We all have friends who act stupid. The one who’s sleeping with her unemployed alcoholic ex again. The one who continues to pick up her mother’s phone calls even though they always end in tears. The one who works for corporate America and still posts nip-slip pics of herself on Facebook. We, the friends, usually stand by as these inanities occur, lying in wait with a shoulder to cry on. That is the role of a friend, right? We’re here for you after the fact.
But in a piece for July’s issue of Marie Claire, author Lori Gottlieb argues we are the ones making bad decisions by not being blunt with our friends. (You’re crazy if you’re still seeing that jerk! Your mother is messing around with your head! You’re going to lose your job if you don’t exercise a little more discretion!) As female friends, Gottlieb writes, we “yes” our pals “into false presumptions and bad decisions … convincing one another that anyone who disagrees with us is wrong.” Keep reading »
There is that scene in Bridget Jones’ Diary, where, Bridge (as she’s called) lies on her couch, pajama-clad, bottle of vodka clutched tightly in hand, bemoaning the fate of an untimely death for a single person. She worries that if she were to die, alone in her apartment, it is likely that someone would find her decomposing body three weeks later half-eaten by an Alsatian.
I too fear the fate of an untimely “single” death. I imagine my distraught mother, overcome with grief, forced to go through my things. Her sadness only magnified as she discovers the true, mind-blowing total of my credit card debt, and then the small stash of “emergency” illicit prescription drugs in my bedside table. I can see her coming to the realization that I’m not the daughter she imagined, but her image of me will truly be shattered when she opens the drawer that I use to store both my vibrators and my financial statements. I can just see the horror pass over her face, as she realizes that her daughter was not only a bit too sexually adventurous, but also was unfamiliar with exactly what a 401K is. Keep reading »