Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

A Girl Thing

You may or may not be surprised to hear that I don't have a large number of close woman friends.

Oh, I have casual acquaintances up the wazzoo. I can always find someone to go shopping or meet for coffee. But my interaction with them is very superficial. It is a shallow intimacy, which is really no intimacy at all.

Really, my sister is the one person in my life with whom I am completely real. Because I trust beyond a shadow of a doubt that no matter what stupid thing I say or do, she will always, always be there. She won't turn her back on me and she won't betray me, both of which have happened more times than I care to remember. When she is angry or annoyed with me, she tells me, rather than expecting me to guess. She doesn't play games and she doesn't rely on me to stroke her ego or feed her insecurities.

She is, unfortunately, a rarity among women.

When I was in high school, the group of girls that I hung with decided to completely ostracize me about halfway through the year. I still don't really know why, but I suspect that I just didn't play the girl game right. It's completely contrarty to my nature to kiss ass. And I've never been one to sacrifice myself for the sake of inclusion. So I spent the rest of the year alone, except for my boyfriend and one stalwart gal pal who refused to bend to their demands that she turn her back on me. I didn't really even care that much.

When I was 22, my very closest friend seduced my fiancee right out from under my nose and married him. We had been together for six years, lived together for two. She and her husband, who was fiancee's best friend, had been married for nine years. It was a huge, emotional clusterfuck and it took me a long time after that to trust another woman. I think on some level I expected that kind of thing from the fiancee (he had left another woman for me, after all), but her betrayal...that really hurt.

Now, I'm not absolving myself of blame when it comes to my problems in this regard. I don't really get the dynamics of girl to girl relationships, and I'm not very good at doing all the things that need to be done in order to nurture a bond of that kind. It can be so very exhausting.

I don't have much patience for drama. I don't have much patience for high maintenance women who need constant bolstering and continual reassurance. I don't have the patience for all the touchy feely hyper emotional clap-trap that a lot of women seem to thrive on. In other words, I am monumentally inept when it comes to relationships with women. I so could not be a lesbian. Well I suppose I could, but I would be a very lonely one.

Sometimes I wonder if I might be one of those people who is psychologically male, but physiologically female. Perhaps that explains why my marriage is so strong.

So anyway...where am I going with all of this? Why am I sharing how I am profoundly handicapped when it comes to forming satisfying relationships with other women?

I want you to understand what a rare and special thing it is when I do form a connection with another woman. When everything just seems to click, when no warning bells shrill through my subconscious, when I realize with suprise that not once has the ugly spectre of annoyance reared it's ugly head. When I really, and truly enjoy another woman.

To my astonishment, this weekend, I found four such women.

One of those women, Nina, has been an incredibly loyal and steadfast friend, who went through some incredibly tough stuff with me, and stood by my side through some very emotionally trying experiences. She defended me to the end, in the face of scathing criticism, slander and rumormongering. She refused to believe any of the horrible stuff that was being said. She refused to not believe in me.

I had met Kirdy several times in real life and had an absolutely fabulous time with her. We found we were kindred spiritis of a sort. Girly girls in the extreme, but with a strong pragmatic streak and a blazing independance. We both have healthy marriages and both genuinely like our spouses. I can talk to her about anything from nail polish to politics and everything in between.

The other two I had formed relationships with fairly recently, when we formed a small, private online group.

AA is a teacher, and has listened to my problems with Diminutive One with enormous patience, even when I castigated her profession and her compatriots. She has given me a ton of useful advice and insight, as well as a peek at the grass on the other side of the fence, which isn't as green and lush as one might think. And, she will discuss theology with me until the cows come home. Most people tire of listening to my pseudo-atheistic rantings long before my inexhaustible skepticism is satisfied, but not AA. She can totally groove on my blasphemy and irreverence.

Lizardbreath had at one time, been an employee of sorts, albeit a non-compensated one. I found that she had a very calm and rational demeanor. She rarely got rattled. She never got so angry or incensed that she couldn't reason through the difficult tasks she was charged with. She was like the calm at the eye of a storm. Her very presence was soothing. She was such a welcome change from all the emotionally charged drama that I think I clung to her like a drowning man clings to a piece of driftwood.

So I knew them. But did I really know them??

One wonders, when meeting internet people, if they are as wonderful (or as awful, I suppose, depending upon circumstances and perspective) as you found them to be online. One wonders if the chemistry will be so profoundly perfect face to face.

It was.

From the moment I met AA at the airport and we embraced among strangers, to the moment Kirdy pulled up breathless and sparkling, to the moment Lizardbreath and Nina stepped out of the cab and into reality...it was as if I had known them forever. It was surreal and fantastic, but it was never like meeting strangers.

I won't go into all that we did, all that was said. I won't account for what happened in those all too short moments that we spent together. I will simply say that for those three precious days, I felt like I was a part of something really special. I wasn't on the outside looking in, wishing to belong, knowing I would never be able to do what it takes to win their approval. It wasn't even an issue of trying. It just was.

And that...easy effortlessness...that is a thing of beauty in my fringe reality. It is a thing of comfort to my outsider mentality.

