Finding mom friends is kind of like dating. You put yourself out there and boldly set forth into a land of relational awkwardness—and not everyone is going to like you. It’s a simple, albeit brutal, reality. I, for example, know I am not everyone’s favorite cup of dark roast coffee. Many “momlationships” will never extend past chitchat at the bus stop.
But some—the mighty few—will make it through, and it is for those brave few that we soldier on through a land of relational awkwardness.
Trolling for Mom Friends
You’ve been there, right? You try to make small talk with other moms during your children’s shared activities (like music class or swimming lessons). This stage is all about making a connection. If you toss out a movie quote or tell a cute story about your kid, you’re hoping for at least a polite smile and a courtesy laugh.
If you bother to put down your Kindle and attempt an actual conversation, you’re hoping the other mom will exchange a few interesting details. And if your kids seem to be getting along in swimming/dance/karate lessons, then even better. So at the end of the activity, casually ask her about a playdate.
If your new potential mom-friend says yes, you plan to meet on neutral territory (like the park). Location is critical for a good “mom date.” You want a place that sets you up for the highest probability for entertaining and engaging your children. Otherwise, you’re stuck climbing through plastic tunnels with your kid on your back while the other mom mentally breaks up with you from her comfortable seat on the bench.1