Jealousy Takes Its Toll
My name is Bailey, and I’m a labradoodle. For the past six years, I have lived happily and in harmony with a Persian cat named Kirby. I can count on one paw the times we didn’t see eye to eye. Nothing had ever come between us until friends of my Mom showed up for the weekend. From the minute they arrived until they left, all they could talk about was Kirby this and Kirby that. Not once did they pay any attention to me or offer a kind word.
Since then, I can’t look at Kirby without having the most terrible thoughts about him. I’m not proud of myself for feeling the way I do. When I can think rationally, I wish we could go back to being pals like we were in the old days. But as soon as I see him, these feelings well up inside of me, and all I want to do is bite him. I don’t understand what has happened to me and how to work this out with Kirby.
First of all, there’s no need to worry. Most of us have been angry, at one time or another, with a close family member. What you are feeling is jealousy. Who likes to be left out and ignored? No one. When it happens, sure, it isn’t pleasant. But why take it out on Kirby? He didn’t do anything. He was merely the object of someone else’s affection. Weren’t many of the guests’ compliments the very qualities you love about Kirby? Maybe they didn’t realize they were hurting your feelings. More likely, they were just over-the-moon cat lovers. I suspect there have been times when your Mom had guests who were dog lovers. They probably lavished all their attention on you and ignored Kirby. A start in restoring your relationship might be to consider the last visit as being Kirby’s turn.
The best way I know to get over angry feelings and restore a relationship is to have an honest and open conversation. Kirby needs to hear how upset these hateful feelings have been for you and how you can’t shake them. He also needs to hear that you want your relationship to be what it was before the evil guests showed up. Kirby must have a chance to talk about his feelings and the effect your behavior has had on him.
Airing your feelings is crucial for both of you. It’s never good for a relationship to keep toxic emotions all bottled up. End your conversation by reminiscing about your happy times together, and the things you did that brought you both so much pleasure. Then make a plan to do some of these same things in the future. To seal the deal, you might end with a rub under one another’s chin. Nothing like the reassuring touch of a loved one to feel everything is going to be OK.
© 2021 Geneva Woodruff
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