Hot Best Seller

You're the Only One I Can Tell: Inside the Language of Women's Friendships

Availability: Ready to download

Best friend, old friend, good friend, bff, college roommate, neighbor, workplace confidante: Women's friendships are a lifeline in times of trouble and a support system for daily life. A friend can be like a sister, daughter, mother, mentor, therapist, or confessor--or she can be all of these at once. She's seen you at your worst and celebrates you at your best. Figuring o Best friend, old friend, good friend, bff, college roommate, neighbor, workplace confidante: Women's friendships are a lifeline in times of trouble and a support system for daily life. A friend can be like a sister, daughter, mother, mentor, therapist, or confessor--or she can be all of these at once. She's seen you at your worst and celebrates you at your best. Figuring out what it means to be friends is, in the end, no less than figuring out how we connect to other people.


Compare

Best friend, old friend, good friend, bff, college roommate, neighbor, workplace confidante: Women's friendships are a lifeline in times of trouble and a support system for daily life. A friend can be like a sister, daughter, mother, mentor, therapist, or confessor--or she can be all of these at once. She's seen you at your worst and celebrates you at your best. Figuring o Best friend, old friend, good friend, bff, college roommate, neighbor, workplace confidante: Women's friendships are a lifeline in times of trouble and a support system for daily life. A friend can be like a sister, daughter, mother, mentor, therapist, or confessor--or she can be all of these at once. She's seen you at your worst and celebrates you at your best. Figuring out what it means to be friends is, in the end, no less than figuring out how we connect to other people.

30 review for You're the Only One I Can Tell: Inside the Language of Women's Friendships

  1. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    I've inadvertently been reading a lot of stuff, mostly fiction, about female friendships lately, so the timing of this release (and the fact that I'm a Tannen fan) was a sort of meant-to-be read for me. It's an accessible book and doesn't delve too far into any given subject, whether linguistic or sociological. Most women will likely nod their heads all the way through reading it, meaning, you aren't really going to learn anything new about female friendship - you've lived it, so you know it. The I've inadvertently been reading a lot of stuff, mostly fiction, about female friendships lately, so the timing of this release (and the fact that I'm a Tannen fan) was a sort of meant-to-be read for me. It's an accessible book and doesn't delve too far into any given subject, whether linguistic or sociological. Most women will likely nod their heads all the way through reading it, meaning, you aren't really going to learn anything new about female friendship - you've lived it, so you know it. The book is largely filled with examples of friendships from Tannen's extensive interviews, with little room given to other analysis or research. Not a bad thing, necessarily, just makes it a light read. I found the social media chapter most interesting, perhaps because I'm one of those in-between millennial types who currently communicates most through texting, messaging, email, etc., but who also grew up with a second phone line and a time limit for talking on said phone (a TIME LIMIT, y'all. Are those even needed for today's kids?!). It's interesting to consider the in-depth, more nuanced conversation that was lost when we stopped talking for hours on the phone to each other. Texting doesn't allow for that same sort of daily recap session, which makes me wonder if close friendships are harder to cultivate now. My close friends tend to be men, and while I understand that's not what the book is about, it would have been nice to read more about platonic friendships between straight women and men (she mostly covers straight women and gay men). The rest of it certainly took me back to a time when I did do the girl BFF thing, most of the time not very well. So, fair warning: as much as you'll see yourself in the positive examples Tannen provides, you'll also see yourself in the negative ones. Be prepared to identify with the betrayed and the betrayer. I'm inclined to recommend Tannen's other books over this one, but it's still an enjoyable read that categorizes information you already know. At best, it'll make you think of friendships you've had or have and possibly provide some insight on how to navigate the imperfect ones better. At worst, it'll drag you too deeply into the emo sob-fest that was middle school, and you'll find yourself having to claw your way out and back to adulthood (which is mostly the same, but with less drama and more anxiety, heh).

  2. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    I find this topic interesting and enjoyed an interview with the author on Lexicon Valley. Reading the anecdotes in this book got surprisingly tedious, though. For me, it was difficult to read an analysis of an area that is so familiar that insights often seemed obvious or self-evident (although of course the book is about how that isn't true for everyone in the same way!). I find this topic interesting and enjoyed an interview with the author on Lexicon Valley. Reading the anecdotes in this book got surprisingly tedious, though. For me, it was difficult to read an analysis of an area that is so familiar that insights often seemed obvious or self-evident (although of course the book is about how that isn't true for everyone in the same way!).

