In every group of girls, no matter where they are, there she is. At the airport, she’s the girl that’s trying to herd everyone to the correct gate as they depart for Spring Break. At the house party, she’s the girl trying to prevent her sorority sister from knocking back a tenth cup of trash can punch. At the bar, she’s the girl that’s cock-blocking her friend going home with that guy who’s wearing cargo shorts non-ironically. She’s the mom of group, and she’s me.
In girlfriend groups, we all have our role. There’s always the wild and crazy one, who takes chances the rest of us wouldn’t dare, but yet crushes all of them. There’s the hot mess, who can’t seem to get her shit together, no matter how she tries. There’s the promiscuous one, who has one night stands on most days that end in Y and never looks back, because she knows a better guy will come along tomorrow. There’s the bitch, who thinks that whatever she’s got going on is most important, because <i>she’s</i> most important. And then there’s the mom, the one that serves as the therapist/resident parent of this group of misfits, and even as my friend groups have changed, I have always been her.
For as long as I can remember, my mom tendencies have been in full effect when it comes to my friends. When we were little kids on the playground and someone came up with the idea to kiss the fourth-grade boys, I cautioned that I didn’t think it was a good idea, because we could totally catch cooties. In high school, I was always stayed (relatively) sober when we would go out in the woods to drink, so <i>all</i> of us weren’t stumbling around wasted in the darkness trying to find our way home. Now, it means that, while I still have plenty of fun when I’m out (even on the nights when I don’t indulge – I’ve gotten really good at having fun sober), I try and make sure everyone is making good choices throughout the night. And when they don’t, I’m the one that’s there to wipe away the tears, hold back hair during worship at the porcelain altar, or offer some wise words of advice.
My mom tendencies extend far behind the drunken nights out. Everyone’s birthday is marked in my planner and I make sure to mail them a card for it – who doesn’t love mail? Plus, each of my friends gets an insanely thoughtful gift for that birthday and the holidays – and that’s because I’m always picking up things I know they’d love and setting them aside until their special day(s). I’m always the one to drive…probably because I have the cool version of a mom-mobile – the mid-size SUV. And I’m always to herd the group back to that SVU at the end of the night, even though herding feral cats would be an easier task.
In my opinion, while all of the roles within the friend group are important – you can’t have a group full of bitches, can you? – the mom is the most important, because she’s the one that keeps it all together (both literally and figuratively).
You may be thinking “If the mom is essential in a girl group, how come there is no dad in a guy group?” I figure there are two reasons for this. First, whereas girls want to protect each other from making mistakes, guys encourage it. They think it’s hysterical when their friend makes out with someone distinctly below their hotness level or runs around the bar with his shirt pulled over his head screaming “I’m king of the world!” They won’t step in to stop it because having the story to tell for the days and months to come is more important.
Along the same lines, while guys are able to laugh off their mistakes with their friends, girls agonize over them…and make their friends overthink it with them. So by being the mom of my group, I’m not only preventing you from doing something dumb to begin with, I’m saving both you and I from the three to five days of painful analysis that will follow. You’re welcome. Even though the mom of the group prevents lots of drama and occasionally provides some gratification when you stop a friend from making a bad decision, it’s oftentimes a thankless job. There’s a lot of unsatisfied dudes, tears, and vomit left in my wake, but at least (most of the time) every one survives the night with minimal physical and emotional scarring. So the next time you see the mom of your friend group, be sure to tell her thank you. She deserves it.