I'm looking for a word for someone being upset at someone else doing well or succeeding. Either a word for that sort of character trait or a word that describes that behaviour. It could include things like being annoyed at someone trying to make positive changes or something similar. The phrase tall poppy syndrome comes to mind but it's a bit long, and not quite a description of the character.

closed as off-topic by aparente001, Edwin Ashworth, curiousdannii, Scott, JJJ May 2 '18 at 11:32

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  • 3
    Please include a sentence showing how you want to use the word. – aparente001 May 1 '18 at 23:34
  • Please clarify the meaning you want to capture. (1) I don’t think I’d ever heard of “tall poppy syndrome” before; Oxford says that it is an Australianism. You should add a sentence (or more) explaining the phrase, and/or provide a link. (2) Do you mean upset at someone else doing well or upset at someone else doing good? A jealous or envious person is upset when somebody does well. A mediocre student is upset when classmates do well because that hurts him if the teacher is “grading on a curve”. A vandal who breaks things is angry at the person who repairs them. Criminals are angry at police. – Scott May 2 '18 at 5:42

There are two nouns that define the entire spectrum of the feelings you describe perfectly:


a feeling of discontent or covetousness with regard to another's advantages, success, possessions, etc.


resentment against a rival, a person enjoying success or advantage, etc., or against another's success or advantage itself.


  • resentment is mentioned by your definition of jealousy. I tend to prefer it if the resentful person isn't necessarily jealous or envious, but just peeved at someone else for rocking the boat. – stevesliva May 2 '18 at 3:54

The first adjective that comes to mind when describing one who gets mad at another for doing well is irrational.

For example one could say:

X is an irrational person or demonstrates irrational behaviour by getting upset at person Y when they do well.

Irrational works well here as most reasonable people would not get mad at another person for doing well. Although it may not be fair to deem a person irrational based on the situation described, however one's behaviour is in this case would be considered irrational since most logical decision makers wouldn't see a valid reason to be upset at another for their success. Thus, the person as a whole may be irrational (as well as their behaviour/thinking)

Irrational: Not logical or reasonable.


a hater TFD or hateful

  1. To feel strong dislike for or hostility toward: rivals who hate each other.
  2. To feel dislike or distaste for: hates washing dishes; hates to get up early.

As in:

He was a hateful person, visibly upset at his friend doing well and succeeding.


Truth is, people confuse jealousy and envy with hate. People who are envious of us don’t hate us, they just want what we have or want to be where we are. But if you don’t address those that are envious of you, the jealousy can ferment into hate. Huffington Post

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