I was thrilled to be included in the anthology The Herstories Project: Women Explore the Joy, Pain, and Power of Female Friendship edited by Jessica Smock and Stephanie Sprenger. My essay was a very small way to pay tribute to and express my gratitude for the friends who stood by me, loved me and supported during one of the most difficult times in my life.
In that essay, in one small line, I mentioned that I lost friends during that time as well, and those certainly aren’t the only friendships I’ve had that have ended. That fact is sad and painful and I was happy to push the thought to the back of my mind. It’s those thoughts in the back of your mind, though, that stay with you, reminding you that they need attention, that they will work their way to the forefront at some point.
And that point, for one of my stories about the loss of a friend from childhood, is now. I’m honored and humbled and so very, very pleased to have an essay included in My Other Ex: Women’s True Stories of Leaving and Losing Friendships, also edited by Jessica Smock and Stephanie Sprenger.
Smock said, “Stephanie and I found that we couldn’t stop thinking about this aspect of friendship: Why is it so painful for a friendship to end and why is it so hard for women to talk about? Again and again, other women — friends, readers, relatives, acquaintances — have told us stories of their own friendship breakups and dissolutions. In their stories, we heard their pain, their shame, their confusion, and their continued sense of deep loss.”
It’s tough stuff, no doubt. If I’ve learned anything from writing, though, it’s that there is an incredible amount of power and beauty in women sharing and writing about the things that are tough. That’s especially true when talking about these 34 contributors.
And that’s not to say that the book will be without humor, and there are some happy endings. I wish my story was one of those happy endings, but it’s not. Fortunately, though, new friends have entered my life, including the amazing, hilarious, and insightful Nicole Knepper of Moms Who Drink and Swear. She is a licensed mental health counselor with years of experience and expertise in understanding human relationships, and so she is the perfect choice for writing the introduction to My Other Ex.
Click here to pre-order the book in advance to both save $1 and to support teh HerStories Project’s mission of sharing women’s voices, one story at a time and building the HerStories Project community. If you order now, your autographed copy will be shipped on September 2, 2014. That means you get it early! You’ll have it in your hot little hands two weeks prior to its official publication date of September 15.
Women know that female friendship is a complex, intricate, emotional and important topic. The end of a friendship can haunt you longer than the end of a romantic relationship, or it can be a weight lifted, or just a source of confusion that may never get resolved. It can teach us a heck of a lot about ourselves and others.
I’m excited to read and learn from the experiences of these amazing women. I hope you’ll join me in doing so.
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