To the lonely mom who longs for a friend. When I found out I was pregnant, I found my mom community on the baby center’s birth club back in 2014. We moms were together in it and raised our babies by helping each other for the first few years of their lives. As the babies and toddlers turned into preschoolers, we grew apart. Part of it was because each one of us found her own community at the local preschools. I started mom blogging around the same time, and instead of a preschool mom gang I found my mom blogger gang online.
Fast forward to today, my best mom blogger friend (also a single mom) messaged me saying something that I could relate to. Despite being surrounded by our loved ones, we were feeling LONELY. Just to confirm, I asked her being alone and lonely are two different things, are your sure you are feeling lonely? But deep down I knew the feeling, and I knew it was real. We both grew apart when she found her own gang of single mom bloggers in her city. And a few months ago, they all grew apart too.
Here are a few lessons that I learned in the last 7 years of being a mom.
Growing apart is a part of Growing up
I feel becoming a parent has been life changing. Not only because I have to take care of another human being. But also because I see through a lot of society’s and capitalism’s bullshit. And the best part is, I am not afraid to call it out because we know the truth.
Similarly, when we see right through people’s bullshit, I don’t think there is at all a reason to hold back and not call it out even if its you who is being your self bullshitting self. I was someone who would internalise other people’s feelings. So if someone else is hurt, I would feel their pain too. Unlearning this is still a work in progress. As an adult I now realise that this is what I do and most of the times I take care of myself.
As an introvert mom, I have realised that I cannot be friends with every mom I meet. A part of this is because since I became a mom, my mindset has only kept growing and I don’t want to level down or look back. The simple funda here is with time and experiences we all grow and what doesn’t help us grow or holds us back is better left behind.
Another reason could be similar to what I said above, we all want to raise our kids in a certain way and while every parent is the best parent many times we beg to differ. So its ok if you have grown apart from your mom friend/s. Just look at all the difference that it has made in your busy, tired daily life.
Adult friendships are complicated
Just observe younger kids in a park. They will mostly play or get along with any and every child regardless the similarities or differences. But as they grow up, they will eventually find their person/people depending upon their nature of being an introvert or extrovert. They will have fewer friends and more acquaintances.
Very few are lucky to have the same set of friends for all the seasons of life. I am not one of them. I do have childhood friends but we all are at different phases of life and there is rarely a midway. They are mostly all bachelors trying to build a career and life for themselves. Most of them don’t relate to being a parent and their idea of fun is limited to clubs and night outs.
We adults carry a baggage from our childhood and that makes relationships difficult for most of us. Some of us are people pleasers, some of us are unable to express our emotions or true selves, while some lack confidence. Honestly, all of us need therapy but even the well educated moms won’t see one because it’s still a taboo.
So this entire combination makes adults, COMPLICATED and adult friendships more complicated. But make sure that you understand that having a mental illness and being lonely are two different things.
They grow up too fast
I know every mom already knows and feels this. But most of the moms I spoke to who felt lonely were moms of kids who have started going to school. Our kids need our constant attention till the age of 6-7. Till then we feel needed, we feel seen and we feel less lonely. 7 years of undivided attention comes with a lot of dedication and patience. Suddenly when they want share most of their secrets with their friends and have fun with their friends. It is natural to feel left out and alone. And at this stage if you don’t have a mom best friend or a mom gang, life might start getting lonelier.
Friendships take time
If you have read till here, know this that finding your person takes time. Finding a good mom friend takes time. Building a connection takes up small but a great deal of efforts. Being a friend needs consistency. And if you find it difficult to be consistent I will urge you to see a therapist/mentor/coach.
Where to find mom friends?
While online is great, but not everyone is a great writer or enjoy writing messages. I feel finding at least two – four mom friends is important. You moms need someone to talk to, to have fun with and share your life with too. So where can we find mom friends?
- Local Facebook Groups – Find your local mom groups on Facebook and try to be active there. Generally, such groups organise events/meet ups once every quarter or on special occasions. May be you could find your person in one of the events.
- Society – Try to get acquainted with your child’s friends and their parents in your society/colony. May be you guys can be friends too?
- School – I have seen great friendships when it comes to school mom friends.
- Park – You can find new friends in parks too.
The ultimate message of this article is for you to go out and find your tribe. Meet up with people once in a while and have fun! You don’t have to be lonely.