Happy birthday to my SMILF BFF (and why every single mom should play pool)

This was originally published Nov. 19, 2012. I'm republishing it today to honor the launch of Single Mom Society, the only forum created for professional single moms to connect, support one anther and create real friendships. It was inspired largely by my friendship with Morghan, which sustained me through a whole lot of good and tough times.

This past weekend was the birthday of my SMILF BFF, Morghan. Morghan, here are 11 reasons I love you:

  1. Sure, I know lots of women who have gone through divorce. But not at the exact same moment I’m going through mine. Or with the exact same-aged kids who lives in my same, weird Queens neighborhood where said kids go to the same daycare and we’re both self-employed professionals. Oh, and we’re both from the Midwest and each of us was a newspaper reporter and we’re both drawn to moody men (cue inside joke about blue vibrators).
  2. When you said, “If you want me to hate him, I’ll hate him. But when you guys get married, I’ll be totally happy for you,” you changed the kind of friend I hope to be. I hope to be like you.
  3. You say things like, “Let’s leave this cozy table on the patio and stand near the bar where men will buy us drinks,” and “Let’s do shots of Jameson.” And when I don’t do shots of Jameson, you don’t judge me. At least to my face.
  4. We’ve been playing pool. In groups of people with pitchers of cheap beer. And it’s totally fun and I haven’t done that for, like, 15 years. And you reminded me why single moms should play pool and drink cheap beer: Because it’s awesome.
  5. Because we’re both figuring out how to date again like a couple of silly 14-year-old girls who text each other about what to wear on dates.
  6. Because when I went on my first date in 9 years a while back and I thought I would pee my pants, you texted me, “Have a GREAT time! You look awesome! He’ll love you!”
  7. Because you’re a smart, hard-working, ethical lawyer and a very savvy businesswoman. And we talk business at least as much as we talk about our divorces or kids. But not as much as we talk about men.
  8. Because at 6:44 p.m. on Halloween I had expected to be home reading O magazine, but at 7:07 p.m. I was wearing your slutty Wonder Woman costume (while you were dressed Gangnam Style), and at 7:57 p.m. I was getting my picture taken my European tourists in the East Village (and it’s all your fault).
  9. Because when my chunky kid’s diaper blew out while we are on an outing and I didn’t have a spare pair of pants you just laughed along with me as Lucas's butt cheek poked out of his Pullup all day long while all the snotty moms in Brooklyn gave me the stink eye.
  10. Because when we were on vacation together you bought Helena that artist Barbie you knew she’d love, and you knew I would never buy, and she loved it.
  11. Because I cannot imagine going through these past three years without you on text and the phone and at the playground or destroying Chicken Shack with the kids. They say that when people go through war, they’re bound for life. I hope that we’re both on the other side of war now, and I hope I know you for a very, very long time.

Looking for your own single mom BFF? Are you on Single Mom Society? This is an awesome new forum for professional single moms to  hang out, dish on divorce, kids, sex, dating, money, career — and MEET EACH OTHER IN REAL LIFE. You need friends. Single mom friends. This is where it happens.

Jump in – share. It's 100% CONFIDENTIAL. And FREE.

Like a 24/7 support group and party. At the same time.

single mom friends.1

About Emma Johnson

Emma Johnson is a veteran money journalist, noted blogger, bestselling author and an host of the award-winning podcast, Like a Mother with Emma Johnson. A former Associated Press Financial Wire reporter and MSN Money columnist, Emma has written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Glamour, Oprah.com, U.S. News, Parenting, USA Today and others. Her #1 bestseller, The Kickass Single Mom (Penguin), was named to the New York Post's ‘Must Read” list.Emma regularly comments on issues of modern families, gender equality, divorce, sex and motherhood for outlets like CNN, Headline News, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fox & Friends, CNBC, NPR, TIME, MONEY, O, The Oprah Magazine and The Doctors. She was named Parents magazine’s “Best of the Web,” “Top 15 Personal Finance Podcasts” by U.S. News, and a “Most Eligible New Yorker” by New York Observer.A popular speaker, Emma presented at the United Nations Summit for Gender Equality. Read more about Emma here.


  1. Morghan on February 23, 2015 at 12:37 pm

    I love this piece. We had some fun times (and you make me sound awesome – lol). I hope women will use your new forums to find some friends or at least friendly chat and support.

  2. Camille Johnson on January 10, 2015 at 6:05 pm

    i’m glad you two have each other. you are both blessed. i am in awe of you both.

  3. Morghan on November 14, 2013 at 10:59 am

    Sounds like pool and pitchers of cheap beer are in order. …

  4. Sabine on December 7, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    I had missed this one while I was in NM!
    I remember the artist barbie and how Helena couldn’t stop painting and painting and painting again to make the picture appear.

    Well, I Hope to have such a good friend as you both are for each other.


    And happy birthday Morghan; I had no idea! ;-)

  5. Teresa Ombres on November 21, 2012 at 11:22 am

    Dear Emma:

    I very much enjoy reading your articles and posts. But even more, I enjoy getting to know you more. Which is far different and better from when we first met. You seem to be doing well and I am glad for you. Not surprised, but glad.


    • Emma on December 3, 2012 at 8:27 pm

      Thanks Teresa – glad to see you here! Please share my blog with other women who may be in the same boat.


  6. lawmom on November 19, 2012 at 10:08 am

    Thanks Emma. Good friends like you are some of the best treasures in life. Love ya!

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