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To think if we move when the boys are in secondary school I won't meet other mums

(25 Posts)
KateLennard Mon 10-Oct-16 21:45:40

DH and I are considering moving to a much cheaper area in 3 years time, when ds1 will be in secondary school and ds2 just finishing primary.
There are a lot of reason for this, but the primary motive is that ds1 has SEN and we may have no choice but to move and free up the money to put ds1 in a small private school, just so he functions.
My question is totally selfish, but due to DHs job we can't move for the next three years. If DSs are in secondary school, will it be really hard for me to make friends and meet people through school?

RalphSteadmansEye Mon 10-Oct-16 21:49:19

If you do move ds1 to a private school, you are much more likely to meet people/other parents than in a state school. There's a lot more "school gate" culture as many children are delivered and collected; there are social events; there's more 'hanging around' and chatting over a glass of wine at parents' evenings or concerts etc.

Ds started senior school knowing nobody and we've made loads of whole family friends.

BrianMolkoismyPlacebo Mon 10-Oct-16 21:52:42

Why would you WANT to meet any other mums? The only thing you'll have in common is having kids.

Why not join some local clubs?

KateLennard Mon 10-Oct-16 21:56:45

Thank you Ralf
Brian, I was very lonely before I met DH and had no success with the clubs etc route of meeting people. I feel like the only time I have managed to build a real social network is through meeting mums at school.

lovelybangers Mon 10-Oct-16 21:56:51

None of my friends are school 'mum' friends.

Most are from various places of work over the years, others from fitness groups and classes in my new area.

There are loads of ways to make new friends - which you are likely to to have things in common with.

lovelybangers Mon 10-Oct-16 21:57:59

Oh - i see I just posted at the same time as you OP>

Well, new place - new start?

Give it time and throw yourself into new groups and activities and see what happens.

KateLennard Mon 10-Oct-16 21:59:30

Ralf, I think what scares me about that is that they will be really posh and I won't fit in. The only way we can afford what DS1 needs (small classes) is by selling the house and moving away.

SandyY2K Mon 10-Oct-16 21:59:42

You don't meet school mums in state secondary school's.

KateLennard Mon 10-Oct-16 22:03:13

Ralf. What scares me about that is that is the fear that they will all be posh and rich. I am neither. The only way we can afford what ds1 needs (small classes) is ny selling the house and moving away.

weegiemum Mon 10-Oct-16 22:03:33

Sadly, secondaries just don't have a school gate culture. Even at primary we didn't have that as our kids went to school by bus, and at secondary they travel on their own each day,thats just how it is. I'm sorry that means that a friend group is harder for you to find, but I dont know anyone who's made friends through the secondary school gate.

KateLennard Mon 10-Oct-16 22:04:58

Lovelybangers I run a business from home, between that and all DS1s appointments I don't have much time for clubs.
SandyY2K that's what I thought!

ChairinSage Mon 10-Oct-16 22:08:10

We moved to an entirely new area when the DCs were at secondary school. I've met a couple of mums through DD's after school clubs but haven't socialised with them. I have met lots of actual friends through evening classes and through work. I'm much less involved in my children's lives now they are teenagers so it hasn't been an issue.

KateLennard Mon 10-Oct-16 22:12:14

Chairinsage I work from home (own business) so that cuts out that avenue, and am usually exhausted after a day of dealing with DS1 and all the stuff that goes with his SEN for evening classes.
I would much rather do it now, so at least I have time while DS2 is in primary school but financially we can't.

BackforGood Mon 10-Oct-16 22:26:47

Thing is, even if you do make friends with Mums in ds2s Primary school, you'll more than likely drift away from them when they go to secondary - it's just the way it is. Mums of my dcs friends are just that - people I will chat to if I see them, and we'll help each other out with lifts etc., but we've not kept in touch after they've left Primary and I've not seen them in the playground.
However, secondary schools do have tiny PTAs, if you want to meet other parents, and some have 'parent forums' (under a variety of names) so there are still opportunities to meet other parents.
Like most people though, I'd suggest you ring fence one night for yourself to join something you want to do, for you - book club, choir, sport, volunteering, whatever, and then you'll meet folk with similar interests.

