When I started my friend search I had a very clear, and very limited, idea of who would be my new BFF. She would love television. She would not have kids. She would be at least 25. She would live probably in Lakeview, Old Town, maybe Lincoln or Logan Square—areas I considered fun but not fancy.
Don’t ask me why I assumed these things. I don’t even live in any of those neighborhoods.
I figured I’d be able to look at someone’s Facebook profile and tell pretty quickly if we were a match. Who needed to actually meet when I could “get to know her” online and forecast our friendship from there?
As you might imagine, I learned quickly that I was shooting myself in the foot.
The whole judgmental thing was pretty limiting, first of all. I was casting asides entire neighborhoods of potential friends and a pretty large parenting population.
At 27, most of my friends were over their hard-partying ways, so I didn’t think I’d have much in common with post-grads. I thought certain zip codes attracted my kinda girl. And I thought I’d have nothing to say to someone who couldn’t appreciate a good episode of Friends (still sort of a concern).
In the end, of course, plenty of my greatest friends lived in those fancy ‘hoods. One of my dear pals from The Year had kids. I was proven very very wrong, very very quickly.
But I’ve heard from people who do indeed have friend dealbreaks. You might remember this nugget of goodness from Liz Lemon: “You have sexually transmitted crazy mouth. Deal breaker!”
Though that’s a pretty fair one.
Recently a guy was telling me about a new potential friend for his wife.
“I don’t have high hopes for the relationship,” the husband told me. “According to Facebook, her favorite singer is Josh Groban.” My friend and his wife? Not only can they not stand Mr. Groban, they don’t understand what kind of person would be a fan. Deal breaker!
I hear things like this all the time. Friendship deal breakers can be politics, bad books or movies in their “favorites,” religious status updates.
There’s research that you know what kind of relationship you want with someone within 10 minutes of meeting her. But you need to actually meet. Stalking her Pinterest page doesn’t count.
So I ask you—honestly—do you have any friendship deal breakers? Anything you might learn about a lady that would say “nope, we’ll never be friends”? Is yours Groban-related too?
I Skyped into my first book club appearance last night! So much fun. If your book club is interested in reading MWF Seeking BFF, check out the discussion questions. I’d be happy to visit your club (in person or via Skype), too!