Have you ever moved somewhere (college, new city, new part of town) and felt like everyone around you had friends and was exponentially happier than you?
That sums up the feeling Rachel Bertsche had when she decided to go on a year-long quest for female friends, documented in her memoir MWF seeking BFF.
On the surface, I’m not much like Bertsche. Sure, we’re both writers but that’s where the differences end.
Bertsche was newly married at the time of her quest and lived in a large city. I’m not married and I don’t think anyone would call the city I live in “large.”
The really big thing that made me identify with Bertsche the most was this: we were both on a quest to find a friend who would be what we envisioned a best friend to be. For me, that would be a friend who would drop anything to talk me through my latest crisis and reassure me that it is not in fact a crisis.
Don’t get me wrong, I have great friends. Friends who would do just about anything for me. And I love them for that and am extremely grateful for them.
But when I’m having a moment where I have no idea what’s running through my head or what to do, I don’t know that I’m at the level with any of them where I’m comfortable interrupting their lives to ask them to talk with me about mine. I don’t want to become that overly needy friend.
And that’s where Bertsche’s book really helped me. She had been looking for something similar and over the course of her journey, realized that not every “best friend” has to meet that criteria. For every person, best friend is going to be defined differently.
So, I don’t really need that person. Most of the time, I try to autopsy my own thoughts or journal to try and sort through things before going to a friend because I’m better able to discuss my own feelings.
The one thing I did wish is that I lived in a bigger city. Bertsche utilized meet up groups and other avenues to find people on her friend quest that are not available to those of us living in mighty metropolises of under 100,000 people.
Long story short: this book was great for me. It helped me realize how awesome I have it. I have great friends and great support in my life and I’m really happy with that.
If friendship fascinates you or you’ve been struggling with defining what you and your friends are, I suggest reading MWF seeking BFF.