Three Friends Every Mom Should Have

There are three friends every mom should have. It’s very easy to become isolated as a parent, or to stop expanding your social network as you start to realize what being a parent really means. Here are three friends you’ll want to hunt down, now matter what.

The Peer: This mom has a child about the same age as yours. You have similar parenting styles, and can commiserate together about the trying times in child’s development. You can laugh together as your children go through the same stages, and chances are, your kids will become friends with each other too.

Where to find her- She is everywhere. You can find her at your child’s activities, you can find her when you pick up your child from school or daycare, you can find her buying clothes in the kids department. She’s the easiest friend to find, because your kids will find each other.

The Mentor: This mom has a child who is older than yours. It could be about five years older, or it could be much older, it doesn’t really matter. This is the friend who reassures you that you aren’t damaging your child for life by making her do XYZ. She assures you that children are resililant little creatures, that it’s important to enjoy these early years because they go by so fast.

Where to find her- She might be the parent of a child your child’s age, as well as an older child. She might be a coworker or a neighbor, she might be the mother of your teenage babysitter. Look for her until you find her, because her input is priceless. It’s very easy to get wrapped up in “new to you” issues with your kids. Having a mentor mom can help you see the light at the end of the tunnel, as well as put things in perspective in a way that only a mom who has been there can.

The Newbie: This is the mom that you will, in turn, mentor.  Put together a basket of essentials you know she’ll need. Bring her dinner. Offer to watch the baby while she takes a nap. Do the things that people did for you, or that you wished someone had thought to do.

Where to find her- Maybe you’ve met while you were both expecting,  but this is your second child. Maybe she’s a coworker, maybe she’s at your gym or in your casual social circle. Seek her out and then proceed to encourage her, console her, and remind her that it really is all just fleeting.

What kind of mom friends are essential on your list?


11 replies on “Three Friends Every Mom Should Have”

I didn’t have any mom friends for the longest time. When Mini was born, I was only 21, so no one else was having babies. And I lived far away from my family. And then I lost my job. Even when Mini finally enrolled in school I didn’t find friends among the other mothers — I was so much younger than they were, and I had funny hair and visible tattoos and was clearly much poorer than they were. The first time I spotted another mother at Mini’s school who was my age, I clutched my husband’s arm and whispered ‘She’s got to be my friend!’

Actually, she is now, though our friendship isn’t based around our kids, who don’t care for each other.

So I can’t help but agree with your checklist — parenting is so isolating and lonely, and everyone judges you all the time. Support, especially support that comes from outside your immediate family, is vital. Now that my friends and siblings have finally started to have kids I find myself in that curious place as the older mentor, where everyone seems to really appreciate my advice and willingness to babysit. Its nice.

I agree with all of these, but the one I really wish for? The Co-Worker.

I am the only person in my building with school age children, so I am the only one who ever has to 1) take time off with a sick child/take child to allergist, dentist, etc., 2) take time off to go to school programs or teacher conferences, 3) leave early/come in late due to inclement weather decrees by the school system, and 4) take a day off when childcare isn’t open on a school holiday/furlough day.

I feel like it makes me stick out like a sore thumb that any time I take off is under scrutiny.

My mission in life is to be this friend. And the World’s Greatest Aunt. I don’t plan on having kids, but I love them, so I figure being a non-mom friend and awesome aunt will be a good way to get my kid-fix and stay connected when all my friends and family start making babies. Which I kind of wish they would start doing already, because there is only one small child in my life regularly right now, and that’s really not enough.

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