I like most of the Moms (and the occasional Dad) I meet at the girls' activities. It's fun to swap stories about our kids and their development, or some crazy thing that happened at home.
What I don't understand is why so many Moms tell stories that probably shouldn't leave the family. I realize we're all together being casual, but some stories don't belong outside the house. I know it's a tell-all world, but there are still some things I don't need to know.
Here's my latest example. I was sitting on the bleachers at the girls' ice skating class last week. We were chatting about baby names as one of the Moms is pregnant. We were all talking about how we named our kids and what their nicknames became. One Mom said, "Well, everyone calls me Jane, but my real name is Cynthia. My Dad didn't think I was his child, so he refused to come to the hospital. My Mom put Cynthia as my name on the birth certificate. Once my Dad decided I was his child, he refused to call me Cynthia. He wanted my name to be Jane, so that's what he and his entire family called me since I was born."
I just stopped for a minute. She kept rambling on about her name situation, but all I kept thinking is that I have spent about two hours total with this woman and she decides we're close enough to tell that story? I don't want to know that much about someone I'm going to see for 1/2 hour once a week. It's not like we're especially close, and I'll see her outside the ice rink. And, even if I was thinking we'd be friends, wouldn't it be better to ease into a story about how your Mom was cheating on your Dad and he wouldn't claim you once you were born?
There is something about hanging out with the same group of women every week that build false intimacy. You sit around, chat about life, and seem like friends. The difference is you won't see each other again after the class ends. Once in a while you make a long-term friend, but most of the time you just part with pleasant memories.
And, that's fine with me. So, let's make a deal. Please don't tell me your family secrets. I promise not to tell you mine.