“Envy typically involves two people, and jealousy typically involves three people.”
I did not expect that last Sunday would become a day of realization. It is suppose to be an ordinary day but there were two significant occurrences that gave light to one issue that most people in relationship have experienced. The resolution to the issue is feeble if only couples would take time to examine carefully the nature of causality.
That day, I received a text message early in the morning from a friend. He found out that his partner was not in bed with him and discovered that the latter had spent the night with another man. For some moment, I stared at the message trying to digest what I am reading. I was groping for the right reply. I do not want to react immediately without considering the characters involved.
I know the partner for four months already. Given that short period of time, I already have an idea, more or less, of his character and the tendencies that character would likely to behave given situations such as this. I reminded him once when he confided that he is “straying”, that as long as he knows what and who he wants, he would never get astray. He deserves to be heard.
A few hours later, I received a text message from the partner saying that he got bruises from the friend. I am alarmed by this development. I am aware that the partner is bigger than the friend so there is no way that that could happen. I did not overreact and waited for more developments.
Finally, the friend called. I could not hear any frustration, disgust, anger, or whatever feelings of resentment from the tone of his voice. Relieved, I asked him to tell the whole story and from the background, I could hear the partner laughing out loud. I listened carefully and caught one important detail. The third party was actually a third wheel to their threesome from days back. That made me smile.
“I think I already knew why you are mad. You are mad not because you are jealous but because you are envious. You are mad because you could not find the house of the third party and join in the fun.” I did not hear any disagreement from the friend. “Why don’t you just get back at him when he goes for vacation to his province?” I suggested jokingly. He agreed while I still could hear the partner laughing.
What would have happened if it is the other way around, that the friend is really feeling jealous? Certainly, there would be a big fight. Bad words would come out from each other’s mouth. There would be hate, anguish, disappointments, and other ill feelings shrouding the minds of each party. Emotions would flare up and decisions would be made that would only be regretted in the coming days.
Jealousy and envy are feelings that are usually mixed up by people in relationship. Because it usually being nurtured by emotions, people tend to forget to examine the real causality of the two. Jealousy is the fear of losing something or someone that one owns to another person. Envy is the frustration caused by another person because he has something or someone that the envier has not. In jealousy, one has ownership of something or someone, whereas in envy, there is a desire of owning something or someone. “Envy typically involves two people, and jealousy typically involves three people.”
Later in the evening, another set of couple visited our abode. The first partner was busy communicating at one of the social networking site while the second was standing behind the first looking at his partner. Suddenly the second one blurted out. “Selos naman ako. Ang hirap magkaroon ng boyfriend na artista, daming kaibigan.” Realizing at the similar situation I just had earlier of the day, I laughed. I asked him. “Sigurado kang selos iyan? Inggit ka lang siguro?” He replied, “Oo nga. Inggit lang ako.”