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Rosie Green in patterned shirt dress on This Morning© Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock

At 50, I've realised that your mates are your real 'happily ever after'

 You are never too old for a girl squad, says Rosie Green

By: Rosie Green
July 5, 2024
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Emergency contact?  It was a question that sent me spiralling.   

My 26-year relationship had recently imploded, and I would no more write my husband's name in that box than I would French kiss Putin. 

I thought about my mother, but she was too old to spring into action in case of catastrophe. Then I considered my kids. But as teenagers, their prefrontal cortexes are still not developed enough to remember to replace loo roll, let alone make a life-or-death decision.

Woman laughing on a boat
Rosie Green wondered who would be her emergency contact

Finally, I thought about my friends. Of course, my friends! But would whoever I chose to think this was weird? Be irked by the responsibility? I messaged one to sound her out. A reply came back in sub-five seconds. "Of course."

Society has always put romantic relationships on a pedestal. Placing your boyfriend/husband as your number one attachment, the most important figure in your life. People ask me daily, "Would your partner like to come to our party? We are having a few people over for supper next week, would your partner fancy joining? Will your partner be picking you up from the hospital?"

As someone who has been through a split and now has a new (ish) boyfriend, I have witnessed first-hand this social preference for including him as a plus one rather than one of my female friends.  

Don't get me wrong, I get that they'd like to check him out and welcome him and I'm grateful for that. But it does make me reflect, why opt for unknown man (who could be a social hand grenade) over my been-around-for-ages BFF?

Woman smiling against the sea © Instagram
Rosie Green asks why romance is considered more important than friendship?

Like I said, it is ingrained in our culture, but I think times are changing. Our mums would think it was risqué to go on holiday with their friends or a night out with just girlfriends, but our generation thinks nothing of that. 

At 86, Jane Fonda said recently she had no intention of dating, but collects new girlfriends all the time. She said, "I don't even know what I'd do without my female friends, they make me stronger, they make me smarter, they make me braver, they tap me on the shoulder when I might be in need of course correcting."

MORE FROM ROSIE: Have JLo and Ben Affleck proved that being madly in love isn't always the best thing? 

My friend, at a recent gathering of us girls, said that we are her 'enduring loves'. We have been there to celebrate each other's highs and the snot-and-tears lows. Our friendship has predated any of our relationships. 

In the celebrity world, girl squads are also being celebrated. Taylor Swift, famous for hers, gathered Kate Moss, Stella McCartney, Cara Delevingne, Phoebe Waller-Bridge and honorary female Andrew Scott, for a night out while she was over in the UK. 

Taylor Swift with Selena Gomez, Cara Delavigne and Zoe Kravitz have a girls night out in New York City. The group headed to BAM to watch Ramy Yousef before going to Lucali in Brooklyn where Anya Taylor-Joy also joins them.
Taylor Swift is famed for her girl squad

Meanwhile, Kate Hudson said her mother, Goldie Hawn, memorably told her and an assorted group of women, "Men, they come and go. They always will. Hopefully, they stay. But it's the girl that’s sitting next to you, or the girl that’s sitting across from you, that's going to get you through everything."

Amen to that Goldie.

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