  3. 4 out of 5

    Shane

    I think this is a great book to read with friends to be able to discuss it! Didn't super take a lot away from it though. I think this is a great book to read with friends to be able to discuss it! Didn't super take a lot away from it though.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Julia

    This was very affirming for me. I don't feel like I learned anything I didn't know, but it clearly stated a lot of things I knew in the back of my mind and have experienced. This was very affirming for me. I don't feel like I learned anything I didn't know, but it clearly stated a lot of things I knew in the back of my mind and have experienced.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Amy K

    This was a feel good book for me. Reading through different dynamics of women's friendships through all age ranges made me reminisce over friendships throughout my life, many of which I am fortunate to have had and keep through the years. There are a lot of "phew, it isn't just me" moments, reminders on how others may processes my way of communicating and that not all women are as trusting of others or make or keep friends easily. I'd recommend this book, it is like reading a long article and a This was a feel good book for me. Reading through different dynamics of women's friendships through all age ranges made me reminisce over friendships throughout my life, many of which I am fortunate to have had and keep through the years. There are a lot of "phew, it isn't just me" moments, reminders on how others may processes my way of communicating and that not all women are as trusting of others or make or keep friends easily. I'd recommend this book, it is like reading a long article and a few pages a night is about all I could do, but its worth the read and I'd like to read more by this author.

  6. 5 out of 5

    C

    I love to learn and love to practice the new ideas that I've learned. I appreciate that this book has taught me a lot, has taught me to be a better conversationalist with the women in my life (my gorgeous Vida Mía and my daughters), and a better person to the people in my life. I regard reading this book akin to being an anthropologist visiting a foreign culture, that of women, learning their language, and understanding how their use of their language is so alien to me. It gives me an appreciatio I love to learn and love to practice the new ideas that I've learned. I appreciate that this book has taught me a lot, has taught me to be a better conversationalist with the women in my life (my gorgeous Vida Mía and my daughters), and a better person to the people in my life. I regard reading this book akin to being an anthropologist visiting a foreign culture, that of women, learning their language, and understanding how their use of their language is so alien to me. It gives me an appreciation into how women relate to each other, and how I can try to relate to them better.

  7. 5 out of 5

    KatieMc

    A detailed deconstruction of the patterns and behaviors found in friendships of girls and women. The author, who has written several books on communication, comes to the topic with a linguistics background. She is able to identify and name styles of interaction and explain through many detailed examples. Some interesting terms/ideas discussed: High Involvement High Considerateness Troubles Talk Witches Coven Social Media - all the rules of communication complementary schismogenesis I could say more, bu A detailed deconstruction of the patterns and behaviors found in friendships of girls and women. The author, who has written several books on communication, comes to the topic with a linguistics background. She is able to identify and name styles of interaction and explain through many detailed examples. Some interesting terms/ideas discussed: High Involvement High Considerateness Troubles Talk Witches Coven Social Media - all the rules of communication complementary schismogenesis I could say more, but I am planning on discussing this with a couple of friends. Maybe after that I will share more.

  8. 5 out of 5

    LauraW

    I started this book a long while ago, but I read multiple books at a time and it got buried under the onslaught. I have finally finished it and I would now love to recommend it to friends for discussion purposes. And, I may have to read it again, just to consolidate my own thoughts about friendship and talking. The book has given me insight into some of the successes and failures of my own attempts to talk with friends. I usually feel that I am pretty good at understanding what others are feelin I started this book a long while ago, but I read multiple books at a time and it got buried under the onslaught. I have finally finished it and I would now love to recommend it to friends for discussion purposes. And, I may have to read it again, just to consolidate my own thoughts about friendship and talking. The book has given me insight into some of the successes and failures of my own attempts to talk with friends. I usually feel that I am pretty good at understanding what others are feeling, but that hubris may be a bit misplaced, especially with attempts to connect with people of different backgrounds and experiences. Recommended for people who are interested in the connections between linguistics, sociology, and psychology - or people who are interested in talking to friends. It is not just for women, but in my experience women talk in this manner much more than men do.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jan

