My best friend

Yesterday was National Best Friend Day in America and celebrites marked it by sharing pics of their best friends on Instagram.

It made me feel like a weirdo because I don’t have a best friend. Are adults supposed to have best friends? Is it odd that I don’t?

I have lots of good friends. Does that count?

I’m not sure how I’d fit a best friend into my life. I have trouble seeing my good friends more than a few times a year. Between raising two kids as a single mum, working every day and spending time with DD, there aren’t a whole lot of spare moments to devote to a bestie (who I suspect by definition expects to see you more than a few times a year).

I have my kids every Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I can’t really afford the babysitter/cab/dinner combo so I usually turn down invitations on those nights. That leaves Sunday, Monday and Wednesday for sorting out my life, seeing DD (who has his own hectic schedule) and friends.

I tend to spend more time with the women who are in my “village” – school mums sharing my kids’ journey – and fortunately I have a sister who lives just five minutes away. My world has become infinitely smaller as the years have gone by.

The closest I come to “besties” are DD and my sis. They’re the ones who get bombarded with the high and lowlights of my life. And it’s particularly fun when we all sip Prosecco together in my sister’s spa.

But your partner isn’t supposed to be your best friend. It’s a big part of what went wrong with my marriage. The friendship overtook the love and eventually that withered too.

RoleReboot says: “In some ways you have more intimacy with your best friend because there is absolutely no mystery. Even if your best friend is a different gender, they have a comforting familiarity. And yet there is an essential unknowability about a romantic partner, no matter how long you’ve been together. ‘Best friend familiarity’ is not sexy. ‘Otherness’ is sexy.”

Well, DD still feels “other” so hopefully I’m OK.

Because the guilt is strong in this one I fret about those good friends I neglect. It’s a bit like being connected to Cerebro in The X-Men … there are all these people in my head I worry about. They’re crowded into my brain, remonstrating with me for not seeing them more often.

The reality is that they all have very busy lives of their own and aren’t all that bothered by how long it is since they saw me, but Alana’s Cerebro cares nothing for such practicalities.

Every now and then a friend will note that I was there when they needed someone and I will be quite literally shocked. It’s like they’re talking about a doppelganger version of me. Because the actual me is hopeless at being a good friend, so they must be confusing me with someone else.

If they’re not, then I feel profoundly touched that I did the right thing when they needed it most. And I hope they know they can always reach out and I’ll be there.

But enough about my personal version of cray-cray … Do you have a best friend?

Here are the celebs who shared pics of theirs (loving the Ben Affleck one ) …


Song of the day: Queen “You’re my best friend”


4 thoughts on “My best friend

  1. Having moved around a lot with my family growing up (6 different schools!) I never developed one of those BFF relationships that many people have.

    Best friend has to be my brother. He is only a year younger and our friendship has grown stronger as we have grown older. We share EVERYTHING about our lives, loves and family, work and play.

    Like you, Alana, I have a vast network of people, many of whom are friends, and some who are really acquaintances, but communication after long periods always seems to be easy and comfortable for me. We seem to take up where we left off, in most cases.

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