Counseling/Friend Problem


QUESTION: Hi William

I'm 18 and this is gonna sound extremely juvenile and it is but its really bothering me so I'd like some advice. I have two friends (A and B) and its usually the three of us but friend B has two other friends that are closer to her (S and M).So my friend B was thinking about marriage and who would come to her wedding (which will be overseas) and who wouldn't out of all her friends. And she basically said that she'll obviously invite everyone but she's only sure that friends S and M will be coming which is fine with me since they are really close. But she said that while she's sure that friend A will come she's not sure that I will. And I got really offended by that because I thought we were close and I don't know how she doesn't expect me to come even if it is overseas. And its bothering me that friend A and B are closer and I'm feeling left out and jealous and I feel really silly and immature but I can't help how I feel. How do I get over this? I''m now feeling like I have no one.


ANSWER: Hello Elle

No reason to feel bad about your feelings. Everyone has been in this type of situation, and it never feels good. Feeling left out is something that happens to all of us at some time in our lives.

The important thing is how you deal with these feelings when they come up. Getting other people to act differently, or to treat you better, just won't work. You can't change others, but you can change how you react to what others do and don't do.

It's important to be a friend to yourself, and the best way to do that is to pay attention to your thoughts about what's going on around you. The feelings you're having are more of a reaction to your thoughts than a reaction to what your friend said.

Self love is a very important thing to learn, so that when things don't go quite right with others (and that's going to happen to everyone from time to time), you always have yourself and your self love to fall back on. Learn more about self love, and practice the skills described on that page, and you will start to feel better.

It will also help you, Elle, to start each day by listing all of the good things you can think of, about yourself, your friends, and your life in general. There is so much more right than wrong, so much more good than bad. When you focus on the good things, you will automatically start feeling better, and you will connect more with the wise and good person that you truly are.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you so much :) I will :)

I do, however, have a question to ask you regarding something else and involves a long story and quite a bit of reading so I want to say sorry in advance haha. So I asked this question to an expert on here a while ago and after reading this they referred to my parents as "unhealthy, unnurturing parents". I never thought about it that way so I wanted to ask you how you feel about it? Are you in agreement with them? I never told my parents what happened with this girl and I also never interacted with anyone else the same as I did with her. And I used to act very different at home than I did around her. It was almost like I was two different people. I do sort of blame my parents for not recognizing that I had that inferiority complex (although my dad did ask me a couple of times if I did and I outright denied it. He still told me once not to have that complex but I didn't really implement his advice.)Please give me your honest opinion, don't worry about the fact that its about my parents. Is it fair to label them as unhealthy, unnurturing parents? Here is the question.(its long so sorry!) :D and thanks for your help

I'm 21 and I'm feeling really low about how I've been in the past. In school I met this girl that I had a complete inferiority complex to and we became best friends. But it was never an equal friendship, it was always me feeling inferior and hero worshiping her which obviously made her treat me with disrespect and a bit of superiority and could be really rude at time which by the way I put up with for 6/7 years because I thought she was always right and that I deserved it somehow. This was so obvious to everyone, her brother even referred to me as her sidekick once which was extremely embarrassing. And I have a feeling this made a lot of people automatically lower their respect for me and I'm extremely embarrassed of this and I'm feeling really low. I'm kind of growing into more of my own person now I feel really bad every time I think about it. And to be honest I still have a bit of it in me. And I had all sorts of complexes as a teenager that made me lose sight of reality and made me act so unlike myself and how my parents brought me up. It made look like a not very decent person. Add to that some of the things I've said have been timed really badly and made me look like a very low person.

For eg. my friend (the one I was talking about above) called me after a long time and we hadn't kept in touch (we kept growing apart sort off and I didn't really do all that I could to stop it since it was sort of a relief to not have her around because if she was I would go home everyday feeling bad about myself...which was not a class act I realise) and I felt like saying sorry for not calling her through out the whole conversation but didn't and didn't think I was going to and then she offered to help me with something and I for some ridiculous reason said sorry then which was totally the wrong thing to do I realised AS I WAS SAYING IT and her family heard it and now they just don't have any respect for me at all. And I made myself look like a really low person and I never believed I was that and but now I'm starting to wonder if that situation did represent who I really am. Does it sound like it does? (Please reply to this and I want your honest opinion even though you don't know me)

Anyway how can I move on from all this and maybe forgive myself and develop a healthy self-esteem. My low self-esteem since my teenage years has completely ruined my life I feel because I put up with how people treated me and became friends with people who weren't right for me and whenever something bad happened I went into my fantasy world as an escape and this affected my studies really badly. I went from being a straight A, very focused student to a C student who didn't care about studies.

I'm feeling really bad. And the worst part is, I'm sort of starting to feel bad that my parents didn't really recognise what was going on in my life and am starting to blame them. Please don't get me wrong they are wonderful people and they have talked to me so much about doing well in school and have given me amazing advice throughout which I listened to but never put into use. But I still can't help but wonder why they didn't recognise that I had such low self-esteem and help me with that which was a core issue? I hate to sound like I'm blaming them (even though I guess that is what I'm doing) and I hate to sound like an ungrateful, arrogant child but I can't help but feeling this way and I'm hating it. What can I do about this?

And also, I'm really good at fooling myself, how can I stop this and get down to reality? I say this because I've thought about some of the things I mentioned above several times, esp. thee phone conversation but its only now I'm realising the true nature of it.

Thanks and sorry it was so long :) :D .."

I see no reason to label your parents in any way. That simply won't help you, and certainly is not fair to them, since I don't know them and have not heard their perspective. I'm sure they failed to meet some of your needs, however, from what you've written. Many good, well meaning parents fail to meet some of their children's needs. It still causes problems. Your task now is to identify what those needs are, and go about trying to meet them yourself, in healthy ways.
The best way to do that is by working on your self esteem, as I mentioned earlier, and by creating healthy relationships as a young adult.

You can do this, Elle. Believe in yourself, and take one step at a time toward creating the life you choose for yourself.

My best,

Dr. DeFoore


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William DeFoore, Ph.D.


I can answer questions about depression, anxiety, anger issues, marriage issues, parenting, addiction issues and general life coping problems. I will give a positive perspective, offering encouragement and an action plan about the next best steps for you to take.


I have been in practice as a counselor for over 38 years, working with individuals, couples and families with good results.

I am the author of: *Anger: Deal With It, Heal With It, Stop It From Killing You. Health Communications, Inc. 2004. *Anger Among Angels: Shedding Light On The Darkness Of The Human Soul. Health Communications, Inc. 2000. *Serai: Bringing The Children Home. Wingspan Press, 2007

B.A. in Sociology; M.A. in Clinical Psychology; Ph.D. in Counselor Education; Licensed as a Licensed Professional Counselor

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