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Why does everyone think my life is so easy?

(33 Posts)
Itssoeasyeasy Thu 13-Dec-18 02:19:21

This is a bit of a self-indulgent misery insomnia post.

A friend was messaging me earlier, just having a little moan about life and I was being sympathetic, but then she said how lucky I am to have everything so easy and I'm confused and actually a bit upset that she would say that.

I've been a single parent of 2 for 10 years. I work in a low paid job that is physically exhausting and mentally draining. I live in a tiny house that needs work doing that I can't afford.

My friend who thinks my life is so easy is married (happily as far as I'm aware, though I know you can never really know what's going on in other people's marriages) and she and her husband each earn more than double my salary. She's been moaning about how stressful it is that she is having to move house because her current house, which is a lot bigger than my house, is apparently far too small to live in now she has a child.

And another friend years ago commented on how lucky I was too have just walked into a job after taking time out as a SAHM. I didn't just "walk into" that job, I volunteered for a charity and a paid position soon became available, I was asked to apply for it because I had shown myself to be good at the work as a volunteer and I worked really hard on my application and preparing for my interview and got the job.

Even back at primary school I was bullied by a girl in my class for having such an easy life compared to her, though there was nothing I had that she didn't and plenty of children who had more.

The bullying was so bad I could barely speak until I was in my 20s. I self-harmed for years and still frequently struggle not to. I suffer from anxiety.

I know that comparatively my life isn't that hard, at least I don't live in a warzone and I have a roof over my head and I'm not terminally ill.

But why do people who are the same as me or better off always think I have everything so easy?

TheFairyAstronaut Thu 13-Dec-18 02:22:05

They are just thoughtless.

It’s more that they are of a (selfish) think no-one could possibly have it as hard as them.

Racecardriver Thu 13-Dec-18 02:30:31

I think that most people are just more aware of their own problems. Even in your post that comes through. You seem to be thinking of an easy life purely in financial terms. But everyone has their own problems. I often look at poorer people and quite envy them for a split second before catching myself and remembering how lucky I am to have the problems I have. Still, it would be lovely to be able to take for granted that my children will be in school next term because there are no fees to pay or to not have to live with the crippling fear of failing the next set of exams and not being able to pay for increases in fees as the children get older or going bankrupt because the next client won’t pay and we won’t be able to pay the next set of tax (which is guesstimated and taken before we even earn the money). Our accountant recently screwed up and we had to siphon money that was meant to build a house for my father to pay tax. Now he is living with a relative and we’re not sure how long it will take to get the money back so he has somewhere to live long term. If you mask your resentment well then they probably have no idea that you aren’t happy with your ‘simple’ life.

PirateWeasel Thu 13-Dec-18 03:01:16

Does your friend really know your situation? Or is she looking at a carefully curated "highlight reel" on social media and only seeing the best bits? I always take the stuff I see on social media with a wheelbarrowful of salt, as nobody's life is ever perfect no matter how it comes across.

Cloglover Thu 13-Dec-18 03:09:11

I really wouldn't take it so personally. Stress is relative. May be you come across as happy go lucky. And may be they are envious. It's not everyone - It's only the opinion of 3 people during your lifetime. Why does it bother you so much?

kateandme Thu 13-Dec-18 03:37:02

are you able to ever share how bad things are then?
you've struggled and then spiraled in the past and is this partly becaue you were never able to seek support to recover properly.
im not saying your at fault but if you pput the everything isok mask on then sometimes people just don't see past that.and after so many years maybe your so good at playing ok.
why don't you sit and tell her.tell her your struggling.this is how people are there for you if you let them into ur pain sometimes and let them hold yo uwith it.
im so sorry you struggled with self harm.but...again you took the pain that wasn't your fault out on yourself.did you manage to seek help.to recover with love and support.
when your having it rough.let people in.let them look after you.otherwsie this will lead to you taking on the pain and internalising it.and self harm anxiety etc will surely be what follows.
its ok not to be ok.but you don't need to do that on your own.
what happened and how you feel isn't your fault.your not bad and ur equally not bad for needing people.
also with more wealth can come more problems.you seem to her happiness or suppose happiness on her being well off with things.but internaly that cant always make her happy.and its how she copes with the problems her money or children or marriage brings that will now effect her.
im sorry you've felt alone with stuff.
let peope in you deserve that too.

speakingtruthfully Thu 13-Dec-18 03:44:32

People only see the outside picture , they never take into account all the effort that goes on to create it and mostly only see what they want to see

Itssoeasyeasy Thu 13-Dec-18 03:51:43

I may have worded my op badly but I'm not thinking of an easy life purely in financial terms.

It's hard being soley responsible for two children (because my ex left and then moved practically to the other side of the world without telling me). It's hard having to spend nearly every evening at home alone as I can't go out because the children are asleep in bed and friends don't often visit because they want to spend evenings with their partners or going out to book groups or craft groups or the like.

It's hard having anxiety and always being afraid I've done something wrong or being too paralysed with fear to do anything. It's hard stopping myself from reaching for something sharp to stop the thoughts inside my head.

I only bother posting on social media about once or twice a year and usually just a throwaway comment that doesn't really say much, but my friend is close enough and long term enough to know quite a lot about me. But I've never actually said I find things hard so maybe she thinks that means I just find things easy, whatever happens.

