Anna Faris opens up about why she used to avoid being friends with women

If you’re a listener of Anna Faris’ podcast, then you are well-aware that this lady is known for keeping things real and dishing out some solid life advice — and her memoir is proving to be no exception.

Cosmopolitan recently procured an excerpt from Faris’ upcoming book, Unqualified, in which the actress and podcast host discusses her history of being a “guy’s girl” and not having any female friends.

In the essay, Faris talks about how she used to proudly proclaim that she was a “guy’s girl,” and how she felt weirdly boastful of her brood of male friends. In retrospect, she says that this was more of a defense mechanism than anything, since she had been bullied by other girls throughout grade school, and felt a certain unease about being friends with women.

“The truth of why I didn’t have girlfriends probably had nothing to do with my being a guys’ girl and everything to do with the fact that I was angry and jealous and unduly proud of the guys I was hanging out with,” she writes.

She adds that the unwarranted cruelty she endured throughout school made her cautious where other women were concerned, and had her assuming the worse about their intentions. She viewed other women as obstacles to overcome, as opposed to opportunities for friendship.

“That’s why it took me longer than it should have to realize just how important female relationships are,” she writes. “It takes vulnerability of spirit to open yourself up to other women in a way that isn’t competitive, and that’s especially hard in Hollywood, where competition is built into almost every interaction.”

Faris says that female friendship is especially important for women, because it’s important to not expect your romantic partner to meet every single one of your emotional needs. Guys often seem aware of this notion, but women often forsake their friendships in favor of romantic relationships, which can ultimately choke out any chance for space or independence.

“I was once told that I didn’t need a tight group of girlfriends because Chris (Pratt) should be my best friend,” she writes. “But I never bought that. The idea of your mate being your best friend — it’s overhyped. I really believe that your partner serves one purpose and each friend serves another. There’s the friend you confess things to and the friend with whom you do the listening. Or this is the person I talk to when I’m feeling lonely and sad, this is the person I talk to about work shit, and this is the friend I’m still in touch with because we grew up together.”

Faris says that getting over hear aversion to female friendships has been invaluable. And, even though she’s far from being the Queen Bee of social events, she is happy to allow a few close friends into her inner circle. “Today, I’m lucky to have a handful of women I count as confidantes.”

For Faris, it’s all about acknowledging that friendship isn’t a zero-sum game, and that you shouldn’t expect all of your friendship needs to be met by one person (or one gender, for that matter). Not to mention the fact that labeling someone as your “best” friend is kind of unfair in general.

“I think the notion of best friends in general is messed up,” she confesses. “It puts so much pressure on any one person, when I truly believe it’s okay to have intimacy with different people in different ways.”

“And ranking your friends? It just shouldn’t happen, at least not beyond grade school.”

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