Monday, April 4, 2011

Because you gotta have friends...

When you have your first child, your relationships with your friends change.

You Have Kids, They Don't
If you have kids and your friends do not, no matter how many times you say it won't happen, your relationship changes drastically. You see those without kids less and less, for many reasons...your life is turned upside down after having a kid and that child is now your life...while they are happy for you, they can't totally relate to what you are going through, as they are in the "adults only" part of life still. While you would love to get into the adults-only pool area at times, you are now with child and stuck in the family pool, that is most likely filled with pee. You try your best to keep these friends in your life as much as they were pre-baby, but fact is, they can only hear you talk about breast-feeding and poop so much. These friends will be there to support you, and comment on the many photos you post on Facebook of baby, but fact of the matter is, your lives have taken different paths. If you are lucky, once these friends start having kids, they will be back in your life again, and you can hopefully pick up where you left off.

My personal experience with this scenario is being the person without the kids and watching my friends have kids all around me. It was even harder as I was trying to have kids at the same time with no luck (took us 2 years) so I was watching them all go through the baby-bliss while I was visiting the hospital every day to have my kooka examined and blood taken...but I digress.

You Finally Have Kids
When you finally have kids like all your other friends, your relationship greatly changes with those friends. You are now in the inner circle of Mom-dom. You now understand all the complaints about sleepless nights, sore nipples, and taking forever to get places. You know what a My Breast Friend is! You look to these friends for advice, and support, and love to get together with them and their children because now you are truly part of the gang! You understand why they would rather stay at home with baby rather than go out for drinks at night (soon they will want that, I promise). You talk with these friends and see them much more often than you did before you got pregnant and had baby. Unless...

They Go Back To Work, You Don't
If you have kids and decide to be a SAHM, and your friends go back to the office, your relationship with those friends change. For one, you obviously don't get to see them as often as you would like. Their only free time is on the weekend, and while you would love to see them then, that is their time to run errands, and actually have the family time they don't get during the week. You cherish the time you had during their maternity leave, as you both were playing SAHM together, but that comes quickly to an end as your friends step back into the working world wearing business suits and you are left in your yoga sweats. It now takes months of planning to actually see these friends, as their weekends fill up quickly, but when you do see each other it is like nothing ever changed. These are the friends that you mostly keep in touch with over email now, and you will always be a little sad that they didn't choose to stay at home because you would love to see them more often. (Yes, you know who you are. :)

SAHM's With Kids The Same Age
When you first have kids it is very important that you seek out a support group of women who have babies the same age. You will be overwhelmed by the changes in your life, and I can't stress enough how much it helps to have Mama friends while you are going through all of this. These women will be very important to you, as you are going through the same life changing event at the same time in your lives. Even though they are strangers, you have a common bond of being a new mom and not knowing what the hell you are doing. If you are lucky enough these Mamas will love tequila and the Real Housewives of Anywhere as much as you do and you will forge a bond that will last a lifetime. And if you are lucky to all be SAHMs, these will be your Ladies Who Lunch, and your play date well as your confidants and gossip mongrels!

No matter what your situation with your friends is these days, it is important to have friends and support (other than your husband) in your life. Being a mom can be a lonely job sometimes, and with good friends around to share in the ups and downs of parenting your life will be all the more rewarding!

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