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Accepting I don't have friends - Page 2

post #21 of 48
Thread Starter 
Sadly it's been another long friendless week. All you mommies feeling the same...it's funny to think how many of us out there feel this. There are probably lots of mommies close to us that we will never meet feeling the same that could be our friends. I told my DH it is an almost impossible wish to find a friend. It is hard enough to find someone I really like. Now add in the kids. Do they have kids the same age? Do they parent like me? Are our kids a good match up? Then add in life. My husband works so much I consider myself a single mom. I'm busy. I don't have time to nurture a friendship. There will be no one on one mom time. Ever. Any time I would spend with this friend I would be neglecting work that needs to be done. Last the chances of me finding a mom like me is slim to none. Every other mom I know has family in their lives. Every other mom I know has a husband that only works half as much as mine. Every other mom I know has some type of friendships and support. I feel like unless I meet a mom like me, alone I won't be able to build a friendship. They don't know what it feels like to take care of 3 kids from 9am to 11pm everyday ALONE. They has husbands that come home have dinner with them, talk to them, help with the house and kids (maybe). They have family to call, to help, to talk to. They have friends that have been a part of their lives for some time. It breaks my heart to hear the mom I really like talking how she emailed these moms about a field trip and did this or that with this mom or that mom. No one emailed me! :-( It's painful for me to see their lives, and hear about them. I don't want to know they have dinner every night with their husbands and have the whole weekend every weekend to be together as a family. I don't want to hear about their amazing mothers who come over clean their house, watch their kids and take them shopping. I don't want to hear about all the things they are doing with all their friends all the time. I really wish I could switch off these feelings and focus on my kids. That is want I've always done, but it's hard. I'm trying to accept that this is my life. I try not to blame myself. I know that I would make an awesome friend. I'm funny, honest, kind, giving, loyal. I just need another mommy who is all alone looking for a friend like me.
post #22 of 48
I PM-ed you FLmom. I know exactly how you feel. I'm in almost exactly the same spot as you, just younger with very very little income, and zero people around my age with children that actually take care of their children.
post #23 of 48

hug.gif mamas!

 

I read this thread bc it's true; I really don't have "friends" anymore... but I have been through some of the same things some of you are going thru right now (ie, I was a very young single mama who "parented" her dc; I have been a home-bound married-single mama dt no car; I have had dear friends earlier in life, only to be lonely later), so maybe I can encourage you a bit? I hope...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ladylittlebird View Post

 After 5 years as a SAHM with 3 children, I resorted to a "mommy and me" play group at a local Gym. It took a whole year of Wednesdays (sometimes I went home and cried because I knew I would have another friendless week ahead of me) before I finally made a connection with another mom. We joke now about how awkward it was for me to ask for her phone number. But it was all worth it. Having just one friend inspired me with enough confidence to reach out to other people. SO many woman feel the way that you do. And 2 years later (and one more baby later) I finally feel like I have a village of friends. AND the secret ingredient to maintaining mother- friendships is allowing yourself to love THEIR kids (flaws included!) It's challenging but rewarding, just like being a mom. My husband is still the only person I feel 100% at ease with, but I hope with time my friendships will grow. Good luck mommies, and don't give up.

 

ITA with you! I try to see other's children the way I see my students when I teach or tutor-- there is no way I'll agree w all those other parenting styles, but it isn't the dc's fault-- maybe if the other mama's parenting needs work, you can be an example to her? I have learned so much from other mamas over the years, so apparently -I- was one who needed some positive examples at times. Clearly some healthy boundaries are important if the other children seem to be a negative influence (& I have cut friendships short when it went too far), but it's possible to have friends who do not parent like I do.

