2 years ago, my family moved to a new city and I knew absolutely no one. This was a first for me. The only other time I had moved to a new city was when I got married, but my husband had already been living there for a year, so I had a ‘head start’ of sorts. In college, at least where I attended, they provided ample opportunities to meet your peers. Plus, if you had a roommate you at least went in knowing one person’s name.
Finding new relationships can be daunting, even paralyzing for some. Maybe it’s not finding friends in a new city, but you’re in a new season of life and want to make similarly seasoned (Is that a thing? going with it…) friends. Which brings me to 5 Ways to Meet Mom Friends. But honestly, these pertain to any friendship, so if you don’t have little fingers wiggling under the bathroom door when you’re trying to use it in peace, you can still utilize these! If you’ve ever had a toddler permanently attached to your hip, then settle in for a brief moment of girl time.
If you’re anything like my introverted self, hearing “Go make friends” makes me immediately relate to the Wicked Witch of the West where she screeches “I’m melting! I’m melting!”. Not the wicked part, the screeching and melting part. Putting myself out there and meeting new people is incredibly intimidating and draining to me. What I’ve learned about myself is that because of this, I choose to avoid these situations at all cost. I would rather stay in my house. But this is unrealistic. We were built and wired for relationships. We need them.
So the next time you are at a park and there’s another mom there, start chatting with her. Begin with a common experience. “How old is your daughter? Mine too! We are looking into local preschools, have any suggestions?” You may not walk away with a friend, but you’ve been brave and that’s certainly worth being proud of! And consider this, what if she is looking for friends too? You may be what she’s been looking for!
Did you know that it can take just 20 seconds to detect whether a stranger is inclined to being trustworthy, kind or compassionate? It’s true! Backed by science. So that means you have 20 seconds to make the best first impression to your future BFF. And let’s be honest, it’s not going to happen if you have Angry Resting Face (yes, it’s a thing and you know what I’m talking about if you’ve been diagnosed with ARF) or you’re buried in whatever is way more interesting in your phone. So make a habit of smiling and putting away your phone when you’re out in public (it’s a good practice for home too).
There are many different ways of meeting others from joining a group or signing up for a class. Here are a few places to begin your search:
- MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers)
- Storytime at the Library
- Online communities
- Music class
- Attend a home business party
Remember how it takes 20 seconds to size up a person? Take this opportunity to put your judgement aside when you see that she has different parenting techniques than you. Or maybe she’s actually dressed in real clothes (not sweats) and you instantly think you know she has it all together. There is no way to know someone’s insides by the look of their outside. We have an incredible chance to learn from one another and our differences. Who knows, she may have a great tip on how to transform last night’s leftovers!
Be a Coordinator
Don’t be afraid to start your own group! Put something out on Facebook or start a group on Meetup.com. Being a coordinator means setting the place and time. Don’t put pressure on yourself to put on an event, just a casual time of meeting other moms. Maybe that’s setting the place and time for a park playdate or a kid-free coffee time.
Do you have any other suggestions for meeting new mom friends? I’d love to hear them!