    Like she's done in her other books I've read, Deborah Tannen teaches and reveals important lessons in "You're the Only One I Can Tell." Terms, social contexts, personal examples, some overarching references to other books, and generous references to other researchers and authors make this well-organized book engaging from the first chapter through to the end. An added bonus? I listened to the audio of this while I was reading, and it was narratd by Deborah Tannen herself. I've spent about a week Like she's done in her other books I've read, Deborah Tannen teaches and reveals important lessons in "You're the Only One I Can Tell." Terms, social contexts, personal examples, some overarching references to other books, and generous references to other researchers and authors make this well-organized book engaging from the first chapter through to the end. An added bonus? I listened to the audio of this while I was reading, and it was narratd by Deborah Tannen herself. I've spent about a week reading, rereading (or again listening to), and taking notes, yet I know this is a resource I will revisit numerous times.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Simone

    I saw this on the new books shelf at the library and picked it up, and it ended up being a pretty fast read. I think I thought this was going to be a slightly different kind of book, I didn't realize Tannen was a linguist when I picked up the book, so it then made sense that the book was about "the power of conversation" at a micro level. Still she covers a wide variety of issues and situations related to friendships (I'd say especially among women, but I lack a real comparison since I've never I saw this on the new books shelf at the library and picked it up, and it ended up being a pretty fast read. I think I thought this was going to be a slightly different kind of book, I didn't realize Tannen was a linguist when I picked up the book, so it then made sense that the book was about "the power of conversation" at a micro level. Still she covers a wide variety of issues and situations related to friendships (I'd say especially among women, but I lack a real comparison since I've never really been a part of a close male-male relationship) including the dreaded "cutoff." That is to say for every story I wasn't super into, there was another that really resonated.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Talk about a simple but powerful analysis. This book led me to re-evaluate my friendships in light of an understanding of indirect versus direct communication styles and cast many troublesome interactions in a new light. I love Dr. Tannen's work and although the analysis presented in this book wasn't particularly complex, it was extraordinarily useful and relevant. Also enjoyed learning the phrase 'complementary schismogenesis,' which is another useful tool for understanding why communication so Talk about a simple but powerful analysis. This book led me to re-evaluate my friendships in light of an understanding of indirect versus direct communication styles and cast many troublesome interactions in a new light. I love Dr. Tannen's work and although the analysis presented in this book wasn't particularly complex, it was extraordinarily useful and relevant. Also enjoyed learning the phrase 'complementary schismogenesis,' which is another useful tool for understanding why communication sometimes goes wrong.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ellen Sears

    friendship :) i leave you with the following front bottoms lyrics: I wish we were forever lying on the Santa Monica beach, drinking Tecate 24oz underneath the stars, being the superior couple, loving who I am cause what we are

  13. 4 out of 5

    Allison

    This was fairly obvious and may actually create more anxiety for people who are already overthinkers or who are emotionally intelligent, sensitive people.

  14. 4 out of 5

    susie

    I happened upon this book in a used bookstore at the right time. (Rather Irene did, thanks, Irene!) My female friendships are extremely important to me. Yet I’ve been navigating confusing, at times awful, waters with some of my female friendships lately. (Not you, Irene!) Why do certain things posted on social media get under my skin? Why do i feel so destroyed after mundane slights? Most importantly, why don’t some of my friendships feel more unconditional and reciprocal? This book helped me unde I happened upon this book in a used bookstore at the right time. (Rather Irene did, thanks, Irene!) My female friendships are extremely important to me. Yet I’ve been navigating confusing, at times awful, waters with some of my female friendships lately. (Not you, Irene!) Why do certain things posted on social media get under my skin? Why do i feel so destroyed after mundane slights? Most importantly, why don’t some of my friendships feel more unconditional and reciprocal? This book helped me understand some of that, and think about the long term ways women support each other. It’s linguistic and sociological, not really any kind of a guide, but this was an objective read during this confusing time in my life. It was, at times, very validating. I think friendship is a subject more people could give some attention and care to in general.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Andria

