Webchat with Tristram Hunt, Labour education shadow, MONDAY 27 April at 12 midday ×

Would you like to be a member of our research panel? Join here - there's (nearly) always a great incentive offered for your views.

NCT group and socialising

(29 Posts)
Soontobemama Sat 22-Jun-13 20:09:08

Or lack of in this case. We only have one class left and so far nobody has made any moves to arrange any meet ups. We do a lot of group work during the classes but there's no real chances to chat and get to know people.

The only reason I signed up was because I'd heard about the great social life everyone seems to have with their NCT group. I'm not finding the information particularly useful as I've done a lot of reading already this pregnancy. I chose daytime classes too in the hope people would want to do something after but they all seem to dash off the second the class is over.

I am hoping to pluck up courage to ask if people want to go for a drink after the last class but am a bit worried that maybe the rest of the class are not interested in socialising.

For those of you who have already done NCT when did your class socialise if they did at all?

Pusspuss1 Sat 22-Jun-13 20:14:01

Oh no - I haven't started my classes yet, but the only reason I decided to spend the money on them was to meet the lovely NCT people that everyone talks about! Like you, I've already read lots of books on the subject, so my main aim is to meet people locally with babies the same age.

I think you should definitely take the initiative and suggest doing something. Bet most of them will say yes.

intheshed Sat 22-Jun-13 20:16:41

That's rubbish :-( In my class the instructor handed out a list of everyone's emails and phone numbers! (we were asked first)

Definitely get some dates in the diary to meet up when you are all on maternity leave.

lucidlady Sat 22-Jun-13 20:17:02

We didn't start socialising properly until after the babies were born. You could set up a private Facebook group or something, that's what we did.

NaturalBlondeYeahRight Sat 22-Jun-13 20:18:54

You kind of have to force it. Frankly everyone goes to nct for the friends. (I still have some of mine 13 years latergrin)
What you do is say
'Right, that's our last, who wants to meet at .............. next week?
(Park cafes are good in summer)
I can almost guarantee that all hands will be up.
You will fall out with some, bond with some, argue with some but they made my newborn bit A LOT easier and I couldn't have coped so easily without them (mushy stuff)
Do it!!

JambalayaCodfishPie Sat 22-Jun-13 20:19:51

At our last class, our NCT leader asked if it was ok to forward details on - exactly for this purpose. The next day I got an email with contact details for each couple. About two days after that I got a group email from one of the woman suggesting the first meet up. grin

Maybe ask your leader if she's planning to do this , and if not, maybe suggest/organise it yourself.

You won't be alone in joining for the social aspect. smile

WizardofOs Sat 22-Jun-13 20:22:14

This is unusual. Ask the teacher to put together a contact list (she will need the clients' permission first but most teachers offer to do this). If they are daytime sessions what about lunch after a class or if the wrong time what about going for coffee and cake? Most groups do socialise as in chatting but it is common not to meet-up until the babies are born but those groups that do begin before have a head start. It is part of the teacher's role tom facilitate bonding which is usually an easy part of the job but occasionally can be a struggle.

MyNameIsSuz Sat 22-Jun-13 20:34:00

We didn't really socialise much during the course, but on the second to last class we made arrangements to go out after the last class for some dinner just down the road from the hall our classes were in. I think it was my husband who suggested it, and I don't think anyone else would have, but they were all keen to do so.

Our teacher also sent around a list of everyone's numbers and email addresses after the course had finished, and we also (again, I think my husband) set up a little private facebook group and found the others to add both to the group and as friends. We then started to meet up occasionally once some of the group were on maternity leave - again, there would be someone who would reach out and text around to ask if anyone wanted to meet for a coffee or a swim, and the others usually bit their hands off.

I think I remember the classes being a little uncomfortable and a bit unnatural, and we didn't really bond as a group until that first time we went out after the course was finished. And even then at first it wasn't instant besties. But gradually we got closer and our babies are now 9 months old and we meet up at least once a week.

I think you need to reach out in case nobody else does. Bite the bullet and suggest doing something after your last class, or maybe at the weekend after, to celebrate finishing. Doesn't have to be anything big, coffee or lunch somewhere close by, but it's much easier to get to know each other away from the forced environment of the course. I bet if you're proactive the others will be grateful as they are probably thinking the same thing as you!

My bet is they are all begging for someone to make a move. Be brave, it's worth it but the babies do make it easier.

Jollyb Sat 22-Jun-13 21:03:57

I don't think we met up until after our classes had finished so don't worry too much.

Our teacher sent an email round with all our addresses on and the first of many coffee dates was arranged from then.

ItCameFromOuterSpace Sat 22-Jun-13 21:29:19

I joined nct when pg with dc1 (now 19 months). I've since kept in touch with 2 out of 7 of the women. It's a complete pot luck who you get in your group and I found a lot of good mum friends from baby and toddler groups.

NumberTwoDue Sat 22-Jun-13 21:52:31

It never really happened with my NCT class. We see each other occasionally as a group (I think some of them meet up fairly regularly, but I'm not one of them). I went to the NHS classes as well and am still very close with seven out of the ten from that. Total luck of the draw I think. You meet lots of people at baby classes and play groups too, but have to be quite forthright if you find someone you like initially.

fuckwittery Sat 22-Jun-13 21:56:31

We didnt socialise during the classes or until our babies were born, we arranged a reuniom once everyone had their babies and when we were all off on maternity leave we all met up quite regularly, was much more bonding when we had newborn and birth stories to swap!

fuckwittery Sat 22-Jun-13 21:57:13

Oh but my best lot of friends was from a baby group I started at about 6 weeks.

namechangea Sat 22-Jun-13 22:09:30

I didn't do NCT did the general ante natal. Made 4 fantastic friends who I still see regularly 3 years on. They are probably my best friends now.

