Do you think your parents envy you? Or have you ever thought of it? We, Indian Children, can not think of it easily because according to us and our parents no such thing exists. But, pause there, take a deep breath, and hear me out, the harsh truth is that it does! Now, envy does not always mean in a bad way, they can envy you because they had a struggling childhood whereas you are enjoying your childhood to the fullest, going on trips with your friends, getting what you want, all you need to do is ask, and there can be multiple reasons most common of them is the generation gap, they might envy the kind of lifestyle you have, the kind of world or environment you are growing in.
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Parents, especially moms can show certain signs of jealousy. While that may sound strange (I mean, how could a mom be jealous of her very own daughter?), there are several reasons why this can occur. For one, it can be difficult to cope with providing your children with opportunities you didn’t get to experience while growing up.
There are some signs that can help you understand if your parents envy you or not. Let’s look at them:-
They try to steal your spotlight: If you sometimes feel like, all your mom or dad do is talk about how great they or their achievements are while you share with them what’s been happening for you lately. It might be the case that they are unable to give you the spotlight and attention and instead of showing support, her actions may make it feel like a competition. It can be a result of their childhood trauma, maybe they were not appreciated enough as a child.
Total overreaction: Over-the-top reactions are common in the jealous parent. What happened the last time you came to them with a relationship problem? Did things get blown out of the water? Did they resort to the most dramatic solution right away? What happens when you talk to them about their behavior? Do they blow up and push you away? They may be afraid of the insight you hold. They might be scared of how smart and sorted you are, and how you are able to be it all while they struggle to make it through the day.
Not open to mature conversations: Have you ever confronted your parents about something they said and you didn’t like? How do they take it? Do they tell you that it wasn’t their intention and that was not what they meant? Or do they straight away tell you that you are over-reacting and they were right all along? It’s important for parents to be open to such conversations and listen to their child when he/she tells what’s been bothering them instead of shutting them away. But as a highly obsessed and jealous parent, they might not take your need into consideration.
Minimizing success: Does your mother or father always minimize the success you find in life? Maybe you come to them with a big promotion and they don’t react at all. Perhaps they compare you to someone else and ask why you didn’t do well. The jealous parent cannot accept your successes because they see them as their own failure. I never did that, and neither should they. When we allow this dismissal to hit our hearts, it damages our sense of self.
Beauty competition: Does your parent compete with you in the looks department? Believe it or not, it’s not uncommon. Children reflect on their parents in many ways; both what they could have been and the very passing of time. This can inspire envy in some parents. In a desperate means to stop the passing of time and reclaim their position of superiority, they engage in a superficial competition of looks and “youth”. If your parent gets involved in this game, there’s no point in fighting it out with them.
Self-focused: Without a doubt, the jealous parent is always a selfish one. How could they not be? The very act of being jealous of your child involves comparing them to yourself. That’s why a subtle sign to look out for is a parent who can’t stop talking about themselves. Do they ever ask you about your life? Show interest in helping you be a better person? Probably not. Jealous parents don’t have time to hear about your life. You’re an emotional dumping ground. And that’s exactly where they want you.
People tend to avoid the issue and continue to be as they are, but if there is anything true about becoming a better version of yourself, it is by accepting your faults and working on them.
They may or may not acknowledge the problem and leave it just as it is. But just for your betterment, it’s wise to understand that the problem is with them and it’s their childhood trauma or probably their personality and there’s nothing you can do about it. The more you dig deep and try to understand them, the more miserable you feel. When you can’t change a person, it’s better to change the way you deal with them be it your parents!
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You’ve got to set boundaries to protect what’s rightfully yours: joy. Don’t leap into conflict with an envious parent. It only leads to nasty emotions and an even more complicated resolution. Take a step back and process how you feel and how you want to proceed instead. Next, build on compassion by seeing the wounds beneath their envious behavior. We behave jealously when we’re in a place of insecurity, and those insecurities come from fear and hurt. Use that compassion to open up a conversation, but don’t be afraid to walk away when you know it’s unproductive. Avoid blame games and avoid trying to “fix” your parent or the way they see you. You’re the only person you can control. Set boundaries and make them clear.