So you have good news to share, you received a promotion, you passed university with flying colors, or are getting married, you are so happy you decide to share the news with your friend but her response is cold or lukewarm at best. She didn’t congratulate you or acknowledge your good news. Why did she react like that? Does this mean she is not happy for you?
We received an email from one of our readers, the solutions given are universal and can be applied to any situation. Before you overthink the situation, read through the list of things you can do when your friend didn’t congratulate you.
The situation: When friends won’t acknowledge your success
I have been working at my job for the past five years, I was recently promoted to regional business manager. I was so excited and told my friend about the promotion. When I told her she slightly smiled, and to my shock, she didn’t say anything. I repeated my good news and she looked at me and asked if we could change the subject. I am shocked, I thought that she would at least congratulate me. I have always been there for her and this hurts. (anonymous)
9 Things you can do if your friend didn’t congratulate you
Keep the good news to yourself
If you are on social media you already know the famous Twitter hashtag that says “move in silence because not everyone wants to see you succeed”. Sometimes it’s true, now that you know how she feels about your success take it as a sign to not share any good news with her. As much as you would like to celebrate with your friend, she might not be the right person to do it with.
Observe how she interacts with other friends
Is this a “her” problem or a “you” problem? One of the best ways to find this out is to observe how she reacts to good news from other friends in the group. If she is happy and celebrates the success and good news of others, then this tells us that this is a “you” problem. She has a problem with you. If her response to everyone is also cold, then this is a “her” problem, it’s in her nature to not congratulate and be happy for anyone.
Give her room to make up for the mistake
I will give you an example, I once had a good friend whom I told good news, we were having drinks at her house and I shared my news, at the time I had been offered a job abroad, I kid you not, as soon as I shared my good news her face changed from having the biggest smile to frowning ( well she looked unhappy), the mood changed a little. In the morning she apologized and told me she was happy for me but that it felt like her life was stuck, she also shared that she had been seeing a therapist to cope, and I didn’t know all of this.
So cut your friend a little slack, you don’t know what she secretly battles, give her room to make up for the way she acted.
Be proud of yourself
WHOOP, you made it, you achieved your goals, you got a promotion, you passed university or you are getting married, take your right hand and pat yourself on the back, it’s not easy achieving any these days with the current social and economic climate. So whatever it is, you deserve to smile.
Helpful tip: Celebrate your small achievements, you can buy yourself something nice or book a spa day it can be anything.
Understand her love language
Not everyone can express their joy and happiness as easily as others, take the time to understand her love language if she doesn’t congratulate you but takes you out for dinner after hearing the good news, then that is her love language, some people express their feelings better with actions than with words. It might sound weird but some individuals have to be given time to process any type of news, it could take your friend a day or two to say to herself “ wow, my friend achieved this or that” and then come back to you and congratulate you.
Let it pass
Okay, you didn’t get the reaction that you wanted, and your feelings are hurt, but has this person been a good friend to you in the past? Has she supported you when you needed it the most? Is this a one-time thing? If the answer to all of these questions is a yes, why not let it pass?
Helpful tip: The only time you don’t have to let it go is if she has not been supportive at all, if you are the one who is always been there and congratulated her achievements, you must deal with the situation at hand.
Lower your expectations
It’s human nature to want to receive the same treatment that we give other people, if this was the case the world would be a different place, but alas, it’s not. You treat people with respect because you expect to get that in return, the same thing with getting praise, but just because you congratulated your friend when she has accomplished something doesn’t mean that she will do the same for you, as hard as this is, lower your expectations, my friend.
Share the good news with people who have similar interests
When you have passed your university major with flying colors share the good news with friends who are (or have been) at university, they know how hard it is and have been in your shoes, if your friend decided not to go to university she won’t necessarily be jealous but her excitement might not be what you expect, as opposed to when you share the good news with your university friends. The same thing in other areas of life, If you have a business and have good news to share it’s wise to share it with other people who have businesses, they can relate to struggles and highs.
Have a word with her
Your friend might be oblivious to how you feel, and her not congratulating you might not even be a big deal to her. Take the time to talk to her and tell her how you feel, it’s quite possible that she is not even aware that she has hurt your feelings.
Helpful tip: When you talk to her try and come from a place of kindness and not be defensive or harsh, it would help if you could start the conversation by saying “ so what do you think of my good news?”, this should open the doors for communication.
Why some people don’t congratulate you?
Some people find it hard to be happy for others, secret competitiveness and jealousy can make it hard for people to congratulate you.
To wrap it up
You are not asking for too much when you want your friend to congratulate you, it’s part of being a friend and showing support. Some people find it hard to be happy for others, but this has nothing to do with you and is not a reflection of your hard work. Keep improving yourself, celebrate your small wins, and treat people the way you expect them to treat you.