I’ve never been very good at female friendships. Never. I say what’s on my mind. My humor is twisted and sarcastic. Sometimes I just don’t get other women. As far at female relationships go, I’m pretty bad at being a girl.

I don’t typically like to ask for favors like, “Hey, So and So, can you give my kid a ride to school today because my other kid’s leg is hanging off and I need to get in an ambulance now.” No, I’m more likely to call the school and tell them the non-maimed child won’t be making it to class today. It’s much easier than running the risk of putting someone out to ask for help.

I am aloof. I am aloof because I spent my formative years living on a 200-acre farm with no neighborhood children to play with. I am aloof because I was born this way. I was born with a tumor on my eye and looked pretty weird as a little kid. I was a target for questions, stares and nasty little girls. As an adult, a simple eye-roll, dismissive gesture or turned back brings those little girls right back into play.

I’m kind of a loner. I don’t like talking on the phone. I rarely think about texting other people. I don’t like to gossip and I’m pretty bad at small talk. I tend to seek friendships that are real, deep and lasting. People who don’t mind if I forget to call or text.

These traits don’t mean I’m unfriendly or bitchy or that I don’t like you. I don’t decline invitations because I want to. It’s because I have three children and, sometimes I can’t be in three places at once.

Sometimes I write on a stupid blog. Mostly, I write what I hope will be a not-so-stupid book. A book about a little girl and a ghost and some sad memories of bitchy little girls and a whole lot of loneliness.

Not one of the qualities I’ve mentioned is conducive to building new friendships or getting invited to join the PTO.

At my last residency, I was slightly shocked and surprised when another woman asked me to come help her pick an outfit out for her reading. Shocked and surprised that another woman thought I was “normal” enough to do such a thing! On some level, I know how dudes must feel when wives and girlfriends start grilling them for opinions. I was honored but found myself waiting for her to realize that she’d asked for help from a woman who’s really bad at being a woman.

Here, in my every day life, I’m sure there are mommies who think I’m snobby. That I’m brushing them off. They might believe that I actually enjoy saying, “Sorry, but I can’t make it,” and that I never feel guilty about it. And that’s my problem I guess, because I’m the one who chose to follow a dream. Maybe, on some level I am a failure as a mother and as a woman. One who has chosen to pursue a master’s degree while her children need her to do things like bake cookies and plan birthday parties and playdates and sell wrapping paper. Maybe some of those women are right and I should have waited to get my degree.

Maybe. But I don’t think so. Maybe I’m just bad at being a girl.






  1. Well, You know that I’m exactly the same way! BTW, I don’t like talking on the phone either, however the occasional, “how are you big sister?”, call would still be nice! We can keep it short!

  2. I heart you Kell! I think you are a wonderful mother, and extremely funny! I love sarcastic humor! And if you ever need me to cart around the kiddos, I would be most willing! hehehe!

  3. All of your posts lately big time make me wish you all stayed in aforementioned town.

  4. joanne richards says:

    I learned it doesn’t matter what others think of you,,, if you love yourself that is all that matters…. also you are a wonderful mother, wife, student. Stop putting yourself down, you are an intelligent, wonderful person, if others don’t see it, it is their lose. Love You,,

  5. I get this… I have trouble making/keeping friends because I’m brutally honest and expect others to be the same, but we seem to live in a world of people who would rather say and be told ‘what you want to hear’, and it’s so frustrating! My sarcastic sense of humour has all but disappeared, because it just isn’t safe anymore… 🙁

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