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Please help me to stop being such a jealous cow(27 Posts)
Before I begin, please PLEASE go gentle on me. I do not have much self confidence at the moment and can't take a beating
There is a woman I know, let's call her Lorna, an acquaintance/friend who is everything I want to be. She's pretty, funny, confident, outgoing, good at the sport we do (which is how we met), clever blah blah. She's also a lovely person and has been nothing but nice to me.
My OH runs his own business which is linked to the mutual sport. She is unemployed at the moment, so he has taken her on to do odd bits and bats and she often attends trade fairs with him etc. For some reason, I feel wildly jealous about it, and it's making me feel all sorts of horrible things towards her (which of course I keep to myself).
Part of the problem is that I have always helped OH with his business. I enjoy it, personally think I am quite good at it and he has always said that when he can afford it he'd take me on. Now I feel like she is getting asked to do everything and is better than me and it just confirms my own feelings of uselessness. I feel like I am rubbish at everything, unsociable, boring, and that Lorna is the total opposite. It just confirms my own feelings of inadequacy.
I feel a bit...hurt and feel angry towards Lorna, although I know this is totally irrational.
It's eating me up inside and I am avoiding events that she is at because I feel so upset about it all.
Having written that, I can see just how unreasonable i am being. But right now I feel so crap about my life this just isn't helping. Why do I feel like a stupid fucking jealous child? I'm in my 30s FGS.
I don't think you're being irrational. If you've always helped with the business and he has always said that he would take you on more permanently at some point then you're bound to feel that you've been overlooked in favour of Lorna. I'd be pretty annoyed as well, if I were you. Getting jealous is maybe not appropriate but talking to your partner and explaining that you're cheesed off & would have preferred it to be you picking up the extra jobs and attending the trade fairs etc. is quite legitimate. If you say nothing he won't know how you feel.
I've told him how I feel (but left out some of the more horrible irrational things I've been feeling!)
He says that Lorna is very good at sales and has lots of contacts in the industry that I don't. He is right, which is the hard thing.
Well... there's one issue, which is your self esteem, which would probably benefit from some counselling or psychotherapy. It should be possible to meet a nice woman and think how nice she is, gosh she's good at that sport, without comparing yourself negatively all the time. You are doing well at wrestling your horrible feelings towards her, as you realise it isn't your fault, but you shouldn't have to feel bad either. You deserve to be happy in your own skin.
Second issue is your OH taking on someone else with the business when you have always been the one to help him up till now. What does he think he's playing at? Are you really being irrational - is Lorna filling in because you're not available to attend the trade fairs - or are you actually being somewhat pushed out? It doesn't necessarily have to be for any sinister reason (although it wouldn't be the first time such a thing had ever happened in the history of humankind), but maybe he's just being totally thoughtless, giving a friend some much-needed work experience for her CV, fine, but neglecting his own partner in the process?
BTW.... being passed over for Lorna doesn't make you useless or inadequate. The only material difference between her and you, by the sound of it, is that she's been more vocal and then grabbed the opportunity offered whereas you've kept quiet. However, you have several big advantages over Lorna, not least that you're the person he loves most...
Some cross-posting there. Hmm, well, if she's so good at sales and well-connected it won't take her too long to find other employment, will it? If she concentrates on job-hunting, that is, instead of giving her time gratis to someone else's business. <cynical>
I'm thinking the same as Anniegetyourgun that she'll be looking for a permanent position and won't be happy with bits and pieces for long. In the meantime, you could be proactive about this. While you've got the opportunity why don't you team up with Lorna, go along to the trade-fairs, learn what she knows, meet her contacts.... so that when she goes you can fill her shoes and be just as good at sales etc.? More than one way of skinning a rabbit.
I don't want to "compete" with Lorna, I recognise that she has a skill set that I don't, but I do feel usurped. My OH says I am jealous because she's a woman and that if he had taken on one of male friends I wouldn't feel this way. I can't work out if he is right. Embarrassingly, I think perhaps he is a little bit right, so maybe it's not just about the work, but also about me feeling jealous. I HATE that I feel this way, it's very immature and ridiculous and I need to get over it because it's affecting my social life and my relationship with my OH.
I hope you told him he was talking a load of patronising crap! Even if you do feel worried that they are sipping cocktails together in hotel bars during trade shows or whatever that's immaterial. You were doing those jobs for him, he's brought in someone new.... that's your real problem with this.
Then again, a man who immediately leaps to defend their new female employee and accuses their partner of being jealous of them solely for their gender.... 'methinks he doth protest too much' ....?
Good advice from Cognito to
steal build bridges with Lorna's contacts.
How secure are you in your relationship with OH? Is it long term, do you have children together?
