Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

bitterly jealous of my friends beauty

(45 Posts)
theuglysister Mon 12-May-14 17:45:23

I have been friends since university with one of my closest female friends. We are both in our mid 30's now and have been though each others ups and downs and it has been a great friendship, one of the best which makes what is happeneing now even harder to cope with.

One of our shard interests is beauty and skincare we both have issues about our looks so we always bonded over that. She had a very young face and skin but was about 70lbs too heavy, I was slim but looked older, more wrinkles etc.

In the past year after a health scare she radically changed her diet and lifestyle, she dropped her excess weight and began taking car of herself. The result is incredible, she is slim and looks so young and fresh, she could easily pass for her early 20's and she is beautiful.

I am happy for her but I am also bitterly envious of her transformation. She has been very open with me about all she has done to achieve her new look what books she read, what exercise, treatments and food she ate as well as skincare etc I have tried to take some of it on board but I find it overwhelming. She also was in a better position to begin with as she never, smoked, sun bathed or drank booze so her skin was very youthful anyway.

I have found myself not really wanting to go out with her as I feel so aware of how crap I look next to her with long glossy hair and her line free face. If I have her over my dp hangs around with his tongue out. He always liked her a lot personality wise, he thinks she is more intellectual than me but he wasn't attracted to her but now he is.

Its pretty much ruining the best friendship I have because I feel so jealous. Everything is falling into place for her, looks, career a new home while it all feels over for me.

Is it better just to to see her for a while?

LaurieFairyCake Mon 12-May-14 17:47:37

I know it's irrelevant but the partner you've chosen is an idiot

He didn't find her attractive because she was a bit chubby? And now he hangs around drooling over her?

Even bitter, you could do better wink grin

littlegreenlight1 Mon 12-May-14 17:51:26

I dont have any real advice but I do have a supermodel looking best mate and it does make you feel like shit!!!
She is unmarried, childless and STUNNING. We are best of friends but live away from each other so meet up maybe 5 times a year. I always do my hair lovely, dress nice, then we meet in a pub and I see her and I just want to give up.
Im jealous as hell of her figure and face and hair and lifestyle but then she has had many mental health issues, an awful awful divorce from a psychopath years ago, still desperate to become a mother etc - we all have insecurities and I feel actual pain for her for all of those.

Dont focus on what you havent got, or what she has. Focus on everything you do have. I know it is hard and I really should take my own advice but please dont get down any more about this.

I am seeing my friend in 4 weeks. Im going to lose a stone and have a facelift before then :D

theuglysister Mon 12-May-14 17:59:25

I think it is more difficult because she used to me more like me, just average looking and now she turns heads. If anything when we were young it was me that got the attention.

We mer up with some old uni friends a month or so ago at the wedding and guys who we have both know for years really changed how they acted about her, I felt invisible next to her.

Shodan Mon 12-May-14 18:05:02

I don't think it's at all irrelevant, Laurie.

OP, do you think you'd be feeling this bad if your partner wasn't such a pillock? If my DH didn't think I was the most beautiful woman in the world (even though I'm obviously not grin) AND made it plain that he found my friend so attractive, I think I'd probably be introducing my knee to his groin- before questioning whether I wanted him around me at all.

Please don't allow your feelings to alter your relationship with your friend- it's clearly important to both of you. Are you close enough that you could maybe tell her how you're feeling?

MarianneM Mon 12-May-14 18:28:04

You should look at it from your friend's point of view - TBH you really don't sound like a good friend.

I could never understand jealousy between friends, but seeing stuff like this makes me wonder if there can actually be any real friendship between women.

What I find especially hard to understand is how you can justify your jealousy when in the past you got more attention and now she does.

I am perhaps a bit like your friend, not any model type for sure, but never used to get any attention when younger, a bit overweight, but now in my late 30s have not maybe aged as fast as some, and now I seem to be noticed a lot more than before, and have often wondered if some women who have put on weight, aged more quickly etc are resentful of this...

Pitiful, petty.

