Monday, June 23, 2008

I would even have talked about religion and politics.

This weekend, I attended a reunion with about 10 of my sorority sisters. There was beer and general frivolity.

A funny thing happened, though. All of these women have college degrees, most of them advanced. They have traveled far and wide, had adventures, lived life. And we all knew each other back when oversized sweatshirts were in vogue, when we didn’t know what we wanted to be when we grew up, when The Rachel was every girl’s hairstyle goal.

We should have a lot to talk about.

And yet? And yet, the topic of conversation all weekend was motherhood. Children. Pregnancy. Feedings. Preschools. Discipline. You get the picture.

Granted, not everyone in the group was BFF during college, and so some of that reminiscing would have been an odd fit. But really, is parenting the only topic we had in common?

Because I didn’t.

When I found myself single at 30, surrounded by married and childful friends, I felt very Other. There was an appreciation for our differences, but sometimes I would leave social gatherings feeling like a leper.

Now that I’m in a serious relationship that’s Going Somewhere, I don’t feel that type of leprosy anymore. But this weekend, I felt a different strain of the disease.

If you want to talk about feeling Other, consider being an Almost Stepmom in a room of Bio Moms. “It will be fine” and “You’ll figure it out” don’t constitute a meaningful dialogue about my brand of parenting. There was almost an implied “Just have a baby of your own and you’ll know what we’re talking about. A step is a good starter.”

I am on the fence about having a biological child. Having a biological child just so you have something to talk about with your friends is, uh, not a good reason to have a child. But why can’t we manage to talk about anything else?

3 comments:

Average Jane said...

As someone who chose not to have kids (but doesn't have any inclination to get on a soapbox about it), I'm always really grateful that I have a niece and nephew I can talk about when everyone else is talking about their kids. 'Cause even my best friends can get a little shirty when I start comparing my cats to their children. ;)

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I find that really sad. I have a group of friends where some are mothers and some are not and we all make a real effort to keep the convo. off the mommy topics--why? As a mom I need a break from that stuff so I'm so glad to talk about movies or politics or whatever else! It's only good manners and being a good friend to not dwell on any one thing that has someone's eyes glazing over.

Sara said...

Dear, you can always call me and we'll talk about our empty wombs.