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Happy Girlfriends having breakfast together at home

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You and your bestie have probably shared details on how you’d like your ideal engagement go down. You may have even swapped photos of what you want your ring to look like in case he ever asks.

But when the big moment happens for her, before it happens for you, you may be alarmed at the mixed feelings that come with the happy news. Before you start berating yourself for “being a hater,” psychologists say that there is more behind you unhappy feelings that go deeper than just not being happy for your girl.

“You might feel like you’re losing a friend,” explains Dr. Susan Edelman, board certified psychiatrist told Elite Daily. “It can trigger feelings of abandonment.”

What’s key here is separating your emotions from what’s actually happening.  Just because you’re fear of abandonment is triggered by your friend’s engagement, it doesn’t mean you aren’t happy for her–it just means you have some things to work out within yourself. As a friend, be gracious enough to give her all the love and support in the world, and in your private time, do the inner work with a psychologist or trained professional to process your feelings so you can be free to celebrate with your friend unrestrained.

A friend’s engagement may also shed light on the places where you feel unfulfilled in your own romantic relationships.

“It might trigger feelings of dissatisfaction about your own love life,” Edelman told Elite Daily.

“You might ask yourself: ‘Will I ever find someone who loves me?’ and ‘Why is it taking so long?’”

All of these questions are real and human and are only problematic if you inject your pain into her joyous situation. Instead of venting your frustrations to her, take these emotions as a sign that you have some inner work to do.

“Freaking out implies it’s really bothering you,” Edelman explains. “If simply reassuring yourself that your life is fine doesn’t work, learning more about problematic dating patterns or talking to a therapist or coach might help you feel like you’re taking your issues seriously and putting your life on the right track.”

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