“I married my best friend.” I heard this constantly when I was single. Mostly in movies (damn you, Hollywood!) but a few of my married friends also feel this way. Keyword: a few. Most of the women I know love their significant other, but when they look at their dude with his pants inside his pants and acknowledge that he avoids long-winded conversation, they think, “Why the fuck would I want a best friend like you?!”
That’s how I feel after trying to force details from Boo about his day. He’s not only a mumbler, but he also loathes chit chat. This is how a convo usually goes.
Me (all enthusiastic, ready to divulge every minute of my life:) How was your day, babe?
Boo: Gangsta. Yours?
Me: Yea…that too.
I can share story after story about what my boss did and what I ate for lunch and how my bitchy coworker pissed me off, but I don’t bother. Boo really doesn’t want to hear it.
But, don’t cry for me, Argentina. I’ve accepted my partner as is. He never hid the fact that he isn’t a talker and that he fades out after one too many stories. He’s also like this with everyone. Once I realized this I stopped taking it personally. And I never hid the fact that I can create a novel out the smallest incident, like going to buy food at the Wendy’s drive-through only to miss the actual drive through (#firsttimedriverproblems).
Boo’s the yin to my yang, that’s for sure. But he isn’t my best friend.
I know what you’re thinking: THEY ARE DOOMED! This study from the National Bureau of Economic Research says as much. Researchers discovered that when we marry our best friend we get double the benefits of wedded bliss as we give best friends mutual respect, trust and eagerness. Especially when gossiping. #realtalk
So, are Boo and I done for? Are you and your bae if you don’t consider him your BFF? Not necessarily. We believe this is the case because we are fed this myth: a man should fill every role in our lives. This isn’t fair or realistic. Sure, your man may be your BFF, but I guarantee if he is, something else is lacking.
Would I love to feel like I can tell Boo everything? Sure. Do I think I need to? Not anymore. He shouldn’t know that I sometimes still pick my nose. He shouldn’t know that I check out other guys and wonder what I would be like as a single woman now that I am 40 and more self-aware, authentic and confident. He shouldn’t know every feeling and thought that crosses my mind. Especially not when I want to yoke him. My best friends, however, are down to listen. They are down to commiserate and plot revenge!
Boo doesn’t need to know everything. And neither do my best amigas. I’ve finally realized that keeping some secrets, desires and doubts to myself is healthy.
So, no, I won’t be marrying my best friend. He won’t be coming to the nail salon to get a mani/pedi with me and I refuse to do a Tough Mudder race and get all, well, muddy. In the end, Boo knows where my heart lies and vice versa. We know we can count on each other. We know we are great parents. We know what we need to continuously work on so that our relationship withstands loss, failure, wins and empty nest syndrome. And we don’t need to be BFFs to convince us otherwise.