One of the reasons Friends remains one of the most-watched and binge-worthy shows ever created is its relatability. With their diverse personalities and various quirks, each of the six friends is relatable in their own way. However, Monica Geller, especially in the early seasons, has some of the most relatable moments.
In her early twenties, Monica struggled with her career, suffered heartbreak and experienced other pains of romance, and dealt with her flaws and shortcomings. It was easy to relate to her because her problems were closest to our own. So, without further ado, here are Monica's ten most painfully relatable moments.
Monica’s relationship with her parents, especially her mother, is difficult. While it’s clear that both of them seem to prefer Ross, it’s Judy who constantly makes Monica feel like she’s not good enough. She even came up with the expression “to pull a Monica,” which is just another way of saying to mess something up.
For those fans who experienced similar difficulties with their parents, it's easy to connect with Monica’s story, and even if you haven’t had as many problems with your parents as Monica, pretty much everyone has faced some undeserved and too harsh criticism from their parents.
In the season two two-parter “The One After the Super Bowl,” the friends find themselves on the set of the new Jean-Claude Van Damme movie and Monica freaks out when she sees him. Turns out, she has a bit of a crush on Van Damme and Rachel tries to convince her to go over and talk to him, saying “what’s the worst that could happen.” And that’s when Monica sums up our concerns in regards to flirting in one iconic line: “he could hear me.”
Now, not many of us get the opportunity to flirt with Jean-Claude Van Damme, or whoever is the equivalent of Jean-Claude van Damme at the moment, but, for many of us, even flirting with regular people can be terrifying.
Monica is the “mother hen,” the glue that keeps the group together, the hostess – she’s the responsible one. When she and Rachel first become roommates they couldn’t be more different. Monica has a job, she’s paying her rent and her bills, she’s doing the whole adult thing. Meanwhile, Rachel is used to living off of her parents, has never worked a day in her life, and has absolutely no idea how hard it is to live as a young adult in New York.
Luckily, Monica takes Rachel under her roof and under her wing, determined to help her start a new, more grown-up, and responsible life. To encourage Rachel, Monica nails the meaning of becoming an adult, saying: “Welcome to the real world. It sucks. You’re gonna love it.” And that really is what entering adulthood feels like.
In the season six episode “The One on the Last Night,” Chandler and Monica are about to start their new life together. But, first Rachel needs to move out. Phoebe and Monica help her pack, but the night takes a turn for the worse when Rachel and Monica get into an argument about everything. Eventually, they make up and have a touching, tearful goodbye.
Monica declares it an end of an era and it’s clear that what both of them are actually upset about is that their time together as roommates is coming to an end. It’s episodes like these that have universal and timeless relatability because everyone eventually goes through their last night moment and it’s never easy. Just like Monica, we are happy to be moving forward, but we’re also scared of the change.
“The One with the Fake Monica” shows us a very different side to Monica, or should we say Monana. While getting your credit cards stolen wouldn’t be half as much fun in real life, Monica is still incredibly relatable in this episode.
The way she feels dissatisfied with herself, thinking that this woman is living the life she’s always wanted to live, and that makes us think about all the stuff we’ve wanted to do but never had the courage. But, the most relatable moment has to be that tap dance scene. Monica does her best, but we all know that she’ll never be a kook like Phoebe or as naturally charming as Rachel. And that's something many of us have had to come to terms with too. Insecurity and awkwardness are something most people struggle with and that is why we relate to Monica.
In the season five episode “The One with All the Thanksgivings,” we get to see two very different Thanksgiving dinners held at the Geller house back in the 1980s. On the Thanksgiving of 1988, Monica and Rachel hatch a plan so that Monica can get revenge for Chandler calling her fat the year before. Rachel shows Monica some seduction techniques and Monica decides to put the moves on Chandler.
Unfortunately, she quickly proves she’s no master of seduction when she starts using carrots, a package of macaroni, and a very large, sharp knife as props. If you’re anything like Monica and seduction really isn’t your forte, then this particular scene hit too close to home.
In the season two premiere, Monica asks Phoebe to give her a haircut. She specifically tells Phoebe that she wants it like Demi Moore. However, Phoebe confuses Demi Moore with Dudley Moore. As a result, Monica ends up with a pretty bad hairdo and, naturally, has a complete meltdown.
Now, if you’ve somehow managed to get through life without getting a bad haircut or two, well... congratulations and, please, do let us know how you accomplished that feat. As for the rest of us mere mortals who have photographic evidence of all the horrible decisions we've made regarding our hair, seeing Monica go through the same thing was relatable and comforting.
Monica’s career was anything but smooth. She’s been fired and unemployed, she worked as a waitress in a ridiculous outfit, she tried to start her own business, she was harassed by her co-workers, and she interviewed with some really creepy and crazy restaurant owners. Her career struggles were both hilarious and painfully relatable.
Seeing Monica go through all these ups and downs in her career made us relate more to her character, sympathize with her, and feel a bit better about our own career struggles. She hasn’t always had the best luck, and she had to suffer through some crappy jobs to get where she wanted to be and that inspires all of us to do the same.
Monica’s uncontrollable need to please people and be well-liked is a running gag. One year she went out of her way to keep making copious amounts of candy for the neighbors to make them like her. When Rachel’s mom got mad at her for forgetting to invite her to the baby shower, Monica did everything to get back on her good side.
In the hilarious episode “The One with Ross’s Tan,” Monica and Phoebe’s old acquaintance Amanda comes to New York and wants to catch up. However, neither of the girls wants to see Amanda, so they decide to cut her out. Of course, Monica eventually breaks, admitting “I’ve got this an uncontrollable need to please people.” And, well, most of us can relate to Monica in this situation because we’ve all said yes to things we didn’t really want to do just for the sake of being polite, not offending someone, or making them like us.
In the phenomenal season three episode “The One Where No One’s Ready,” the gang is getting ready to go to Ross’s big event at the museum, but they’re all running late for various reasons. Monica finds a voice message from her ex-boyfriend Richard, but she can’t figure out if it’s old or new. So, she makes the horrible mistake of calling him to leave what she believes is a breezy message.
Of course, her attempt at being breezy is anything but breezy. But, haven’t we all been there? You try to be casual and breezy, but because you’re trying so hard you end up sounding the complete opposite of breezy. Then when you try to fix the mess you've already made, you end up making an even bigger one, kind of like Monica babbling about her period on Richard's outgoing message.