Moms, Your Friendships Will Change After Kids
Guest post by Melissa Lawrence, co-founder of CloudMom.
They say a baby changes everything. And friendships are definitely not exempt from this at all.
Unfortunately, you’ll have to say ‘so long’ to the tight party dresses, all night happy hours with your girls, and day-long sessions at the spa with your bestie.
After becoming a mom, it may seem like your old college girlfriends are falling by the wayside. Each day is now consumed by this little sleeping, burping, crying, and pooping human. But with a new baby also comes many opportunities to make new friends.
Here’s how I’ve handled friendships since my five kids have entered this world.
Get out of the house.
As a new mom, I must admit I was intimidated to go out into the big scary city with my baby for the first time. What if I had to deal with an exploding diaper on the metro? Or got dirty looks from strangers if my baby started wailing away in public?
My advice would be to start off small.
Go to the corner store for some milk and eggs. Take a brisk walk around a local park. Baby steps.
Once you’re comfortable enough with having your baby in tow while in public, you’ll be ready to join the major leagues – bringing them to the mall, church, or on an airplane. All very doable with the right preparation and patience!
Break out of your comfort zone:
So what does getting out of the house have to do with friends? The outside world is teeming with moms just like you!
Overly exhausted and in dire need of adult interactions. And they’re all looking for new friends to connect with.
Stop by some of the more popular places for new moms, including the local park, grocery store, or playground. Once you’ve acquired a target, think of a common talking point, and walk up to them confidently! Compliment them on their adorable stroller, cute nursing top, or comment on how your children are relatively the same age. This could really strike up a great conversation and subsequent friendship!
As new moms, it may seem like we’re back in elementary school looking to find new friends. Know that you’re not alone and more often than not, these mothers are craving someone to confide in and reassure them that we’re all in this together!
Signing up for community organizations and clubs is another great way to find other new moms! Try some “mommy and me” swim classes at the local Y, join a church group that offers classes and activities to mothers, or, once your kids are in preschool or kindergarten, join the PTA.
You’ll find that you will have more in common than you think with these women and you can joke about things your hubby would never understand. Once you’ve made these connections, start branching out by getting together with these women over play dates or other fun get-togethers with the kids!
A new baby doesn’t have to necessarily spell doom for your old friendships. Sure, there will be friends who are in a completely different stage of life than you are. Maybe they haven’t settled down with anybody yet or are married and don’t want kids of their own. And that’s totally ok!
It’s important to keep these friends in mind and let them know you’re still emotionally available, although most of your time and effort is consumed by this new bundle of joy.
Send them a quick message on Facebook or give them a call every once in a while. Invite them to see the baby and catch up over a cup of coffee. In my experience, a small gesture can really go a long way and true friendships don’t fall apart over the coming of a new baby.
True friends will be there no matter how frazzled you become after acquiring the title of ‘mom’. Keeping up with friends and making new ones once your baby has arrived is a delicate balance. It will take some effort on your part but it is all worth it in the end.
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Melissa lives in New York City with her husband and 5 young children. With a few parenting tricks up her sleeve, Melissa posts how-to videos and blogs for parents on a range of issues including baby, toddler, kids, fashion, travel, and well-being.