@Haruyou: It’s really been a process for me to get where I am, and I’m still not jealousy free (hopefully I will be someday!).
A couple of years ago it was much worse :). My husband had two guy friends (one is the husband of the couple I mentioned earlier) who met women in the spring time. They were engaged in the fall (about the time that we met). We are mormon, so this is pretty normal for us. They both planned to be married the next spring/summer, but then moved their weddings up to that winter. Winter! Can you believe? Less than a year after they met!
Meanwhile (as you can see), I am going crazy. I was so frustrated that we weren’t even engaged, and my husband had every intention of waiting at least another year and a half to be married. Of course, this is fast for many people but it’s all relative imo. One of the women (not the wife of the couple I mentioned earlier) was really snide about it and acted like she was better than me, more mature, etc. because she was engaged/married while I was simply dating. It was awful. I have a distinct memory of going into the basement to cry in private during a bbq because she was so cruel about it (my poor husband felt really bad when I told him after we were engaged, at which point I began to cry at the sad memory). I also cried at the wedding reception (in the bathroom, don’t worry I didn’t cause a scene) of the couple I mentioned before because I just so wanted to be married to my husband (as you can likely sense, I am a crier). In the end getting married when we did was absolutely the best choice for us and I have been so happy that we decided that, but at the time it was miserable to be so “left out”.
Just like everything else in life I like to take baby steps (a la What About Bob).
Being in a place I am happy with has helped a lot. I love my husband, my program, our apartment. I am a very happy clam which helps me not be jealous of other people. But, I’ve also had to get into the mindset of being happy with these things. I think there are stepping stones. There’s no reason imo to deny yourself your feelings. If I am feeling jealous I don’t say “that’s stupid, no feeling that way” because that doesn’t help me. Instead I say “That’s not rational, the choices we made are good for us, let’s move through this”. (I like the move through, not jump over, as jumping over doesn’t really work for me).
One stepping stone for me has been, as poor of a choice as it is, to think about why the choices we made are better for us, and sort of trying to think of the blooper reel in others lives. The couple with the cruel wife aren’t together anymore (because she was crazy, as I knew all along). The couple with the house and babies are still in school (and will be for years, probably 4 years after my husband has graduated) and the husband works seriously at least 12 hour days between work and school to provide for them the things they want. This works for them, but it could never work for us (we both fall into quality time in the love langauges). I sort of try to move past thinking about the “bloopers” by thinking about how we’ve just made different choices. If my husband got a second job and I worked full time while I was in school and we weren’t concerned with an emergency fund then we might buy a giant house, but we are not willing to do those things for a house. Your SIL is willing to sleep on the floor, and sell the car to barely make rent in order to have a really nice apartment, but you value being careful with your money and having a bed. Everyone is entitled to their own choices, even if they don’t make much sense to others.
I also try to think about something I found in Slaughterhouse V (but I think it’s pretty popular) about changing the things you can, accepting the things you can’t and knowing the difference. In this house situation I can 1) be jealous, which is fine for a while but not how I want to be all the time; 2) buy a house, which isn’t really right for me, and may be better or worse than other houses my friends have; or 3) be happy with what I have. I prefer three, it is the most happy, peaceful, comfortable which I generaly enjoy. It’s sort of a mind over matter + baby step thing for me.
Sorry this is a million years long and probably redundant but I hope it helps! If you want to stop being jealous you can do it and I think it will probably be more enjoyable in the long run :).