12 May 2014

MWF Seeking BFF – Get out of my brain

By: Jessica B.
Tagged: Random

I’m not really a “reader.” I read magazines but only really indulge in books while on vacation. So in prep for my most recent vacation, I took the advice of my fabulous cube neighbor Gloria and finally downloaded MWF Seeking BFF, a book she and my brunch buddy Nikki have talked about several times as a must-read.

Here is an official description of the book (from the website), “When Rachel Bertsche first moves to Chicago, she’s thrilled to finally share a zip code, let alone an apartment, with her boyfriend. But shortly after getting married, Bertsche realizes her new life is missing one thing: friends. Sure, she has plenty of BFFs—in New York and San Francisco and Boston and Washington DC. Yet in her adopted hometown, there’s no one to call at the last minute for girl-talk over brunch or a reality TV marathon over a bottle of wine. Taking matters into her own hands, Bertsche develops a plan: she’ll go on fifty-two friend-dates, one per week for a year, in hopes of meeting her new Best Friend Forever.”

So why would this relate to me? Well, minus the “M” part (married,) I can relate to Rachel, a lot. When I moved to Chicago, I was 25 years old and has zero friends. And didn’t really make one for six months. And now, as a 30-something woman, I’m going through another friend crisis of sorts. Friends are getting married, moving to the suburbs, moving away from Chicago for work, family, etc. and….I’m still here. Not that I mind, I love Chicago, but the idea of being in the city I love with not a solid group of friends is scary! How do I….start over?

And it’s not easy in the city. People have established groups of friends, boyfriends, or people they know, and it’s easy to just stick with that crew. And as you get older and dynamics in life change, your friendships change too. They aren’t the person you hang with 24/7, life gets in the way. And by the time you are hanging out again, you are looking at the next friend date being in two months because of…life.

In dating as well as friendships, I’m much  more shy in putting myself out there. Fear of rejection sucks. Or the shallow, “yeah let’s totally meet up!” and then when you reach out, they never respond. Is that always the case? No. But as I’ve gotten older, it’s more difficult to find people who are at that same kind of life spot as me.

So what did I learn from this book? I’m not alone! There are a lot of other people my age (or close to it), struggling with the same thing, and when we share our sorrows (or those who choose to), I keep trying to put myself out there, meet new people, find people with similar interests and just see what happens. I won’t have the 24/7 BFF I’ve always wanted, at this point in my life at least, but finding those who compliment me, and working to really establish a good base of people here is a challenge I’m up for.

What about you? Have you read the book? Or had similar troubles finding and making friends?

3 Comments

  1. Akirah says:

    I really enjoyed that book and could relate to a lot of it. An issue for me is that even though I am married, I’m eager to meet women who aren’t. I’ve found that many of my married friends are looking to have babies and that’s just not me. I’m pretty career-oriented and in my experience, many of my single girlfriends are too. But it’s weird to be like…”I’m looking for single girlfriends!” Also, I don’t discriminate against ladies based on if they’re married or not…I’m just trying to not engage in baby talk all the time. Make sense?

    Church has helped me a bit with this, though.

  2. Caz says:

    I used to follow the blog, but never read the book. I’ve related to it a number of times, having moved frequently in the last 10 years (Toronto-Vancouver-NZ-Vancouver-Australia-Vancouver), meaning friends groups stayed/left/moved onto different life stages without me, while I did the same somewhere else.

    While I don’t really have one BFF, I do come pretty close with a new friend which is great. On the other hand, I find having TOO many disparate friend groups (grad school friends, undergrad friends, hiking/outdoorsy friends, skiing friends and just a group of randoms) that 1 -I don’t have enough quality time for any of them, and 2 -because of this, many of them don’t prioritize me as an invite because I’ve frequently been busy/away. I don’t have a dedicated “we’ll hang on Friday night” group/individual I can always count on.

    As an extrovert, trying to maintain relationships with ALL of these people was detrimental to the rest of my life (no time for exercise, too much booze, too much $ spent etc.) and I had to actually, seriously think about and prioritize who I was spending time with and how much, so I didn’t blindly RSVP ‘yes’ to every event and then bail on people at the last minute, or have zero time for the other aspects of my life.

    I’m not trying to sound hunblebraggy or crap like that, I’ve legitimately had more than my fair share of Saturday nights without plans because all my friends are busy with things I haven’t been invited to. But being on the other side of the equation is hard too. Having to realize that I don’t have the time/energy to put into all the relationships I am trying to juggle and deciding how to prioritize my time is difficult. (Especially when people ask you why you’ve said “no” to their last 4 invites.)

  3. Lacey Bean says:

    I read the book a few years ago and thought it was so interesting! And I think I have trouble keeping friends. I can’t be good friends with someone who needs constant interaction. I can go weeks without talking to my two best friends (Arielle included) and they’re ok with it. Other friends I’ve had would get twitchy, think something was wrong, and ain’t nobody got time for that. I wish I had a thick group of girlfriends from school or something, but its just not in the cards for me.

 

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