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!
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Tuesday, December 22, 2015
Female Friendship Myths
The Top 4 Myths About Female Friendships by Rori Boyce
Movies and television shows don't exactly portray female friendships in the most realistic way, so Boyce clarifies some of these common myths. Below is an excerpt of myth #2 and #3:
"Myth #2: Being Friends Means Being in Constant Contact (Facebook Doesn't Count)
Honestly, I haven't had this kind of friendship since I was in college and it was much easier back then because we all lived in the same dorm, took the same classes, and did the same thing on Friday night. And yet, I have found myself questioning how "good" my friendships are because I don't have this kind of constant daily contact with the friends I would consider the closest.
In truth, some days I don't even have anything all that interesting to share with my husband, who lives in the same house, shares most aspects of my life, and does the same thing I do on Friday night. So the idea that I would have something meaningful to share with my friends that often seems a little silly. It is okay to have as much or as little contact as each individual friendship requires. Not talking every day or even every week is not a sign that you aren't good friends; it is a sign that you are grown women with busy lives.
Myth #3: Real Friendships are Easy to Sustain
The older I have grown, the less true this has become. There was a time that friendships just "were" and I didn't have to work too hard to make them or sustain them... it was called high school and had everything to do with proximity. But in the grown-up world, we are raising children, running errands, and hoping to find a single hour for ourselves so we can go to yoga. This leaves little time for female bonding, heartfelt chats, and girls night out.
In truth, having friends, keeping friends, and especially making new friends requires time, energy, and effort. We live in a world where meeting new people and establishing new relationships of any kind is hard work. This is why so many people have turned to online dating to find a mate. Friendships are no different than romantic relationships in this regard which is why websites geared toward helping people make friends are flourishing. Let go of the idea that "real" friendship only happens organically; it is as mythical as the idea that all you need to make a marriage work is love."
It's important to examine these myths since a lot of women put pressure on themselves for not having a gazillion friends or for not seeing their friends every week. Especially as we get older and have limited time, friendships will ebb and flow, which is not a good or bad thing...it is what it is. The more we acknowledge the reality of our friendships and let go of these unobtainable expectations, the more we appreciate the people in our life and allow the friendship to flow naturally. Furthermore, as long as we're putting ourselves out there, reaching out to our friends and investing time and energy, the friendship will maintain itself. There is no "perfect" friendship, and if we're willing and able to accept that, we'll find we are much happier in our relationships.
What do you think about the article? Do you agree with these myths?