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Mama Deb
mamadeb
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December 2010
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Mama Deb [userpic]

We've become friends with a younger couple in our synagogue. Sort of. He's in his thirties and while not a Fan, definitely has a fannish mind. He reads Pratchett and comics and can talk movies and gets (and makes) the bad jokes. He also reads Anthony, but tastes are tastes, you know?

She's...very sweet. And not stupid. And a wonderful cook. But. All the books were his. All the movies were his. All the games were his. We played Fluxx this afternoon at their house, and she...left to take care of the baby, and let her husband finish the game. It was his first time playing Fluxx, too. (Fluxx, for those who don't know, is a card game where the rules change as you play it. It's lots of fun.) And - she didn't get the jokes.

I remember having a conversation with her when they came to us for a Shabbos lunch. And she was confused when I said I didn't wear make-up because I was too lazy to do that. And I'm not sure why.

Most of my friends, both RL and here, are fannish and/or very bright. I can do more than talk about recipes.

And she isn't stupid. But I can't connect with her at all.

Comments

Hrm. First, I'd say, not being able to connect with her doesn't mean either of you aren't good people or that either of you are stupid. It means you have different priorities and interests. And that's okay. It would be nice if you could connect with both of them, but, well, it is what it is.

I wonder, now, though, if you consider me a friend, or at least someone you'd be friends with if we saw each other more than once a year (give or take). I'm not fanish, but I also talk about more than recipes. (Though I daresay, I'm always happy to talk about recipes!) Mind you, I wouldn't be offended if you said no to that question.

Anyway, I hope that you are able to find a way to connect in some satisfactory way.

The more orclings I had, the less makeup and time for anyone but them was all I could manage.

Now that they're older, I can do stuff like find the five minutes it takes to put on a face and actually socialize beyond discussing fun stuff like breastfeeding, housebreaking what color Barney actually was and where the Teletubbies actually came from. (Zeta Reticuli, anyone?) LOL

That being said, you're just on differing levels at this point. She may like knitting or needlework or had something wonderful she did before the husband and baby. For me, it was piano and horses. Then I worked and somewhere along the way acquired the husband and the orclings and had little to no identity outside dealing with being a wife and mom 24/7.

The computer was a big help because I was actually able to socialize to an extent and it didn't matter that I had a baby hanging off the boob, no makeup on and hadn't slept for three nights. I could still type with one hand and at least know I wasn't the only other mom out there who was doing the same stuff I was dealing with at the time.

Course, then again, some people are just way shallow trophy wives who view children as a fashion accessory. I hope she's not one of those!

Good luck.

She's hardly a trophy wife (at least not the way I understand it. He's in grad school, neither has a huge amount of money and she's, well, she's beautiful, but she also weighs more than I do. Not trophy wife territory.) And she adores her baby girl - and deals with her very well. (Watch Kayla have tantrum. Watch mommy ignore it until it's over. Watch tantrum end *really* fast.)

Trophy wife may mean something different down here, then. *g*

Tantrums, huh? I tried not to let mine ever get to that point. LOL

I define a trophy wife as the much younger second wife of a wealthy middle-aged man. He's had his kids, so he just wants someone decorative on his arm.

Down here they're a bit different. *g*

They can also mean high maintenance wives. LOL

Watch Kayla have tantrum. Watch mommy ignore it until it's over. Watch tantrum end *really* fast

I do this with Julian, but now that he's approaching 2, it works less and less. He can scream louder and longer with no reason than he used to be able to. Ah well, at least when he's screaming I know he's breathing.

Yeah, with me it's more along the lines of, "Watch Brianna have a tantrum. Watch Mommy smack her leg and tell her to stop it, because it isn't going to work, and she knows it. Watch tantrum end *really* fast." By the time they're approaching 2, they've long given up on the tantrum approach, because the older and more canny they get, the less "smack" and the more "spank" they get, and the less a tantrum sounds like a good idea to them. Besides which, it just plain never works, and doesn't even let them vent off some steam, so they finally give up on it.

Mind you, I'll let them yell or cry all they want, if they need to vent...even to the point of taking them out of a public place and letting them do so, if they have a legitimate problem and they need to cry. That's totally separate. Any mommy can tell the difference between frustrated crying and a *tantrum*. ^_^

I never could do the 'wait it out' approach, because I have extremely strong-willed children. (Gee, surprised, anyone?) They *are* willing to push and see just HOW LONG Mommy and/or Daddy's patience will hold out, and whether or not if they keep it up five or ten minutes more, if they might not get their way this time. So no, waiting out a tantrum just is not an acceptable solution.

Yes, I consider you a friend. We can actually *talk*. You're fun to talk to. And you know fans, so we're not an alien species (or, if we are, we're not unapproachably weird or something.)

I don't mind talking recipes. I just also want to talk about other things.

I know fans, true. I suppose, perhaps, I've never gotten a handle on what being a "fan" really is, in that sense of the word, anyway. I mean, I'm a fan of many things, but I don't think most people classify me as "a fan" in your sense of the word. Though I have at least one friend who calls me a closet fan/closet freak (she's a certified fan/freak herself). But I get your point about being able to talk to me.

Many fans are unapproachably weird to me, by the way. I flock toward the ones that are more socially ept, so to speak. And I know that's coming out badly, and I don't mean it to.

I think your issue with this woman isn't that she can't relate on a "fan" level, but rather that she seems to have little to relate to at all, on any level. It's difficult to talk to someone who doesn't appear to have any interests or any focus. Perhaps underneath her bland exterior she has a deep-rooted passion for weaving or basketball or um, something?

I know a lot of fans are poorly socialized. It's one of the problems we have both in and out of fandom - and the poorly socialized ones realize it. They just can't figure how to do it.

I know that I can communicate with 90% of the fen out there. I'm less comfortable with non-fen. And, honestly, with less bright people. Fen, for all their problems, tend to the brighter side of the curve.

(no subject) - (Anonymous)

I have a response to this, but I have chosen not to clog up mamadeb's journal with it. Suffice it to say, I think you're viewing this too narrowly. People see what they want to see. The rest of my response will arrive in your email shortly.