Letters to Lenny: Toking Up at a Baby Shower

Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner answer your most pressing life questions.

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Dear Lenny,

One of my close friends is PG with her first kid and pressured me into going to her annoying f--king baby shower. Knowing that it was going to be an air-kissing shit show, I decided to hit a joint in the car in the parking lot outside before I walked into the restaurant. Some stuffy older woman with a bad nose job and veneers two shades too white knocks on my window and says, "There are children here." So I said, "Not in my car," and she stormed away.

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A few minutes later, I walk into the event and go over to say hello to my friend. She introduces me to her friends and her mother-in-law, who turns out to be the woman who freaked out on me in the parking lot.

Next day, I get a voicemail from my friend telling me how selfish I am for disrespecting her on "her day."

It's weed, for fuck's sake! She's acting like I did rails of coke off the tray of her unborn baby's high chair.

She's a great friend who stayed by my side for 12 hours during a bad acid trip. She also encouraged me to start following my dreams and jump off the corporate treadmill.

I want to save this friendship, but I also don't think I did anything wrong. I mean, did she think I'd be able to deal with a baby shower straight? She knows me. WTF?


From Lena:

Listen, I get it. As we grow up, we watch certain friends embrace traditions we all would have mocked a decade ago, and that's weird, especially if you're not moving in the same direction. But toking up outside her fancy party to celebrate THE BIRTH OF HER CHILD is not going to turn her back into the person you used to know, and it's not going to rewind the clock on adulthood. You're here now, and part of growing with friends is understanding that their boundaries and priorities shift. I've known radical punks who covered their tattoos for a white wedding and anti-corporate piss queens who Instagrammed joyfully from Carnival cruise ships. If that kind of change doesn't work for you, if the pregnant and slightly prissy version of your friend is an issue, then the most loving thing you can do is back away. Otherwise, you both just serve as guilt-inducing hurtful reminders to each other, and that's the opposite of friendship.

Lena Dunham is a writer and filmmaker from New York City.


From Jenni:

Not to be a dick, but your behavior was bad manners at best and passive-aggressive at worst. Lena makes some lovely points, but let's look at what is really going on here. You seem to have some real hostility toward the fact that your friend is having a child. This is worth exploring. Despite the implication of the name, pregaming before an event generally implies less "sport" and more an attempt to quell social anxiety. The fact that it is pot is irrelevant. You're asking if you should save the friendship, but, truly, this is not about your friend. This is about your fear of losing your friend when she has her baby. Dude, change is hard. I suggest you look inward and explore what is scaring you about this time in your friend's life. And then apologize. Because nothing bad can happen if you come clean with your friend.

Jenni Konner is good in a crisis.

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