As close as I am to Sabine, I definitely think that Aurélie is more like me personality-wise. We are both on the shy, quiet, and reserved side of the personality spectrum. We best express ourselves through our favorite hobbies--mine being football (soccer) and hers being ballet or playing the flute. However, it is hard when the thing you love most is also the thing that is tearing you apart. Aurélie doesn't really like to verbalize her problems with Sandrine to Sabine because after all, Sandrine is Sabine's twin sister. Although Sabine has her fair share of problems with Sandrine (and shares all of them with me), Aurélie still doesn't want to hurt Sabine's feelings. Though, I doubt that Sabine's feelings would be hurt. Aurélie is just way too nice.
Anyway, I have been spending a lot of free time with Aurélie, and we have been discussing some of these problems. To say the least, Sandrine is extremely competitive and views Aurélie as her only true competition. Aurélie, in some ways, does take that to be a compliment. Sandrine only views true talent as competition, and I know that Aurélie is a beautiful dancer. However, Sandrine makes Aurélie feel very uncomfortable by giving her dirty looks, making rude comments, and talking about her to other dancers. Plus, Sandrine is interested in studying la dance classique at the Conservatoire de Lille alongside Aurélie.
Aurélie cried. "She is making me hate my one true passion, Julien. I was going to drop my private flute lessons so I can dedicate more time to dancing, but now, I'm considering dropping ballet. That would mean dropping my dreams, though. I want to dance professionally for le ballet de l'Opéra National de Paris more than anything in the entire world, but so does Sandrine. I don't want to have to deal with her."
I told her that she should never quit. She's worked so hard to get where she is today. It is ridiculous to give up because somebody is being nasty, and I told her that she needs to get tough. I just can't see anybody who wants to dance professionally as being weak. I had to get the courage to defend myself against my dad; now, it's Aurélie who needs it to stand up to Sandrine and continue to live her dream.
I gave Aurélie a hug. She said, "You are right. My ballet instructors aren't exactly the nicest, but I can deal with their criticism. I just can't deal with Sandrine's nastiness. Like you said, though. Competition does seem to dominate the professional world...especially when it comes to promotions and getting contracts resigned."
What advice would you give Aurélie? What advice would you give me?