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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've seen a lot of threads about the difficulty in making friends as a SAHM.
Dh and I moved to a new town about a year ago and I have found that a lot of moms that I see and have a rapport with just don't want to make the effort to establish friendships. It's frustrating but I wonder if it's mainly because we're all so tired. I know that sounds simplistic but in comparison, when I'm out with ds and we see nannies with their kids they are almost always so friendly and open. Moms, OTOH, often just look so tired and worn out and although they may be somewhat friendly there seems to be more of a line. It's like they're out with their kids to pass time/make it through the day, but they're just trying to survive and don't have the energy for much else.
Anyone agree or have another opinion?
 

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I never thought about it that way. You could be right. I just tend not to fit in with most 'mainstream' moms. I'm very shy (I have to force myself to be outgoing) so it's really difficult for me to strike up a conversation.
I'd be interested in hearing some new ideas for making friends though.
 

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From where I am, it is very difficult for me to make friends. There are two main reasons for this.

1) I have seven children that not only raise, but homeschool, too. This makes for me having very little time to get involved with anyone.

2) A majority of the other moms around me (like 99%-100%) only want to get together with other moms WITHOUT their children. They "want a break" and never get together with children. So, because I take my children with me everywhere, I just don't fit in.

SO...All my "friends" are on line.
 

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Yep, many of the moms near me want to get together without children in tow. This would be ok with me on occasion (just on a saturday during the day though) but my son is with me ALL the time other than a few hours on some saturdays.
Most of the moms in the Moms Club want to do Mom's Night Out. I don't go out at night
 

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I love to get out once in awhile to pursue my own interests. The moms on my street have a mom's night once every few months, and it's usually dinner out then talking or going for a walk. I find the people i connect best with are like-minded and have a similar parenting philosophy. "observing' other mom's in 'action' is a great way to guage whow they are with their children...like at playgrounps or the playground. As an example, i know i could never be friends with a spanker...it goes against everything I believe about child rearing, so i don't bother to try to connect with anyone i see physically disiplining their children. That said, i am pretty outgoing and self confident, i have no problem striking up a conversation with another mom at the playground...and i can usually tell within that first meeting is she is someone that I would like to have playdates with or socialize with. i have a "core' of mommy friends that i tend to stick with, though, so I usually don't make new 'mommy friends' unless we are in a repeated social situation together with out kids, like an organized sport or playgroup.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I would think this also depends on your geographic area, meaning that in some areas people are naturally just more friendly than others.
I've had moms that I've met at parks spontaneously give me their names and numbers to get together again with our kids, BUT they are always moms that seem to have more energy and are not so overwhelmed.
I think because of the aforementioned overwhelm people would feel more comfortable just sticking to connections from their playgroups and so on. If you only have so much energy you can only exert so much towards outside relationships.
My high needs son finally has calmed down enough that we can travel 1/2 hr in the car so I just joined a moms group. I obviously will meet people that are actively seeking friendships so hopefully I will meet a mom and child that mesh with mine. But the park thing is frustrating for me because I know these tired moms need support. Heck, we all need support. We need to get together so our kids play together (and IMO small 2 mom groups work better for this), we need to support and inspire each other, etc. so I wish it was easier to connect.
 

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I've only just recently made a couple of friends with similar-aged children, and my son is two! I have yet to get together with them without our children--we generally plan an outing together (with kids) with each of them once a week or so. This works because I'm not involved in a playgroup or other "class" -- it's about all of the planning I can handle.

I found these two friends in different ways. One I met in a mainstream moms group. The second I met at a park and immediately had a connection with her--thus far she's the only person I've ever exchanged numbers with after a chance meeting. It happened to be a good, calm day for me and the kids...maybe that made the difference, made me a little more open.

If I were starting over, I'd get involved in LLL or a Holistic Moms group, or another "alternative" kid-friendly group where there would be more of a chance of meeting similarly-minded mothers. Getting to know someone over several meetings in a group will often allow you to develop enough of a connection that you'd want to pursue individual meetings/playdates/talk on the phone, etc. That can make all the difference for a tired mom--it's not just something else to do, but something you look forward to doing for yourself.
 

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I've often wondered about this myself. I had one mama who was a WOHM who I met through my DDs swim class & we hit it off (we were the only 2 using CD
). We e-mailed for awhile, but when it actually got around to scheduling a playdate or something nothing ever came of it. I think she's just too darn busy! My best friend is also a WOHM and getting together with her is impossible. I can maybe steal 1/2 of phone time on an evening or Saturday. We do manage a playdate every few months, but generally we have to schedule it *weeks* aheads of time. *sigh* NOT just a friend you can call up and say, "Hey, want to go have coffee at Borders while the kids play in the book section?" or something like that....

Meeting other moms at the park -- forget it! Everyone I see is either already there as part of a group or WAY too busy chasing their kids around to get to know the other mamas. I even checked meetup.com and there is nobody in our area signed up!

