I Couldn't Help But Wonder...

Charlotte is the worst mom frined

At 35, I Watched SATC For The First Time & Charlotte Is The Worst Kind Of Mom Friend

We get it, you know everything.

Sex and the City premiered in 1998. I was 10, and not exactly the target demographic. (Also, we didn’t have HBO, and I knew we were missing out on something since it was advertised on the billboard of every hotel as an incentive to stay there.) But even as I got older and went to college and met friends who had the entire pink box set, I couldn’t help but wonder if the show was right for me. I couldn’t relate to the big city, to the expensive shoes, to all the sex.

“Because you watched Friday Night Lights” is the reason my Netflix account pushed Sex and the City to the top of my watch list. I loved Friday Night Lights because my husband reminds me of Coach Eric Taylor and it was about small-town Texas and football, a whole lot of identity crises, and motherhood. Sex and the City does not have those elements. Well, except for the identity crises and, eventually, motherhood.

In Season 4, Miranda reveals she’s pregnant after a one-night stand with Steve (“He has one ball, I have a lazy ovary, in what twisted world does that make a baby?”) and the show gets extremely relatable. From Miranda’s fears about her job finding out (wow, things haven’t changed much in 20 years, have they?) to all of the overwhelming thoughts of impending motherhood, it’s extremely easy to see yourself represented in this NYC lawyer.

Especially her nightmare of a friend, Charlotte.

Look, I am a new Sex and the City fan. I like Charlotte in most episodes, but the baby shower episode (Season 4, Episode 17, “A Vogue Idea”) is truly Charlotte at her worst — and her most heartbreaking. And it’s a pretty great symbol of what it’s like to be expecting a baby when everyone around you — from your friends to your Instagram feed — thinks they know better.

Charlotte, what is this face to Miranda's breast pump?Netflix

Of course we’re sad for Charlotte. She wants a baby more than anything and has gone through infertility and a divorce since finding out Miranda was pregnant. Her friends have worked hard to be sensitive to her and have let her break down whenever she needs to. But her urge to turn expecting a baby into an Excel spreadsheet with 20 different labeled categories is too much. It’s giving “Buy my parenting e-book because you’re going to be terrible at this!” vibes. It’s giving pushy local Facebook Mom Group. It’s giving overbearing friend who thinks she knows everything. It makes Miranda feel like she’s already the worst mom in the world. It’s overwhelming and unnecessary.

Watching Charlotte walk through Miranda’s apartment, giving her those big shocked eyes any time Miranda mentions not having a crib yet or wanting fried chicken at her baby shower made me cringe. It’s the same way I felt walking into a Babies R Us when I was pregnant with my first daughter and instantly wanting to walk back out the door. I’ve wanted to be a mom since I was old enough to hold a baby doll, and the idea that this part of motherhood — the preparing part — could be so overwhelming it would make me want to avoid strollers instead of testing them out was not in my mind.

Charlotte is like the Babies R Us registry guide. She’s the influencer showing you how “easy” it is to make homemade baby food, the parenting book stripping you of all your instincts, the sleep consultant who’s going to charge you $500 to tell you your baby needs to follow wake windows. She just stresses you the fuck out. She’s the one who knows everything, but can’t be definite about any of those things she knows. “You definitely need a bassinet, unless you’re going to sleep with him. Are you a marsupial mom or a stroller mom? This place is a deathtrap,” she tells Miranda. Ma’am! You! You are the deathtrap!

Of course, following her own inevitable breakdown because she can clearly see how her desire to be a mother is affecting her friendships, Charlotte is one of the most supportive people in Miranda and baby Brady’s lives. But this episode just proves that no matter how Type A you are or how prepared you can be in so many parts of your life, motherhood will always throw you for a loop. The end of the episode shows Miranda instinctively comforting Charlotte — and realizing maybe she will be a good, nurturing, loving mom after all.

And just like that, I realized maybe I am a Miranda after all.