Your husband, im sorry to say, is thinking with his cock - I assume he is paying this woman to do what you used to do for him for free? I wouldn't stand for it actually. You have told him how it makes you feel and his comeback - "she has the skills i need, you don't" Errr, bye then!
I think that in your shoes, I would actually still feel 'jealous'/miffed it was a man your OH had taken on. You say that you always helped your OH with his business, therefore, it was part of your relationship with him. He has moved you out of that part of the relationship and moved someone else in. The fact that it's a woman makes it a bit worse, but the fact remains that he's replaced you in part of his life with someone else. Have said that, it's only 'part' of his life and it's a business part, not a personal part.
I think it's a bit of a low blow to accuse you of jealousy because she's an attractive woman, to be honest. A mite manipulative, no? Now you feel you have to line up with them to give yourself a hard time for being so unreasonable, when actually, you're not being all that unreasonable.
I wonder how your OH would feel if you brought in another man to take over the jobs he normally does with/for you. Would he be pleased if you started attending events with the hypothetical new man, and be satisfied with your explanation that the new man just had a better skill set than OH does?
What would concern me in your situation is how your OH has been quick to dismiss your feelings outright and not offered you any reassurance. It's all about him.
Op I'm sorry to ask this but do you think something is going on between your OH and Lorna?
Maybe your feelings are spot on and you should stop turning this on yourself and direct it where it might be better deserved?
I hope I am wrong in what I'm thinking. Only you would be able to answer that though.
Sorry for disappearing - I had work to do. No, I don't think for one minute there is something going on between them romantically, I trust him implicitly and don't think that she would be the kind of woman to do that.
I think my jealousy stems from my own insecurities about myself, rather than my insecurities about our relationship, although I do think one day he might wake up and realise how crap I am and that him seeing successful, beautiful people like Lorna won't help.
I feel sometimes that I am sabotaging my own happiness. When he comes in from being with Lorna at a meeting, I am snappy with him and grumpy, because I feel it should be me, I suppose. And then I think "no wonder he wants Lorna to work for him". Instead, I suppose I shuold be gracious and fun so that I don't pale so much in comparison.
Another approach... rather than relying on your OH for approval and security, how could you get that independently? What do you do that is worthwhile and gives you satisfaction? What could you do that would give you a sense of achievement that had nothing to do with him or his business?
Do you feel you're in a competition with not just Lorna but also your OH? Do you feel that others are doing better than you generally?
I think you have every reason to feel insecure about this and I think your gut instinct is telling you hello you need to Do somthing about this. You are not been silly for feeling this way. Think your husband is thinking via his pants.
I think you may be right in some respects, Cogito. I Do feel worthless compared to OH. He has built up a successful business, has done very well for himself despite leaving school with only a few GCSEs. I'm the opposite - I did very well at school and university, but now work in a dead end job I hate and feel very stuck. I do feel that my life is rubbish, that it's my fault for not being sufficiently ambitious/proactive/whatever but don't know what to do about it.
I have hobbies and interests outside of my relationship which I pursue and enjoy. But these are solitary pursuits so there is no "competition" as such. Whenever I'm involved in something with other people I can't help but compare myself and always feel I am the worst.
I think you should tag along and try to build a friendship with this woman. By avoiding events she's at and letting her have a clear field while you seethe out of sight, makes her 'fun & involved, interesting person' and you 'grumpy unpleasant person to be around'.
Push through the jealousy and learn from her sales methods etc.
I'd be the exact same as you, I have jealousy and insecurity issue but I accept them. Because I have no reason for them!
Your DP is handling this badly though, if he knows you feel the way you do, he shouldn't be patronising you like that and should be doing his best to put your mind at rest.
You're right dequoisagitil (like your French name!). I have often thought that myself too. I need to be fun and interesting, in my own right at least, and not the boring grumpy little wifey stuck at home.
I just need to bury my jealousy and get on with her, because she is a nice person and before all this I did really like her.
"now work in a dead end job I hate and feel very stuck."
To me that sounds like you need a new challenge and the obvious first step would be to get a job that reflects your abilities and makes you feel worthwhile. I don't think you'd actually be happy picking up the bits and pieces you described earlier. Does your OH value what you do or does he take you for granted?
To be honest, I would feel the same as you, OP. Does anyone really like the thought of another woman getting close to and spending a lot of time with their husband?
You admit that you have issues with your self-esteem and confidence and blame yourself for your insecurity.
But if I were in your shoes, I would not make excuses for my feelings. There is definitely room for jealousy and caution here. Many affairs begin in the workplace where curiosity and opportunity collide. If I were you, I would insert myself between them and keep an eye on proceedings. Best to displace her rather than leave them to it.
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