Thursday, May 15, 2014 many of us have them?

Lately I've been thinking about friendships. I think of the changing face of my adult relationships - how, if I were to throw a party today, how different it would look from a party I threw two years ago. So many of my old friendships have waned - and I've also met a ton of new people, and gotten close to people I only knew slightly before, all because of having kids.

The other day a friend I see a couple of times a month remarked how when I first told her I was pregnant with B that she immediately thought she'd never see me again - being older and childless I'm sure she's been witness to this scenario dozens of times, as I was even in my thirties. Turns out I see her more now than I ever have - because she's available during the day, loves my kid(s), and of course I do enjoy her company. I find I work a lot harder to maintain my friendships now - but this is due to a couple of unique circumstances: I don't work outside the home, so access to friends is my only way of being around adults, and there's no husband or partner to fulfill that need. I also don't want to become that woman who has kids and immediately drops all her friends.

I have to say, though, that I'm lucky that most of my friends now have kids. There are only a couple of hold outs. I could have been one of them, but went down a different path. I often think if I had been surrounded by a big group of perpetually single people I could hang out with and travel with and spend holidays with I may never have had kids...but where, after thirty or thirty-five, do those big groups of single people exist? People want to pair off, and most people who pair off want kids, and most people who have one kid want another. I had an "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em" mentality, and that worked for me. I hate feeling left behind.

I look at the people I spend a lot of time with now and realize with sadness that even some of them will fall away; once these kids start school, especially, that'll be a whole new crop of friends that will eclipse the old mommy & me group friends. The sort of random people I hang with these days may drift away as our children's lives become more complex. 

One thing that will hopefully keep things a little more consistent for us will be the fact that I plan on not moving...ever. We moved many times before I was ten; until fifth grade I was in a new school just about every year, sometimes twice in a year. And for no better reason than my mother just couldn't stay still. I do feel like all that disruption early on had a major damaging effect on me. To this day I have hardly any friends that I made before the age of twenty; I so envy those people that have big groups of friends that they grew up with - it's like having a whole other family. I want that for my kids so badly I'd do just about anything to make sure they have it - same house, same school, same friends. In that one area I really do want to give them everything I never had. 


  1. We moved only twice when it mattered to me - age 7 and age 14. I have always longed to have friends I've known my whole life. I'll never have that.

    My friends now are pretty much the same as before. The only ones I don't see are the ones who never initiated get-togethers much even before I had kids. I won't lie - I LOVE getting invited to "no kids" events right now. Felix is older and I can afford a sitter, so it's really enjoyable. All my friends with kids have teenagers by now.

  2. I grasp desperately to the (very) few friends I have now because I am horribly shy & making new friends is anxiety inducing to me. Add on top of that being a home body, making new friends is near impossible. I wish I had more IRL friends that had kids the same age as E for her sake. Other than the couple of hours a week she's in preschool, she's never around children, let alone ones her own age! I feel so guilty about that.

  3. Friends are tough. I think the older you get, the harder it can be to make new friends. I always say I have a MUCH bigger social life now than I ever did before I had a child. And I know why, too - I actually like to do the things you do with kids, and I never liked the things you do without them. I was never a bar or club person, although games nights were ok. But I like going to the park, the playground, story hour, etc. Kids make it so much easier for me, because I have so much social anxiety and always felt like everyone was looking at and judging me (when they probably weren't).

    I agree with wanting to put down roots and stay put. Jordyn and I are moving (ten minutes away) in about 3.5 weeks (yikes!!), and my plan is to never move again!