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.