RalphSteadmansEye Mon 10-Oct-16 22:37:18

They won't all be posh and rich. Or even posh or rich. Honestly smile

KarmaNoMore Mon 10-Oct-16 23:46:44

My son moved primary schools 2 times, I am still friends with my first set of mums, who I met when all our kids were in Reception. I didn't make any friends in school 2 and 3 as the mum friendships groups were by them too close to accept new comers. The only friends I made were the mums of other children who joined also joined later.

No mum friendships to develop in secondary schools, as you are no longer organising play dates or talking to mums at the school doors (most kids travel home by themselves).

I have plenty of friends where I live, they come from very varied backgrounds and share a common denominator: none of us is from the city, none of us have family around and most of us are in our own or with husbands that travel all the time, so the friendships are more based in the mutual sense of not belonging and the need of support and companionship, rather than interests in common.

PickAChew Mon 10-Oct-16 23:52:37

Sounds like bliss.

BigGreenOlives Tue 11-Oct-16 06:45:49

I've developed good friendships through volunteering with the Parents' Association, you get to know other people gradually. In my experience private senior schools still have coffee mornings, drinks events etc. We also used to meet up after parents' evenings or talks on parenting.

Nermerner Tue 11-Oct-16 06:58:13

I would completely forget meeting mums through school. If you don't have time to do clubs you won't have time to do the endless boring school gate gossip and coffees that private school mums seem to have time for. All my mum friends are through various sports clubs (mine and dds). Make time for yourself to do an exercise class or hobby. It will give you more to talk about when you do meet school mums.

Nermerner Tue 11-Oct-16 07:03:17

I absolutely love dds new schools for this reason. Big state secondary where I very occasionally see a mum I know. Whizzy private mainly boarding where I occasionally see a mum I recognise on the side of the hockey pitch. I can't bear gossip. I like friendly small talk and that's it. At their last school there was endless bitchery and gossip and negative bollocks it was awful.
And only on mumsnet are private school parents 'normal with old cars'. They are rich and posh.

UsedToBeAPaxmanFan Tue 11-Oct-16 07:45:43

I have made a couple of friends through my ds when he was at secondary school but I agree with others, it's not the best way to meet people.

We moved house when ds was in year 5, so primary but he was old enough to go to friends houses without me tagging along. I realised it would be difficult to meet people that way so did other stuff - joined a book group, joined the village drama group, and did some voluntary work locally. Yes, it's tough after a full day's work but I made myself do it because I knew that otherwise I'd be very lonely.

To be honest, it took about 3 years before I felt I'd made friends rather than acquaintances. But I now have some very good female friends, only 2 of whom had a child in the same year as ds.

fishonabicycle Tue 11-Oct-16 09:46:49

I know a few of my son's friends mums from secondary school. But obviously not s many as at primary. I would recommend exercise classes or similar.

KarmaNoMore Tue 11-Oct-16 22:33:04

DS went to 3 schools.

First one was private with friendly "joules" style mums and a handful of scruffy aristocrats. Fancy and old cars in equal proportion, lovely place, people had nothing to prove, so no show off nastiness at all, I really felt at home there.

Second school was an upper middle class state school with lots of boring people trying to keep up with the Jones or pretending to be better than the rest. I found the experience quite shocking, the rich mums at the private school were miles away from this judgemental lot of pretentious people.

Third school, also a state school, with many immigrants, taxi drivers and postmen dropping their kids in in the morning and I was told there was a rotating population of travellers sending kids there. The parents were all lovely, probably they didn't have as much time for coffee or lunches as the mums in the private school, but they were great.

But again, I think those friendship groups develop when you are all together going through the experience of taking your little ones to school for the first time. Second time round is not the same.

TheSconeOfStone Tue 11-Oct-16 22:46:36

Are there any support groups or activities around your DS's SEN? We have found a great group locally for ADHD/ASD kids and their families. Nice bunch of people and they understand the exhaustion of it all.

I would agree that it would be good to have at least one evening where you do something for you. I managed that a couple of months ago. It's not easy getting out of the house on time but it's been brilliant for my mental health. I am making friends too.

KateLennard Thu 13-Oct-16 16:16:37

Thank you all for the replies. I agree I would need to get out and do some kind of activity. I am definitely very keen as well to meet people through some kind of support group for DS SEN. I think you really do need some people in your life who know what it's really like.

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