Ever since the book came out, I've received feedback about how it's made women think about friendships throughout their lives, as well as who is in their lives now. The goal of this blog is to open up and create a dialogue about friendships: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Each week I will post my thoughts, experiences, as well as various articles, topics or quotes that I feel are important when examining female friendships. Please feel free to leave comments; I look forward to hearing from you!

Email me: survivingfemalefriendships@gmail.com

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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Life's Too Short For Crappy Friends

I stumbled upon this great article with a very direct and well-said point: life's too short for crappy friends.

In the article, Anna Lind Thomas explores what it means to have a good friend versus a crappy one.  She gives a positive message to women who may be struggling with being the "cool" or "popular" ones, and why it's important to live your life for you, instead of constantly seeking approval from others.  The more you improve yourself, the more others want to be around you and you'll have meaningful, healthy relationships.  It's a win-win!

An excerpt from the article:
"There are obvious signs you might be in a friendship you shouldn’t be in. Obvious signs could include that the person makes you feel bad about yourself, you’re constantly paranoid about losing the friendship, or the person blatantly uses you and may even be mean and verbally abusive towards you from time to time.

But there are subtle signs too. They don’t outwardly treat you badly, but there’s just something about the way they interact with you that makes you feel inadequate. Sometimes you decide to hide certain aspects of yourself because you’re not convinced they’ll like or accept all of you. Sometimes you’ll start compromising your values to have something in common. Sometimes you find yourself acting like the person you think they want to be friends with rather than just being the precious being you are.

Sometimes, even though you’re surrounded by “friends,” you start to feel lonely and insecure. They’re your friends, but the friendship has limits. Maybe your feelings don’t matter if they inconvenience them or if you ever share that they have hurt your feelings, they decide you’re a little too exhausting to keep around."

It's not worth it or healthy to keep a friendship that makes you feel bad or inferior.  The goal is to have friends who lift you up, make you smile after a difficult day and appreciate all of your (good and bad) qualities.  I agree with Thomas in that I'd rather have one great friend than many who are fake and catty.  That one friendship would provide a lifetime of positive experiences than having many friends who would drain, exhaust or cause tension.  Who wants that?!  Life is waaaaay too short for crappy friends!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Friendship and Therapy

Check out this article I was interviewed for:
Does your friendship need therapy by Anna North

We often think of couples going to counseling, not friends.  This article explores why therapy may be helpful for those friendships that need an outside perspective.  As a therapist myself, I think it's a great idea, as it would improve the overall quality of the friendship, including any issues with communication.  If the friendship is worth saving, therapy would be a logical next step.

What do you think?  Would you seek therapy with your friend?

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Another Reason I Like Mindy Kaling...

If you're a fan of Mindy Kaling, you'll like this article:
Mindy Kaling Is Right, Friends Are Hard to Find by Dyanne Weiss

The article asks the question that I get asked all of the time: As adults, how do we make friends?

An excerpt from the article:
"Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, has written a lot about the difficulty of making friends. She suggests that people join or form a group that at least have one common interest – e.g., the yoga class, a book group and other things that at least give one exposure to someone new. The key thing is to keep trying, do not be afraid to seek people out (and possibly get rejected), and make the effort to keep the friendship going. Some people never initiate outings, but welcome the invitation; so keep inviting.

Kaling confided to fans at the event, “The only thing I want to do in the next five years is make a new good friend.” I can relate. As we get older, it gets hard to find good friends with are just right for where your life is at are heading and, for Mindy Kaling, being in the public eye does not help."

It does take putting yourself out there to make friends.  Another way I've found helpful is meeting people through your friends' friends and getting to know them.  This allows your social circle to expand through your various networks of existing friends, as that is most easily accessible to you.  The goal is to keep trying and to not give up.

It's also validating to know that even Mindy struggles with this.  Hey, Mindy, we could be friends?!