packing for the family trip to Hawaii, and then trying to schedule the romantic getaway two weeks after they shake the sand out of their shoes. Other times, she's interviewing a new house-cleaning service, setting up a schedule with the personal trainer, telling the landscape guys what to do next.

As I listen to her, I pick dirt out from under my nails after pulling a million weeds from the front yard while defrosting some chicken in the sink.

We've been friends for years, and I've never been jealous. "That's her life, not mine," I would say to myself, honestly -- without a jealous bone in my body. I have always taken pride in doing it all ... after all, that's what mothers do.

But I have to say, the last time I saw her, I developed an unflattering shade of green in her presence. She had a new house and designer-picked furniture. Meanwhile, I obsessively stare at my out-of-date bathrooms every day wondering when I'll be able to shake the '80s.

But you never know someone's life and what goes on behind the scenes. And while she certainly has a life I do not lead, she doesn't have the life I lead -- the good husband, the great kid, the career driven solely by me.

Every life is different, and I feel pretty fortunate for the one I've got. Out-dated bathrooms or not.

next: Look Who is Due to Pop!
4 comments so far | Post a comment now
2 cents March 4, 2009, 10:25 AM

Nice blog! You are correct, you do not know what goes on in her life behind closed doors. My family grew up living paycheck to paycheck and my parent’s friend’s were LOADED! Like, vulger loaded! My family grew close because of not having a lot of money while the friends money caused them problems, (dad never home for kid, affairs). Now this does not happen to everybody with tons of money, but in their case it did.
I sometimes find myself getting the green eye, but when I do I just count my blessings. You can never be happy if you compare what you have to others.

Patricia March 4, 2009, 12:06 PM

I’m in the same position with my best friend and unfortunately as much as I’ve tried to dismiss my jealousy the green bug has become clear every time I’m around her.
I’m not proud of my behavior so I’ve opted to distance myself from her which is a real bummer since I miss my friendship.
But I don’t want to resent her either.

Qfhzsypl June 30, 2009, 9:50 PM

tkXtYz comment1 ,

Ten Tees January 9, 2011, 2:44 PM

Great site. Enjoyable to read. I just have one point to make about funny shirts.

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