Foslady Thu 13-Dec-18 04:00:10

I get it OP, I have been in a similar situation but with one child and for 9 years (partner has just moved in and a massive difference).
I really do think that some people as so wrapped up they don’t see reality. I have been told by a friend that my dd was lucky because she came home to an empty house so could get on with homework where as it was unfair on her dd as she had her dad and sister there so was missing out on family life if she went upstairs and studied.......hmm, yeah, right lucky because Her dad fucked off and left us in dire straights with me struggling to keep all the balls in the air on a low wage and he’s coming home to an empty home every night!!!!
It’s a ‘laugh or cry’ situation, and once the anger subsided from these comments I do laugh - it makes me realise how strong I am.

Foslady Thu 13-Dec-18 04:03:08

And yep - I too have been diagnosed GAD, because it wrecks your mental health having the responsibility every single moment of the day and night.
Looking back on it you can be proud, but looking forwards is terrifying
Just know that you are doing a great job flowers

Returning2thesceneofthecrime Thu 13-Dec-18 04:40:25

I think there are a couple of possibilities here.

First, they are struggling and said something stupid and thoughtless because they are (hopefully temporarily) very self involved because they don’t feel like they are coping well (in contrast to you).

Secondly, they see you as someone who really has her shit together and who is to be admired and who they can’t measure up to.

Coyoacan Thu 13-Dec-18 04:48:32

It sounds like you do not confide your worries and problems to your friends. Maybe you should try not to hold everything in so much, for your own wellbeing, not just so that they stop saying such crass things to you.

KeysHairbandNotepad Thu 13-Dec-18 04:58:25

Your 'friends' sound like arseholes op. A little thoughless and self obsorbed at best.

I'd be asking myself if they were worth staying in touch with.

Mummyoflittledragon Thu 13-Dec-18 05:10:51

These people show a lack of emotional intelligence Itssoeasy. I do think that your friends don’t have a clue about how you feel. Rather than thinking you have it easy, I’m baffled why they are not in awe of how well you manage you life and situations alone.

As Cocoyan said you are choosing not to share your struggles and perhaps if you did, things would be different. Is this because you don’t feel worthy of their concern / pity? Is it because it is none of their business?

It sounds as though you are passively taking these comments. I’m not sure why.

Foslady shock

Birdsgottafly Thu 13-Dec-18 05:18:46

I had similar said. Even though I've lived in poverty and was Widowed with three children.

I think deep down you are content.

Money, marriage, big house, aside, I wouldn't want to live in most people's head.

Mixing with people and them opening up, has made it impossible to ever be jealous. All these people forever striving for something better, or having to be outwardly perfect etc, are usually a fucked up mess inside.

That's what people envy you for.

I've found that if you point out to these people that they cause their own problems by their wants and thought process, they'd rather fall out with you than acknowledge it.

Birdsgottafly Thu 13-Dec-18 05:24:22

X post.

You need to share more, or brush off the comments.

But whatever you are portraying, it's something worth envying.

Start to believe your own publicity grin

I think you've got your shit together a lot more than you realise.

Oblomov18 Thu 13-Dec-18 05:37:52

Are these 2 friends real, close friends? Or merely superficial acquaintances? How well do they know you and how well do you know them?
Are you a closed person? Do you open up easily?
I suspect not.
What level of closeness and friendship do you want?

I open up too easily. So I've been told!
My 4 closest friends know pretty much everything there is to know about me. So they wouldn't make such comments.

Have you considered politely correcting them?

user1471426142 Thu 13-Dec-18 05:58:02

It’s bizare really given your circs as I don’t think anyone with any common sense would say you have an easy life. I think some people give off that impression though. I’ve had it quite a bit. I remember someone at work snapping at me and saying ‘well it’s fine for you, you’ve just floated through life and had it easy, you just get handed everything on a plate’. It was nothing to do with me really but she was insecure and I put her firmly right as my circumstances growing up were actually very difficult and at the time I was working stupid hours above my pay grade which was why I was up for promotion and she wasn’t.

Areyoufree Thu 13-Dec-18 06:06:21

I think the issue is that your friends are pricks. Even if I had a friend who really did have an incredibly easy life - enough money not to have to work, perfect house, perfect health etc - I would never tell them so.

MiniTheMinx Thu 13-Dec-18 06:08:14

It's the swan thing. Apparently I too seem to glide effortlessly over the water, below the surface I'm paddling like mad.

HopeGarden Thu 13-Dec-18 06:12:15

I think the basic problem is that some people just don’t stop to think, and get so wrapped up in their own problems that they can’t see past the end of their nose.

Either that or they’re under the mistaken impression (through lack of emotional intelligence perhaps) that because you’re not continuously pointing out your struggles, that this means you’re not at all bothered by them.

user1499173618 Thu 13-Dec-18 06:14:45

People only see the outside picture , they never take into account all the effort that goes on to create it

This. I worked extremely hard at a personal goal for many years - and achieved it. My sister, who would have liked the same achievement, had all the resources at hand to get there but was far too lazy to try and attributes my success to luck and external factors. She is so resentful that she goes out of her way to create a fiction in which she never wanted what I achieved anyway (this is totally implausible and leads to the most unbelievably silly and self sabotaging behaviours).

Baking101 Thu 13-Dec-18 06:14:48

They are probably aware that if they were in your situation, they would struggle really badly and couldn't cope at all. Just jealous of you being more capable than them.

strawberrisc Thu 13-Dec-18 06:26:04

It’s a thoughtless and strange thing to say. I’d never say that to anyone.

FruminousBandersnatch Thu 13-Dec-18 06:27:49

" they see you as someone who really has her shit together and who is to be admired and who they can’t measure up to."

I think this is it. They're confusing being sorted, with somehow being privileged.

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