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Only friend who isn’t rich

Hi Sam. In my friendship circle, everyone has a lot of money. They all have nice houses and all the latest tech, clothes etc. My parents on the other hand, often struggle to afford things and whilst I know it’s selfish, I am always jealous and feeling left out a lot. They are really nice people but sometimes I just get upset when I compare my life to theirs.

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Sam

Hi there,

We all come from different backgrounds and circumstances. Friends are often people who you have things in common with, but that doesn't mean you'll have everything in common. Friendships are about sharing the things you both enjoy whilst accepting the things that make you different.

Differences in wealth can sometimes cause problems in friendship groups when some people can afford things and others can’t. It can become more of a problem when a group wants to go out and do things that cost money together - like going to the cinema or shopping. There's no shame in saying that you can't afford to do something and your friends should want to spend time with you no matter what.

Some people might look down on those who have less money but this isn't right. The amount of money someone has doesn't say anything about them as a person. This works both ways - just because someone is rich, doesn't mean someone can make any judgements about the kind of person they are. It's okay that you don't have as much money as your friends and it's okay that they’re fortunate enough to be in wealthier families.

My advice is to try not to focus on material things. It's nice to have the latest tech and expensive clothes, but the reason you're friends with these people has  nothing to do with the gadgets they own or how they dress. You like each other because of your personalities. Try arranging something you can do together where money doesn't matter - like streaming a quiz online or going out to a park in a safe way.

I hope this has helped, thanks for sharing this with me. If you ever want to talk more about how you’re feeling, Childline counsellors are always here to listen.

Take care.

Sam

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