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Five Tips Friday: Making Mom Friends

I've never had the courage to talk to that mom at the playground. She could be any mom with a child of the same age as mine. Or she could be the mom who is so great with the other kids. Or the mom who smoothly chats up with other moms. But here I am - a bit of an introvert. I can never make the first move. Despite this social inability, I have managed to make a few mom friends who, I am glad, came and talked to me. Why are 'mom friends' so important, you say?

When my son was born, I felt cut off from the world. I felt like my friends didn't know me anymore. I wanted to talk to someone who knew what I felt about my new status as a mother. Who wouldn't mind me constantly talking about my baby's gassy tummy. It took me a while, but when I made a few friends who were first-time moms like me, I realised how special they were, and why I needed them in my life.

Motherhood isn't a journey you are meant to take alone. Our society owes new mothers all the support they can get. Having friends who understand you, and help you deal with the challenges of raising children can make a huge difference in your life.


Five Tips For Making Mom Friends


Here are five tips for making new mom friends:


 1. Have common ground


Having children who are around the same age is kind of important. Or at least children who get along with each other. Before planning a play date, make sure you are on the same page. It isn't hard to figure out what school of thought the other mom subscribes to. You can't constantly be disagreeing, or dealing with your children in conflicting ways. If you agree on the major things, you are good to go!

2. Respect the differences


You will never find a mom who is just like you. As mentioned above, it's important to agree on some subjects, like discipline. You don't have to follow the same techniques, but learn to be respectful of the other mom's way of doing things. Try not to imply why your way of doing things is 'better'. Every family is different, and so are children. Being non-judgmental will help you become a good friend.

3. Open up


We have a tendency to make everything sound better than it really is. It's great to be positive, but there's no point in making the other mom feel guilty because you just told her how you make a theme lunch every day for your child (when you do it only once or twice a week). Then, she will feel compelled to one-up you, and so the chain of lies continues. Stop doing that! Be honest about your struggles, and you'll be surprised at how quickly she opens up about hers.

4. Talk about yourselves


You may be mom friends, but you are individuals too. Don't get stuck on kid talk. Ask your friend about her. It's possible that you may be the only one who has done so in a while. Try to talk about what your goals are, and what dreams you still want to pursue. That will make you feel much better than talking about how expensive school education is!

5. Closer is better


You may have found the perfect mom friend, but if she stays an hour's drive from you, chances are you'll soon lose touch. Try to meet moms who live close to you, so you have an opportunity to spend time with them, and benefit from having them on close call.

So, don't hesitate to say hello to that mom you see at the park. She may need you as much as you need her!






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39 comments

Nina G said...

I have only made one genuine friend out of all the mom groups I've been to. I feel like I suck at this, too, but thankfully I've never felt the need to reach out to other nearby moms because I have friends and family who are moms. I mainly reached out to mom groups to have a regular social gathering for my eldest. I love your tip about making sure they're nearby! So key. So glad you're talking about this. I'm planning on writing a post similar to this and you should expect an email from me soon to get your opinion :) ~Nina

Nicki Gilbert said...

Such important advice, Tarana! I especially love "Don't get stuck on kid talk." Thirteen years and four kids later my mom friends are my sanity, my fun, my tears, my everything on this crazy ride! Thank you for hosting FTSF this week and for the awesome prompt!

April Grant said...

I've made mom friend elsewhere but now I've moved and have to start again. I got really close to one mommy, but then she moved away. Making friends as adult is hard and it sucks because you know that school or a job won't be holding you together. I'm looking for that mommy friend now, just one or two to whom I can talk openly.

Tarana said...

Having family close to you is such an advantage! I have a HUGE support system back home, but I'm pretty much winging it here.

Tarana said...

Rightly said! Where would we be without them?!

Tarana said...

It really is hard making lasting friends as an adult. I hope you find the right one for you!

Emily (OhBoyMom) said...

I agree that it does take courage to make mom friends. I too had trouble in the beginning when my kids were younger because I am kind of a shy person. It seemed to get easier as my kids got older and now I rely on my mom friends a lot. It's true that we need them as we raise our kids!

ruchira said...

