I’ve never exactly been what you’d call a social butterfly, and making new friends is hard in general. I’m a total over-analyser, and during those first parenting months I was more concerned with how other mums would view my parenting than I was about them liking me.
During pregnancy, I was adamant that I didn’t need to join any groups or make mummy friends. More to the point, I didn’t want to.
“I don’t need new friends, I have friends. Why do I need to make new ones just because I’m now a parent? My ‘support network’ is just fine, thanks!”
The unfortunate reality was that after a few weeks I realised that I probably could have used a little support network buffer, so to speak. My friends who already had children gave great advice and were a shoulder when I needed it, but they were at different stages with their kids. My childless friends were mostly at work when I was at a loose end or in need of a rant.
Hindsight is a Wonderful Thing
Looking back, as much as I hate to admit it, I kind of wish I had joined a group, or tried harder to make friends. Now that Amelia is nearly 3, and Wills has joined our little family, I feel like there’s a little part of motherhood that I’m missing out on. Now that I’ve emerged (albeit partially) from the haze of new motherhood, some days I can think of nothing better than getting the kids together with a group of good mates and just chewing the fat for an afternoon, no-one giving a crap whether I’ve washed my hair this week, or have baby food down the front of my top.
I have great friends that I can (and do) enjoy this with but I won’t lie, I wish I had more. Mainly for the sanity of the one mum friend I have who has to be like 10 mum friends all rolled into one because I was too lazy and too ignorant to make any more!
Advice For New Mums
So if there was any advice I would give to expectant mums it would be this; make friends! However you do it, whether it be through blogging, websites like Meet Other Mums, ante-natal or NCT courses, Mumsnet, or any other kind of groups or meet-ups, believe me when I say you’ll be glad you did.