Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Tongue Tied

So, the whole not being able to blog thing? Isn't just limited to the blogging world. It seems that I'm incompetent in conversations as well. Today I had lunch with a friend, and I sat there muttering and murmuring my way through lunch. I half expected my friend to throw her food at me and yell, "Get with it Corinne! Say something intelligent!! Talk about something other than babies and poop!" Thankfully, she's a lot nicer than that, and seemed to understand that I'm sleep deprived.

I wanted to tell her what I'm telling you, that it's not you... it's me. I can't really formulate quality sentences anymore. Where I used to be good at carrying on an intelligent conversation about books, movies, politics, etc.... now, I'm reduced to talking about my kid. Which, don't get me wrong, I love Shepherd, and love talking about him with anyone who will listen, but let's face it. I enjoy me a good conversation about something else from time to time.

I think the complicating factor in all of this is that I want to preserve the friendships that I have (including you, oh faithful reader). I'm pretty sure that most of my friends are on the same side of the political spectrum, but I'm always afraid that my big fat mouth will get me into trouble, that I'll say something they disagree with, and they won't want to be my friend anymore. So I play it safe... I talk about Shepherd! Do any of you struggle with this?

I sat there at lunch, trying to think of things to talk about, and I thought of a few, but not knowing if they were okay to talk about. I wanted to talk about how angry I am about this whole Israel/Lebanon thing, and how the other night, while watching BBC News, I broke down sobbing because there was this Lebanese baby who'd been hurt by a bomb crying, and I just got so very angry at what Israel is doing. I wanted to talk about the people I'd love to see run for president in '08, but because my time is so limited during the day, I don't know a whole lot about the people, and feel that people could run laps around me with what they know... or worse? they'd laugh at who I want in the office. I wanted to talk about how angry I am at quote un-quote "Christians" these days, that get all the press coverage... the people who perpetuate hate, not love... who preach and preach about the awful sins of a few people, and neglect to mention that we ALL, ALLLLLL are bad people.... that God loves ALL of us... not matter what color, sexual preference, religion, etc... he loves us all.

I wanted to talk about all of that, but I can't. I just freeze, and I'm terrified of opening up. It might be because I've been burned by friends in the past... it might be because this is the first time I'm making friends since breaking free of that fundamentalist group of friends I had in college, the friends who banded together, and didn't reach out beyond the confines of their religious preference. It's my first time in the "real" world trying to make a real friend... and it's hard to be vulnerable when you have no idea if the other person will respect you, or agree with you. It's easy in a group of friends who all believe the same thing... you know they agree with you... and when you don't? It's bye-bye friends.

How have you done it? Have you had to do this???? Does everyone go through these insecurities? The insecurities of making new friends??? Any advice???


Anonymous said...

Well, to be honest, I'm just pitiful. I don't have any new friends. I have work friends and such, but all my real friends I've had since college (or before) and I haven't made any new ones. I have one good friend in town, the other 3 are hundreds of miles away. With one exception, they're all male. I avoid political discussions and religous discussions at all costs. I'm not good at making friends, esp. with women. So I've just quit trying.

I don't guess I was much help, was I? At least you know you're not alone.

Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

Honestly, I just throw it all out there, and if the new person and I don't get along I just move on.

I'm pretty outspoken in real life and so I have some experience with not being liked. I try to be okay with it.

K said...

I really appreciate your honesty. Is is so hard to make grown up friends.

I do think that there needs to be some common beliefs in order for a deep friendship to grow. And within that deep friendship it is safe to disagree on lots of things.

Perhaps I'm not normal (ok, so I know I'm not normal) but I have a large group of aquantance friends. We can chat about work and kids and enjoy being around each other but it is all rather surface level. Then I have a very small group of what I would call intimate friends, the ones I can share all of my brokeness with.

Have courage and share. Women need each other. I think you will find that you are surrounded by women who are just as nervous about opening up as you are.

Grace and Peace,

VHMPrincess said...

I had a slightly different problem - maternity leave makes me dumb. Lack of adult stimulation or something...

At the end of my leave w/my older son, I had to do a telephone referral for an employee of mine that was interviewing for another position. Apparently I sounded so terrible, my husband was HORRIFIED and insisted I hurry up and get off the phone before my lack of IQ cost this poor guy his job.