I was chatting with my bestie a few days ago. I was telling her sometimes I feel like I’m too sarcastic, that I have a big mouth, and that maybe I’m just too much and should shut up every once in a while. Her response validated why she has been my best girl for 26 years. “That’s the girl I lived with for four years in college, that’s the girl I love, and that is who you are, so please don’t stop being you.” She knows me, loves me anyway, and realizes at 41 I am not going to change, nor does she want me to.
Chances are, you aren’t going to change either. And you shouldn’t have to become someone different in order to keep good friends. Here are the qualities that make for the kind of friends who will appreciate you for who you are:
Moms need friends who accept who they are through and through.
It’s too much work to keep ourselves buttoned up for fear we might make someone uncomfortable. Moms need friends who will let their true messy selves bust out and not worry about being judged.
Moms need friends who can be unrealistic.
We talk really big about all the high heels we are going to wear and all the alcohol we will consume during our much-anticipated girls’ weekend, but we will be totally fine if we just sit around in our jammies and eat a bunch of crappy food. Maybe we will do the binge-drinking and high heel-wearing thing next trip, but probably not.
Moms need friends who don’t mind seeing them in their jammies.
Because sometimes we need each other really early in the morning or really late at night (okay, at like 9 p.m., but still), and that comes with getting a view of your BFF braless in her oversized T-shirt.
Moms need friends who make them laugh.
Life, parenting, marriage, divorce, working — it’s all so freaking hard. We all need comic relief. We need to have someone who can help us escape, even if it’s only for a few seconds. Even if you don’t mean to make me laugh, but you do, I will keep you close. If you can make me cry-laugh, I will never let you go.
Moms need friends who can speak up if they are mad.
If I piss you off, hurt you, disappoint you, or make you sad, I want you to tell me — not Nancy from down the street. Nancy just makes things worse between us. Nancy doesn’t have a place in our friendship. Moms don’t have time for a mediator.
Moms need friends who encourage them.
I am talking about bad habits as well as when I decide to do something new and scary. You talk me into getting another cup of coffee so we can sit and talk a little longer, tell me to just order the large fries, and let me know the second you hear about a shoe sale even though my hubby asked you not to. You also hold my hand, tell me I can, and remind me that I am a badass when I don’t believe it myself.
Moms need friends who will take a bitch down for them.
If Nancy down the street starts to badmouth one of my girls in my presence, no. Nancy is going to get an earful and will never flap her gums like that around me again, ever.
Moms need friends who realize their kids can be assholes too.
All kids can act up and get all Jekyll and Hyde during a playdate. They can all be little assholes sometimes. If you have perfect little cherubs who do no wrong, this friendship isn’t going to work.
Moms need friends who aren’t dickweeds at kids’ sporting events.
I don’t care if it’s your kid, my kid, or a kid that is just a pain in the ass. If you are a douche on the sidelines, you are a douche in life and I’ve heard douching isn’t natural. I prefer real friendships.
Moms need friends who will tell them if their ass doesn’t look good in a pair of jeans.
Honesty is the best policy — always. If I look like a bag of dicks, tell me. If I have spinach in my teeth, tell me. If a bird shits on my head, tell me.
Moms need friends who don’t care if you only text and never call.
You don’t care if you only hear from me via text and I never call you. And if I do have an emergency and need to call you, you understand I will probably have to urinate at least once during our conversation and you won’t judge me. You understand, because having kids does a number on the bladder.
Moms need friends who stick around when shit gets real.
When you are struggling to keep it together, going through a horrible time, or swimming in a sea of anxiety and depression, your people are the ones who see you through it. They will be there on the other side.
Moms need friends who let them eat off their plate.
Sometimes I order salads and want to steal some of your nachos. If you scrape some frosting off of your cake, you don’t care if I scoop it up with my fingers, which may or may not be clean. I will draw the line at licking salt off of your margarita glass though. Promise.
Moms need friends who aren’t afraid to show their messy parts, who stick around, who will bring them a Diet Coke just because. Moms need friends who are true to themselves and your friendship. Moms need friends who will tell Nancy from down the street to shut her face if she crosses you. And most of all, moms need friends who love them for exactly who they are.
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