Post # 1
Hi looking for some advice. I have several friends in my wedding party who are going through rough times in their life. A lot has to do with they are upset that they are not in a relationship.
one bridesmaid went through a breakup almost a year ago. They dated for 10 years and almost got engaged. Highschool sweethearts.
one bridesmaid is down in life about her general situation of not having a relationship and her career.
overall I am super happy with my life, my fiancé, my job. I feel bad talking about “oh me and my fiancé let’s call him Jeff are going to dinner this weekend”. Basically I feel guilty sharing our happy moments and things that are happening.
We are close with my future in laws and future brother in laws and spend a lot of weekends with them. I feel bad constantly telling them this, when I can’t hangout.
i give advice when asked and try to support both of their feelings. However, I do not give unsolicited advice because they are both smart girls! I know they will get over these rough patches.
How do I not feel guilty about being happy. Do I not share things about me and Jeff?
Post # 2
I feel like you’re infantilizing your friends by believing that sharing info about your engagement would upset them. True friends should be happy for you and likewise you should not feel like their life is lacking because they’re single.
I think these kinds of issues are why women fall out with their friends when they get engaged or married. Sure, sometimes single friends get jealous and spiteful. But just as often the coupled woman starts treating their single friends like they feel sorry for them which is just as insulting.
And I am not saying YOU don’t mean well…but this is how it can easily come across.
Post # 3
My advice would be to stop over thinking it. You being a bit coy about it will be far more irritating than just acting like a normal human and saying – me and Jeff are out to dinner that night with the in laws. No normal human will be upset at that…..
It’s sweet you care, I don’t mean to sound harsh, but the last thing they will want is your pity. Just lend an ear when you are needed and be the lovely friend you sound.
Post # 4
There’s a difference between talking about the good moments in your life and ramming your happiness down other people’s throats.
There’s absolutely no need to avoid mentioning your fiance or not to talk about places you have visited together. Your friends will expect you to do that. What should be avoided is constantly going on about how wonderfully happy you are, how amazing your fiance is, how you wish all your friends could be this happy… Since you are sensitive enough to your friends feelings to have posted this topic, I doubt very much that you will ever be insensitive enough to talk like this, so I really wouldn’t worry. Just keep being the lovely, caring friend that you obviously are.
Make sure you do spend some time with them though, even if it means missing out on an occasional date with your OH. I had one friend who dropped all her mates when she got engaged because she wanted to spend every spare minute with her OH – when she went through some tough times a few years later, she found that she didn’t actually have any friends to give her support because they’d all moved on and found new friendship groups.
Post # 5
PPs have given good advice.
Another thing to consider is to not assume Jeff is a friend of your friends. For example “I told Jeff about your issue with Matt, and he thinks… “. Don’t assume Jeff is invited to brunch/ dinner/ drinks, unless he has been invited. You have chosen Jeff. Your friends respect that… but if you make hanging with/ confiding in Jeff a precondition of your friendship, you’ll do those friendships a disservice.
Post # 6
When you were single, did you need people to tiptoe around you, or would you have found that insulting? I would find it insulting. Just be normal.
“I feel bad constantly telling them this, when I can’t hangout.” — If you feel bad about constantly ditching your friends, the solution isn’t to sugarcoat why, it’s to stop ditching them. If you constantly choose your fiance’s family over your friends, it’s natural that they’re going to start resenting it. It’s not because they envy your wonderful life, it’s because you’re ditching them. You’re allowed to reprioritize your relationships, but don’t blame it on others being jealous.
Post # 7
Well this is gross behavior on all ends.
It seems all of you have this idea that 100% of your happiness depends on whether or not you’re in a relationship. Also, you’re automatically assuming that they must be jealous of you because you’re engaged and that automatically makes your life better than theirs.
Post # 8
How about just making some time for your friends? I mean, as someone whose been the girl that wasn’t engaged/married well after all her friends (despite having been dating far longer) yeah it sucks. But that doesn’t mean other people don’t get to be happy or share their joy. But if you are ditching them every weekend to hang out with your future in laws don’t be surprised when there comes a time they just doesn’t invite you or think about you anymore.
Post # 9
To clarify- I don’t think they are jealous. I just hate that they are unhappy being single. I do not think I have a perfect life, by no means. I Just get paranoid about all the wedding events and wedding talk when I know two of my friends are unhappy in that area of life
Post # 10
I would just not talk about wedding/fiancé stuff as much, unless they ask. No one (married or single) in real life cares about your wedding as much as you do, which makes this site incredibly useful. I don’t mean that in a snarky way at all.
Maybe plan a few nights out with them and talk about shared interests, funny things that happened, just natural conversation. I bet they’re really happy for you, but they just want to have some laughs with their friend.
Post # 11
Sorry my comment was super rude and probably just me projecting my own insecurities! I apologize
Post # 12
Well, as a single woman, plenty of married people have told me that I am lucky to be single!
Post # 13
That’s nice, but OP said specifically that she knows her friends feel bad about being single, so.
OP, I don’t agree with PP that a “good friend” automatically feels happy for their friends’ good fortunes if they themselves are experiencing misfortune, and that’s contradicted by actual studies of the brain anyway. So I can definitely see that your friends might feel down when they compare their lives to what’s happening in yours. I think it’s compassionate of you to consider their feelings in this; most people don’t even think about that.
I feel like it shouldn’t be too much of an issue to hang out with your friends regularly and not constantly bring up your relationship or wedding, though. I mention my husband very little in conversations with my friends because we talk about ourselves and our feelings/experiences and what’s going on in the world and so on. Maybe ask them about how THEY are feeling more often; focus the conversation on them.
Post # 14
It does sound like you might want to make sure you make time for your friends- if they’re the ones asking you to hangout regularly and you never can because you’re always with your spouses family, at some point they might stop asking. Make sure you set up times that you invite them, make sure you hold time in your life for having friends outside your relationship. Its good to have those people when things are hard.
You can always let your spouse go hang out with his family without you from time to time as well.
Also one of the amazing things about langugage, you can just ask. You could say something like “hey I’m super focused on this wedding stuff, am I talking about it too much? Is there anything I can do to be more supportive for you, you’re such a good friend. Do we hang out enough?” You’re asking us what your friends might feel but we don’t know them. They know themselves and you.
Post # 15
I was that desperately single friend for a long time. It sucks. Like REALLY sucks. As the perpetual solo friend, it does get a little sad/discouraging to constantly hear about your coupled friends doing couple things. That said, it is not the coupled friend’s fault that you are single and she is not. I always kept this in mind and never felt angry towards my coupled friends. Sad for myself alot, but never mad at them.
It is very kind of you to consider their feelings. I don’t think you need to avoid talking about couple activities but they would probably appreciate talking about other non-relationship topics as well. Also, I always apprecaited when my single friends made time to have girls-only outings. It takes away from the constant “I’m the only one paying for my own dinner” scenarios and depending on the settings, allows for some opportunity that you’re friends with potentially meet someone. It was hard when all my couple friends would include me at outings to a bar or somewhere where I could potentially meet a guy because men are not likely to approach a women who is in a group full of other men.