I don’t ask to hear other people’s business. I swear. My husband says I just have a face that makes people want to spill their guts. Or maybe I’m just the only person who sticks around when others start spilling their guts? Whatever it is, I’m always amazed by the incredibly intimate things that people I hardly know will tell me. And apparently it’s not just me. Plenty of my friends have been on the receiving end of some epic overshares. Some favorites:
1. “I’m thinking of getting Botox.” I grew up thinking plastic surgery, or anything closely related, was only to be spoken of in hushed conversations (if at all). Apparently I am alone. Because I spent about half an hour in the parking lot of my daughter’s preschool listening to another mom contemplate Botox. Why did she tell me? She said I looked like someone who would know where to go. I’m not sure how to take that, but I’m going to pretend like she meant it as a compliment.
2. “I’ve got herpes.” My friend Cindi heard this deeply personal confession from an acquaintance. Talk about TMI at its absolute worst.
3. “We smelled a burning smell and it turned out to be our son’s gas.” The only thing worse than a stranger’s TMI is your husband’s TMI about your life. My friend Lyndsey’s husband actually said this to a random person. (And yes, she’s always on pins and needles about his lack of a filter.)
4. “My daughter is promiscuous.” Unbelievable but true: A checker at Walmart shared this gem about her daughter’s sex life with my friend Amy. And yes, Amy has never been so happy to take her bags and leave.
5. “We haven’t had sex in months.” Okay, I am the first to admit that I’m not at all comfortable hearing about my married friend’s sex lives — especially if I know both the husband and the wife. The imagery is just too much for me. So when I was at a recent girl’s dinner and a friend confessed that she and her husband hadn’t sex in months, I wanted to un-hear that. Now that’s all I’ll think about when I see she or her husband.
6. “I’m thinking about getting a divorce.” This is always a tricky one to hear because if the couple doesn’t get a divorce, it’s hard to forget that at least one of them was unhappy in the marriage. So when my friend told me recently she was getting a divorce, then days later was planning a trip to Asia with her husband, I felt confused. Next time I see her, I’m not getting sucked in to listening to her drama. It’s too confusing!
7. “I just got new boobs. Do you want to feel them?” Kudos to any woman who gets plastic surgery to make herself feel better about her own body, but why does everyone I know who gets breast implants want me to feel them? I wasn’t sure how to respond to the mom at school drop off who was so enthusiastic about her new assets, she wanted to show them to me. No. No. No. But, uh, thanks for asking?
Graphic: Meredith Gordon