To be a bit upset with my friends?(155 Posts)
Fully prepared to be told that I'm being over sensitive here but I just need some perspective really.
I'm the first one in my friendship group to have a baby; DS who is a little over a year old. I'm also a single mum and the father is not involved. My friends have been an excellent source of support and, until recently, I couldn't fault them for anything.
They're great with my son and have been massively supportive and helpful towards me. However, over the last few months, things have started to change and I'm now struggling to not feel upset about it.
My friends and I are all in a group chat so that it takes just two seconds to let everyone know if something's happening and we can meet etc. I choose my occasions wisely and obviously specific events such as a birthday would take priority over a night down the pub, and anything overnight is a no no, so naturally I'm fine with missing out on things in those circumstances. Plus we all quite enjoy nights in with board games and movies etc so there's been plenty of nights in at mine when the baby is asleep so I've been lucky in still being able to have a social life and such. But recently I've stopped being invited to a lot of things, and not the usual Friday night down the pub things but daytime events that there isn't really any reason to not invite me to, aside from they just don't want me there. The latest being on the bank holiday weekend, on the Saturday we were at a friend's birthday and those of us who were available agreed to do something on the Sunday. I sent a couple of messages to ask what people felt like doing and received no reply, only to later find out that they'd all 'coincidentally' bumped into each other on the way to get their cars and decided to go to a nearby town (ten minute drive) for lunch and it was all very last minute etc, and they didn't seem to see the problem that I had effectively been left sat at home wondering why nobody was answering me.
I know it probably sounds pathetic but it's happening with more and more frequency; when I'm at things, they don't really treat me any differently to how they always have so I don't really understand it. When it comes to events, I would suggest something like going to the cinema or for lunch or a picnic, nobody will reply except my best friend who is the only one who isn't doing any of this, but when somebody mentions anything else they'll reply even if it's just to say no. Or it'll be a case of where everyone will suggest something and they'll all agree to the thing I can't go to, which again is fine on occasions but it's nearly every time now and it's just starting to feel a bit unfair. I've mentioned it a little bit and have just been met with comments that I'm overreacting or that it's not true and because they all say that, I don't know what to think anymore.
I appreciate they're all young and without commitments and that I'm the one with the baby so essentially it's my problem and I swear that most of the time, it really hasn't bothered me, but it's just building up now and I can't help but feel really upset and left out, and actually quite hurt especially because they've been so great up until now. I'm usually an assertive and confident person in these situations but this has really made me feel vulnerable and lacking in confidence. My best friend is moving away in September, only London but it's still quite far and I'm just dreading what things will be like. So AIBU?
Sorry this is so long, but any advice or kicks up the ass would be great.
Do you take your child to these daytime events? Little uns change the dynamics of an outing.
If you're taking the sprog along then I'm not entirely surprised because, as gamer says, it changes the group dynamic. If you always / almost always leave sprog behind then YANBU.
If you're taking your baby with you, or expecting plans to always revolve around you because you're A MUM, then they're probably a bit fed up!
When you don't have kids, baby bores are the worst!
Do you think they lied about the last minute lunch thing?
It depends what it is really. Like if it's a walk or lunch then yeah, i'd take him with me. If they were gonna be sitting in a bar all afternoon then I just wouldn't go and that would usually be fine. If it's ever something where DS would potentially make things complicated etc then I just don't go cos I agree it can change the dynamic. As I said, it's the frequency of the things and the fact that nobody is actually talking to me about it, but I guess people don't want to admit that they don't want someone there because of the baby.
I don't expect them to revolve around me though, I thought I'd made that obvious in my first post about how I'm usually fine with not being at things, it's just the fact that it's really often now. And I don't see myself as a baby bore; most people have commented how I haven't really changed since having my son.
I don't know if they lied, but the last minute excuse is one that's used often.
It would be kind if they could give you the option wouldn't it?
No reason they couldn't say 'We're going to X. Would be lovely to see you madam if you can get childcare'.
But even though you may not be talking about sprog, they're still there & it makes it a different occasion, particularly since they don't have kids. You might find that if you didn't take him along for a few outings then you might start getting more invites.
Oh yes, it'll be the taking your son along thing. I have 3 children, love them dearly but don't take them to stuff like this as other people's kids are boring as anything! Go on your own and this will stop happening.
No-one's going to tell you to your face but sorry yes it's probably because of your LO. They'll get there in a few years themselves but you might not want to be friends with them any more by then and I wouldn't blame you.
Can your best friend be honest with you about what's happening with the other friends? She has nothing to lose by being straight with you about it as she's moving away.