The midwife taking the course handed a sheet of A4 round and we all put our details on and she photocopied it and gave us a copy each in the last class. We arranged to meet the following week at the time the class would have been. We then promised to text when the LO's arrived and once we'd all dropped and got past our 6 weeks (3 of us ended up with c sections) we met up with all the babies. Amazing cute photo.

Bite the bullet, these women will become your greatest support network. We bonded so well because we instantly had such honest relationships. I adore their children and would trust my (now 2) children with any of them as I know they love them too. Finally, our children have grown up together (to the grand old age of 3) they fight, they hug, they grab and sometimes they share and it's all beautiful.

Bite that bullet and if that fails baby groups are a great place after the birth.

rockybalboa Sat 22-Jun-13 22:22:13

We chose to do NCT over one full day on a Thurs and one full day on a Sat. I am the only person I know who didn't make at least a couple of really good friends at NCT. Lots still friends 5 years later and v close at that. No idea why our group didn't click, they just didn't. There was one mummy meet up in a cafe when babies were small and I met up with a couple of them separately but a couple of people were leaving the area and it just didn't last. I've always put it down to the fact that we didn't do the evening classes over however many weeks thing which most people seem to do. Just didn't fit with DH's work pattern.

Rockchick1984 Sun 23-Jun-13 10:25:08

Soon everyone will be feeling the same about suggesting going out together - no one wants to be the one to get turned down! My teacher did the same as a few others, we all wrote down our email addresses at the last class and she sent them round but even that way someone has to bite the bullet and suggest a meet up!

From our group of 5 couples only 1 wasn't interested in socialising (she would come to things occasionally but only full group things, she made excuses to all of us when asked to pop round for coffee etc). Two couples were close during maternity leave but only speak to them occasionally now, and one is a very close friend still, but babies are now nearly 2.5 so this has been a gradual change!

Thurlow Sun 23-Jun-13 10:30:18

We didn't do any socialising before the babies were born really, well I think the mums might have met once or so when we were all off for maternity leave. We did meet up loads once the babies had arrived though, everyone emailed to announce that their baby had been born and then kept on emailing.

I wouldn't worry about it too much - it's frustrating that you aren't socialising now, but I bet you will once everyone is actually at home with the baby. If it isn't what you expect them go to other baby groups too. I'm actually better friends with people I met at the NHS postnatal classes.

Yonionekanobe Sun 23-Jun-13 13:14:50

I'm still in touch with my NCT group but very rarely see them (children are just two). One family moved back to Australia, one to the States (in fact we are closest to them and in US now visiting them amongst others), and two others to another part of London which may as well be the other side of the world!

I did an NHS post-natal course and made two very good friends. Don't see them much as we all work full time but type of friendships where when you do see each other it is like you we're never away!

Yonionekanobe Sun 23-Jun-13 13:15:43

We're = were. Predictive text!!

😎

Poosnu Sun 23-Jun-13 13:29:50

Can you suggest that you have a regular time to meet up - say every Tuesday lunchtime while on maternity leave? That's what our group did and it worked very well. Not everyone was there every week but it meant there was less pressure on someone to organise meet ups.

On the last day of our NCT course, the teacher made sure that the mums put two dates in the diary to meet up before baby. The dads were also told to put a pub night in the diary. Part of the class time was allocated to this. It was a great way to start things off. Can you ask the teacher to do this if you don't feel able to suggest it?

WouldBeHarrietVane Sun 23-Jun-13 13:31:30

Rocky we didn't meet anyone at our class either - I think the people were just too different.

MrsMargoLeadbetter Sun 23-Jun-13 13:36:40

If you are up for it, be proactive. Offer to organise a meet up and them email with suggested time and day. As others have said the teacher may well offer to share details as it is the last class.

I have organised a bumps and babies meet up near me as NCT not that active. I use doodle.com (think that is address) which is a great free scheduling tool. You add dates/times and then everybody adds when they can do. It is a easy way to see when people can do and you can make a decision based on majority.

Good luck.

austenozzy Sun 23-Jun-13 13:46:07

All 8 of the couples in our NCT are still getting together fairly regularly. Dads have curry, beer & pool nights, mums have curry and wine nights... you know the drill! My wife meets 2 or 3 of the mums more than the others, but only because of schedules, not anything else. It's great when we all get together. And we're now at the stage where second babies are coming along, which is great!

Like others have said, once you (or someone) forces it, it ought to gain its own momentum and you'll be away. Grasp the nettle and just make an announcement (in person, via email, whatever suits) asking about meeting in x cafe at midday on whenever. Done.

coolpink101 Sun 23-Jun-13 15:39:37

My nct tutor was excellent - after only 2 sessions she encouraged everyone to get together for a social before the course ended - it worked - we all met up one evening and since then we've been meeting up very regularly as a group - both before the babies were born and afterwards. by the time the reunion comes around in a few weeks we'll have seen each other loads - so it will only be a reunion for the tutor really!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now