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On the Complicated Evolution of Female Friendships

Yesterday an essay I wrote was the headlining piece on Huffington Post Women. It was entitled My Friend Got Pregnant! Why Couldn’t I Be Happier For Her? It wasn’t easy to publish this piece — it’s about a time in my life when I was at my worst as a friend — but it’s about an issue that I think a lot of women experience. True to the title, it’s about how one of my best friends got pregnant when I was 26 and how I had a really hard time being happy for her about it.

Funny enough, the friend I write about in this essay happened to arrive in Los Angeles this week with her family for a visit. Holly and I have been friends for something like 17 years now, and I couldn’t be more grateful that our friendship has evolved through so many phases of our complicated lives. And I’ll never stop being grateful that she had the wisdom and compassion to forgive me for my horrible behavior all that time ago.

The point I eventually come to in my essay is that figuring out how to become a woman is not always the most graceful experience that we’ll go through and that often we forge this path alongside our best friends, helping each other to figure things out as we go. What’s important is that the process is an evolving one and if you stick it out long enough, always worth it.

Me and Holly at age 25, drunkenly cooking Thanksgiving dinner in LA:

Trying on wedding dresses at age 26 for Holly’s wedding:

Me holding Holly’s daughter Loretta on the day she was born:

Our kids playing together yesterday on the beach in Malibu:

Me and Holly, yesterday at El Matador. (I’m not sure what that weird sunspot is but I like that it’s right where my baby’s head is!):

More photos from El Matador…


  1. i think your baby is saying hi!

    it’s hard to see another person enter a new stage in life before you. we are trying for our first baby and my best friend of 16 years is very nervous…I’m going to send her your article. :)

    Comment by jen on May 25, 2012 at 4:05 pm

  2. Wow, that sunspot is amazing! Didn’t you mention that psychics said there was something special about that baby??!!?? I’m believing it. I went through something similar with a great friend from college and now I don’t feel so bad about it. She had a baby in 2010 and I thought we’d always be the ones without kids, you know? When she sent me an email saying that she was pregnant in late 2009 I didn’t get back to her right away…I just couldn’t for some reason. When I finally did, it was the forced, obligatory “congrats!” Even though we were both in our 30s, married and I didn’t think I ever wanted kids, I felt oddly left behind or even jealous I guess. So, my point is, don’t feel bad – I felt like that in my early 30s! Now that we are both moms it feels even more strange. But in a good way. :)

    Comment by Liz on May 25, 2012 at 11:35 pm

  3. So glad you liked the essay, Liz. Thanks for reading and relating. Yes, the sunspot is totally weird. Was just looking at it again.

    Comment by Claire Bidwell Smith on May 30, 2012 at 11:10 am

  4. Hope the article helps your friend, Jen!

    Comment by Claire Bidwell Smith on May 30, 2012 at 11:11 am

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