It may not be such a bed of roses always for her either even if she does look better than you.

Is this all your friendship is based on?

Twinklestein Mon 12-May-14 18:35:28

I don't think your partner is behaving very well, it's rude of him to admire her openly.

That aside, I think you need to make a decision whether you love your friend enough, and want her in your life enough, to forgive her for her transformation, or whether it's too much to deal with.

I have some experience of this from the other side - altho' I would like to emphasize that I am not beautiful - a friend of mine of 30 years has developed an obsession with my appearance. Whenever I see her she repeats how lucky I am to have no lines, be thin, have my natural hair colour (I've told her it's highlighted a gazillion times - but hers is grey under the dye). It all seems a bit bonkers to me. She's lovely looking, I think she's just lost confidence & for some reason it's randomly focusing on me. I don't suppose for a minute you are saying these things out loud as my friend does, but it's not healthy either way.

So I think you need to figure out what you want. Tbh I would be having second thoughts about the partner rather than the friend.

TheOneAndOnlyAlpha Mon 12-May-14 18:36:57

Yeah. I get that. I'm pretty invisible looking, very short and have had various skin problems. I'm smart though, so I focus on that. It is hard but I try to focus on my good bits and try to stay reasonably fit and healthy. I know I can look better so I'm trying to lose a bit of weight.

All my friends are better looking than me without without exception. I'm not just saying that, they are! But I can scrub up pretty well when I need too.

OP try focusing on your good points. I'm sure there are many.

Twinklestein Mon 12-May-14 18:37:33

It's not real is what I am trying to say. Lines etc really don't signify.

TheOneAndOnlyAlpha Mon 12-May-14 18:39:24

Must add that I like to see what my friends are wearing and their make up etc. I'm pretty useless at that so I steal ideas from them! Not in a bad way, it's a bit like using a fashion blog.

magoria Mon 12-May-14 18:40:50

If you smoke, sunbath and drink then your skin pays the price. That's the way it is unfortunately.

How did you feel all the time you got the attention and she didn't? How do you think she felt then? She was still a good friend to you through all that.

If you are going to be a good friend now put her looks and your jealousy aside and treat her the same as you have all these years.

She has had a health scare enough to have radically changed her life style. Would you really want to do that just to look prettier or worse to look prettier than her?

To draw back and stop seeing over this makes you a not very good friend really.

Your DP is a shit though and so are all the other men who dismissed her when she was plumper.

Minion100 Mon 12-May-14 19:05:38

I am 36 and my best friend is 38 and about two years ago a waitress in a restaurant mistook me for her Mother smile

That said, she is very youthful but I don't feel jealous of her....maybe this is more about feeling bad about you? Your DP hanging over her makes him sound a bit of a chump tbh

Maisie0 Mon 12-May-14 19:05:46

Guys can be truly unself-aware sometimes. I would actually point it out to him in a way to embarrass him because his tongue is indeed hanging out.

My ex was the same when a very young woman had actually wore tight jeans walked past us, and his eyes were like glued. I was horrified but I checked his reaction. Despite his numerous "clean moral nonsense", he did actually do this, which he denied and is unaware, but he tries to hide, cos I guess he did not realised it at the time. Now.. whenever something like that happens, instead of getting upset, I get mad and even with him, and he starts to laugh. Cos he realises that it is SO true.

I think you should be honest to your friend with your feelings to be honest, and why let something like this damage your friendship ? If you were there for her, then maybe she could be there for you too. This is what a true strong girly friendships are about imho. You do look out for each other. Ask her, whether she can also help you to motivate and put a plan together which works well for you too, and get her feedback as a bystander's perspective.

I've had my sister mentioned that she was jealous of my social life during our uni years when she was stuck in a serious relationship. In retrospect, I am still the single person on my own, without a relationship. The same with another friend, who was jealous of my job at the time, when we were in the same industry, but now, I have specialised but she is still hanging tight on rounds of redundancies. But we still keep each other motivated.