I liked your tips.
I actually found it easier when my kid was growing up rather than as an infant...more so to find a common ground.

Kristi - Finding Ninee said...

I have a hard time making mom friends too. I feel like the ones in our neighborhood already were all friends before I became a mom and they're younger than I am as well... I like your tips though! And I do have a great mom friend that I met through my son's school which helps a lot!

Anna Fitfunner said...

Really great tips! I'm a fan of #1. I find that making friends is so much about the common interests, especially at first. Common interests help to move the friendship through those awkward initial stages to a point where you can open up and share more meaningfully.

Kelly Mckenzie said...

Oh how well I remember those days when I knew no one in my neighborhood and I had a newborn. It was such a relief to learn that there was a new mom just two doors down. As my two got older and started to cruise about I took them to a local play group called Motoring Munchkins. Met some lovely people here and learned how important it was to put myself out there, smile and say hello. But it wasn't until I enrolled my oldest in the threes class at a parent participation preschool that things really took off. I can't say enough about our social nights. Wine and confession. So, So, So good for the soul. Everyone agreed that it was so good to learn we were all going through the same things - similar joys and frustrations. Can you say "Therapy?"

Becky Holland said...

great tips and very practical. I have always found it hard to make friends I always felt I was the odd one out. Finding that common ground always helps start the conversation.

Tarana said...

It is easier to connect once the kids get older, isn't it?!

Tarana said...

It was the same with me!

Tarana said...

I've met most of my friends at the park!

Tarana said...

Absolutely, or there's nothing for the friendship to move ahead.

Tarana said...

I had to make an effort to make friends too. It's great that you have made good friends who are therapy!

Tarana said...

It's never been easy for me, either!

Bellybytes said...

well, "mom" friends are a great support system and it's always nice to know where your children's friends come from

Ayesha Siddiqua said...

Have been in the same boat. Exactly my thoughts. Pinning and sharing.

KatiaDBE said...

Oh my goodness, this resonated with me SO much! During the two years I stayed at home every time my older son started a new year at kindergarten it was PAINFUL for me to try and launch a conversation with the other moms. It brought me right back to high school. I love this and I love your advice. Wonderful topic and such wise advice!

Tarana said...

Right, it's so important to focus on yourselves as people too, just to keep sane!

Tarana said...

Thank you Katia! My son hasn't school yet, but I'm nervous about the other moms too :)

Kate Williams said...

Oh I hear you! I find it...okish to talk to the other mums at playgroup but I used to be on total lock down in mum and toddler groups!

Tarana said...

I would have been the same too if attended them!

Let's Talk Mommy said...

What a great list. I am awful for trying to meet more moms. I think when school starts for the kids it will get easier so I think I have always just put it off until then. It's great tho to have someone that has things in common and understand. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me and for all the amazing linky support in 2014! I can't thank you enough. Happy Holidays! #sharewithme

Susanne Remic said...

Great tips, as usual. When my son was born I forced myself to go out and make friends and its was one of the best things I've ever done x x x

anita said...

This is interesting, definitely helpful. I find at times most moms are so busy or stressed out that they come off kind of unfriendly?

Tarana said...

That was absolutely the right thing to do!

Tarana said...

Very true, it can happen that way too, so we have to learn to be non-judgmental.

TheMissusV said...

1 is so important especially when it comes to values you uphold at home!

Sarah said...

All so important! It is so hard and can be so lonely at first. Friends that share the same beliefs as you make it so much easier.

Chris Carter said...

I love this so much... it makes me realize all the struggles I went through when my kids were so little and I felt so alone!! Beautiful advice, Tarana.

Meredith said...

Great ideas. I met a mom at the park once, and she is still one of my best friends to this day. I also wrote a post for blogHer that was really popular on the subject. Definitely tricky for moms to learn how to make friends in adulthood.

Tarana said...

Yes, or there can be some rough waters!

Tarana said...

Exactly! It's so important to agree on the big things.

Tarana said...

I've felt that too, Chris. Thank you!

Tarana said...

I made most of my mom friends at the park too! It's great that you found a true friend, and it's truly hard at this stage.

Tarana said...

Yes, and it's harder for some people like me!

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