You’re a new mom or new to the area. You’ve done your due diligence and mapped out all of the local moms groups nearby. You RSVP to your first meetup, throw on your favorite ‘I swear I’m not trying to hard’ outfit, and doll up your little one up in his/her Sunday best. You are ready.
Today, I am going to rock this moms group and meet some mom friends!
You pull up to the coffee shop and wait in the car until it’s just two minutes past the hour, scoping the crowd out to see if you can spot the moms who are meeting up. You get out of your car and continue to peer around “nonchalantly”.
Bam… you lock eyes with another cool mom and smile. She smiles back with a similar uncertain look. ‘I’ve got this,’ you say to yourself as you wave and start waking toward her.
“Hi!” you say.
“Hi,” she replies. “I’m sorry, do I know you?”
While the awkwardness begins mount, the crowd clears and you see your moms group already sitting at the table behind you.
You head toward them and suddenly the raging mommy confidence you thought you had is completely gone. You’re alone approaching a group that looks like it’s straight out of Mean Girls. They all have white toothy smiles, which tells you that 1. they are mean and judgmental Byou-know-whats or 2. they are equally awkward and just trying so hard to mask their own feelings.
Do they like me? Did I wear the right outfit? Should I sit down or get a coffee first? Oh my gosh, I would kill to be back home in my yoga pants on the couch.
You sit down, introduce yourself, and say hi. And then stand up quickly declaring that you are going to get a coffee now… as fast as you can.
As you wait in line, you feel like you’re back in high school. Turns out making friends as an adult is still awkward. The absolute worst was and is when you needed to break into a pre-existing group. You knew damn straight you were being vetted, and your fate of friendship was in their hands. Moms groups are no different. They all know each other and none of them know you.
As you sit back down at the table, the small talk begins….
Where do you live?
What do you do?
He’s so cute! She’s so adorable!
How about this weather….
And then one of the moms mentions breastfeeding. Almost instantly you notice the air gets thicker. A couple moms chime in, while you stay silent.
“So, how is breastfeeding going for you?” one mom asks you directly.
“Well, I am not breastfeeding, actually,” you respond.
“Oh, why not?” another mom asks.
With just two questions, the entire morning begins to die a rapid and painful death. You explain your challenges with latching and milk supply and low birth weight, only to be assaulted with tips for better latching, building your milk supply, and first-hand examples of other moms who brought their baby up to a healthy birth weight via breastfeeding.
The small talk continues and you “remember” you need to get back home because the oil company is coming by to check your furnace.
“It was so great meeting you all! I hope we meet again soon,” you declare – a lie that everyone sees right through.
You drive away thinking to yourself, I seriously hate this. This mom friends thing is so not for me. They are so not for me. I’m all set.
Then you pull up to the gas station and see another mom. She smiles at you and comments on the freezing cold weather before she hops into her car and drives away. You know instantly that you would have hit it off with her. Why couldn’t she be at that moms group? Will I ever see her again?
If this sounds like you – you’re so not alone. Becoming a mom is a new chapter in your life. It’s rewarding, exhilarating, exhausting, and often super lonely. While you may hold onto some pretty cool friends from other life stages, chances are you now feel a strong need to connect with other moms who are experiencing similar joys and challengest. It’s totally natural.
Our advice is this: keep doing what you’re doing. The more you put yourself out there, meet moms, and embrace new groups, the less awkward it will be and the faster you will be able to figure out what you are looking for in a mom friendship. In addition, try meeting moms one-on-one. Search for mom friends who live close, have similar age children, and seem interesting.
It’s an uphill battle, but it is SO worth it when you finally do meet your MFF (Mom Friend for Life)!
What about you? How are you meeting mom friends? Is it working? Is it difficult? Any tips? Share your story below.