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15 Signs of Envious Friends to Recognize the Harmful Friendships

A friend is someone who’s there beside you through the good times and bad. But sometimes, you see signs of envious friends that have become harmful.

Have you ever seen the signs of envious friends in your life? We’ve all been jealous before. It’s an emotion everyone experiences from time to time.

When you lose your job and see other people vacationing on yachts, it’s hard not to feel jealous of them while you’re suffering. But jealousy has a limit before it starts to interfere in your relationships and daily life.

Friendships may experience jealousy every now and then, but this is when you check in with yourself and figure out why you’re having these feelings. Some people self-reflect, but many don’t. Their jealousy ends up ruining the relationships around them.

[Read: How to stop self-destructive behavior and change your life for the better]

15 signs of envious friends to separate the good from the bad

If you feel you have a jealous friend, it’s probably been hard to even be around them. You feel like you must walk on eggshells and watch what you say so they don’t throw it back in your face. And this isn’t what friendship is about.

It’s important to recognize the signs of envious friends; that way, you can sit down and talk to them about how they’re feeling or take some time off from the friendship. You need a genuine friend around you, not someone who’s going to try their hardest to bring you down.

Envy doesn’t belong in a friendship.

#1 Your friend struggles with self-esteem issues. We can all have our jealous moments, but when you look past the feelings of jealousy, what do you see? Envy and jealousy stems from insecurities and low self-esteem issues. A jealous person isn’t happy with their own accomplishments and feels insecure about their own abilities. [Read: Why your codependent friendship is more unhealthy than you think]

#2 Your good news isn’t received positively. Maybe you received a promotion or lost weight and are wearing new clothes, and this just is making your friend lose their mind with jealousy. Of course, you’re sharing the news with them because they’re your friend, but they don’t celebrate your good news. Instead, they only respond with negative comments.

#3 You can’t relax around them. When you’re around your friends, you’re supposed to feel comfortable and relaxed. But, when you’re around them, you feel tense and uptight around them. This isn’t a feeling you should ignore. Instead, explore why you’re having these feelings. [Read: The signs you have shitty friends and need some new friends!]

#4 Your friend is always trying to outdo you. When something good is happening in your life, your friend makes it a competition. If something good happens to you, then they make sure to outdo you. This is simply their insecurity and low self-esteem appearing as they don’t want to look “less” than you. 

#5 They copy you. Your friend is jealous of you; let’s get one thing straight. This doesn’t mean they don’t want to be you. Rather, it’s the opposite. Whether they’re jealous of your job, relationship, or the clothes you wear, they’ll try to imitate you. Even though Oscar Wilde said, “imitation is the best form of flattery,” I get how irritating it can be as well. [Read: 16 subtle signs of a jealous friend you may not always recognize]

#6 It’s all about false compliments. Your friend isn’t actually pleased to know you’re doing well in your life. When they’re in a spot to compliment you, they’ll do so, but make sure it’s either a back-handed compliment or a fake one. Admitting out loud they’re genuinely happy for you is near to impossible.

#7 They make you feel bad about yourself. Whatever the case may be, your friend pushes you down to make themselves feel better. Since they’re jealous of you, the only way to raise themselves above you is to make you feel bad about yourself. They’ll say small things like, “you’re having a lucky streak” or “you were just there at the right time.” [Read: The creepy signs your friend is secretly an energy vampire]

#8 They talk about you behind your back. When someone is jealous of another person, they’ll have to make all other people also seem that person as less than. When your friend talks about you behind your back, they’re not praising you. Instead, they’re letting other people know how much better they are in comparison to you. 

#9 They’re unsupportive. A friend is someone who is supposed to show support when you need it. What else are friends for? But, when you’re on your way to achieving a goal, they’re not supportive. In other words, they don’t want anything positive to happen to you. So, they’ll show a lack of support in hopes of you failing. [Read: 17 types of bad friends you need to unfriend from your life]

#10 They see you as a rival. Friends aren’t supposed to see each other as competition; they’re friends. But one of the clearest signs of envious friends is that they see you as their rival. This is because you represent insecurity in themselves, and they can’t let that happen. You’re a person they must conquer.

#11 They point out your mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes; we’re only human beings, after all. But your friend will use your mistakes as a way to make them feel as though they are right. A true friend wouldn’t use your mistakes against you to satisfy their own needs.

#12 They love to talk about their own success. What else is a jealous and envious person going to do? They cannot just slam your goals and dreams down without making themselves look bigger. So, while they downplay your goals, they’ll talk endlessly about their successes and achievements, making sure you both know they’re better than you.

#13 They downplay your achievements. Maybe you made it to your goal weight or aced the exam you’ve been studying for the past couple of months. Point is you’ve reached your accomplishments after a lot of hard work. But for them, they downplay your achievements, saying it was about time or your goal wasn’t that hard to begin with.

#14 You feel their jealousy turning into hatred. I get that there can be a little envy between people, but jealousy can quickly turn into hatred and resentment. Your friend may be starting to show signs of a strong dislike towards you when you haven’t done anything wrong to cause a rift between you. [Read: 10 ways to recognize a selfish person and 5 ways to get away from them] 

#15 You no longer feel them as a friend. They used to be your good friend, but lately, you haven’t been feeling that type of connection. All relationships go through their phases as people go through different things during their lives. At this moment, they’re not behaving like a genuine friend, which doesn’t mean they won’t change. But right now, you are on different paths.

[Read: How to tell if a friend is toxic and brings unhappiness in life]

After looking at these signs of envious friends, reflect on your friendships. Do you notice these characteristics? If so, what are you going to do?

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