You do have choices here. It is okay to have these feelings, but then, what does it mean ? To me, it means that you desire the same thing too. So use this feeling to turn things around for yourself too, and motivate yourself to get what you want ? As for the DP. Throw him a house chore to do til he apologises. Or get him to cook his own dinner.

theuglysister Mon 12-May-14 19:46:07

I don't think my partner knows how obvious he is being about fancying her as I said they get on, they both read a lot and always talked about books so its normal for him to talk to her. He does always mention how terrific she is looking now though. I doubt she has noticed, she does feel better about herself but it hasn't really sunk in for her yet what a change it is, and just how beautiful she has become.

I do want what she has but realistically its not possible unless I have surgery. I do still want to be her friend but its do difficult, she is changing doing the things we only ever talked about.

I do feel bad that I am bitter about it, especially because I still though of myself as the better looking one, well I used to be and I was slimmer. Now I feel I have ages much worse than her, worse than most women my age. I wouldn't be surprised if someone thought we were mother and daughter.

oikopolis Mon 12-May-14 20:04:50

I think this situation could be a major learning experience for you OP.

You didn't appreciate your friend's feelings back when she was the "invisible" one; now you have a chance to develop that empathy and appreciate how she stuck with you even though she was presumably feeling a lot like you do now. She sounds like someone you should really cherish!

Perhaps even more importantly, it sounds like you're having to come to terms with your own ageing process. There will come a time when you no longer catch most men's sexual attention, regardless of who's sitting next to you... maybe you need to start practicing being OK with that, having other things to fall back on in social situations, fielding the new emotions (resentment/envy/disappointment etc.).

If I were you I would praise her effusively and help her come into her own as a beautiful woman. What a wonderful feeling it will be for her to finally get a few years' of attention for her physical beauty. Most people don't get that opportunity! While you praise her, step back from your feelings and sort of look at them as if they were zoo animals, and work out what they are and where they come from. It will be uncomfortable, but I think it might help you in the long term.

FWIW I don't think how you feel is unusual or wrong. We do place a lot of emphasis on physical beauty as a species, after all. Maybe focusing on helping her enjoy her new beauty might help you come to terms with your feelings.

Maisie0 Mon 12-May-14 20:08:16

You don't have to have surgery. You need to check seriously where you are at, and stop the elements of your lifestyle which is aggravating things, and then increase the better elements which will improve things for you. I have never drank that much, and not smoked, but I do have sun damage as well. But these days, I just try to go for a better diet, and actually start to detox, very very heavily, and I looked very saggy, and now I am rebuilding it up to a better diet which does preserve the skins more. I am 37 this year. I have started to follow TCM. I detoxed my liver, and I look like I was 50. My skin was very dry, and I had lost some weight as well. I did not realise water can be such a big effect on a person. I realised why I have always looked young. It was the babyfat. But, I also realised recently with help from some of these beauty and style threads here that, the basic condition of your skin can indeed reverse a little bit, and continue to be protected as it ages. We cannot stop aging. But we can help reduce the speed of it by removing triggers which makes it worst and worst.

People also used to say that I looked like the older sister when I walk by my sister. But I realised that it is because I was not dating. I saw some photos of late with my ex, and I kind of reversed back almost 10 years. How I also rehauled my wardrobe helps too. You will be surprised how colours bring out your natural beauty, and how water helps rejuvenate skin.

MostWicked Mon 12-May-14 20:13:49

I do feel bad that I am bitter about it, especially because I still though of myself as the better looking one, well I used to be and I was slimmer

So it was fine when you were better looking than her, but now she is better looking than you, you feel bitter.
Be grateful for the fact that she is not as shallow as you, and was happy to be your worse looking friend for a long time.
If you can't be happy for her, then you're not really much of a friend.

My best friend is drop dead gorgeous. I have always wanted the best for her and the most I have ever felt is a little envious of her ample boobs!
My DH does compliment her, but he's with me and he loves me - simple.

