Tuesday, March 17, 2009

She's Just Not That Into You

It must be known that Amanda wrote this post prior to the book being put into film, she posted it over on her blog way back in 2007. She has since revised it, acknowledging said movie. Might I suggest that you go back and read through Amanda's blog, front to back? Do it, I dare you.


Have you heard of that book that came out a few years ago, He's Just Not That Into You? You certainly saw the movie with Genifer Goodwin and Jennifer Anniston. The book was written by this guy whose premise was women need to take the hint when it comes to dating. He said all guys send major signals as to whether or not they're actually interested in you, interested in parts of you, or just not interested at all. His book was blunt and unapologetic, but women everywhere praised it for its honesty and realism; guys send signals, we just don't often choose to see them.
I think there should be the same book for women about making girlfriends. I have said before that making girlfriends as an adult feels a lot like dating. First you spy someone with whom you have a connection or could see yourself liking. You don't always know why you're interested, but she's just got that something. Then you have to make the first move - feel her out, maybe share a story about a common interest. If you have kids you're in luck because they're the ultimate prop. All mothers think stories about their kids are so interesting everyone else will certainly want to hear them. Fashion is also a good opener. If you share the same style or shop at the same places, you've automatically jumped ahead a few spaces in the game.
Then comes big step #1: The first date. One of you has to casually suggest that the two of you go do something sometime. Again, kids are the perfect crutch because you can have playdates, but in truth, those don't really count as dates. The big league is when the two of you actually go somewhere alone, sans husbands or kids, and are forced to talk to each other one on one. Remember dating in college when you tried to have interesting conversation with someone but it just didn't flow because you didn't yet know each other's pacing and humor; the conversation was riddled with false starts and stops and you felt worn out at the end of the night? There was no goodnight kiss for that one.
It's after these first girlfriend dates that a lot of us throw in the towel. It feels too hard, you think, and you'd rather just hang with your husband or your established friends. However, on a rare occasion you go out with that girl who just "gets" you. Your timing is spot on, you laugh, you open up more than you're used to, and you end the night feeling giddy and light.
On to date #2. I think the second date is huge because now the ball is in her court. You asked her out, had fun, but must now wait to see if she calls you and initiates something. If she does, you're as good as in. If she never calls, but awkwardly says every time she sees you, "We should do something sometime", SHE'S JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU!
If she does ask you out and things go well, you'll likely get closer and closer and continue to build that relationship. Luckily we enjoy that honesty and lack of pretense that we didn't get when we were younger. Unlike college, a pretty face and a good body mean very little now. If there's a girl out there with washboard abs who's a size zero and a knockout, I'd probably be better off not being friends anyway. Seriously, who needs that torture?
I write this because I've been blessed as an adult. I've made some good friends in the last ten years and I've been much more choosy. I don't care how popular you are, how thin you are, how big your house is or what your reputation is. If we connect, we're friends. I've always been a "girl's girl"; someone who feels more comfortable with the girls than the boys. I've gotten better at dating now that I'm grown, too. When I meet someone I like, game on. I love friends and I think I'm good at being one. I think girls without girlfriends are the loneliest people on the planet. I get something from being with a girlfriend that just fills me up in a way my relationship with my husband doesn't.
I've made or reconnected with some especially fabulous friends lately; you know who you are. People who make me feel like my authentic self and make me want to be better and do better.
These are the friends you marry.



Nicole said...

This post was right up my alley and I thought it was totally great. I agree that making friends in adulthood is so much harder than it was as a child. Relating it to dating is perfect.

Christy said...

I totally agree. Girlfriends can make or break you. I've had several periods in my life where I didn't have a girl to call when I really needed one, so lately in the last few years I've made a real effort to be a better friend and to reconnect with my old ones, and it's really paying off. I love spending time with the girls!

What a fabulous post - one of the best yet! I will delve into her archives as soon as I have time!

Dove said...

ppssssht. i don't know what's wrong with you guys. i have more girlfriends than i know what to do with...

he he. no, really - thanks for this. it reminded me of that brilliant book (i read it long ago also) and i needed those reminders, as i'm in the dating world.

suzan said...

I think you hit the nail on the head. I have a hard time making great new friends the older I get. But then I guess that could have something to do with the fact that all of my co workers are in High School...
This reminded me of a realization I came to the other day. The older I get, the fewer friends I have, but the friendships that I do have are much stronger than ever before.
Great post!

Raydar Love said...

Well said, Suzan.

Kellie and Justin said...

love this post, especially since i am one who is slow at making good friends! reminds me of a great article in "real simple" i read last year about a couple who was out "dating" other couples to find friends. same idea, love it.

mavis said...

Kellie, I read that article in Real Simple and it reminded me of Amanda's post too, way back when she first wrote it.
I love this post. I don't have time to make friendships "work". I am just trying to make motherhood work, ya know? Not that I don't cherish relationships, but I just love the ones that click and keep clicking. Even if they don't click anymore but once did, I cherish the once upon a time. But for now, I love when people get me and I don't have to second guess or feel insecure and I don't envy those who date around.