 

I also wanted to encourage the married mamas to nurture the friendship w your dh; I know, I am working on it, too-- DH & I used to be much better friends... & that means we can be again if we give it the same attention we did before (hm, maybe I need to tt my dh re this thread; he'd be sad to hear I really don't feel I have friends, but it's true...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by FLmomof1/1ontheway View Post

I always though the same thing. That maybe it's just grown up life. Grown ups don't have friendships the same way as you had them as a kid or teenager. Becoming a mom changes everything. If my husband is working 80 hours a week and I'm homeschooling, running a household and careing for 3 kids under the age of 8, I'm lucky I have enough time to take a shower. When in the world will I find the time to build and nurture any friendships?

 

TY FLmom-- this is what I thought, too, but I discovered that the reason I don't have (m/any) friends isn't bc I've outgrown friendship or that I don't care for ppl... it's bc I am not caring for -myself- enough to allow myself the "luxury" of time to nurture friendships. Maybe not true for everyone, but it's worth asking yourself...

 

I've lost friends to death, moves, growing apart, etc. Now I'm in a rural place, few like-minded ppl, etc. I had a like-minded mama friend I love whom I've moved away from-- we are just starting to reconnect, now that our technology is able (I now have net at home- she now has txt). My oldest friend is just. so. busy (not as an excuse to ditch me, but really, she's single, working, raising 2 dc & a "foster" baby, too w very little help) we rarely talk & are growing apart. An old male friend from work just feels more cool, standoffish & uncomfortable since I re-married (I guess he doesn't want to make DH feel threatened) plus we freelance together & the work relationship has grown while the friendship has cooled.

 

I feel your pain. There are other ppl at church, etc, but so very unlike me at all. I'm the family kook, no matter the family! C: (It struck me when our congregation was asked to each invite someone next week, & I thought WHO could I possibly invite? Will I realistically tt ANYONE this week? No, I don't ask Jesus what to make for dinner, LOL, no offense to those who do, but that really was the moment it struck me-- I don't have a friend to even invite!)

 

The thing is, I'm more ok with this than I used to be. I've accepted, like a PP said, that not all friends are my bff-- it's ok to have acquaintances that really only relate on one or two levels. That friendship may grow; it may not; but it still has value-- you may be that person's only friend, or maybe the only authentic person in her life! In time, she may be yours...

post #24 of 48

I have been there too.  I have had close friends who suddenly get to busy to connect or friends who move away and just lose touch.  I feel like I am "picky" by nature in terms of who I decide to establish close friendships with, but I am fairly good at making friends so I have a circle (mostly moms from my church or work).  I feel that upon reflecting on myself, I have been part of the problem.  Sometimes I judge to quickly and I am working on developing more compassion and trying to find things I have in common with people rather than focusing on our differences.  Sometimes lifestyle choices can be so divisive, but they don't have to be if both people can just let it go and talk about something else, realizing that we all have a right to live our lives in different ways.  I now have two friends who are close enough for my comfort (I just don't like people in my house all the time because I hate trying to make it look like my expectation of presentable) and we joined a small group at church (we go to a very love-focused, progressive church, they are out there even in small podunk towns!) and I use facebook to chat.  I come here if I want to talk mommy stuff instead of even trying to talk about natural lifestyle choices with my mainstream friends.  I feel we are social creatures by nature (at least most of us) and having some sort of support network is a good thing but we don't have to be all up in each others business all the time.  Good luck, I bet you will find someone of like mind in your area on here :)

post #25 of 48

I feel the same way. I also feel like I try so hard to make connections and friendships but nothing ever comes of it. It seems so easy for other people to make friends but not for me. It's hard to not take it personally and internalize it like there's something wrong with me, but I'm trying not to do that. 

About a year ago I complained to my husband I don't have any friends and he replied "we're each others friends." I bursted out laughing but it's true. I don't have many friends, but I always have him. 

That helps me feel better most of the time. 

post #26 of 48
Thread Starter 

My husband says the same thing. I will always have him.  It's true he is a great husband, but he is never here when I need him.  I try not to take it personally also, but I do.  My husband constantly reminds me our lives are just different.  

