WHY I’LL BE YOUR FRIEND WHEN MY CHILD IS GROWN UP

The title of this post should properly be why I need my girlfriends now just as much as why I hope to be their friend later on in life. Especially those with children. This is not to discriminate against those that don’t have kids, it’s simply that the others might understand why I turn up looking dishevelled and can’t necessarily stay out past 10 pm. I could, I just don’t have the energy anymore. To be perfectly honest, those that don’t have children are still utterly supportive and wonderful. I’m truly blessed in the friends department. From my online blogging gals that I’ve never actually met in person but who know more about my life than my closest family. To my best friend back in Denmark, who I’m so desperate to catch up with.

Relocating to London in 2009 meant leaving behind some amazing girlfriends. Women who I have shared some (read: many embarrassing) moments of my early 20’s with. You know those formative years (spent in trendy bars in Copenhagen… or hungover in the university canteen).

Whether it’s hitting 35 this year that has made me reminiscence and take stock of my life I don’t know. I don’t miss those years as I often felt insecure and out of place, but I do miss those ladies who were with me every step of the way (even when I tripped on stone steps coming out of a nightclub on my 25th birthday and scared my shin for life… only to realise the next day when I woke up a bloody mess…literally). When I do see them we realise that despite the years have passed and our situations have changed dramatically we still connect. Although it’s so difficult to stay truly in touch when separated by countries.

MAKING NEW FRIENDS IN A NEW COUNTRY

Last year I wrote about how I found it tricky to make new friends. Especially since becoming a mum. I’m a social introvert and between being a mother, running a business and dealing with everything else in life it can be difficult to muster the energy to engage with someone new. I even compared finding new mum friends to going on several blind dates as that is what it felt like at times. Yet sometimes you realise that what you are looking for is already in your life and even when you do meet a new person, and it’s the right person, then it will naturally happen.

Loneliness it huge in early motherhood and it’s hard not to feel alone at times. With social media fuelling our fears that everyone else is out there having fun, doing a better job than us, being more successful, and having their life together it can make things even harder. You can feel judged based on your background, your current situation, your nationality and instead of feeling at ease, you feel on edge.

When this happens then take a step back and look at who is in your life. If they haven’t reached out in a while it’s unlikely that it’s because of you. It is rather where they are in life. They, too, feel stressed, overwhelmed, undervalued and tired. It doesn’t mean they don’t care, don’t love you and wouldn’t be there in a real crisis.

APPRECIATE YOUR TRUE FRIENDS

Appreciate your true friends. Those who are there now and will be there in the future. If someone listens to you ramble on, truly listens and remembers so that they can follow up next time you talk, even if it’s been quite a while, then that, in my book, is a true friend. Amongst my mum-friends we often joke that we never get to finish a sentence let alone a conversation as there will be a baby or toddler needing our attention before we have concluded our train of thought. That is essentially what makes a friendship difficult in those early years of motherhood, as we can all seem so disconnected.

I, therefore, want to say to the wonderful women in my life, especially those with children: I will be here when our little ones are grown up. When they don’t need us anymore and we’ll need each other more than ever. We’ll have plenty of time for catch ups then, for dinners and drinks and nights out. We might even miss these crazy times where toddlers are running off in opposite directions as we try and finish our chats. Thank you for being there now, on Whatsapp, online, in thought and right in front of me. I love you all dearly.

 

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15 thoughts on “WHY I’LL BE YOUR FRIEND WHEN MY CHILD IS GROWN UP

  1. Wouldn’t have survived being a mother to 3 kids without the help of my mom friends. It’s nice to find someone who just understands. It is the best to find someone who don’t just understand but also connect with.

    (I love social media but it can sometimes cause people to either knowingly or unintentionally “compare” too much. Many people feel like they have to outdo everyone else LOL.)

  2. Life is so busy that I don’t see my friends as often as I like but I know they are there at the end of the phone if I need them

  3. I was talking to my friends the other day and we complained about how hard it is to make new friends. I can’t make the effort anymore, the ones I have are enough. Great post

  4. Meeting new women friends is exactly like dating in many ways. It’s even more difficult if you’re an older mum like I am (had my kids at 43 and 45). And I have to say some women are really not that supportive or friendly.

  5. Oh, what a lovely post… Loneliness is terrible. I’ve moved on from my friends of my teens and 20’s. We are no longer in the same places. I don’t connect with them anymore. I have made new friends but they are few and far between because, like you, I’m more of a social introvert.

  6. Loneliness can be awful in early motherhood and my mummy experienced it 🙁 thankfully her friends pulled her through but it was a lot of compromise on both sides x It’s great that you have lots of online friends to chat to anytime x

  7. I totally get where you are coming from. After leaving Ireland for the UK after college I lost my true friends and have never made any proper ones since. We’ve moved again, now to Portugal and I somehow don’t see new friends in my life for a while until I get to grips with the language. It’s very lonely at times.

  8. I love this, and I totally get what you mean. When I moved to the US from the UK, I left behind all of school and college friends, those that knew me inside and out, who I could be totally myself with. I miss those friends all the time, but even more so now I’ve got little ones running around. Making friends as a mom is hard; it’s difficult to make plans with such busy schedules, and then plans often fall through when the kids are sick or you’ve forgotten an appointment you made. But I cherish the friends I do have, and know that once the craziness of the baby and toddler phase is over, we’ll have more time to reconnect.

  9. It can be hard making new friends when you become a new mum. It’s great that you have supportive friends who aren’t mums yet too though. I have one friend who I miss teribble since she moved away but we still catch up when we can.

  10. Motherhood is tricky, because in some ways you can feel crushingly lonely, but, in other ways you do get opportunities to meet other new mums, at antenatal classes, toddler groups, etc. I found the loneliness got worse when my youngest went to secondary school and I didn’t even have to do the school run anymore! It must be tough moving to a new country, I think you’re very brave!

  11. Ahhh this is so lovely Nadia having had my daughter abroad then coming back to the UK and essentially have to start out all over again I can really empathise with this. You are a beautiful person and although we have only been able to meet once out of the blogosphere I’m so happy to have met you it’s always so lovely to see you xx

  12. It is really hard to meet and make new friends that become special once you are a mum. I have been lucky in that I have a few in the UK that I had to leave behind after moving to Sweden (but who have travelled out to stay), and some lovely new friends here on our little island. I think moving to such a small place helped a lot, and everyone wanted to be so helpful too, so I hoping these are for life as well 🙂

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