If you are anything like me, 99% of my “mum friends” exist through Internet connections alone.
I have my girl friends, my work friends and even some church friends, but when it comes to real life mum friends, I admit, I’m running low.
I’m not sure why it’s so hard to connect with other mums and cultivate new relationships. Perhaps it’s our fear of being judged for our parenting style or sometimes more accurately and honestly, our judgment of theirs (I just can’t be friends with a mum who doesn’t discipline her kids). Maybe it’s that mums seem to run in cliques (you know the working mums, stay-at-home mums, the my-kid-is-better-than-your-kid mums, and so on…) and our emotional selves don’t like to feel left out or like we’re late to a party we really weren’t invited to. Perhaps it is something even simpler: we don’t have the energy to fester up the guts required to overcome the awkwardness involved in saying “Hi, let’s be friends.”
While I don’t know precisely why it’s hard to make mum friends, I do know that it’s a little like dating, in the sense that you seem to kiss a lot of frogs before you find a prince, or at least another mum you really connect with. And like anything else, the more you put yourself out there, the more likely you’ll find a connection.
If you’re like me and running low in the mum friend department, don’t give up.
Continuing to do the things that you love doing with your children. When you do, you’ll likely end up in places with mums who share similar interests. If you like to hike, for example, do it and notice and talk to other mums who are there. If you like to go to church, do it and start chatting with other mums who have children your age. I love going to the playground with my children and I recently ran into a mum there and we connected! You never know when or where you’ll find a mum connection.
Joining or starting a local Meetup group for mums in your area. Attend or host playdates and get to know the mums with similar aged children in your community. In addition to making a few mum connections, I’ve visited some great places my children have really enjoyed.
Attending community events and kids classes. Many communities host children’s events ranging from story hour at the library to mummy and me music classes. Check them out and use them as an opportunity to meet other mums. One of my closest mum friends and I met at a Music Together Class.
Finding mums you truly relate to can be challenging but they are out there. Sometimes you have to go out of your comfort zone and take the first step, but chances are, they desire to connect with you as much as you do with them.