I lost all of my old friends when I had my first....I was included in everything to start with, but as I didn't have any childcare choices during the day, bit by bit I was dropped. It was heartbreaking to be honest, but I now see that they didn't have kids and didn't want to spend their time around them, even if it was a friends. It's not nice, but I think it's quite common. Have you made friends at any baby groups? It's much easier to socialise with other mums when you've got little ones.
You're most likely not a baby bore, it's just that they don't want a baby, any baby there. Which is understandable but so is you feeling hurt that they now don't bother to invite you at all to the things you probably wouldn't go to.
Am I right in saying then than mostly you either don't go at all or if you go you go with your ds? Do from their point of view they are probably not thinking of the times you don't go but thinking of the times that you do and your ds is always with you. Now I'm not agreeing with them at all I'm just wondering if that's it.
Do you mind me asking what age you are? And if you friends are in long term relationships and kids will one day soon be on their radar or are they just totally oblivious and kids are nowhere near their radars at all
Well there's your reason. It's not exactly an easy conversation to have with someone. I ended up suggesting adult only activities whenever I saw certain friends so they couldn't bring their kids... And I have my own. I can imagine if you're child free even one outing with a child in tow would be taxing.
I think you need to have a conversation with your friends but be prepared you may not like what you hear.
They'll understand better when they start to have babies.
But if you would bring your baby to the lunch because you think that's fine, and they don't want to go to lunch with a baby, then you're at an impasse really,
Have you ever organised a night that didn't involve games at yours? Do you have sitters readily available?
I'm not saying they're right, just you're in a different place now and some people just don't wan to be around kids!
Its the taking the baby along that is the issue. They want to do single girl childfree carefree Sex and the City style lunches not one where you need highchairs, kids menus, having a baby taking your attention, possible wailing or screeching from a baby etc. They want the freedom of perhaps then going on somewhere not restricted by child such as cinema/pub or even chatting up men.
You will need to realise that your decision yo have a child in your life is yours - not theirs!
The other thing to think about is future proofing your friendships
A baby is portable and doesn't interrupt too much but a toddler is an entirely different kettle of fish.
You might need to try to widen your friendship group to include other Mums at the same stage for daytime outings and just see your other friends for evenings when you have childcare.
I'm sorry though, it's hard.
I think the other posters are right - they probably still like you, but they don't want to have the baby everywhere they go.
If I were you I would accept this - that you aren't an integral, attending-all-events member of a friendship group that is all about being young and child-free - and try to maintain friendships by suggesting a certain number of things you would really like to do, and being up front about the changed dynamic.
So if they really all do like boardgame nights, ask for a monthly one of those, or something like that, saying "I know I can't be a part of so much of the childfree stuff but I really want to stay in touch and catch up regularly with you all" - and be nice about it - " I value your friendship more than ever now" or something, not demanding or needy or pushy.
A one year old isn't the same as a babe in arms and it could all be a bit much,
Simultaneously, can you try to make friends with women with children of the same age? that day to day just popping for coffee thing is something that will probably work better with people at the same life stage as you.
You either bring your baby along, or have board games AT YOURS - because you're a mum and the others aren't mums, so therefore they should be the ones to do all the travelling?? I have a friend like this and its a pain. Get a sitter and offer to go for games at someone else's house for a change - people can't revolve around you, your home and your baby - others might like to not have to travel for a change.
No I'm not saying that. I'm saying I have to choose my babysitting nights wisely because my mum won't always be willing to do it, and so it's a choice of an evening every so often or not at all because she won't have him during the day as she's busy a lot of the time. I've had plenty of nights out without him and I do go as often as I can to things in the evening. Plus it isn't always at mine at all, they regularly stay in at each other's so i go then too, but in the day he is usually with me. I don't just assume I can bring him, it depends on what it is and like I've repeatedly said, if it's something that I can't go to because it's gonna be too much of a hassle or because I can't bring him, during the day, I likely won't go because I don't have much choice.
No I don't talk about him loads nor do I expect them to do anything except basically just not shove me out and act like it's not happening. I've never made a deal about any of this until now.
We're all in our mid to late twenties by the way.
You can't consistently take a baby to single girl meet ups it's not how it works sadly. They are voting with their feet. Options are either leave baby with dad or preferably find friends with same age kids.
My everyday friendship group consists of women with same age dc that broadly get on with mine. We started off sitting in church halls / the park now they late primary we can all eat out go swimming etc. None of us see a lot of say other mothers with toddlers as we through that stage and can't be bothered with tantrums, screaming and 100 % attention required now our youngests are 8.
It's bringing your child. The lunch thing - I'm guessing u would have to bring him? Perhaps they don't want to take the risk your going to bring your child so yoir not invited
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