 

After bawling my eyes out last week I though maybe a life of solitude would be better for me.  I don't have to hear what other mamas are doing together. I don't have to have unanswered emails, and I certainly don't have to see everyone soooo happy on FB. Or see that my posts get no likes.  What's the point of having friends who can never possible understand how hard life if for you? What's the point of friends if you don't really like the people? What's the point of friends who don't have time to be your friends? 

 

So after a week of avoiding everyone I don't feel any better.  My birthday came and went.  No one but my husband and children remembered.  I want to be OK and focus on my kids.  I want to accept that this is the way life is, has been, and will be. 

post #27 of 48

Starting friendships in adulthood is difficult and the hardest thing to feel is uncomfortable. Especially when motherhood can be so challenging.   Not branching out is safe and often times leaves us feeling lonely.  I found going to your local book store and joining the book discussions or sign up for a group of something that interests (Like crafting, knitting or learning something new) it will help you find friends that you have things in common with. It will not feel ok at first but hang in there and be yourself. Relationships form over time and from shared interests. Sit in a coffee shop with your kids and make eye contact and smile at other moms. Set these small goals for yourself.  Just by your original post you sound like someone who would be a great listener and isnt that what a good friend is.   Good luck! 

post #28 of 48

What can we do? Lets do something....Lets come up with a few things to try and then DO THEM...Also can we start a "Friends Tribe"?

post #29 of 48

One thing I have found that when I want something it can work. It is to say the thing you want in the present tense as if you already have it. So if you want one really good woman friend, for example- say- write, and think to yourself the statement something like: "I have a new really good woman friend who likes me just as I am and who I like just as she is- and I am so happy we finally met and connect so easily and support and love eachother" or whatever specifics you want. Somehow saying the things we want in the present tense as if we already have them can help tune your mind like an antenna to then attract that into your life. I have been practicing this kind of thing in my life, and have found many wise spiritual teachers and books who teach this type of thing. (one example is a book calle dyou can create your own miracles by napolean hill if anyone is interested, but lots of people- louise hay, etc, practice this). So the idea is that- it is great to first acknowledge any problems,. That is actually a great first step as many people live in denial. OP it sounds like you have come to a good place of really acknowledging your issue at hand. So that is the first step. Then, if it appeals to you try to then- it is almost like a fake it till you make it idea- then try practicing your statemenet of what you want as if you already have it. Say it a few times a day and see if anything changes! Just one idea, if it appeals to you. I have seen it work well for people and for myself too. It is like our minds are antennas and we are capable of tuning into different vibrations and tuning our antennas.

post #30 of 48
Positive affirmations! They can work. Usually in unexpected ways.

I have been in your place, and it is recently that I am feeling better. I'm wondering if you are getting a lot of criticism or judgment, which would naturally increase your desire for someone like minded so as to feel supported and less alone. I had to cut the critics out of my life, in order to feel better. That also made room in my life for others who have similar views. Nature abhors a vacuum. Make room, first, then be choosey about how to fill it.
post #31 of 48

I feel the same way. I've always been socially awkward but since having kids I've become much more aware of health things ect (gentle parenting, not vaxxing, trying to avoid toxins) which just makes me feel like more of an outcast. btw, I'm fine with others making different choices (other than hurting their children because I have a hard time seeing that and will say something) but people don't seem to be okay with my choices. My own sister has stopped talking to me and snidely posts how if you don't beat your children they're going to be screwed up on facebook a lot. It sucks. We're military so while I have made a few friends over the years we've all moved away from each other. It hurts and is really lonely but it's nice knowing I'm not alone either. Hope everyone has better luck meeting people.

post #32 of 48

I came here to start a thread on how to make friends in real life and I'm so glad to see this thread. I've never made friends easily, was the "slow to warm up" child and still am shy and a bit socially awkward to this day. However, some things have happened recently that have me focusing inward a bit, considering how to form "real" connections in real life. We have 1 family car and my husband both works and goes to school full time. We have 2 small sons. The days are often long. I'm often left without a vehicle during the week. I know I can try harder to attend LLL meeting where it is possible I will meet like minded mamas. I've only been to one (that I really liked, although there were only 3 other women) and that was last year. Maybe I can take sewing lessons here or there and possibly meet others. I can always walk my sons to the library or park during the week. Yay for spring! I've honestly felt lonely ever since becoming a mother. Forming friendships is tough because if one is too desperate for friendship, it turns others away. I don't know the answers. But I'm here with you all and following along. I am nearly 37 and feeling like an adolescent in this area. :-)

