Do you suck at making mom friends?
Girlllll, so do I.
Seriously. I became a mom just over two years ago and I have yet to make a mom friend with whom I feel like I have a REAL relationship with.
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I truly suck at making mom friends, and I feel like something has to be said about it.
It’s totally okay if you suck at making mom friends.
It’s okay if you don’t have any cute pictures of your kids on a playdate at the zoo. And so what if you don’t have any moms’-day-out pictures to post on Facebook?
I have no pictures like that whatsoever. Making mom friends is not my strong suit. And I’m okay with it.
You see, at some point I felt like it was necessary for me to go out and become BFFs with some other moms my age. I thought it would make me feel better to get out more. I thought it would be good for my PPD. I also thought it was just what I was supposed to do. But now?
Now I just don’t care.
There are a lot of pressures when you become a mom. Making mom friends is just one of them.
Breastfeed, they say. Develop a parenting philosophy, they say. Get out and meet other moms. Make sure your kid reads enough books and plays with enough other kids. The list goes on. (Yeah, you know it.)
But guess what? Becoming a mom is SO much harder than everyone talks about.
You can try and try until your head explodes – but things will only go your way so often. You aren’t ever going to be the perfect parent.
And that’s okay.
You see, I tried to make new mom friends on many occasions. I’d meet up with other moms who were both close in age to me, and who had kids close in age to my own daughter.
But you know what?
It was all bullshit, 99% of the time.
It was a lot of looks down the nose.
It was a lot of small talk.
And it was a heck-of-a-lotta comparing.
Comparing our pregnancies, comparing our labors, comparing our children and their developmental milestones, comparing how we feed our kids, and a whole lot more.
Yep, I know that you’ve felt the same things around other moms.
Honestly, it made me feel worse.
Am I the only one who wants to get REAL?
Am I the only one who wants to have real relationships? The kind of relationship where it’s okay to talk about how many of us are really suffering?
I want mom relationships that look PPD in the face. The kinds that look past developmental differences. The kinds that let me be a “hot-mess mom” without feeling ostracized. The kinds that doesn’t judge based on who boob fed or not.
You know the kind.
But it’s almost like they doesn’t exist anymore.
You see, I only want mom-to-mom relationships where we can be supportive. The kinds of relationships where we don’t have to hide how terrible we’re really feeling. The kinds that celebrate the ups and downs of being a parent.
Honestly, if I can’t have that, then it’s all a waste of my time. I crave honesty.
We all love our kids so much – but why can’t we acknowledge how hard it is?
Guys, don’t get me wrong. I’m all about having mom friends. I am SO about that. But I just want the real ones, dangit!
Why can’t we get real about parenthood? None of us are immune to bad days. So why all the judging?
Gosh, I didn’t mean for this to be another mom love post. But really.
Mama, I am here to tell you that it’s totally okay for you to do your own thing.
It took me a long time to figure that out. Do what’s best for you and your family. If that means skipping the small talk during mom’s group, DO IT.
As if my little pep talk wasn’t enough, here are 10 other reasons it’s totally okay to suck at making mom friends:
- Kids suck the energy out of you. If given the chance to take a nap OR go to an awkward playdate, your body + sanity should be enough reason to justify staying home. Seriously mom, take care of yourself.
- You have earned time to do what YOU want. After all, you’ve been changing diapers and fighting back tears of frustration/exhausting/overwhelm for a few years now. It’s okay to be antisocial if you’re not already addressing your own “selfish” needs/wants. 😉
- You have to keep your individuality by focusing on your own hobbies and needs. If you don’t have time for your own hobbies, your identity will be lost in mommy-land. Nothing is worse than not feeling like you’re anything but a feeding, diaper changing, house-cleaning machine. Don’t forget about the things you love. Take some time to go hiking, read a book, scrapbook, go shopping, or whatever.
- Your family is your priority. That includes you. If mom isn’t happy, relationships start to change and parenting gets even harder. You don’t have time to put on a fake face. Address the issues in your own family (or yourself) before trying to start new relationships. I know I need to.
- It is so dang hard to show up looking cute. Especially when you have a screaming toddler and pooping baby. I’m not saying that you have to look a certain way to go out in public. But if you feel the pressure to look a certain way at a mom get-together, it’s okay to skip it. You shouldn’t have to feel uncomfortable about your appearance with other moms.
- Moms who want real relationships will reach out to you. If it feels forced, it’s okay to give it a chance. But a lot of times, the best relationships happen in strange and spontaneous ways.
- Alone time might be more important right now. When was the last time you went to the grocery store by yourself? When was the last time you went for a run? When was the last time you didn’t hear, “Mommmmmy!” for at least an hour? You know how to relax and unwind yourself better than anyone else. Making mommy friends might seem like a good distraction, but it’s not worth it if you’re going to be self-conscious or worried the whole time.
