Admitting you need help is never easy, but once you have kids, it’s almost inevitable. When I had my first child I was the typical, overprotective, super-sensitive working mom who suffered from near-constant sleep deprivation. The only shoulder I leaned on was my own mother’s. Making mom friends seemed impossible. A real friend is someone you’ve known forever, right?
That mom I chatted with at the playground? No way was I going to let her in my house to see the mountains of laundry, the dirty dishes, the toys all over the floor. She’ll judge me! She’ll tell every other mom on the playground that I suck at housekeeping! She’ll form a secret group and spread rumors that I’m a hot mom mess! Dishes in the sink will somehow damage my son and therefore he will never get into a good college! Does this irrational inner voice sound familiar?
There are some people with outgoing personalities who make the first move towards new friendships. But as you get older, your inhibitions take over and it gets even harder. But here’s why it’s absolutely imperative to make to make other mom friends: you need these other women. It’s a simple fact.
Here are five reasons why it’s important to let mom friends into your life:
Your kids will benefit.
Everyone has value, everyone brings different things to the table, and that’s what makes life fun. I know yoga moms, stay-at-home moms, working moms, moms that sing in bands, moms that bake, moms that run marathons, moms that are PTA stars and keep me informed of every school event possible. Moms that knit. Tech-savvy moms that know the best way to catch a cheater in school. The list of personalities is endless.
We want our kids to have a wide net of friends, so it’s cool to set the example. Also, free babysitting!
Moms are an open store when you can’t get to one.
Your Target run got postponed and now you’re out of diapers. There’s a mom across the street or in the apartment on the 2nd floor who has a kid that looks about your child’s age. Your mind races: “Should I ask or do I just use the dishtowel?”
Take the plunge and ask. Even if she doesn’t have a diaper, make an introduction, have a laugh, then throw out that dishtowel.
Parent friends are the best resource.
I’m including the dads here because every parent has something of value to offer: advice, knowledge on when and why the date changed for the school play, and endless amounts of humor. Social media has helped moms & dads tremendously – you can pretty much create a Facebook group or page for anything, and you can be as niche as possible. Moms Who Have Golden Retrievers. Dads Who Read Poetry But Love Monster Truck Rallies. Also, having a school page on Facebook is also a fabulous resource to stay up-to-date on activities and announcements. And you’ll get opinions galore.
Mom friends get it.
Universal understanding is the key to bonding, and other mom friends just get it. They understand when you start to lose your mind, when you’re struggling, when you only want one hour of peace, when you’re absolutely dying for just a hint of self-care. They’ve been there, done that. They can offer help, or at least give advice on the best eye concealer cream for your dark circles.
You’ll get out of your comfort zone.
Of course, it’s never easy reaching out, and natural introverts will resist anything outside their comfort zone. Take that one little step and see how it goes. Remember, moms are also people, and had a whole life before Mommyhood. Peel an onion, there are a lot of layers. You might find something in common besides offspring to make that connection.
Will these new friends be your best friends for life? Maybe not. Will you always have things in common? Doubtful. But reaching out for extra help when you’re at your most vulnerable might create a friendship you never thought possible.
Has a mom friend enriched your life? Tell us about her in the comments below!