I am so glad you have this column because I have no other person to turn to. My “issue” is so selfish that I am ashamed to admit it to anyone I know. I am forty-three years old and have a very successful career and a great life. The issue is that I have a non-existent love life. Nada. Love is something I have accepted may never happen to me and I have always dealt with that disappointment as best as I can–with humor and as much grace as can be expected; until now. My baby sister has found an incredible man, and at thirty-four, she is now planning her wedding. I am thrilled for her, but also incredibly jealous. I am so angry with myself for the thoughts that go through my mind and the bitterness that I feel when I watch her smiling and talking about her dress and the plans she has for her future. It’s so evil and I hate myself for it. Here’s the kicker; she’s asked me to be her Maid-of-Honor. I feel honored but also torn; I am a fraud. What do I do?
My heart goes out to you. It must feel terrible to sit there with all of this discord and pain going on inside of you. I want to first commend you for your candor and having the good sense to know that these feelings are toxic and unfair; not only to your sister but to you and the bond you two have built (which must be pretty wonderful for her to ask you to be her MOH).Green, what you are feeling has been felt by friends, siblings, family members and strangers for many years. Sometimes these feelings revolve around love, other times body type, careers, vacations, cars; you name it. There is a strange thing that happens amongst humans when we see someone else having something; many of us see it as proof that we never will. We use their “success” as an insult instead of being inspired. This is when the infection begins.
The truth is that we are all on our own paths and living our own lives and your sister’s wedding and happiness is something you have been invited into, but in reality, it has no link to your own life or happiness. You are in total control of that. This means that you have the ability to choose to go about this differently. You can decide to indulge hurtful thoughts and feel guilty or you can purge them out into a diary, go and speak to a professional or simply meditate on the things in your own life for which you are grateful and use them as examples of your wonderful skills, traits and determination. You say you have accepted love might not happen. I am sorry to hear this. Green, what if you accept that you are right where you need to be in your life and that everything your heart desires is possible? What if you took this time to be an amazing support to a sister who loves you and you love and go around with her, enjoying shopping and planning, the parties and smile brightly beside her as she lives out a beautiful moment in her story instead of reading your own narrative? You never know, this energy may attract all kinds of things around you, perhaps even someone who appreciates what a confident, supportive, happy and beautiful sister you are to the bride.
Have you ever been jealous of a bride? How did you deal with it? Share your best advice with this sister in the comments or below. Also, should she accept the MOH role?