    You've heard of FOMO (fear of missing out), but what about FOBLO (fear of being left out)? Or FOGKO (fear of getting kicked out)? Did you ever feel like a friend was poached from you, or that you had been cut off by one? Tannen has illuminated these and other sometimes critical aspects of friendship between women. This was the first I had heard of Tannen and her work in sociolinguistics. I understand that most of her books about interpersonal communication and conversational style must be somewha You've heard of FOMO (fear of missing out), but what about FOBLO (fear of being left out)? Or FOGKO (fear of getting kicked out)? Did you ever feel like a friend was poached from you, or that you had been cut off by one? Tannen has illuminated these and other sometimes critical aspects of friendship between women. This was the first I had heard of Tannen and her work in sociolinguistics. I understand that most of her books about interpersonal communication and conversational style must be somewhat similar, but as an introduction to her work I was blown away. The focus is on friendships between women, a concept I have sometimes struggled with in my own life. Her conclusions, based on analysis of self-reported conversations between women were simultaneously reassuring and enlightening. I was surprised to find many of the conversational struggles I had run into with other women are more common than I might have anticipated. The best compliment I can give Tannen is that I frequently had to pause playback, prompted by some new insight to think of a friendship in my own life and how the concept had played out in the past. I came away with a better understanding of my own conversational style and how that impacts the conversations I have with people who may not share it. Specific to the audio edition, Tannen read her own book and I thought she did an excellent job. Her voice is expressive and easy on the ears. I'm already planning on revisiting this at a later time in text with the hopes of retaining more.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Eileen

    This book did not flow for me. The author's profession may require endless detail, but it was very boring to read. Many years ago I had read the book, You Just Don't Understand. As a 20-year-old, some of the insights in that book helped me understand the differences between men and women's conversational styles. In this book, however, I'm older and wiser regarding friendships, (topic of this book.) I choose my friends on their similar interests, sense of humor, faithfulness, and other values. I This book did not flow for me. The author's profession may require endless detail, but it was very boring to read. Many years ago I had read the book, You Just Don't Understand. As a 20-year-old, some of the insights in that book helped me understand the differences between men and women's conversational styles. In this book, however, I'm older and wiser regarding friendships, (topic of this book.) I choose my friends on their similar interests, sense of humor, faithfulness, and other values. I couldn't be less concerned with small, competitiveness and cliquish behavior that this book describes. Life is too short for petty jealousies. I have many friends that fulfill many needs: there is no one perfect friend. I felt like her descriptions were aimed at people who just failed to grow up! The only chapter that I felt was interesting were the way social media communication is interpreted via young and older users. Reminded me of when I was just learning how to text. My daughters said, "Quit shouting!" I have since been careful not to capitalize every word! Hahahaha.

  17. 5 out of 5

    BrittainX

    Well... As an Aspergian, it made daily conversations clearer for me. It helps me understand that there are two, or three+ sides to a conversation, and that people have motivations that are not personally related to you, and they have reasons for not sharing them. That was the first half. The second half got dull. One particular passage offended me, when she described an autistic person who had magnetic therapy to "cure" his autism. She described this offhandedly, to make a random point that und Well... As an Aspergian, it made daily conversations clearer for me. It helps me understand that there are two, or three+ sides to a conversation, and that people have motivations that are not personally related to you, and they have reasons for not sharing them. That was the first half. The second half got dull. One particular passage offended me, when she described an autistic person who had magnetic therapy to "cure" his autism. She described this offhandedly, to make a random point that understanding emotions does not bring people who are already close to you closer, but makes casual acquaintances closer. This seemed to me a callous use of a hot topic, and can't even explain that point thoroughly. Hmm. Like the subject, not the book.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Ben

    I feel like this is a 2.5 book for me. The stuff I liked, I really, really liked and found interesting. Differences in conversational speech are real and lead to major misunderstandings. However, the rest of the book suffered from SO MANY examples, so many of them so similar I couldn't tell much difference, it began to get repetitive. I honestly struggled to finish it and felt like a lot of it could have just been condensed, maybe not a full length book. And half of the examples made me just thi I feel like this is a 2.5 book for me. The stuff I liked, I really, really liked and found interesting. Differences in conversational speech are real and lead to major misunderstandings. However, the rest of the book suffered from SO MANY examples, so many of them so similar I couldn't tell much difference, it began to get repetitive. I honestly struggled to finish it and felt like a lot of it could have just been condensed, maybe not a full length book. And half of the examples made me just think that women are idiots, not a message I like to come away from a book with, but man, there is a lot of vapid, stupid drama and even reading it summarized was a chore.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Gen

    I have a feeling that you only really need to read one Deborah Tannen book in your lifetime. The good parts of this were rehashed from the more broadly applicable and more insightful That's Not What I Meant! The less good parts were stuff that you already know if you have ever been a female at any point. There was some odd stuff about social media norms at the end which, similarly, you already know if you have ever been on social media. There were also a weird amount of anecdotes centering around I have a feeling that you only really need to read one Deborah Tannen book in your lifetime. The good parts of this were rehashed from the more broadly applicable and more insightful That's Not What I Meant! The less good parts were stuff that you already know if you have ever been a female at any point. There was some odd stuff about social media norms at the end which, similarly, you already know if you have ever been on social media. There were also a weird amount of anecdotes centering around ladies' bridge-playing groups for some reason?

