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It used to be that making new pals was as easy as recess in the schoolyard. Adulthood, however, poses its own obstacles to finding your ride or die —the least of which are crammed schedules, parental duties, and not wanting to leave your comfort zone, especially if you're an introvert.
So as an introvert, I had to push myself out of my comfort zone and purposefully find new mom friends. Small talk is my nemesis. I hate it. Most of us introverts do. It seems so shallow and not worth my time. But I had to do it…almost like taking medicine. I found my friends. I found my people who got me. But for a lot of people who self-identify as an introvert or as shy, making new Mom Friends is hard.
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In fact, Mom Friends can be the hardest friends to make. For us introverts of the world, it can be extra challenging to reach out to people. To chit chat at the park or at school pick up. We have to step so far out of our comfort zone, it can be scary and extremely uncomfortable. But there are a few simple tricks to finding mom friends we can learn from the extroverts of the world.
This is the first place to start because the close proximity makes life so much easier.
10 steps to find and make new mom friends:
Put some comfortable patio furniture in your front yard and take a book out there. Encourage your kids to play outside and then stay with them. Stand outside in the morning with your coffee.
Stand outside in the evening with your drink of choice. Go for walks around your neighborhood to meet people. Introduce yourself.
Get to know the kids in the neighborhood. Let your kids host a lemonade stand and meet neighbors as they make their purchases. What are you guys up to today? How was the baseball game yesterday? Are you feeling better? I saw your daughter riding her bike. With the younger crowd, try Mommy and Me classes and playgroups.
Our first class was when my daughter was 6 months old. There was one other kiddo in that class and the mom and I are still friends. Try music classes or park and rec classes. Look to your church or temple or mosque for playgroups. When your kiddo is ready for pre-school, or a pre-pre-school, up.
Linger at drop off and pick up so you can meet the other parents. Room Moms by default have to get to know all the other moms in the class. It might be worth the extra work to meet some awesome friends.
As an introvert, big parties with a lot of strangers stretch me. They drain me of all my energy.
Yes to block parties and dinner parties and skincare, oil, jewelry, and makeup parties. You will always meet someone new and interesting. You will forge deeper relationships with people you kind of know. Even if you buy nothing, you will probably meet someone you can become friends with.
My new neighbor invited me to a skincare party her friend was hosting. I stayed until midnight meeting the women who became my Boston Mom Tribe. I walked away with lotion and the start of amazing friendships. I now know our preschool mom crowd prefers rom-com movies at a theater that serves pitcher margaritas. And since your kids will run in the same social circles, so will you and their mom. Someone had to teach him his manners and kindness. Someone had to teach him to be awesome. It was probably his awesome mom. While your kids are playing or learning or creating, strike up conversations with the other moms.
Be on the lookout for moms you click with. Moms who easily make you laugh. Moms who are as sarcastic as you or as exhausted as you are or as quiet as you are. Then extend it and ask if they want to let the kids play in the park after the class or if they want to meet for coffee next week before class. The benefits of carpooling are numerous. In fact, one of my closest friends started out as a convenient carpool buddy. Meeting her and figuring out a carpool system that worked for both of us was crucial to our budding friendship. We saw each other twice a day, every day.
We started to get to know each other better. And as we got closer, she introduced me to three other new friends and boom, we were a Mom Tribe. And those ladies changed everything for me. Most towns have New mom seeking friend active mom groups.
I ed one when we got to our new town.
How and where to meet people
I have a toddler this age and we live near this part of town. Does anyone want to meet at the park for coffee?
Even better that a bunch of moms jumped at the chance to meet someone. They wanted to find a new mom friend too. Kind and friendly, yes.
Friends, no. Not every friendly mom you meet is right for you. Listen, to each their own.
You help clean it up and remind your kid to apologize. You scoop them up, head home, and take a rain check. We need to find a friend who can plop on your couch in their pajamas and chat with their feet on your coffee table. The chaos that ensues when my three kids are playing is excruciatingly overwhelming to my friends who only have one. The same of kids is even better. I am drawn to Mom Friends who have 3 kids like me.
7. offer to carpool
It requires zero apologies. And zero explanations.
One friend will inevitably take on more of a mentor role than a true friend. All of our kids were within a few months of each other. We had older kids that were in the same grade.