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Living in Your Friend's Shadow

Everyone feels it, no one talks about it.

My mum once told me, you cannot change another person, you can only change how you handle them or the situations you face. And this, by principle, is something I live by. Okay, so we've all had that one friend (or maybe more) who is adored by everyone, she's usually tall, thin, gets on with the lads, funny, confident, and basically everything you feel you are not. But you love her, she's your best friend, and even though your personalities are kinda polar opposites, it works. Alright... It doesn't always work, you fight from time to time, either she's being flaky, or you feel left out, and in the end, you realise you were both wrong, and you makeup, and the world is a better place again.

But there's still the only one issue that really has ever been an issue for you. You feel completely stuck and completely invisible when she's around. And you hate yourself because this isn't her fault, it has everything to do with you and how you perceive things, but that doesn't change that you feel like you live in her shadow, and you're always second. Sometimes, even to her. It's the worst feeling in the world like you're only invited to things because she's going, or people only talk to you because you're her friend, and they're being polite, and you feel entirely unwanted and ultimately isolated and alone. 

You can't talk to her about it because A) she would be upset and B) she wouldn't understand and think you were being silly. But the issue is, she's all you have to talk to. She's your best friend, you tell her everything, but you can't tell her this. And it's eating you up inside, which makes you hate yourself even more because you're jealous and petty, and no wonder nobody likes you. But stop. Stop thinking that. Right now. Has it ever crossed your mind, that maybe, to someone else, you've been that "better" friend? Someone else has felt second best compared to you? And I know, how could anyone feel that way, "I suck", blah blah. But what if she feels like that? What if her own self-image is as ugly as your own self-image, and actually this whole thing boils down to self-worth, self-image, and comparing yourself to someone else.

You hear it all the time, but nobody ever listens to it, and hey, it's difficult not to do, but comparing yourself to someone else is the most pointless, waste of time, dumbest activity your brain could ever do. And here's why. First, and foremost, no matter how similar you are, everybody is different and has their own personality, embrace it, it is what make you, you. There is no other you. I don't care how weird, or chubby, or different you think you are, you're not. Someone will love you for you, just go find them. 

Second, there is no standard of beauty or social behaviour to properly base yourself upon, there for it's futile to try, people like different things, some people might not like you, jut as you don't like others, but there are plenty of people who will. Think or the comparison of Christmas lights and paintings, both are pretty, but they look entirely different. Everything is subjective. Finally, if, when you finally do embrace who you are, someone doesn't like you, that's their issue to deal with, not yours. Don't make it your problem, you do not need to change yourself for someone else's benefit. 

I guarantee you, once you embrace yourself, others will embrace you, and you will no longer need to live in any body's shadow because quite frankly, you're awesome, and so is your best friend, you're just different, and that's okay. 

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Living in Your Friend's Shadow
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