Have you ever watched a child go to a playground or park and just randomly start talking to another kid and instantly they’re best friends within 5 minutes? I have witnessed my kids do this over and over and over again and I sit there in awe of them. How is it that a 5 year old can just start playing with a total stranger, not even know what their name is, because my daughter never asks names or gives hers, and have the best time ever? Well, because they’re kids and that’s all they know at this point and because they haven’t experienced rejection, to the same point that we, as adults, have.
As a mom of an extremely outgoing child, I’m a little envious of her and her ability to makes friends so quickly. I never had a problem making friends when I was younger, but now as an adult and mother I’m finding it hard to make more than just acquaintance friends. I want the real mccoy, a true friend that I can turn to when I’m having a hard day or just need to talk to and laugh together over a glass of wine. Now, having said that, I do have a few friends like this, don’t take pity on me yet, but as most of us are moms (a.k.a. super busy) and don’t necessarily live close to each other it’s hard, for me personally, to keep those relationships going and strong. I’m a very visual person and if someone is not around me often my brain pretty much thinks “out of sight out of mind.” It’s sad but true. 😦
So where does a mom go to make new mom friends? Well, having moved to a new neighborhood and school I have made it a point to be more like my daughter. I got a fresh start, kind of like going off to college, so I might as well take advantage of it so I’m not sitting at home by myself with my 1 year old. Hahaha I’ve gone out of my comfort zone by introducing myself to moms at Open House and Back to School night, that have kids in my children’s classes. I’m not sitting around waiting for a mom friend to fall out of the sky on my doorstep. Initiating get togethers with old friends has been a good way to rekindle friendships with women who I thoroughly enjoy being around!
Meeting neighbors is a great way to make friends, too. I’m slowly meeting more moms my age and with kids similar ages to mine that live in the neighborhood. It’s honestly about getting yourself out there and making the initiative to introduce yourself or just reach out, once you have had the initial introduction, to continue to strengthen the new friendship.
The number one place I have realized I can make friends at is WORK and not necessarily with my coworkers, although I do love them!! A lot of the customers that come to my work I also see out and about. My daughter’s dance school has soo many potential new mom friends and I didn’t even know it! A lot of the moms also come and work out or bring their kids to activities at the recreation center I work at. That right there is an ice breaker, “Hey don’t you come to the rec center?”, “Haven’t I seen you at the rec center before?” It’s the perfect in for starting a conversation and getting to know other women.
Have you noticed though, making new mom friends is kinda like dating. That first inital meeting/introduction is always so awkward and weird. What do you say after you’ve introduced yourself? Will she like me? Is this mom going to get your sense of humor or think you’re a compelte moron? Being yourself infront of new people, especially people you want to be friends with, can be hard at first while your testing the waters. I believe that you MUST remain true to yourself, though. You don’t want a friend who doesn’t like the real you, crazy sense of humor and all. If you can’t be yourself around a true friend then are they really a true friend?
My advice, which I’m trying to listen to myself, is just get out there and make an effort to meet some moms who seem like they could be your kind of people. Don’t wait for them to come to you, go up and introduce yourself. If anything, compliments go a long way and if you can’t find anything to compliment them on, well, just start talking about their kids. Us moms always love a good kid bragging opportunity. hahaha But seriously, it’s all about making the initiative and showing them that you’re interested in meeting them. It is pretty much mom dating!! Hopefully, if anyone else out there is in the same boat I was somewhat helpful in motivating you to get out there, get out of your comfort zone and make a new friend today. 🙂