- Sometimes, it’s all just a stressful mess anyway. If the kids are going to be there during your time with mom friends, you probably won’t get to talk much anyway. During my most recent playdate with other moms and kids, we were all scattered across a large park, barely talking. One baby was fussy, another needed nursing, one kept trying to break an arm by jumping off the play structure, and one kept making a run for the parking lot. That’s not what I call “making mom friends.”
- Your preexisting relationships with non-moms are important, too. It’s hard to become a mom when most of your friends aren’t having babies yet. But that doesn’t mean that those relationships should just die. Keep those who are important to you and make you happy close, and when your old friends are ready to become moms, you’ll be even closer.
- Making mom friends is simply not a requirement. I’m not saying you should be a hermit. (That is definitely not healthy.) But to be a good parent, you just do what’s best for you and your little family. That’s the bottom line. Don’t let society tell you what’s right – because only you know. 🙂
Phew, I’m glad I got that off my chest.
I think the important takeaway, in this situation and in others, is that even good things (like mom friends) have to take a back seat in some seasons, especially when other things (like naps!) need to take precedence in that stage of life. Like with all other decisions, a healthy knowledge of yourself and your own needs is pretty crucial to wise mothering!
Exactly Lynna! It’s just not a priority most of the time. Thanks for stopping by again 🙂
I’m there with ya. It seems like I’m always the one setting up the play dates, I’m the one trying to make mom friends and well, I’m tired of it all.
I’ll go to the library, do all the extracurricular activities but not try to make small talk with the other moms. Let them come to me first…I”m okay with that 🙂
And yes, being a mom is hard! I’m literally amazed when I leave the house with my purse AND my phone AND deodorant. Those are good days 🙂
Haha! Elna, I’m so glad others feel the same way. But you and I are also trying to grow businesses, so that adds ANOTHER thing that we’re thinking about. 🙂
Oh, I needed this!! While my husband traveled for work, my best friend moved to MN. Since she moved, I became a hermit and didn’t want to try and make mom-friends. Though we were in a mom’s group together, her moved made my kids feel like outcasts of the group because all the other moms have babies and toddlers (mine are 3 and 5). It takes a lot for me to keep my kids in one piece and my house standing, most days. Now that he’s home, I really don’t worry about it. He’s my rock and the only best friend I need. I will get my social life in check, eventually.
I feel the same! My husband is my best friend and I personally think that’s the way it should be. Thanks for stopping by Tyane! 🙂
Great post! I couldn’t agree with you more! With everything else going on during the week like extracurriculars, homework, dinner, etc… I don’t even have the time to blow dry my hair, much less make time for friends. (And who wants a crazy-haired friend like me? I’m sure it doesn’t help that I look a mess sometimes. LOL) It’s not that I don’t want any friends, it’s just that my time is limited and I’m not sure if I’d be a good one. LOL Also, I LOVE how you mention that it becomes a “stressful mess anyway.” Anytime I’ve tried to get to know someone through conversation, every other word was interrupted by my/their children needing something or wanting something, someone getting hurt, someone scored a goal, a phone ringing… I’m never able to get out a sentence without some sort of interruption. It makes getting to know someone very difficult. My husband is my BF, too and I’m perfectly happy with that. Friends will come later. My family needs me more now.
Yes! I totally understand that I might be part of a small population on this one, but it’s nice to see that others feel the same way. Thanks for stopping by Pam 🙂
I appreciate you speaking your mind and being completely honest. Making friends with other moms can be challenging at times although I think it’s good to have a select handful of friends to confide in while the majority could just be simple small talk. I do strive to stay open as the receiving end could be feeling the same way and I may be the encouragement they were needing.
Yep. I definitely give everything a try and I realize that other moms are the opposite. Thanks for commenting Lorin!
Yes, yes yes Although my kids are now much older my lack of mom friends used to worry me a lot. At various times some of my actual friends have had kids and that has been great but just because someone nearby has a kid of similar age it doesnt mean you have to be best buddies.Kids make their own friends at school and they actually remember very little of who they played or didnt play with when they were small – parenting is hard do it any way you damm well can! (I have 5 of them and I think we are all OK)
Haha! I love it! Here I am with one (plus two steps) and think it’s hard! Kuddos to you mama! Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. 🙂
When you come across the most honest article and read every word! I really needed this. I thought I was bad at making friends but I am just reminded that I like friendships that are down to earth and real. I can’t do too much small talk. I appreciate that it’s ok to not have mom bffs..
Thank you for writing this! This is exactly what I needed! I have felt this way for a long time!