  20. 4 out of 5

    Maria

    Repetitive with Rambling. I had to force myself to read this book. It read more like a rough draft than a book. Tannen did not take the time to develop a coherent story line to match her thesis. There were often times where she tells similar stories over and over again. As a reader, I found these stories incredibly boring. Overall a horrible read.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    I gave up. She relies heavily on anecdotes, most of which are incredibly tedious, and her conclusions are completely lacking in any profundity. Beyond that, many of those conclusions are sexist and clearly not based on any modern research. This book seems more like something written 30 years ago than something written last year.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Gretchen Keys

    I really struggled with this one and patiently waited for solid suggestions on how to communicate with someone who has a different language style and how to repair conflicts that arise when two people have misunderstood each other. Alas, I will continue waiting.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lew

    I think this book would have been better as maybe a long article. It had some interesting points, but I felt like a lot of it was just padding by providing a ton of examples.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Bethany

    Too many anecdotes, not enough linguistics.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Anna

    Sort of like "communication female style: the missing manual". I've been missing something like this all my life. I've never really had close female relationships, hugely to the communication style differences and for generally always just being clueless about what girls or women mean when they say something, or why they say something. And the lack of innate understanding of them has often left me consider them like another species. And when my response to their tend and befriend batter fails to f Sort of like "communication female style: the missing manual". I've been missing something like this all my life. I've never really had close female relationships, hugely to the communication style differences and for generally always just being clueless about what girls or women mean when they say something, or why they say something. And the lack of innate understanding of them has often left me consider them like another species. And when my response to their tend and befriend batter fails to follow their norms, I'm of course the odd one out, the one that got always picked by the teen hens in the school, the one that got more toxic reactions from female housemates than guys ever, and so on. Some of these what you are supposed to do things include sharing similarities in your stories (and these apparently can be made up - huge problem for someone like me that hates catching people in their lies), as that is supposed to make you more likable, more like them. So that apparently is what you are supposed to do for all those "omg, when I start to eat this Costco sized milk chocolate candy, I can't stop before it's all gone", and also to all those revelations about their awkward health problems (which I thought was more of a generational thing, mostly older Europeans discussing their cancers and ulcers with the same fondness as they'd discuss their grandchildren). Hm. I don't think I'll want to try the minefield of that, with the fake like-for-like shared stories, especially if there isn't anything in common to begin with. And then we of course have all those "does my posterior look big in this outfit?" where the woman asking is always apparently asking for compliments, not truths (unless they are a sign language speaker) or advice ("join a gym or start running so you'll feel better and don't have to fish for compliments" The book has mostly American female communication issues and examples, but it has also plenty of international examples, and shows how much of generational and geographical and voice or instant message era variations can be such a huge minefield and source of frustration. I don't like indirect communication, so if someone wants to say something I prefer when they say with clarity what they mean (not "it's always so messy in kitchen" but "could you please take the trash out? it's full"). But that seems to be what most Americans don't like, and especially the women. While I'd recommend the book for anyone that knows or deals with women in any context (even if it's only your mother), and those who are interested in communication and have to or plan to live in some other country, I'd also love if the American women (and women in general) learned to be more direct. Imagine all the energy that would be saved when everyone didn't always have to try to read between the lines and see everything from beyond their own assumptions. This book can be a lifesaver to other ladies on the spectrum. * Read as a different audio version.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Adora

