I am 40-years-old and have one beautiful 9-year-old boy that I am raising alone. I have a group of amazing women friends who I’ve met through the neighbourhood and parenting. It is the first time in my life since high school that I can say that I am part of a group of friends. We all hang out together, take women’s weekend getaways together, celebrate our birthdays and kids’ birthdays, meet for picnics in the park, we talk about fashion, parenting, and all the things.
I love the energy of this group. They are educated, thoughtful, creative, generous and so lovely. The issue I have is that I don’t feel I really connect. I find myself feeling like the “different” one and often find that I’m pretending to relate when really I’m not relating. Unlike them, I am poor, single, haven’t found a solid career, am experiencing a lot of housing insecurity because I rent (they all own), I am in a very different socioeconomic place than the rest of them.
I am the only one who is not married, who doesn’t own a cottage, who can’t afford to travel, buy fabulous clothing, enroll my child in all of the enriching programs, etc. I am flattered that somehow I am part of their friend group and am always invited to the events, parties, getaways, etc., but I find that instead of feeling connected, the more time I spend with them and the more they talk about their latest trip or how their husband is amazing, the more alienated and separate I feel.
I want to feel like part of the crew and know this is just a thinking mistake but it’s really hard to not feel like a complete failure in their company. Also because I want a home and a loving husband and all the things they have. I wonder how come my life is such a mess. When I meet a single mom who is struggling I find there is comfort and relatedness and I wonder if I should find different friends who I can relate with better. The friend group I have is so incredible, yet why does it feel so bad?