As Your Friend, I Promise You Can Tell Me Anything That Makes Me Feel Superior To YouCommentary • Opinion • friendship • ISSUE 50•02 • Jan 14, 2014 By Josh Fuller Hey, man, I just wanted to let you know that if you ever need someone to talk to about your problems, I’m here. We’re friends, and that’s what friends do. I’m serious: If there’s anything in your life that’s troubling you—really, anything at all that would lower you in my eyes and make me believe I am a better, more capable person than you are—you should absolutely let me know.As a friend, I’m ready to listen to any insecurities or doubts you may be harboring that could be used to fuel my belief that I, as a human being, am superior to you.Don’t be afraid to lay your worries on me just because you think they’re too embarrassing or pathetic to share. That’s the stuff I want to hear most! Is something stressing you out at your job? Listen, if you’re overwhelmed at work, or having second thoughts about your whole career, there’s no point bottling it up. That’s something you have to let me know as soon as possible so I can compare myself to you favorably.By the way, how’s your relationship with Julie going? Last month you told me the two of you were fighting about whether to move in together. Well, I really appreciated you sharing that. It made me very, very happy to learn I’ve had a lot more success with women than you ever have. If there are any other details you want to get off your chest—like if your relationship is on the rocks or maybe you’re struggling to perform in bed—don’t hesitate to let me know.After all, what are friends for if not to listen to your troubles, mentally catalog all of them, and later use that list of shortcomings to buoy their own sense of self-worth?Please, don’t hold anything back because you think it would burden me. It won’t. The truth is, I genuinely enjoy giving advice to peers whom I perceive to be my inferiors. Offering guidance to someone who’s having difficulties—and thereby convincing myself I’m better able to solve their problems than they themselves are—is, believe it or not, something I take tremendous pleasure in.Maybe you’re running low on cash, or losing touch with your parents, or feeling more tired than you used to. Even little things like that can add up to make your life seem far less fulfilling than mine, and you should always, always confide them to me. Trust me: You want to get that stuff out in the open where it can further justify my conviction that you are less resilient, less emotionally stable, and, in general, a worse person than I am.Remember, I’ll always be there for you when you’re at your lowest—especially when you’re at your lowest, in fact.Of course, it goes without saying that anything you want to vent about stays with me. Believe me, I’m fine with keeping your problems secret and just privately ruminating on them now and then to remind myself I’m far more accomplished than you.I also promise never to judge you out loud. So don’t be shy, man, just let it all out. Tell me about your anxiety attacks, your fears that you drink too much, and how it takes you at least an hour to get to sleep every night. I’ll look you right in the eye and nod understandingly as I inwardly congratulate myself for not experiencing any of those problems.Then, when you’re done, I’ll tell you everything will be okay, and I’ll give you a hug as an intense sensation of relief and pride courses through my entire body.Just let me know when you feel like opening up. I’m all ears, buddy.