Since giving birth to my daughter nearly two years ago, making friends with other moms has been a bit of a challenge for me. I really had trouble connecting with the other new parents in the very first group I joined when my daughter was born. I was reeling from the big changes in my life and adjusting to motherhood and my new identity. Being in that new emotional space and still figuring things out, while being totally exhausted and overwhelmed, there was a lot to overcome to just make basic conversation with the people that I met. But I kept trying and I’ve become better and better at it every day. Over the last two years, I’ve learned some tips and tricks to making parent friends that have really worked for me:
First of all, don’t stress. Just be yourself! It’s the same advice your mom probably gave you when you were starting elementary school. Though it may take some time, you’ll find your people. It may take a little while to find moms you really connect with, but until then, don’t be discouraged.
Try to get involved in the mom’s groups and playgroups in your area. Meet up with a few of them and see if you click with anyone or if the crowd seems really not your type, consider starting your own!
Frequent places where kids and moms congregate – local playspaces, community events for children, the children’s area at your local library (story time is a great place to meet new kids/moms!) or sign up for some kids classes like art or swimming in your neighborhood.
Bring an extra snack! Having an extra snack on hand for your kid to share with a new kid (and mom!) that you might meet is a nice way to spend a little bit more one-on-one time with someone new and share a little about yourself.
This may seem simple but – be kind! Celebrate and engage the other kids you and your little one meet. As moms, we all want our kid to feel supported, encouraged and connected to others in our community and sincerely showing an interest in the growth of the kids you meet in classes and groups will draw other moms to you.
Try out some of the mom-connecting apps out there like Peanut and Hello Mamas. Similar to popular dating apps like Bumble and Tinder, these mom meet up apps help you find like-minded moms in your area.
Put yourself out there as much as you can. Be open, be a good listener, share some of your experience and be approachable. Talk to other moms you see out and about and try to engage them in conversation about those little things (the good and the bad) that we are all experiencing as new moms.