 

My husband is my friend, of course. But we are so busy tending to the children when he is home that it doesn't really feel like it ... which leads me to another problem: no one to sit with the children so we can go on a date or to do anything with just the 2 of us.

post #33 of 48
I have been desperate enough to go " hunting " for other moms. I have tried to strike up conversations with Any mom with a child my son's age who "looks like" she comes from a similar financial background. I did this in lib, zoo, museums etc. After 8 months of trying this, I have managed to develop two good friendships and two more " acceptable" ones. Lol.
I moved thrice in last 3 years and its been the hardest aspect of moving. Its VERY lonely being a sahm. Terribly lonely. And having non conventional parenting choices make it even more impossible. But keep trying!
post #34 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amy@STL View Post

I have been desperate enough to go " hunting " for other moms. I have tried to strike up conversations with Any mom with a child my son's age who "looks like" she comes from a similar financial background. I did this in lib, zoo, museums etc. After 8 months of trying this, I have managed to develop two good friendships and two more " acceptable" ones. Lol.
I moved thrice in last 3 years and its been the hardest aspect of moving. Its VERY lonely being a sahm. Terribly lonely. And having non conventional parenting choices make it even more impossible. But keep trying!

 

Bolding mine because I wanted to touch on this... I come from a middle-class family (first one to go to college), but attended a school with mostly upper-middle-class kids.

 

I have friends who have trust funds and never need to work a day in their lives if they don't want to.  I also have friends who are on public assistance.  Each situation has its own unique strengths and challenges.

 

My spouse and I are also in the position of looking for more friends who are parents - but I'm trying not to limit myself to only people from my own socioeconomic background. 

Amy, are there reasons you feel you can't do this?  Have you tried making friends in the past with moms who had less money than you, or more money than you, and it didn't work out?

 

Just brainstorming more ways you could expand your social circle...

post #35 of 48

In the same boat as a lot of you mamas-- wishing I had more friends and trying to be more proactive about it. I have 3 great friends who I've known since childhood, but two of them live an hour away, and it's so much harder than it should be to connect frequently. I also stay at home with my son, while DH is at work with the car, so I'm limited as to where we can go (I know, not a real excuse-- I can walk to a couple parks, maybe even the library, if I'm feeling energetic :)

 

I've always been introverted and had a few very close girlfriends, but since becoming a mom, it's been hard to nurture those relationships. I'm not a social butterfly-- I find it really hard to put myself out there and strike up conversations. And to be honest, that first stage of friendship when you're just getting to know someone is so awkward-- and exhausting!!-- for me. Sometimes it seems easier just to go on without many friends than to put in the effort of finding/making more. 

 

Another issue is that none of my old friends are moms. They're supportive and wonderful and have known me forever, but they're at such different places in their lives that it can leave me feeling worlds away. For the past year or so, I've watched a few other kiddos at my house, and surprisingly found myself connecting with some of the moms whose kids I care for. These women have high-paying professional careers, live in houses five times the size of mine, and yet, I found that we have so much in common as mothers! We chat about yogurt stains on the furniture, sleep struggles, and toddlers with finicky appetites. I look forward to the 5-10 minutes at the beginning and end of the day when I can connect with other mamas-- even though we come from very different backgrounds. 

post #36 of 48

Hmmm, I may be the only one here who hasn't --in the past-- found it hard to be social??

