If you have a job outside the home, you will naturally have better chances to interact with other people, whether striking up a conversation during your commute or chatting with coworkers at work.
But if you spend most of your time at home or you work remotely, it is not easy to get a chance to speak with anyone face-to-face.
So, if you want to make friends – let’s put you out there. Make yourself more accessible and approachable to potential “mom friends” who want to know you. But, how?
Here are a few tips – but you should be willing to initiate the conversation, no matter whether it is online or offline.
How to make friends as a stay-at-home mom
1. Join mom groups and actively interact with people
There are many Facebook groups specifically open to moms in your area. Join a group and share helpful tips with moms looking for advice.
Once you show up your face regularly, you will find yourself bonding with like-minded moms. More often than not, this can lead to meeting up for playtime for your children, or simply strolling through the neighbourhood, pushing strollers.
2. Initiate a conversation
Whether at the playground, a daycare drop-off or pick-up, or the neighbourhood grocery store, grab a chance to make a friendly comment and strike up an exchange with other moms. It can be as simple a question as how old their kids are, or a comment about the toys they are playing with. Once you exchange a few questions, you will get a sense of whether or not you could get along well with that mom. If not, let it remain a casual chat between moms. Nothing to lose, really.
3. Post open playgroup invitations on the mommy groups you are involved in
This method can be tricky for some moms who are more private and picky about the people they hang out with. But once in a while, it could be a fun chance to host a group of moms in a similar situation, with similar-aged kids, for coffee and playtime.
The more people you involve, the higher the chance you will find one or two moms you get along with during the gathering, and the greater the likelihood that they will invite you to their playgroups, which could even lead to regular meetings.
4. Be a problem-solver
We moms love a helping hand, no matter what day of the week, because our work never ends. If you could be the mom who can babysit one or two hours when your neighbour needs to run a quick errand, you will be a lifesaver.
As grown-ups, we tend to gravitate toward people with resources and know-how. This should come as no surprise, since most of us are well past the age for hanging out with friends for silly fun and talking about boys.
Now, when we chat with friends, many times the subject is a “How to”, like how to put your kids to bed without struggling for a couple of hours every time, how to make picky eaters eat healthier food, or how to discipline your kids when they get out of control, and so on. If you share your expertise as a mom, you will become a natural mommy magnet.
5. Be more fun and inspiring
No one wants to hear tired and exhausted moms rant all the time. Mommy friends are also women going through the trials and difficulties of motherhood just like you. It means they are also fighting their own struggles.
Instead of sharing your hardship most of the time, try to share your ways of coping with the problems, and tips and hacks. In a way, you will be motivating other moms in this chaotic battle of motherhood.
Show your strength and the positive side of your motherhood game. Every mom has something they are good at, whatever they are doing. One of my friends is good at organizing kids’ outdoor activities and family outings, while another friend of mine is good at decorating and making her house Instagramable, any time of day.
Be an encouraging person to other moms so you will be in their minds, especially when they are down. In the end, when moms look for friends, it is usually because they need to connect with someone who knows the road they are walking on. So, if you could be that person for another mom and vice versa, the seeds of a new friendship are sown.
But remember, any relationship thrives on give-and-take. So if you’re a friend that makes others feel energized around you, you deserve the same in return.
6. Be the mommy friend you wish to have
Everyone has different preferences when they look for friends. Personally, I like friends with abundant humour and zero judgement. These two characteristics are the main catalyst for my crush on my mommy friends, so I also try to be a fun and non-judgement friend. It seems people tend to gravitate toward like-minded people.
Whatever the characteristics you wish to find in your mom friends, be that person to others first. I have found this is the quickest way to find a soulmate among your mommy friends.
These tips are written for stay-at-home mothers, but they would also benefit moms in other situations:
1. Single moms wear so many hats for their families and thinking about making a new friend might be overwhelming. What about posting in a single moms group to share chores and childcare
It might take time to exchange messages and short gatherings to really get to know other moms, but once the security checklist is all ticked off, it could be a good way to bond with a new friend, by sharing childcare as a team.
- What about exchanging services with other moms in the same boat? Make extra meals and swap, so you each have two kinds of meals to choose from, instead of one.
- If you do homeschooling, there are moms who alternate days teaching their kids in a small group. For example, you teach math on Monday and another mom teaches science on Tuesday, and so on.
2. Working moms who want to make friends outside of work
- Since you are at work and you most likely rely on some type of childcare service, initiating conversation with other working moms at your child’s daycare or school might enable you to find like-minded moms, who might feel isolated by a schedule that revolves mostly around work and family.
- Suggest weekend family hangouts for a barbeque or grocery shopping together. Opportunities are very limited, so you have to find a way to incorporate these experiences around your other commitments, as other working moms probably do too.
3. New moms who feel absolutely lost in motherhood
- There are breastfeeding groups full of moms in your situation, as well as a list of other groups that the hospital will provide for you to explore.
- Post on social media for a gym buddy, if you are planning on getting back into shape post-pregnancy. There are many moms who want the exact same thing but hesitate at committing to a gym membership.