Maisie0 Mon 12-May-14 20:18:27

I just want to show you how taking care of your skin by sleeping that bit more can help you look a bit different.

Also how hair colour or make up can change how you look as a person.

Zooey Deschanel -32. - This is her natural colour. - Evening make up. - Natural self.

Katie Holme - 2 years ago. 32. She must be around 34 by now. She looks like she has overworked if you look at the eyebags. - 2014.

So it is possible to look good.

CoffeeTea103 Mon 12-May-14 20:22:09

You don't sound like a very good friend. As long as you were better looking than her you were all fine hmm

oikopolis Mon 12-May-14 20:24:59

Christ almighty. Maisie OP's problems are not going to be solved by her pouring effort into looking better. She is going to get older, it cannot be stopped. And her feelings are still going to be there, waiting to be dealt with.

Trying to look younger is not going to make her feel better!! All your posts are doing is reinforcing the idea that her looks are the most important thing in this situation...? can you not see that?

Commenting about "eye bags", yes so helpful!

If she wanted tips on how to one-up her friend in the looks dept, I presume she'd be posting in another section...

theeternalstudent Mon 12-May-14 20:25:25

In my younger days I used to be friends with a girl who was a model. She was known as the beautiful one and I the nice one. Implication being that she was a bitch and that I was ugly. At the time it really hurt to be considered ugly. But then, I realised that it hurt her just as much being known as the bitch. She wasn't but that was how she was known. She also received a lot of unwanted attention from men. She found it creepy and felt like they wanted her for what she looked like and not who she was. In the end it had an effected on the way she related and trusted people. She became a bit of a recluse.

It was a hard lesson for me to learn, that no-one gets everything they desire. Looks aren't everything and that sometimes being pretty can be a real curse.

It took a whilst but I've made peace with the way I look. You really need to try and do the same. No matter how hard you try you cannot stop the aging process. You need to find some self worth that isn't just attached to the way you look and surround yourself by people who like you for who you are and not just the way you look.

TwoKidsAndCounting Mon 12-May-14 20:32:43

I fail to see your point at all. It's utterly ridiculous and you should be ashamed of your jealousy. Sort it out.
Your partner won't be helping the way you feel but ultimately it's you. Nothing has a meaning but the meaning you give it. So ask yourself what is the REAL issues being brought up by your friends beauty!?

Boobsofsteel Mon 12-May-14 20:36:41

A close friend of mine lost tons of weight and looks amazing. I am so happy for her. This is because I am her friend and part of that is a sincere desire for her to be happy.

Maisie0 Mon 12-May-14 20:40:02

oik I am trying to set the correct expectation. We do age. This is a natural process in life. It is not like we can reverse things. BUT... health IS important imho. It does not matter what was done in the past. That is gone. Surgery is not a solution imho. Women always think that surgeries are like Godsgiven steps, but in actual fact, even the most beautiful women in the big celebrity world also age too. The thing which sets them apart is the ammunition called "make up" and "clothes".

THIS is the reality. I just want the OP to see real pictures of real women, looking quite beautiful.

I was watching some of these videos and was quite shocked, but it is quite realistic too.

There is also no point in making her feel guilty either. Cos if she is jealous then surely to address the feeling is more important in reality? We should not turn it into guilt. Because at the bottom of that feeling is the desire for good health once again. We shouldn't throw away the baby with the bathwater.

I can only encourage the OP to treat herself more gentler and eat better, and reduce salt, alcohol, caffeine and so forth. Being good to yourself in the wholistic way can only improve how you view life in general, which is a good thing imho.

Maisie0 Mon 12-May-14 20:45:04

By the way, changing your emotions, or rather, suppressing it, or psychologically suppressing it, is also NOT good. Because you will start to internalise it and imagine that it is not there. But really, you do need to address it, and do the right thing in the right way to turn things around. If the friend is a very close friend, I think the expectation that, one should be able to say honestly, in a matter of fact way, on how they feel, and then also to as for support as a friend too. Wouldn't you ? I would. This is courtesy and respect...

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now