    I appreciated this book for providing a helpful vocabulary to describe my own experiences, as well as some of the elements of female friendship I found most mystifying or alienating as I grew up; of particular interest was Tannen's discussion of the primacy of expressing "sameness" in homosocial female conversations she observed between young girls (e.g., A says "my babysitter has contacts," B says "my mom and dad wear contacts too!" C says excitedly, "The same!"), while homosocial male conversa I appreciated this book for providing a helpful vocabulary to describe my own experiences, as well as some of the elements of female friendship I found most mystifying or alienating as I grew up; of particular interest was Tannen's discussion of the primacy of expressing "sameness" in homosocial female conversations she observed between young girls (e.g., A says "my babysitter has contacts," B says "my mom and dad wear contacts too!" C says excitedly, "The same!"), while homosocial male conversations tended to feature ribbing, competition, "one-upping," and performative antagonism ("I climbed a tree that was 10ft tall," "I climbed a tree that was a mile tall," "I climbed a tree that reached heaven"). The latter tendency has its obvious shortcomings (see also: Peggy Orenstein's book Boys & Sex) but I appreciated that Tannen mentioned it can be difficult to express disagreement in a social context that values sameness as a social glue. My main critique of the book is its failure to more clearly state the subject positions of the women whose experiences we are expected to interpret as universal. Aside from a chapter that incorporated Korean language re: age hierarchy and the role it plays in relationships, there is scant mention of race (one anecdote and some follow-up musing), and none that I recall of class. The women whose stories provide the anecdata for Tannen's conclusions mostly seem to be people like me: college-educated, employed, occasional hosts of dinner parties that feature cheese and crackers. I was also mildly disappointed by the book's somewhat shallow engagement with LGBTQ folks. Though the author writes touchingly about her best friend, a gay man, writing a book about female friendship that does not touch on the sometimes blurred lines between platonic and sexual desire seems like a purposeful elision of deeper questions. I'm personally fed up of a world that treats the separation of dinner parties into the men (to talk about sports and politics) and women (to talk about family and friends) as both automatic and somehow virtuous or ideal, and the frisson of one-on-one meetings or deep friendships with members of the preferred sex(es) as frightening and deviant. Part and parcel with this is the mythmaking that "nothing can happen" between people with the same gender identity. As much as it might reassure the patriarchal imagination to think this way, female friendships are not, and have never been, a "safe" refuge from eroticism - but touching that third rail would mean a higher word count and perhaps deeper questions on the meaning of friendship, so I can respect that Tannen limited the scope of her book.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Julie Bestry

    If you've ever read a Deborah Tannen book, then you know what you're getting. If you're not familiar with her work, you're probably better off starting with You Just Don't Understand, which is about gendered communication styles. Tannen is the quintessential modern expert on (mainly verbal) communication styles. This book looks at the language of women's friendships, primarily in a Western context, although sometimes in comparison with non-Western communication approaches. Her writing is heavily If you've ever read a Deborah Tannen book, then you know what you're getting. If you're not familiar with her work, you're probably better off starting with You Just Don't Understand, which is about gendered communication styles. Tannen is the quintessential modern expert on (mainly verbal) communication styles. This book looks at the language of women's friendships, primarily in a Western context, although sometimes in comparison with non-Western communication approaches. Her writing is heavily dependent upon anecdotes, which can be compelling and resonate with the reader, but they can also be repetitive. Tannen makes a thesis statement, provides an anecdote, discusses the issues at play, and repeats the process. For some, Tannen's approach means seeing your own style reflected; for others, it means seeing a conversational partner's style. The conflicts (or comforts) of those communication's styles (language, interpretations, assumptions, etc.) will likely make a reader nod in recognition, but it can become tedious after a while. Tannen looks at the macro and micro influences of conversational, the keys to similarity and difference in making strong communication and friendship bonds, communication in friendship groups and the concomitant problems related to the fears of being left out or cut out of a group vs. the saving powers of being embraced. Interpersonal drama -- what is often considered an embarrassing aspect of female friendships and communication -- isn't left out, but it's handled deftly. But again, it's all about thesis-anecdote-analysis. The one new focus of Tannen's writing (or at least, I've missed it if it's been in other books) is a look at women's communications in friendships vis-a-vis social media, something that felt fresh and somewhat surprising and not merely a rehash of typical communication styles applied in a different venue. If you like reading about communication styles and/or women's friendships, this is a choice. If you enjoy the anecdotal approach, whether it's because it feels familiar or because it feels gossipy, Tannen brings the goods. I believe men, as well as women who have never read about or given much thought to communication styles will find a lot to surprise them here; for self-aware and insightful women and/or those who've read about this topic, this is more validation to be validation of your assumptions than entirely new territory.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Marn

