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How not to make mummy friends and influence people

1
I didn’t sign up for the NCT classes where a lot of the mums in my area seem to have met and formed little latte-drinking, Joules-wearing tribes. I thought about it but it felt like it was a lot of money for what, essentially, we could get for free at the local NHS antenatal classes. I didn’t realise that those pre-natal groups can give you a lot more than just information.

Roll on to two months after the baby was born and I started to feel like I was climbing the walls, desperately in need of some adult company. The few friends I have that live

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locally don’t have any kids, so I decided my best bet to make some new mummy-friends was at a local baby class.

Scouring the internet, facebook and even our local Tesco’s notice board for any mother and baby classes, resulted in slim pickings. I eventually found a baby music class which seemed like fun and also more importantly, unlike the mother and toddler groups, it allowed small babies to attend.

Walking into the class, it felt like the first day at a new school. Scanning the room for a friendly face and space to sit, I realised that I had

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clearly missed the dress code memo. The pleather strip on my leggings squeaked loudly as I sat on the polished church hall floor, magnifying the seemingly inappropriateness of my clothing choice that morning.

I tried to make small talk with a few of the mums sitting around me but everyone already seemed to be in their own little cliques and didn’t seem interested in chatting to a newbie. One mother actually pulled the seat from under me and said it was taken when I tried to move from the floor on to a nearby chair. Another turned her back on me when

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I attempted to ask her a question. Mean girls eat your heart out.

I powered through it by focusing on my baby, making myself look busy and then scarpering as soon as the music stopped. I was so disheartened. It wasn’t what I expected. Surely us mums were all in it together? I vowed never to attend another class alone again.

By chance, a few days later, I bumped into one of the other new mums from the NHS antenatal classes at our doctors surgery. I pushed myself out of my comfort zone again and tentatively asked her a few questions about her baby.

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She was much more responsive and we chatted for a while. We awkwardly exchanged numbers on the way out and we’ve met up a few times since. It’s difficult to build a friendship with someone when all you have in common is that you’ve both had a baby but it’s been worth the effort. No mum is an island.

Getting to stay at home with your child is a privilege but it can get so lonely. People don’t tell you that part. Making new friends can be pretty difficult for some people at the best of times but under such awkward, forced circumstances, some might

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find it impossible. We need to be kind to each other and support new mums whenever we can.
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- 9 Apr 16

I didn’t sign up for the NCT classes where a lot of the mums in my area seem to have met and formed little latte-drinking, Joules-wearing tribes. I thought about it but it felt like it was a lot of money for what, essentially, we could get for free at the local NHS antenatal classes. I didn’t realise that those pre-natal groups can give you a lot more than just information.

Roll on to two months after the baby was born and I started to feel like I was climbing the walls, desperately in need of some adult company. The few friends I have that live locally don’t have any kids, so I decided my best bet to make some new mummy-friends was at a local baby class.

Scouring the internet, facebook and even our local Tesco’s notice board for any mother and baby classes, resulted in slim pickings. I eventually found a baby music class which seemed like fun and also more importantly, unlike the mother and toddler groups, it allowed small babies to attend.

Walking into the class, it felt like the first day at a new school. Scanning the room for a friendly face and space to sit, I realised that I had clearly missed the dress code memo. The pleather strip on my leggings squeaked loudly as I sat on the polished church hall floor, magnifying the seemingly inappropriateness of my clothing choice that morning.

I tried to make small talk with a few of the mums sitting around me but everyone already seemed to be in their own little cliques and didn’t seem interested in chatting to a newbie. One mother actually pulled the seat from under me and said it was taken when I tried to move from the floor on to a nearby chair. Another turned her back on me when I attempted to ask her a question. Mean girls eat your heart out.

I powered through it by focusing on my baby, making myself look busy and then scarpering as soon as the music stopped. I was so disheartened. It wasn’t what I expected. Surely us mums were all in it together? I vowed never to attend another class alone again.

By chance, a few days later, I bumped into one of the other new mums from the NHS antenatal classes at our doctors surgery. I pushed myself out of my comfort zone again and tentatively asked her a few questions about her baby. She was much more responsive and we chatted for a while. We awkwardly exchanged numbers on the way out and we’ve met up a few times since. It’s difficult to build a friendship with someone when all you have in common is that you’ve both had a baby but it’s been worth the effort. No mum is an island.

Getting to stay at home with your child is a privilege but it can get so lonely. People don’t tell you that part. Making new friends can be pretty difficult for some people at the best of times but under such awkward, forced circumstances, some might find it impossible. We need to be kind to each other and support new mums whenever we can.

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Mama of one. Wife. Lover of leopard print and coffee. Trying to stay creative. Instagram: stateofmama

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