Middle school

This is a whine. 

Parenting feels like middle school. 

I’m part of a group that has rotating weekly playdates (if you are also part of that group you know I love you. You can skip this whole thing of you want). When I was first added to the group it was great and we went to playdates and hosted them and had fun. 

At this point there is maybe 1-2 playdates a month. Sometimes we can go and sometimes we can’t. But everyone hangs out outside of the playdates. I see their pictures on instagram and facebook with other kids from the group. Sometimes one on one and sometimes a group of them. Honestly, I feel like we’re just not cool enough to be invited. 

A lot of things play into this. A lot of the moms are stay at home moms and get together during the day. A lot of moms are on baby 2 or close to it. I have an abrasive personality. 

I know we should make more effort with friends but honesty most interaction we have with other people is initiated by us. And I do all the social arranging so it’s initiated by me. Between work and swim lessons and life it’s hard to do it all. 

We are going out of town a weekend in May, three weekends in June, and then for 2.5 weeks. I can’t wait – I feel like I just need to get out of this town. My family can have a great time on our own. 

Once you know how it feels to be a 12 year old girl I don’t think it ever goes away. 

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Posted on April 28, 2017, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Yeh, it feels like I moved to a new school, made some friends, and yet I’m not cool enough to be invited to anything. I’ve been trying and then it doesn’t feel worth it because it’s one sided. Everyone is wrapped up in their family and their few friends and since I’m single I don’t even have a default friend I get to spend time with everyday. When we go to kid oriented things, no one wants to be friends. I really tried with a mom at gymnastics because our kids like each other and we have some similarities. Four months in and I think she might want to get together outside of gymnastics since I don’t think we are signing up in the summer, but nothing solid enough that numbers have been exchanged.

      • My two local friends who actually make a point to check in with me now and then and include us in things are really busy. One I met at the hospital birth class (since that was mentioned before) and I later babysat for her for a school year. I really enjoy her as a person and our parenting jives pretty well. Her family is great to us and adore Wallace. Definitely friends we will always have! My other friend and her husband feel like family because I nannied for them for a year and we slowly got to know eachother. They are more reserved and I feel like I still have to work hard to not let my abrasive/intense personality out in full force. The kids are a great age to play together, but an unplanned for 3rd is on the way and that takes up a lot of their time and energy, so we don’t get reached out to as much. When I was still on facebook, I felt like I had more social interaction with local acquaintances and yet we weren’t present enough in their mind to get invited to things or to just come hang out. I was also just thinking about the too tired comment below in regards to our societal makeup. As tribes or even with large closeknit extended families, we would have more social and physical support. We weren’t as isolated and it wasn’t a chore to pack up the kids and snacks and diapers and drive to visit friends. Sometimes the idea of a drive is more than I can handle. And we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to have our houses and lives presentable! We don’t want our kid to grab or hit, we want our kid to share and help clean up, and make a good impression… it’s all exhausting and so far from a casual extended family/tribe where you know someone else has their eye on your kid if your back is turned and the kids can just run around and play. Phewh. I hope some of that resonates.

  2. It’s even harder when you’re introverted to boot. I’ve always found forming and maintaining friendships a lot of effort on my part. I don’t think I’m abrasive, but there must be something aloof about my personality that puts people at a distance. We’ve tried harder to schedule more play dates since having some parenting fallout drama with my friends from high school, but it’s not easy. I would love to find a low maintenance kindred spirit mom friend who has a kid who gets along great with mine. Is that too much to ask for?

    • When I was pregnant with Gus we didn’t take a childbirth class. Our midwife said a lot of people take them for the social aspect and we had good social support and friends with kids so we didn’t really think we needed to. Then Gus was born and all our friendships fell apart. I think it is so much harder to make friends after lost friendships. In your case you know your old friends with being super unreasonable but it still makes you feel like crap. We did do a parenting class and met people there but I don’t have the energy to make those connections real friendships from the ground up, you know?

      • I totally know, especially now with two I have no energy to even fake being social. Someone posted a meme recently that said when you have children you discover who your true friends are. A cliche maybe, but we do grow apart. My tribe now is parents of boys and spirited children who get it.

  3. I feel this so hard. We had to move our schedule around and put T in the homeschool gymnastics and it’s me and three other moms who literally ignore my existence and have only started acknowledging HIS existence in the last few weeks. Not sure I’d want to be friends with them anyway but the embarrassing sting is always there. :/

  4. And then there are Minnesotans, who really live up to the stereotype they are known for by the saying, “Minnesotans will give you directions to anywhere except their own house.”

    MN natives have a wicked tendency to stick with their tribes from childhood/high school/college and, once adulting full time, are loathe to open themselves to new friendships, unless preceded by a long acquaintance that is generally due to forced proximity.

    I am just very glad that the queer parent community here contains plenty of non-MN-natives, or we’d be stuck with my wife’s friends from childhood/school. I mean, they are great! I love them and they are like family (the good kind)! But it’s too limiting, and, for an introvert like me, can be intimidating in that “middle school feeling” way of not fitting in when they are gathered around, rehashing stories from the glory days.

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