By LAURA SANCHEZ, Opinions Editor
Success is one of those amazing things in life – that is, if it works out in your favor. Maybe you got an A in that difficult class, or you finally locked in that internship you were waiting ages to get, or you found out that you were accepted into your dream graduate school. You freak out for a few moments and run around your room in your underwear, blissfully unaware of the loud ruckus your neighbors are overhearing. You pause. You have to text your best friend and tell her the great news. You pull out your phone and are about to text her the news, but then halt once you remember that she called you this morning to tell you that she didn’t get that job she was pining over, or that she wasn’t able to get a scholarship for that medical program she wanted to get into. That’s when you realize that you cannot quite text the good news to her at that precise moment, because you’ll then look extremely selfish and not look like a very good friend at all.
What is one to do at this moment? Should one wait a few days to relay the good news onto the world? Or should this second friend accept the successful friend’s great news unconditionally, even though bitterness might ensue and jealousy might take over?
A logical answer would probably say that friends should always support each other, even in the ups and downs and the even-more-downs, and the upmost highs, and the lowest of the lows. I guess there’s no right answer to this question – it heavily depends on the friendship and the circumstances.
In a realistic sense, we all probably get bitter when our friends are leading more successful lives than we are. As they gallivant into the world, with incredible partners and successful careers, we feel as if we’ll never get out of our junk-food ridden bed, as Netflix faintly plays into the background, asking Are you still here? after having watched seven back-to-back episodes of “Gossip Girl.” Yes, still here, not out there.
But then there’s also the reverse scenario, when both friends are at the highest of the highs and the lowest of the lows? Success reigns when one of you gets that sought-after internship and the other finally books her study abroad trip. Score! You’re both thrilled for each other. Nothing can go wrong. Life is booming, life is coming, you’re both living vicariously through each other’s experiences. There’s nothing better than seeing a successful friend when you’re successful as well.
Then again, there’s nothing better than seeing a friend fail when you’re failing as well. Maybe both of you are doing horrible in that class you are in together. It’s okay – both of you aren’t doing well, so it can’t be your fault, right?! It’s okay; at least your friend isn’t showing you up on that exam! As long as you are suffering together, it’s all good.
Success and friendships are tricky and difficult to handle. When it’s great for both of you, it’s easy. When it’s bad for both of you, it’s not that bad. But when one feels the success in the relationship is unbalanced, it’s a hard time. You have to check yourself and your actions and words, but at a certain point, it might be too much to handle. Friendships are always complicated and may not end up being successful at all – that is, depending on who’s looking at it.