The One Where I Talk About Friendships

On the first day of this glorious new year I had an experience that had me wondering, so like always, I put a question out there into the Twitterverse. Cause, you know, the people of the Interwebs never let me down when it comes to responding to my inane thoughts.

Me: “Ladies, is it really hard to find good friends as a grown up? This is crazy.”

I think I got 4 responses within seconds of that tweet going out and it grew into an entire conversation about female friendships and why we thought it was hard to find a good one at this point in our lives.

Twitter responded:

“Yes. Because you get smarter and the amount of bullshit you’ll handle greatly diminishes.

hells yeah. It sucks

it’s harder for me :-/

I don’t have any female close friends….at all.”

… and the conversation went on.

Women talked about other women being catty or loving cliques or not inviting others to events or places (and how hurtful that can be if you’re supposed to be friends with someone).

The conversation then turned to being a mom. Are we excluded from some events because we’re moms and our friends that are not yet moms think we won’t want to come so they “do us a favor” and just not invite us?

Now look. I’m the first one to admit that sometimes you just don’t want to go anywhere. I also know that as parents the best excuse is that of your children. Saying that one is sleeping or misbehaving or ____add child behavior here___ is a good way to get out of almost anything.

The conclusion that I think my roundtable discussion came to, though, was that as friends- we should always invite other friends even if you think that they will say no. Even if they always say no. There may be an off chance one day that they’ll say yes and your invite to them may mean a lot.

I have friends. I have really good friends. The problem is the large majority of them are scattered up and down the east coast and are not always readily available when I want to hang out or have someone over or whatever.

Because I have great friends. I know what a true friendship feels like/looks like/brings to your life. This also means that I know when a “friendship” isn’t genuine. I think I’m ready to say this out loud: I’m a friend snob.

Boom.

Not everyone is worthy to be my friend. (With that being said, I know that not everyone wants to be my friend- and that’s fine. Go ‘head bout your business.)

I need a friend in my life who is not only honest with me, but can accept my honesty (my motto is: “if you don’t want to know, then don’t ask me”).

I need a friend that is not going to judge me… at least not to my face. And that, according to many moms I’ve spoken to, is the problem with friends and getting female friendships to work. We judge each other. We think we have a free pass to tell each other what to do with our lives and how to do it. We think our way is the best way, hands down. What we need to realize is that our way is the best way for us and many not necessarily be the best way for others.

The conversation also turned towards online friends- and y’all know I’m a Social Media junkie, so I have a lot of eFriends that I’ve made over the years- some of whom I’ve been eFriends with since I was a stay-at-home mom with Pea. Some people don’t understand this. Some people don’t use social media and so don’t understand (or believe) that you can be friends with someone you’ve never met.

Now that I think about it, though, how is having a Twitter friend any different from having say- a penpal in elementary school? You’re writing letters to someone you don’t know, but over time, you get to know each other and maybe one day you’ll meet or maybe you won’t.

I turned to Twitter out of necessity. I was a stay-at-home mom living in the middle of the desert with no friends and 3,000 miles away from anyone that I knew. I just started fiddling around online and boom. I have friends like:

- Erin, whom I have met in real life and hung out with on multiple occasions and now have an interracial baby Mommy club with
- Trish, whom I adore, has been my eFriend since 2010 and I Skype with occasionally
- Katie, who is my sister from another mister as we have more in common than we could’ve ever thought
- Miranda, who, really… yeah. That’s my bitch. She is also my endless source of knowledge
- Crissy, whom I met online and now visit with when we go to Nebraska
- Newest in the bunch is (and I quote) “Shannon Carroll, bitch esq”. She keeps me on my toes and unlike many of my white friends understands what it means to be ashy and why as a black woman I do not like to get my hair wet… She’s a woman after my own heart. She’s my bitch. (I told her that I would say that)

And really, this is just a sampling of people that I consider eFriends. There are many, many women in this circle for me. (So, please, no one get offended if I haven’t mentioned you- you’re awesome and you know it).

Some of these women have comforted me via text/video chat/email through my miscarriages. Some of these women have helped me through labor with encouraging words. Some of these women provide listening ears/great advice when I’m having an issue. Some of these women give me parenting advice when I need it. Some of these women help me correct my grammatical errors. We send Christmas cards and birth announcements. We swap recipes and cleaning advice. We send Phineas and Ferb CDs cause we know our kids like them… and the list goes on.

I think that it’s 2013 and friendships have truly evolved. I think no one can truly define what a friendship is but you and so my eFriends are just as valuable, precious and important to me as friends that I have IRL (in real life).

I’m no expert in making friends.

I’m no expert in female friendships.

I really wanted to start a dialogue after seeing how passionate some people are about friends and making friends as an adult. What I heard was that women want friends, but aren’t willing to change/sacrifice who they are to get it (and why should we?). We don’t all fall into a specific box and [I don't think] that our friends have to either. We don’t all have to be the same to be friends. We can have different political beliefs, parenting techniques, etc. and still be friends with someone- right? Or no?

My eFriend Kristen over at Four Hens and a Rooster is blogging about this same topic today- head on over to see what she thinks about female friendships. Then, grab a drink and chime in down below in the comments.

Ladies:

Do you have close friends?

Have you been friends a long time or did you gain these friends as an adult?

Do you think it’s harder to get friends as an adult?

Do you think it’s hard to find friends being a mom?

Do you have eFriends? What do you think about that?

Do you think the more, the better, or do you stick to the saying that having a few close friends is better than having a bunch of shitty friends?

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10 thoughts on “The One Where I Talk About Friendships

  1. you are right on it with this post!! I will say this, I greatly appreciate my friendships that can go on for a while without any contact and then pick up like we were talking just yesterday.

    1. I appreciate friendships like those too girl, though not all friendships function like that. I SO love my eFriends too, though- I wouldn’t have you if it wasn’t for Twitter. :-)

  2. My friends live in my computer. Mostly. I have one or two close girlfriends in real life and we almost never see each other because we have kids and families and lives and it’s hard. And yeah, I’m not putting up with bullshit. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

    So, my friends live in my computer. And when they make me insane I can close the window and go about my business.

    I also value quality over quantity. I don’t want a bunch of shitty friends when I can have two or three who, even if we don’t see each other often, will have my back no matter what.

    And I so know what ashy means. And why you don’t like to get your hair wet. Font of endless knowledge, remember?? :)
    Miranda (Not Super…Just Mom)´s last blog post ..Starting Over

  3. I’d have to say I agree with some of the comments made. Sadly I’ve learned that distance can often cripple a friendship as well if you allow it. Communication gradually lessens to a point where some of my closest friends growing up are no longer the first people I feel like I can call on when I need a friend. That’s not because I think they will judge be (I personally could care less if someone else judges me because that just means they don’t know me) but because we just don’t have the same closeness anymore since the communication has lessened. I guess it all boils down to how much a female values her various friendships. I’ve decided to try to stay in touch more with my friends in 2013.

    I also agree that a few close friends is better than a lot of fake associates.

    1. You’re right on the distance. When you don’t see someone everyday you have to work harder to make it work. Sadly, some people are more willing to put in the effort than others and in a friendship (or any relationship) it takes two. I also think knowing when to walk away from a relationship is important too. Not all friendships were meant to last forever. :-)

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