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surviving the world of mummies

(10 Posts)
Cookiemg Tue 12-Jul-11 09:39:15

I have lived in Edinburgh for 20 years and moved to a certain area 20months ago with our 2.5 year old. I work part time and on the other days take care off dd and have found it nigh on impossible to break into the local mummy network, I have been doing to a toddler group for 18months and generally feel uncomfortable, invisible and only really feel a breakthrough now but am so ready to throw the towel in and want to move back to the area we came from where we had friends. I'm trying to create a network for me and my child but I only have so much strength, this has greatly affected my marriage, parenting skills and self esteem. I want to develop 'colleague' like relationship with mums so that dd can have friends as I find mummy chat deadeningly dull. Should I move back to where we came from, how do I create a network, why are these women so excluding? I genuinely am a very friendly person who needs a sense of community and feeling connected and I know that I.have a very outgoing wee girl too.

JeremyVile Tue 12-Jul-11 09:45:28

What is mummy chat?
Do you mean the boring kids-based small talk? Ime that is just another version of all the the other sort of small talk you get with acquaintances, you'll generally get past that once you get to know each other more, just like you get past weather/work stuff in other circumstances.
If you're thinking that these other mums are a different breed who are only capable of 'mummy chat' then that may be coming across in your demeanour.

SybilBeddows Tue 12-Jul-11 09:51:21

I think you need to find mums with whom you have something in common as well as children. If you find mummy chat dull that's probably your answer.
You need to find some activity to do with women who happen to also have children. For instance a reading group, craft group, church, Mumsnet meet-up....

I sort of know where you're coming from because I made the effort to go to the toddler group and they were all perfectly nice but I didn't really hit it off with anyone, but the women I have met through my feminism network and through Mumsnet meet-ups are dead nice and funny and I would much rather hang out with them.

If you're in a city there ought to be enough going on for it to be possible; it might mean travelling a little bit out of your area though.

Oh, and the other thing is that as she gets older you will find yourself meeting people through your dd: some of the kids she picks to be friends will be ones with whom you have something in common and you can cultivate that.

Cookiemg Tue 12-Jul-11 11:47:03

Thank you for your responses, it is down to the cliquiness of the groups and Edinburgh can especially be guilty of that. I'm just not going to bother anymore 18months is long enough to be banging your head againsts a brick wall. I find all the baby talk, yes the examination of every action and character trait of your child, incredibly tedious and bemusing as I have always maintained a very active life outwith the baby world and see most other women's worlds becoming very insular which would drive me nuts. The area I live in is very conservative, middle aged area and there is not many community ventures beyond church and I am an aetheist! I tried to start a book group but to no avail. My self esteem has taken such a bashing that it has affected all areas of my life and enough is enough. thank you again

meriden Tue 12-Jul-11 13:58:09

i found the same thing really with quite a few toddler groups. I would go for small group activities like music or a mum and baby swimming group, where there's only a few people there. If you have a few regular activities set up, it doesn't seem such an issue to make friends. I found it did get easier once they start pre-school. Hope it gets better for you soon.

TheRhubarb Tue 12-Jul-11 14:02:19

I found this in Preston. Many of the mums had been to ante-natal classes together and so had developed bonds and friendships that I wasn't a part of. After around a year I stopped going because I felt so isolated but then I saw one of the mums in town and she said they had noticed my absence and asked me why I had stopped. When I explained she was horrified and invited me round for a cuppa.

All it takes sometimes is an honest chat about how you feel with someone for them to take notice. Most mums are so engrossed in their own feelings and babies that they hardly notice a newbie or that there is someone left on their own all the time. Be honest and next time you catch one of them on their own just ask how they cope with motherhood and then tell them how hard you are finding it. They'll soon come round smile

paddypoopants Tue 12-Jul-11 14:29:31

Yup- cliquey baby groups are soul destroying. You go along expecting to meet nice people in the same boat as you and end up inside the ninth circle of hell. All ability to make friends and be sociable in your previous life seems to evaporate . I lived in Edinburgh until recently and I def. had days like that at toddler groups. I used to come home completely depressed but ds loved it and I figured if I met one prson I liked it was a success.
If you are in Edinburgh and have a car or use the bus you should try different toddler groups in different parts of the city until you find one that you like. I went to a great one in Portobello and met some nice people and there were a lot of people who didn't live there who just went along and then for a walk along the beach. However even the one I went to had a big clique but I met a few girls who I'm still friendly with.
I remember at one point realising that I had been left out of meetings up organised by one girl who I had really helped when she first came to the breastfeeding group and was struggling- soon as she found her feet she turned into the Alphamum bitch. I was unnaturally crushed but then I thought fuck it - I don't even like you.
Have you tried Rhyme Time at your local library- there are usually loads of Mums there. I ended up doing organised things like Jo Jingles (which I loved but ds hated) and I met nicer people there.
Whereabouts in Edinburgh are you? Or do you not want to fess up.

Cookiemg Wed 13-Jul-11 00:20:09

I'm cagey about saying tbh, south of the city, conservative, affluent. Just giving myself permission to not go and to do something else has made me feel a lot better. I'm really not going to give a toss anymore the only thing is that I've got to live here but I'm working on dh to have a change of heart.

TheMitfordsMaid Wed 13-Jul-11 00:29:08

Well, have you read back over your posts? On one hand you say you want to break into the mummy network, yet on the other you say you find it all very tedious. Are you sure you want in on the tedium? Perhaps you are giving out the wrong vibes.

My DS has been at preschool for a year and I met loads of mums at the school gate, and I've found that they are more interested in developing friendships as it is likely we'll see each other every day until our children go onto senior school.

pleasethanks Wed 13-Jul-11 09:48:08

Try some of the groups around stockbridge, comely bank. I have found them to be reasonably friendly, but it can take a while to click with people, but it can always be like that when meeting new folk.

The P & G playgroup at the top of Broughton St is meant to be good and busy. Maybe worth a shot.

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