I don’t really understand jealousy. I mean I can be a little envious when my friend in California tells me about the weather, and I am –yet again- looking at steel grey rain clouds, but I am not jealous. I am very happy for him to enjoy the sunshine, he’s a good guy he deserves the vitamin D!
Toxic people and abusers are experts on jealousy. They cannot bear the thought of anyone having something they don’t have, or experiencing something they are not experiencing. If you receive a compliment within earshot of the narcissist, they WILL be jealous. Their response is usually two-fold:
- Suck up to the compliment giver;
- Put you down!
I know that my mother was quite often jealous of us, not just of compliments, but of our friends, of attention we were getting, of our achievements, and later on even of our financial independence.
When I tell my sisters of choice about the great outfit I got, or the overpriced haircut, they just OOO and AAA. My mother would comment on the cost, or how she does not think it suits me. Anything to take away from the joy of treating myself. I used to tell my partner to tippy toe up the stairs with the take away when we lived in the apartment in my parents’ loft space. Anything to keep them from knowing we got Chinese food. It is an indulgence that my mother would make sure to spoil it by making remarks about my weight or some such.
See, my mother does not do “simple pleasures”, in reality I think she is jealous of people who do. I think she feels she is missing out, and more importantly that she deserves not to miss out EVER!