It's cold out. Finally. I've been waiting for a chill in the air since the last cold snap of the previous spring. The kids are sleeping, the wood stove is emanating heat to every corner of my snug little house. And what am I doing? Staring into the depths of my monitor, connecting with people I don't even know. Blogging for myself and for the feedback. Hoping to reach people I'll never meet, whilst ignoring those folks within my reach.
The Internet is my friend. My only friend besides my husband and children. Yes, I am one of those women. Women who don't have the time, the patience, or the know how to maintain a female friendship. I've made attempts, albeit failed attempts, but I've tried none the less. I have women I call my friends, but I wouldn't even think about picking up the phone, pouring my heart out to them, yet it comes so easily here. Oddly enough, with you, the anonymous, I am comfortable. Put me amongst a bunch of women and my skin crawls, literally. I feel like an amoeba on a slide under the microscope. Being judged, scrutinized, made fun of. Here, in the vast universe of blogdom and women bloggers, I feel like finally I fit in.
I've often envied relationships perpetrated on television. Carrie and Miranda. Kate and Beth. Lauren and whoever she calls her BFF right now. Witnessing these kinds of female companionship in the real world is even harder. College girls who would do anything for their sisters. Friends for life, since Kindergarten, still in touch in their forties. What have I done wrong? What about me says, “This person is incapable of a lasting female relationship so don't bother.” Why do I choose the anonymity of the web over real, concrete, face to face friendships?
My mother thinks its genetic. She too, is one of those women. I can remember one friend of hers, a gorgeous, fun loving girl she met in college, but today they don't speak. After spending the last 10 years as close pals. Granted, she has had her cocktail buddies, her work colleagues that email and bring her gifts (mainly because she is the boss), but aside from that she maintains relationships with no one but family. On many occasions she has sadly observed that I am the same way. I'm traveling the same friendless road. Maybe she led by example, or maybe I have just never had that connection, that spark it must take to like another woman so much that you share your life, day by day with her.
Maybe there is a prototype for friendless women. Some probably just get along better with men. Some are probably too catty and backstabbing to maintain friendships. Others are mostly loners or too shy to make a pal. Some women are so consumed by their mothering and family duties that they neglect that enriching part of their life. I like to think I fall into the latter. Family being my first priority and any spare time I have is spent here. But I could just be in denial, having made the concious choice years ago to not let another woman too close. Out of fear, fear of rejection, fear of hurt, fear that I'm just not that cool. What I crave is a place to use my words to communicate without sending mixed signals with my expressions. Truth be told, I'm intimidating in person, and women just don't seem to like me from their first impression.
I would love to know your take, my blogger friends, on your real life female friends. How long have you had them, is there any underlying issues you've overcome, did you meet them online? Or are you like me, your best friend is your husband, your emotional support group is your kids and your mother, your confidante is your grandma, and your best girlfriends are only a screen name and a picture.