    Some parts were pretty repetitive but all around this is the kind of book that made me misty-eyed about being a woman and the bonds I've formed with women. I've also had my fair share of friendships with men and one thing I've consistently been surprised by is their accounts of how they interact and relate to their other male friends, which is touched upon in this book too. She talks about how women have talking-based relationships and men have activity-based relationships, which of course isn't Some parts were pretty repetitive but all around this is the kind of book that made me misty-eyed about being a woman and the bonds I've formed with women. I've also had my fair share of friendships with men and one thing I've consistently been surprised by is their accounts of how they interact and relate to their other male friends, which is touched upon in this book too. She talks about how women have talking-based relationships and men have activity-based relationships, which of course isn't true 100 percent of the time, but definitely a pattern that I've also noticed (though I'd never found a way to describe it). I am always shocked by how little it seems like men know about their male friends, whereas I feel like I know most everything about all my close friends, women and men both. I also thought a lot about friend breakups as I read this, because the author spends a lot of time on them. I've only had one true friend breakup and it was one of the most horrid experiences of my life, and it was sort of nice to actually have a piece of media explore that. I think that's why they hurt so much — as opposed to romantic relationships, which you know and maybe even expect to end rather than endure, your friendships are supposed to last forever. And we do NOT have a cultural handbook on what to do when friendships end (and we have almost too much info on what to do when romantic relationships end). Anyway, this book didn't necessarily give me any groundbreaking insights (perhaps because I have firsthand experience with almost everything explored in the book, interested to hear how my male friends will react to it) but I think it's still definitely worth a read and gave me a lot of new language with which to speak about women's friendships.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie G.

    I love Tannens style of writing, so you may not be on board with it- but her observations about friendship and interactions have been on my mind. I've been fortunate to have close friends I have been with for a long time and newer friends I enjoy brunch, lectures, and hanging out with. We may not have everything in common but we understand each other- and accept each other. Work relations have always been frustrating and annoying to me- either coworkers get too personal with me, or a person acts I love Tannens style of writing, so you may not be on board with it- but her observations about friendship and interactions have been on my mind. I've been fortunate to have close friends I have been with for a long time and newer friends I enjoy brunch, lectures, and hanging out with. We may not have everything in common but we understand each other- and accept each other. Work relations have always been frustrating and annoying to me- either coworkers get too personal with me, or a person acts out at me at work and I find it hard not to want to cut them off completely since in my mind emotional outbursts have no place in the workplace: but the workplace is a sociological microcosm and a Petri dish really of gossip, loyalty and hopefully hilarious IMs! I've been struggling with a person in a triad bc of a couple facts- her bestie told her an important secret same day I was told- and that matters. And this book shed light on this issue. In the past, I've cut people off bc I have seen a very negative pattern of behavior and didn't see it improving. But I've been cut off as well and it can be very painful to be on the receiving end of that loss of interaction. I been more forthcoming since reading this book and more reflective over my own style of communication, and I thank Tannen for it! I also thank my besties who are the funniest and kindest people I know!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Noreen

    A couple of interesting concepts. The Hierarchy of Age in Chapter 4 The Same - or Better. In Korean and likely in other Asian languages, supportive intimacy between women is precluded by the rigid hierarchy not only of age, but cultural social position. Sure miss having my mother to discuss this concept. The Schnorrer in Chapter 6 Yiddish word for sponger or freeloader, someone who tries to get something without paying for it. In the context of friendship, it's someone who want the benefits of fr A couple of interesting concepts. The Hierarchy of Age in Chapter 4 The Same - or Better. In Korean and likely in other Asian languages, supportive intimacy between women is precluded by the rigid hierarchy not only of age, but cultural social position. Sure miss having my mother to discuss this concept. The Schnorrer in Chapter 6 Yiddish word for sponger or freeloader, someone who tries to get something without paying for it. In the context of friendship, it's someone who want the benefits of friendship --like the use of your beach house --without actually being a friend. What's yours is mine and what's mine is mine. Page 171. On being cut off: Women who told me they had been cut off always said they'd been devestated, as I had been--and like me always said they didn't know why they had been cut off. But women who told me they had off a friend could always tell me why. On true friends: Part of true friendship is telling a friend something she needs to hear when no one else will. But there might be a reason why no one else tells her:she doesn't want to hear it. Being a true friend means you can tell each other things you might not even tell a sister, because "it's like being a friend with yourself."

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...