Motherhood brings a side of loneliness most of us never expected. We become engulfed in this new world with this tiny bundle of joy, and, sadly, the mom friends and the village are not always there. And in my experience, the more children we choose to have, the more removed we become from all social circles.
Years ago, my family moved to the suburbs from the city and bought the house with the yard and the picket fence like every fairytale we are told growing up. In many ways it was everything we’d hoped for. Seeing my girls grow up and experience a small, tight-knit community was beautiful.
But, here I am, nine years later, and I still don’t fit in. It feels as though the moms in my area are part of a circle of friends I’ve never been able to be a part of. And it’s not for lack of trying.
Why is it so hard to fit in? Why is it so hard to make true mom friends? (I mean, it feels harder than finding a husband!) I have met women where I truly saw potential for a great connection, but, alas, nothing came of it.
Oftentimes, I have asked myself if there is something about me that would cause me not to fit in. I feel like the mom outside the circle. And I’ve begun to wonder how much this has impacted my girls from making stronger bonds with friends.
I know we are all different, and our backgrounds and ways of thinking can impact our relationships. As a mom, that need to feel wanted and accepted is one that rings loud. We all want to find our circle of friends and share those moments only other mothers understand.
It seems it is easier to find virtual groups nowadays — and those groups can be helpful. But so often, people are willing to talk via social media but then don’t seem interested in developing a face-to-face friendship. This is something that still confuses me. I view social media as a bridge to real and fruitful relationships. That need for connection and acceptance is real in all realms.
I want to be the mom who hosts moms nights out. I want to be the mom you call to vent to when you’re having a hard day. I want to be the mom you text to brag about your latest wins. I want to be part of the circle of mom friends.
How can I do that? Well, I’ll start by trying to be inclusive in all ways. Can’t we all do better at including others? Look for those moms who aren’t at the night out. Keep an eye out for the mom who attends school events alone. Set up your camp chair next to the mom who sits by herself at her child’s soccer game. Be that bridge and reach out. Include her in the group text or acknowledge a special day in her life. We all want to be on the inside of the circle.