I do agree that the "culture" in your area can make a big difference. We live in a really rural town that doesn't have many playgroups or that type of stuff. I'd even consider Gymboree some days, but we don't have one! Now, there's a really great town across the lake from us (different state too) that has an awesome family friendly culture. We took DD to a Samples concert over there on Thursday and at least 3/4 of the people had little kids with them. I even had a really nice conversation with the mama sitting next to us while our kids played together. It was great! But that town is over an hour away (plus a $20 ferry ride + gas) from where we live, so it's not like I can get over there all the time to visit. =(

If we ever have to relocate again I will definitly consider what parenting resources are available in an area. I'd love to live some place that has AP playgroups and stuff like that. Also, museums or zoos or other things we could get season passes to.

As it is, I'm going to start going to LLL meetings in a couple months (once I'm closer to my due date) and hopefully meet some like-minded mamas there for the time being.

Holly
 

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I had joined a playgroup in my area when they didn't fit my needs me and a few other ladies branched off and started our own group. We do have MNO once a month just so we can get out kid free. We mall walk twice a week (with the kids) and have playgroup once a week. It's great we get adult interaction and the kids get to be around other kids.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by OdeToJoy
I never thought about it that way. You could be right. I just tend not to fit in with most 'mainstream' moms. I'm very shy (I have to force myself to be outgoing) so it's really difficult for me to strike up a conversation.
I'd be interested in hearing some new ideas for making friends though.
I'm on a small military post and to be quite honest, I don't like a lot of the other moms around here.
: The friends I used to have don't have kids and it's hard to do things with them that are enjoyable for them and kid friendly. My best friend went back to the states, and although she wasn't a mom, she was really into kids and never minded toting the monster with us on our excursions. Also, I'm not mainstream...so it's hard to meet people that share my viewpoints. At this point, my socializing with adults consist of the babysitter and the people I know that I used to work with on post, which means I see them when I go in the store...
 

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My friend calls this "Mommy Dating". She jokes she's going to get business cards made up saying "SAHM. Available for playdates Wed. after naps. Call 555-5555 for a good time." and pass them out at the park and the library
.

Here's what I do:

1.) Join EVERYTHING. Church/religious groups, LLL, baby classes, library story times, etc. Whatever is available.

2.) Strike up a conversation. Some good openers are "How old is your little one?", "Goodness, how cute!", "Have you been to the new ______ for kids yet?" and even the cheesy "Come here often?" doesn't sound so bad from mom to mom
.

3.) When it looks like time to leave or whatever say, "It was really nice talking to you and it looks like the kids had a nice time playing." then, depending on the mood, you can say something like "Maybe we can meet here again- I know DC would love a playmate!" or "Hey, do you want to stop by for coffee sometime and the kids could play? I'd love to hear about ______ that you mentioned before!" or at the very least, say "It was great talking to you. I hope we see eachother again!"

4.) Keep your cell phone on you. If it seems appropriate, you can exchange phone numbers and put it in your phone while seeming casual.

5.) Call shortly afterward. Don't wait too long!

6.) Give people a chance. Unless they are clearly totally not your type, it IS possible to have good friends who are not identical to you. And how well do you really know someone if you just see them at the park?

7.) Invite friends of friends. If you meet them at a get together, say "Hey, Suzy, invite Sarah to come next time! I think she'd like it..."

8.) Go to the same things over and over. You will get to know people (though most likely, you will have to speak up if it is to get further than that!).

9.) Put yourself out there. The worst that happens is a polite rebuff. The best that happens is you make a friend, so what do you have to loose by a friendly offer of a cup of coffee or meeting at the park?

10.) Host. Have a neighborhood BBQ. Offer your house for meetings. Go to your local church or organization and volunteer to start a play time. Offer to drive the kids to practice in a carpool. Throw a party and invite everyone you can think of. Once people have gotten over that intitial "hump", it won't seem akward to invite them again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Those are great ideas. I would say, too, to not be afraid to give someone your name and number and suggest that you meet again at the park or for a playdate. Usually they will give you their name and number, too.
I have a super social son so I've been forced to be really social. What I find frustrating, in my particular situation, though, is when i meet a mom that I like but my son doesn't find her child interesting. My son will either start acting up when we're talking or will walk away so I have to chase him (he's barely 2 so I can't let him be by himself). Very frustrating. Of course the other frustrating thing is when the other mom is too tired/overwhelmed to be social back (hence my original post). The nannies are usually great fun, though!
 

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I had my dh's cousin ask if I wanted to come over for a playdate, so we did. It was nice, our dc all played together. The only problem is that she works the hours of a teacher and is going back to work soon. She asked if I wanted to do playdates with me in the evenings or weekends. My dh works a ton, and by the time he gets home from work(around 7pm) I just don't want to go anywhere. I asked if she would want to hang out on the weekend evenings with our dhs and dcs, but she wasn't interested. So, it was an akward moment. But, oh well.

I really don't talk to anyone during the days, I really just got tired of trying to find moms to talk to at parks, malls, etc. It really does feel as though most of them aren't all that interested.
 

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I too am having a hard time making friends and Ive lived here my whole life. I love my girls, and like many pp's I take them where ever I go. My hubby would like me to do more things on my own, but I enjoy them...thats why people have kids. I had many friends, but married young, and had my daughter fairly young. Hubby as well. All of the "friends" we had, disappeared after that. BUt thats ok with us. We do have one set of VERY nice friends now taht I think of it, but we dont do much with them. We have our family and thats whats important to us.
 
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