Saturday, August 23, 2014

My only friends are internet friends

and I just can't work out how I feel about this.

When Peter was on his mission an acquaintance of mine found out I was waiting for him, and she eagerly embraced me into her world of MGs. My life would never be the same.

Missionary Girlfriends (MG) are this insane phenomenon and sub-culture which is booming and real, even if you have no idea of their existence. Essentially they're like mermaids, because they very much exist, just do so in secret. Mostly they function on Facebook groups, sharing stories, package ideas, and, most fundamentally. support for one another. Say what you will about these girls, spew percentages of the success rate of waiting, and offer suggestions that we're all no-life wannabes, but whether they are reunited with their men or not, I found the MG group to be a fundamentally and majorly decent band of girls, just looking for friends that they could share their experiences with.

For me I found instant relief in these groups. Peter and I had not dated prior to his mission, and it was very important to both of us that he serve a full faithful and diligent two years with no distractions from anything at home. With these basic rules of our relationship, I didn't feel I could openly discuss my love for Peter with anyone without being told I was dumb, or immature, or else simply boring anyone I could find to pine at. Suddenly, with my introduction to the crazy, passionate, and at times alarmingly scary world of MGs I had a worldwide outlet for all my missionary woes.

When Peter came home I joined another group, this time originally built for RMGs (Returned Missionary Girlfriends) and to facilitate discussion about the transitions from mission to dating, from dating to marriage, and all the things it contained.

I have now been in these sorts of groups for over 3 years, and it has been a strange and wonderful experience, an experience that I am still living through, but one that I just can't decide if it's time for me to abandon or not.

On the one hand, I have made SO many great fantastic life long friends through these groups and the subculture they have formed. I speak to two of them on a daily basis and miss them when I don't hear from them even though (and here's kind of the "other hand") I HAVE NEVER MET THEM IN REAL LIFE.

Over last Christmas I brought Peter to Utah, where my parents had recently moved, to meet the family. As a lot of these girls live in Utah, I set off to attempt to meet as many of my online friends as physically possible, and I was met with zero understanding from anyone I knew in real life.

"But what if they're 40 year old men?" my father teased me one day, and while I can understand that this is a genuine and real possibility in this world of the internet and lies (hahaha, jk. everything on the internet is true, I know that) that was never a possibility even in the fathomed-est corner of my mind. These girls were my lifelines, my saviours. They were (and are) girls who I depend on in every major moment of my life. I update girls on the internet more than I update my Facebook. Seriously.

So, (and while I'm not entirely sure if this constitutes a point, or if I even have a point, this is my attempt at one for tonight) what constitutes a real and worthwhile relationship these days?

Beyond Peter, I don't have any friends here in Hawaii. I always heard single people complain that when people get married they disappear off the face of the planet never to be heard of again. I even agreed with them because I had experienced it myself, but now as a newlywed, I often wonder how many times it happens just in reverse, that people write off us married fogeys as soon as we don our wedding gear. I suddenly find myself without anyone seriously interested in having me around them, forget being invited to things.

On the internet, however, I AM SUPER UBER POPULAR! I'm like an awesome B-list celebrity! Like, think of someone you once saw in a movie one time as a supporting actor to a supporting actor. You'd probably recognize their face, but definitely not their name, and it would take you a while to work out where you knew them from. Yup. I am THAT BIG on the internet. Okay, realistically, as big as their sibling that you once got to meet because a friend knew a friend, and you were like, sure! I'd love to meet the sibling of that one guy in Troll 2. So big.

Thus I find myself trapped in this daily struggle. I'm not going to let go of the friends that I have made, Hades no, those are my homegirls! I would never trade them in. Instead, perhaps it's time for me to attempt to deplug and search more fervently for a friend that is tangible as well. One I can see once or twice a week, rather than just stalk their Facebook profiles, instagrams, and blogs passionately, because as much as I love Peter, my jobs, and the endless amount of books I am now reading back to back like someone with serious biblio-dependency, I find myself so lonely and eager for someone to spend time with.

Three things I would like you to know as I end this blog post:

1. I am sorry that I have not been funny recently. That being said, I know only 30 of you are actually reading, so maybe you don't mind, but just like to hear me ramble. Thanks. I appreciate you.
2. I am taking applications for friendship and/or advice on how to make friends as a 22 year old married woman with multiple jobs who is not in school.
3. It is 2:19am and my neighbours are making bacon. It smells divine and I am proud of them for recognizing the importance of the meat regardless of what time of day it is. Bless you, neighbours. Now please share. 


  1. I was about to apply, and then realized that I'm one of those non-tangibles, and I live hundreds of miles away... this is dumb. I need real life friends too!

    1. I kind of lost my point when writing this, but I originally was going to say, does it *matter* if all our friends are far away, do you think? I dunno. I'm struggling with it! I like my friends! :)

  2. Melly, I totally get this. I suspect you are right about single folks deserting their friends as Jordan and I have felt this way for over a year now. We are always joking that we are each other's only friends, but on the inside it kind of hurts. Our new struggle is trying to befriend other young married couples in our ward, but we often find them un-relatable and impersonal and not really that interested in us. Our only friends are on Facebook or xbox (he has converted me to some of his video games) And even then, it feels that people only want to drop in on us occasionally to ask how life is and so we just end up playing alone and feeling like boring, married, old farts.

    1. I never knew marriage could be so isolating! I am glad that Peter and I have so much fun together, just wish that occasionally people would like to play with us too! I'm glad you can empathize :)

  3. If it makes you feel better (or maybe it'll just make things worse; I'm really not sure), Jake and I have been married for four years (yesterday) and while that's no lifetime, we still have no friends. I mean, I have girls I hang out with, but they're both my sisters-in-law, so I don't know if that really counts. Essentially, we married people need to stick together. If Jake and I still lived in Hawaii, we'd totally come play!
    I'll just add that friends are friends--it doesn't matter if they're an ocean or a half-a-world away. Sure, they're more fun when they're closer, but keep your friends. I learned that one as a military kid. ;) (This lack of friends is also why we got a cat....just p.s.)