SOL Day 18: fake friends

Back in August 2014, I was newly pregnant with McKenna when it hit me like a ton of bricks. I didn’t have a mom to ask my millions of questions. Sure. I had sisters but they had kids to shuffle to-and-fro and jobs to support the family. So I did what any modern woman does.

I turned to the Internet.

There are websites upon websites to ask and answer your questions about pregnancy and impending babies.

Is this normal? Can I eat that? Did you ever get it when…? I’ve got this ache…

Bonds are formed and you start to recognize screen names as common contributors. You start to wonder about what they look like and what they sound like. Everyone is very protective of their actual personal information. Theres no way to contact anyone in real life. No Facebook or Twitter and certainly no texting.

Bonds are formed when a group of women go through pregnancy together. But women are catty so fights occur as well. Groups split and sides are taken. Little side cliques are made and the group dwindles. What started off as probably a couple hundred has less than 10 remaining…well for me anyway.

But these women…my fake friends…know more about me than most people. We share pretty much everything. All the good and all the bad is fair game. Divorces and breakups happen. We’ve lost parents and grandparents and pregnancies. We’ve had more babies beyond the ones that originally bonded us. We bought and sold houses. We share milestones and parenting woes. We swap recipes and Christmas cards. We know each others’ husbands’ names and take our fake friend’s side in an argument…every time. We send gifts to cheer each other up and spread the holiday cheer. They helped me make almost every design decision in my house from paint colors to bedsheets to a backsplash. They know my preferred brand of feminine products for the love of Pete!

Never would I have thought that these women from a baby website would still be in my corner. They are not my fake friends. They are my really REAL friends who are always game for a virtual glass of wine, cup of coffee, face mask, or gab session. I’m so grateful that we’ve managed to stick together. And SOMEDAY, Spring 15 Moms (and maybe families) will have a field trip somewhere warm where we will no longer have to be virtual.

I am writing for the Two Writing Teachers March Writing Challenge

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18 Comments

  1. “Fake” friends was a great title for your slice. I have a community like that on the internet. Since I live in a small town, I had trouble finding a support group for breast cancer but there they were online. We do just as you describe, share celebrations, divorces all the good and the bad. People sometimes tease me about it.. but I “get” everything you said and explained so well in your slice!

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  2. That’s so sweet. You’ve been through the ringer with some of the preggo stuff later in life, so it’s really nice to hear that someone(s) helped get you through it. Any little bump helps, real life or web life. Whatev. I’m down with it! Great post.

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  3. Reading your post, I kept thinking: These aren’t fake friends; they’re real friends. I’ve bonded that way w/ other English teachers. Sometimes we meet at conferences and forge a new dimension to our friendships. But I can’t imagine what it’s like to go through pregnancy via the Internet. Times change!

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  4. It’s amazing that you’ve been able to maintain those friendships. It’s not unlike the “Slice of Life” community. Writing is so personal, so the people who read my posts have insights about me that my “real” friends may never see.

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