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Your best friend's been dating this guy for, like, 30 minutes when she calls to tell you they're engaged. You've been been waiting, wanting, hinting, hoping, (and waiting) for your boyfriend to finally get down on one knee already. And he still hasn't.
It's hard not to feel a bit bitter that she's had it so easy and you haven't. But she's your best friend, and you don't want to pollute her joy and excitement by letting passive-aggressive comments slip out — "Gee, wonder if I'll ever get a rock like that?" The truth is, you are happy for her that she found her guy. That it all went so smoothly (and quickly!). That it all seems so natural and easy. You're also sad and frustrated for yourself. Tired of waiting. Feeling hurt by having to wait. Frustrated that you're not in control of the timing. Feeling vulnerable. All this is legit, too. This is a painful position you're in.
As you're oohing and ahhing over her ring, keep this mantra in mind: "I'm happy for her. I'm sad for me." Being conscious of your two conflicting feelings about the two separate issues will help you be present both with your own reality and able to celebrate with your friend. Once you've thoroughly dissected color, carat and clarity of her ring, it only makes sense to loop her in on the latest with you, and how her engagement was a bit of an "ouch" because of your own situation. She won't be surprised. After all, she's your best friend.
Allison Moir-Smith, MA, is a bridal counselor, creator of How Brides-To-Be REALLY Feel videos, and author of Emotionally Engaged: A Bride's Guide to Surviving the "Happiest" Time of Her Life.