I’ve seen the posts on Facebook in the various mom’s groups—someone looking for a friend—women reaching out to find a person with like interests, similar values, and in a similar stage of life to share life.
I’ve expressed interest in finding my friends this way before to my husband. Or, I’ve lamented that all my best friends live hours away. The typical hubby response is this: “Well, I’m your best friend, aren’t I?!? (Said with a hurt tone of voice and adorable puppy-dog eyes!)”
For me, all my best friends that I’ve had since either grade school or college do live 2.5 hours or more away. I connect with them on Facebook, through the occasional text message, and the even less frequent phone call. We can catch up in person on really special occasions, but rarely for more than an hour.
The hubby and I have lived in the Lubbock area for going on eight years. And we’ve attended the same church for almost 7 of those years. And I still don’t have a local best friend (besides you, honey!).
Why do I crave a close female friendship so much?
For starters, I am confident that we are made for relationships. We are made for fellowship. We are made to commune with one another.
But, I also think that part of that need for those close “Pour it out” relationships (reference: Netflix original series, Sweet Magnolias) is due to shows such as Steel Magnolias, Gilmore Girls, and Friends. I was raised on those shows. Well, not raised on them, but those shows are still some of my favorites to this day. I watched Gilmore Girls before it was cool—by that, I mean, in high school, my best friend and I used to watch VHS recordings of the episodes of Gilmore Girls at lunch on Tuesdays because we were both in marching band and missed the new episodes that came out on Monday nights!
Did I mention that other people seem to have these close Lorelai and Sookie, Ouiser and Clairee, and Monica and Rachel relationships? I see them all the time. I see co-workers going to lunch. I see people from church posting their girls’ night photos. I even see MY friends from high school and college posting their pictures with their “adult best friends” at this concert or that coffee shop.
But, more often than not, I feel like Anne. You know, Anne of Avonlea. Not Anne of Green Gables. And this is the 1980’s movie version of Anne—working as a teacher, super sweet and kind to all, but no bosom buddy like she had back in Green Gables. She tries to make friends with Avonlea’s community, but it turns out the Pringles are all very clicky.
For Anne, it was often her red hair or the fact that she was an orphan that separated her from the rest. For me, maybe it’s the fact that I am 5 foot 10 inches tall, and I tower over most women. Perhaps it’s because I have a size 12 shoe and am about 40 pounds overweight. But surely not, right? In 2020, that can’t be the reason!
I am convinced that instead, I have some major character flaws. I’m sure that I must, but my husband told me I’m crazy. In all reality, a little self-reflection is in order when one struggles to make friends. Am I abrasive in some way that turns people off? And, I can honestly say that while I happen to be a little louder and more opinionated than others, my momma taught me well. She taught me how to be kind and respectful, even we disagree. In a professional setting, the school building where I work, I go above and beyond to be a pleasant individual to peers, at least I think I do.
So, at the end of the day, with a pile of soggy Kleenex on the floor by my bed, I sit and ask myself, “Why can’t I have a best friend? Why can’t I at least have a good, solid work friend? Why can’t I have someone to sit with at pep rallies or football games. Why haven’t I made a super close friend at church?”
So, rather than sitting here and feeling sorry for myself—like I want to do—I am writing. And I am praying. And I am posting a Want Ad! So, here it goes.
“36-year-old female seeks best friend. I am a wife. I am a mom to 3 boys ages 10, 8, and 5. I’m also a foster mom. I am a teacher. I am a Christian. I play tennis. I enjoy going to sporting events, but my kids are not athletic, so we don’t go to all the “peewee” sporting events. I do Facebook, but I’m not really into Instagram. I have tattoos, and I want more. I’m 5’10” tall. I’m a little overweight, but I’m trying to get back in shape, so I’d love someone I can meet up with and walk. When not in the middle of a pandemic, I go to church every Sunday and most Wednesdays. I love coffee. I drink hot coffee year-round! I’d be down for a margarita night every once in a while. I also love me a good glass of Moscato or a Sangria. I love food! My favorite is Tex-Mex. I love winter. I love Christmas. I used to go skiing, but the last time I went, my knees hurt for days after! I am a car seat nerd. I’m a nerd in general. I don’t wear make-up or wear designer labels. I wear Chacos, but truly only because they are the best, most comfortable shoes ever! I drive a minivan. I don’t love shopping, but I do like to spend money! I craft a little. I can sew, and I own a Cricut, so I want to do crafty little projects. I enjoy movies and several different series on Netflix and Prime, but I don’t watch regular TV. I’m not political. I’m not too fond of the beach. I do love swimming, and I love hanging out at the lake. I wouldn’t say I like extreme sports. I’m not a daredevil. I do try my best to love and believe in people. Most importantly, I’m not a perfect person. I am just seeking a friend.”
“Friends come, and friends go,
but a true friend sticks by you like family.” Proverbs 18:24
The bottom line here is this: I, as I read back through my want ad, I am not ashamed of a single thing about myself. So, maybe what my awesome husband said is true. I’m amazing the way I am. Should I always strive to be a better, kinder, more loving version of me? Absolutely! Is it ok to be a witch to people just because “that’s the way I am”? Heck no! So, keep being the best YOU that you can be. Keep being a nerd. Keep being crafty. Keep being exactly who God made you be. You are AWESOME!
Something else my amazing husband told me is this: sometimes making those close friendships takes a little more effort than expected on my part. I’m in a busy season of life—4 kids, working, pandemic. He encouraged me to text my friends more. Invite people to coffee. Step out and make an effort. I encourage you to do this same. You might find that bestie you were looking for because you took the first step! That’s what inspired this post. I’m just reaching out in faith that God will bring along the perfect best friend for me.
Note: I’m seeking close friendship, but I have community and family to turn to for social-emotional and mental health support. If you are struggling in any way and you do not have a strong support system you can lean on, please reach out and get help.
- The NAMI HelpLine can be reached Monday through Friday, 10 am–6 pm, ET. 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or [email protected]
- NAMI Lubbock is hosting an Online NAMI Connection Recovery Support Group every Monday from 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm CT
- StarCare Specialty Health System can be reached at 806-740-1414 or 800-687-7581