Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. As usual, all opinions are my own. This post also contains affiliate links at no extra cost to you. Thank you for your support!
Are you one of those women who has friends you’ve known since grade school? And still talk to them? Then this book might not be for you. Then again, it might.
Do you not have any girlfriends? Or only have acquaintances? Are you lonely? Do you wish you were in one of those pictures all over Facebook of women hanging out and having fun? Me, too.
I was sent an offer to review Better Together: Because You’re Not Meant to Mom Alone by Jill Savage (with her daughter Anne) in a period of particular loneliness. And I said yes, because I could use a girlfriend or two.
I have to confess that I’m probably a little abrasive & distant. I don’t mince words and I have no filter between my mouth & brain. I’m also not terribly social, preferring to recharge on my own. Clearly, the odds are against me having a giant circle of girlfriends :).
But I would like a FEW and so I dove right in after Better Together arrived. Jill Savage also wrote My Heart’s at Home and so I was hoping for an equally insightful AND practical book about building friendships. I wasn’t disappointed.
There are 10 chapters in this compact little book. The first two talk about benefits and how to find moms. The third chapter was one of my favorites. I am a personality-type junkie and so when she described 5 different personality traits and how those operate within friendships, I was fascinated. There is nothing halfway about me (INTJ right here) and I found myself nodding when she described me and understood the difficulties of different types getting together. She further goes into the 4 levels of friend, from surface deep to BFF’s.
The next 7 chapters of Better Together go into various aspects of Godly friendships including learning, helping, caring, sharing, praying, forgiving, and encouraging each other. Filled with practical advice and peppered with stories from Anne (Jill’s daughter & co-author), Jill, and various other women, the main takeaway that *I* got was that friendships never just happen. You need to put yourself out there, put down your phone/book and engage. Sometimes for years. Which sounds like TORTURE for this introvert. But she’s right. Every TBF (trying to be friends)/acquaintance was made by putting myself out there & listening to conversations and trying to contribute no matter how awkward I felt.
One thing the authors didn’t mention was that sometimes you outgrow certain venues. My Catholic mom’s group doesn’t feel like much of a fit for me. I’m the only homeschool mom & much discussion revolves around the school, bus pickup, extracurricular activities and I can’t relate. But the lobby of our homeschool co-op has become a fabulous way to talk with like-minded moms.
At the end of each chapter, she includes something to think about that relates to the chapter as well as a homework assignment. These are SO useful for someone like me because I get lost in my own head. Frankly, I should add these to my planner as recurring to-do’s. A pretty printable would be nice, too. Yes, I need that much help :).
So, if you want some better friends or want to be a better friend, Better Together is an encouraging and practical look at friendship for moms. I think we all feel alone. Let’s all try to keep our circles broken so others can enter & our guards down to let others in.
Do you feel isolated as a mom?
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