 

IDK-- I'll provide a humorous example of my current difficulties:

 

I was riding with a lady from church (one I've found it difficult to be close to, but we were going to offer help to a young mom in our area-- sometimes it is easier to make a friend if I'm helping, right? And it gave us something in common to work on and talk about... anyway); she asked about whether I'd applied for WIC yet for the baby on the way. I told her I hadn't bc although it can help, I felt like we are not actually in need, so I prolly would let there be more available for families who are truly in need. She said, that's true, but it really helps most after the baby's born, with formula being so very expensive. I replied that we won't be using any formula, haha. She was shocked, appalled, said, what, are you going to feed the baby goat milk!?!? (a somewhat valid guess, since we  raise & milk sheep, and are surrounded by small goat dairies). I said, no, we are going to feed the baby -human- milk! Oh, OH! well, I guess you could always nurse if you have to! was her reply.

 

BAH HAH HAH HAH! If I have to, oh, man. I guess she thinks ppl only ever CD & BF bc of abject poverty & not bc they feel it's good for the LOs (not disparaging anyone who doesn't, btw, I've just never really tt anyone who couldn't even fathom the possibility that God gave mammals the right milk for their own young, or that we maybe want to stick with that plan, hahaha)

 

It -is- hard to befriend people who think I am so backward for educating myself and making informed choices for my family.

 

Anyway, at least I can be the entertainment here.

 

I had a good chance encounter with a previous friend/ acquaintance from a homeschool group that fell apart years ago-- she was at soccer, taking pix for other parents & our DC (who are not similar age & gender matches, btw-- mine are 19b, 14b, 12g, and I'm due in fall; hers are 10b, 8b, 1 1/2 b) saw each other & started talking. My social butterfly 12yo DD ran and gave her a hug. We talked about midwife options in our area (almost none) and the alternatives, kiddos & activities. It was nice to even small-talk-reconnect. I offered to keep her baby during their next ball season bc they find it hard to juggle the older boys' activities and the baby's needs. We exchanged #s.

 

Seems promising, but I won't hold my breath-- she's a really go-go-go busy mama! & may not have room in her schedule... 


Edited by mum4vr - 4/6/13 at 6:56pm
post #37 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by glassesgirlnj View Post

 

Bolding mine because I wanted to touch on this... I come from a middle-class family (first one to go to college), but attended a school with mostly upper-middle-class kids.

 

I have friends who have trust funds and never need to work a day in their lives if they don't want to.  I also have friends who are on public assistance.  Each situation has its own unique strengths and challenges.

 

My spouse and I are also in the position of looking for more friends who are parents - but I'm trying not to limit myself to only people from my own socioeconomic background. 

Amy, are there reasons you feel you can't do this?  Have you tried making friends in the past with moms who had less money than you, or more money than you, and it didn't work out?

 

Just brainstorming more ways you could expand your social circle...

I appreciate your initiative and agree with you. I have indeed made friends in the past and the background has made a difference. I completely agree that every person has their own unique qualities and if I came across as snobbish that NOT my intent at all !! But I am neither black, nor white ( am south asian), nor christian, not conventional parenting, etc...it so happens that people automatically screen me. Its human nature to a large extent. So, at this point my primary need is to find friendships based on some commonality. Its not me who has issues, its the other party which does , so I am not sticking to my so called financial similarity. I don't know if I made any sense.

post #38 of 48
Thread Starter 
I actually don't find it hard to be social either. If I'm in the mood. I think I could be friends with people of other social economic levels. Although I would have a hard time seeing a family with so much more then us, I admit that. We are in a good place. Not poor, not rich. I think it would be hard to have a friend that has the Mercedes I've wanted my whole life and eveything she desires at her fingertips. It would also be hard to have a friend that had no money, no transportation, and unable to ever do things with you b/c she had no money to do it. So I get why you would mingle with others on the same level as you.

I'm not social enough to hang out with others that don't share my lifestyle. Like the lady who can't fathom you would breastfeed your baby. My husband has said that maybe one reason I don't have friends is because I'm too opinionated and have a very strong personality. Maybe other moms feel intimidated by me. While I feel I don't do nearly enough as a mom, other moms look at me and say "how in the world does she do IT ALL?"

