5 Reasons to Stop Being Jealous of Your Friends in Relationships

woman walking alone with couple in background
Christian Vierig / Getty Images  

If you've ever thought, "I'm jealous of my friends in relationships," you're not alone. Everyone gets jealous from time to time, and these feelings can become quite overwhelming when you're the only single one in your group of friends. In fact, you may feel like the odd one out or the third wheel when you're spending time with your coupled friends, and it's not uncommon that their cute posts on social media can leave you feeling particularly envious that they have a special someone and you're in a romance rut.

But before you become angry and annoyed that your friends are all in relationships, keep reading for our tips on how to not resent your friends' relationships. Here are some things a licensed psychologist recommends to keep in mind that will help you curb feelings of jealousy so that you can be genuinely happy with your single status.

Enjoy Your Time Being Single 

Woman in a gray sweater laughing
Photo by Aw Creative on Unsplash

When you're the only single one in your group of friends, you may feel as though you're missing out on the excitement because you can't partake in couples' activities. But it's time to start seeing your current relationship status in a positive light rather than a negative one. Being single gives you the freedom to enjoy many fun, interesting, and exciting experiences on your own terms that your coupled friends aren't able to do. In an article for Psychology Today, Dr. Kirmayer writes, "Instead of being hard on yourself, practice self-compassion for your feelings, as well as whatever it is you are struggling with."

You can take this time to focus entirely on yourself, whether it's signing up for an early morning yoga class, planning a solo trip, or redecorating your apartment. You can go out on as many dates as you want, meet new people, and take this time to discover what you truly want in a partner before you settle down with someone. If you look at your time as a single guy or gal as something a positive, you'll be positively less jealous of your friends who are in relationships. 

Remember That There's Nothing Wrong With You

Woman on a balcony
Photo by Joshua Rawson Harris on Unsplash

If you're the only single person in your group of friends, you may start to think that something must be wrong with you. Eventually, your lack of confidence and feelings of self-doubt can easily turn you into a jealous, sad, and all-around negative person, but not being in a relationship is not a reflection of you or your self-worth in any way! All it means is that you haven't met the right person for you yet. Rather than deciding that you're somehow unworthy of love or that you'll never find someone, be easy on yourself because your current single status is temporary. It's not a premonition or a determination of what lies ahead for you for the rest of your life, so while you're single, indulge in self-care to reestablish a healthy mindset.

It's easy to get caught up in your own feelings of despair, but instead of resenting your friends' relationships, try to be happy for them because when you are no longer a party of one, they'll be happy for you.

Try to channel your jealousy of your friends in relationships into something positive.

Know That Things Aren't Always What They Seem

Couple hugging
Photo by Lauren Richmond on Unsplash

When it comes to relationships in general, it's important to remember that you never actually know what's going on between your friends and their partners. While they may present their relationship to the world as perfect, it isn't. No matter how happy people are in their relationships, every couple has arguments and doubts every now and then. Just because your friends are only posting the happy times on social media, doesn't mean they are always happy. Relationships start and end all of the time for a multitude of different reasons, and while you may think that your friends' relationships are all wonderful and going to last forever, this isn't always the case.

While the grass may seem greener, your friends may be in relationships that you'd never want to be in yourself. By keeping your standards high and staying true to yourself, you're setting yourself up to find the right relationship and not just any relationship, which is key in matters of the heart.

Don't Take Your Friends' Relationships Personally

Couple in bed
Photo by Toa- Heftiba on Unsplash

When you're feeling down, it's easy to take everyone's happiness as a personal affront to your own sadness, but keep in mind that your friends want you to be happy too. They would never intentionally do or say anything to make you feel less than, so when they aren't free this weekend for wine and movie night because they have plans with their other half, don't take it personally. Dr. Kirmayer adds, "It's entirely possible to feel sad, upset, disappointed, or even angry with a friend when they technically have not actually said or done anything hurtful or wrong," and she's not wrong. Your friends aren't in their own happy relationships to make you feel more isolated or alone.

It's easy to get caught up in your own feelings of despair, but instead of resenting your friends' relationships, try to be happy for them because when you are no longer a party of one, they'll be happy for you.

Do a Social Media Cleanse

Woman in sunglasses on her phone
Photo by Alexey Elfimov on Unsplash

Feeling jealous is inevitable when it seems like all of your social media feeds are filled with posts and photos of happy couples. If that's the case, taking a brief hiatus from social media may be the best thing for you.

Whether you delete the apps from your phone for 40 days or avidly avoid checking them, controlling what you see every day can make a huge difference in your emotional wellbeing. Of course, your social media cleanse doesn't have to last forever—just until you're back to feeling positive and confident again.

Related Stories