A few months ago, a good friend of mine, we’ll call her, “Katie” to protect her privacy, approached me with the following situation/dilemma: A mutual friend of ours, “Sarah”, purchased a home with her boyfriend and shared the good news with a group e-mail that included links to photos of the home. The house was a cute little starter home in the suburbs with a yard and a porch and Katie and I were both so proud for Sarah.
Shortly after Katie finished reading the e-mail she received a call from a friend of hers who had just seen Sarah’s e-mail/photos. According to Katie, the conversation unfolded something like this:
[important]Friend- “Can you believe the house that Sarah just bought?”
Katie- “I know right? I’m so excited for her, she’s always wanted to buy a place”
Friend- “Did you see what they paid for it?”
Katie- “Yeah I won’t lie, I googled it”
Friend- “I can’t believe she bought it with Dan, they’re not even married, I guess she couldn’t afford it on her own. (snidely)”
Katie- “I know they’ve talked about getting engaged, but really, what does that matter?”
Friend- “Nothing I guess, I just think she’s getting in a little over her head. Last I heard she was only making $40k, and that’s a lot of house to pay for on $40k”
Katie- “Well she’s an adult so I’m sure she thought about that that.”
Friend- “I guess, I mean what are they going to do with 4 bedrooms, maybe she’s planning on being a stay at home mom?”
Katie- “I don’t think they’ve discussed kids recently, but I know she does want to stay at home someday”
Friend- “Of course she does (snidely)”
Katie- “Well I have a meeting in 5 minutes, I better go”
Friend- “Yeah me too, since we work for a living”[/important]
The whole conversation made Katie so angry that she couldn’t call that friend for several weeks. Knowing how mean spirited and judgmental the, “friend” was behind Sarah’s back made me think twice about continuing
our friendship to associate with this woman (I don’t need, “house haters” in my life… or any kind of haters for that matter). Because I’m not one to, “let things go”, the next time I saw said, “friend” I mentioned that I’d heard about her nasty spirited comments about Sarah. She apologized immediately, stating she was probably just, “jealous”.
Do you let others people’s financial milestones influence your personal finance journey? Are you Jealous of what other people have, ambitious to match what they have, or don’t let it impact you either way?