I'm seeing I'm really picky too. I see other moms start up friendships and spend time with other moms so easily and they are happy doing it. I'm judgmental from the get go. If a persons kids are running like wild animals, rude, disobedient, mean, and the parents don't see anything wrong with behavior I would never allow my children to do then I really don't see a point in starting a friendship.

I've bowed out of a group of moms for this reason. The one mom whom I do like (whom has really pushed to be my friend) doesn't discipline her children at all. The last time we went to her house I was going to use the restroom with my son in my arms (I can't put him down b/c he is scared to death of her huge dog which she doesn't feel any reason to put him away when we come over-yet another reason) My son says "mommy a green toothbrush" Her 7yo daughter yells "excuse me! And pushed the bathroom door open on me and says- that's my green toothbrush so don't let him or anyone else TOUCH it!" I assured her we weren't going to touch her toothbrush but she pushed the door open again and says "one second - and takes another toothbrush out of the holder and says - that's my toothbrush holder and NO ONE else is allowed to stick their toothbrush in It!" This is normal behavior for her girls, and her mom sees nothing wrong with it. I could on, like how her girls fight and hate each other and spit in each others face. How they are constantly doing things I view extremely dangerous, like ridding their bikes outside alone, climbing up 30 feet into tress, etc. My girls leave their house whining, disobedient, and disrespectful and it upsets our happy home. The other mom in the group-she's nice but doesn't share in a natural lifestyle. My first experience with her was that my 5yo came over to me at the park crying. She said a mean girl told her to go away, that no one liked her. I had her show me the girl which is this other women's daughter. Her kids are not disciplined at all either. She spends all day on FB and laughs that her kids throw things out of the second story window in their house. She jokes "oh no one has broken their neck on my watch- not yet!" Another mom in the group really gets under my skin. She talks and talks and asks question after question yet never listens to your answers. She invites herself everywhere and creates drama about "how do you get there?" "Should we do this?" I do feel for her she has a 5yo son that has autism. He is very difficult to deal with. I find it hard b/c I ask him not to do things-like take away the toy my son is playing with. Yet he does it anyway and his mom does not step in and help with any of the issues surrounding him. The other mom is nice. I have a hard time relating to her. She is older (all these moms are older then me by several years) she only has 2 kids that are 10 and 8 so her kids don't match up with mine. (All these moms have older kids, none of them have 3yos or plan on having more children like me) She is very activity involved. She is always running and has no issue with leaving her kids anywhere. Something I will not do. So I could have friendships. However I choose not to. They are not the right friends for me and I don't get anything out of it.
post #39 of 48

Flmom- I have a kind of friend...last time we got together her son told my son "get out I want to play my video games"? NOT sure where that came from!! But I think 2x before go over there with my kids. Sad very sad.

 

I'm going to our LLL conference this weekend. Hoping to meet some nice moms. Maybe a friend shy.gif

post #40 of 48

I agree with what a previous poster said--- as adults, it's generally harder to find friends.

 

I actually live in an area now where I do have a pretty tight knit group of friends. I'm leaving them soon and relocating, so I'm kind of sad. I have never actually had a ton of problems finding people to connect with. I'm hoping the same holds true for my new home.

 

I think parenting differences can be a big deal, but that shouldn't make it or break it for us. My closest friend in the world has a son who hits my daughter. I have found a way now to only see her or see her and her son without my daughter. Once he can learn to control himself, we can resume playdates, but it does make things awkward.

 

What has helped me is to think--- yes, people are so different and I don't connect with 99% of people I meet--- but everyone has a story and everyone feels pain and love and happiness, just like I do. My purpose isn't to necessarily forge a connection, but to get to understand people and gain new perspectives if I need to. Keep yourself open. Maybe the reason why there are moms that you like that everyone else seems to like to is because they also are open to others and embrace differences as well as similarities.

 

Of course, I could just be really lucky. I did find an AP type group around where I live so that was nice. But I also found a lot of friends that aren't really AP and it just is what it is. I hope I have the same type of luck when I relocate across the country. Yikes! :)

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