When I was hugging my friends good-bye....it was all I could do to let go. And that's something that just doesn't happen to me every day.

I liked it. A lot.

16 Comments:

  • At 4:23 PM, Blogger Doodaddy said…

    Lovely post -- I think friendship is the most delicate and powerful and worthwhile thing we can do.

    Just curious -- in all those years of having few close female friends, did you have close male ones? I've mostly had close female friends, but that road, of course, is not without its occasional bumps.

     
  • At 5:20 PM, Blogger nina said…

    Gosh BA you have literally brought me to tears. I am so lucky to have been part of that wonderful weekend babe.

     
  • At 5:24 PM, Blogger flutter said…

    This is so wonderful, and you also rock, BA

     
  • At 5:37 PM, Anonymous Kvetch said…

    Aren't we lucky, those of us who make internet connections of the most important, impenitrable (sp?) kinds. Think of how we'd never have met these people if it were merely 10 years ago. Even if we were who we are, without the internet, we each would have lived out our lives without knowing the other.

    It's a wonderful thing.

    I am meeting an online friend this weekend for the first time. I feel like I've known her my whole life.

    I can't wait.

     
  • At 6:09 PM, Blogger slouching mom said…

    I nodded many, many times while reading this. I have been burned by women (girls, really) but never by men (or boys). I get this, I really do.

    So I am reeling with the enormity of what you've just written. Four women who are kindred spirits?

    Pretty impressive, BA. Hang on to them.

     
  • At 6:38 PM, Blogger Rock the Cradle said…

    That's some kind of wonderful.

    I'm glad to know friendships like yours are possible. Gives me hope for the future, it does.

    I've had very nearly the same experiences with women friends as you, though I was lucky enough to stumble upon a kindred spirit this last year in my neighborhood. It is a rare and fine thing, this ease of friendship...

     
  • At 6:53 PM, Blogger Kevin Charnas said…

    When you find TRUE friends, hold on with both hands.

     
  • At 7:21 PM, Blogger Mrs. Chicky said…

    *Warning. Gushy words ahead.*

    OMG, I love you so much right now. And I'm a little freaked out that someone crawled into my head, hijacked my thoughts and wrote them on someone else's blog. Sigh.

    I'm so glad you found some kindred spirits. It's not easy for women like us, since we are in our own right a bit high maintenance (because we refuse to play the game and all that... I'm not making myself clear, am I?). Anyhoo... Congrats on what sounds like a very successful weekend.

     
  • At 7:22 PM, Blogger mamatulip said…

    Wow.

    I can relate in many ways to you, and I gotta say it's really cool to hear you met and connected with such fantastic women. Bravo.

     
  • At 12:06 AM, Blogger margalit said…

    Almost all of my longterm true blue friends are people that I met many many years ago via the internet. Of course, back then, before the web existed, we only had words to rely upon, so it was taking every word said and carefully digesting it.

    I've relied upon the written word for choosing whom I love and whom I dislike for over 20 years. It has never once failed to work for me.

    I'm glad to hear that it's working for you as well. Hang onto those good close friends. They are a great reward.

    And I may introduce a Neener into your life, too, if that's OK w/ you.

     
  • At 9:38 AM, Blogger Natalie said…

    The weekend just keeps getting better and better.

     
  • At 2:50 PM, Blogger SoundHunter said…

    periodic lurker here, I'm not sure f I've posted here before, maybe not. Anyhoo, I, like you have not been good at the girl game, nor friendships with women. Having children seems to have chnged that somewhat, well, it began even before tht while trying for three years for our first and bonding with other women online, and off, about miscarriages and infertility. Motherhood seems to make some of us fit better into the women's world, since we actually share a major life changing event, and need to get our kids with other kids etc, but I've found I actully need other women's/mother's company, where before I was happier hanging with the guys. Your visit sounds wonderful, inspiring me to take my online connections more seriously, nd to value those online friends of mine more.

     
  • At 6:51 PM, Blogger Lindsey said…

    I don't know you, but wow, can I relate to this post! I found your blog through Antique Mommy's and instantly felt like I understood what you were talking about. I too have been burned (way too many times), which makes my handful of deep friendships so so valuable! True friends are treasures and I would go to great lengths to protect those relationships! Thanks for sharing!

     
  • At 8:57 AM, Blogger Jenn said…

    "I think on some level I expected that kind of thing from the fiancee (he had left another woman for me, after all), but her betrayal...that really hurt."

    There are things we expect of lovers, but never of friends, aren't there?

    "Sometimes I wonder if I might be one of those people who is psychologically male, but physiologically female."

    Me, me, me too.

    Beautiful post.

     
  • At 9:50 AM, Anonymous AA said…

    "Ooooh girlfriend!!" nice post! Thanks. I love seeing references to me in your writing. Everybody sing with me now, "You're so vain..."

     
  • At 12:45 PM, Blogger Sarah said…

    Awesome post. One I could especially appreciate after having just returned from a girls weekend myself.

     

Post a Comment

<< Home