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When do I need to start socialising with other mums for the benefit of my DS?

(12 Posts)
TinyTiny Tue 28-Feb-17 13:25:05

So I'm m a foreigner and an introvert. I find mingling with locals hard. I tried integrating, I did, but even after 10+ years here I still have a bit of an accent which makes me feel like people judge me / look down on me as soon as I open my mouth.

Also the middle class English way of running conversations is so alien to me, I feel the way people communicate here makes it difficult for the other person to respond - i.e. not asking any questions just exchanging facts about each other's lives in an awkward way,making random remarks and expecting a witty comeback from the other party rather than just introducing themselves etc. I feel like every conversation with an English person is a test of how clever, funny and witty you are rather than just connecting.

But anyway... My DS is now 2 months old, we have not been to any playgroup or social outing - even though I am lucky enough to know two mommies who really do try to get me to come out.

I just feel super awkward when meeting locals, I really don't know what to talk to them about, and think of the activity as pointless as I'm pretty sure no long lasting friendships will happen. It just feels like too much work for almost nothing in return.

However I want my DS to have little friends and been wondering when is the latest I should start making these "mommy" connections to make it happen. I think at his age and possibly up to one year old children don't even necessarily acknowledge one another so I think (and hope) I'm okay to just stay home with him most of the time for the first year?

The obvious response is whenever I want or as early as possible - but then I'd rather not socialise until it is absolutely necessary. Is it too late to wait until they go to school or nursery?

Sorry I really don't mean to offend anyone just looking to went out a little (I also feel like my husband expects me to make loads of mom friends and take DS to groups so extra pressure there.) And possibly any advice/commiseration.

comeagainforbigfudge Tue 28-Feb-17 13:34:15

What about your local library for bounce n rhyme type things? Ours is a drop in affair. It's the only thing I take DD to, and I don't really chat to anyone bar one other mum and the lady who runs it.

My dd loves it AND gets very upset if we go to library and she doesn't get to look at the books grin

mimiholls Tue 28-Feb-17 13:37:51

At this stage baby groups are supposed to be for the sake of the mums for support and friendship so I wouldn't worry your baby is missing out but you might be. I am quite shy but I have found these groups brilliant because everyone has their babies in common so there are lots of obvious topics for conversation. At things like nct coffee mornings everyone is there for the same reason- to meet other mums- so you really don't need to feel awkward. You can also do baby activities like swimming classes, baby massage etc where the time is spent doing an activity so that takes the pressure off making conversation for the whole time.
You say you have two mum friends so could you go with them to a group and then you'd already know someone there?
I don't think it's an issue for your baby at this stage at all but personally I don't want to pass on shyness or social anxiety to my child and so I have tried to make an effort to get out and interact a lot so that she becomes used to these situations and also hopefully makes some friends locally as she gets older before school.

comeagainforbigfudge Tue 28-Feb-17 13:38:42

Oh and we didn't start going until she was about 5months old but plenty of other mums are there with tiny tiny babies

mainlywingingit Sun 05-Mar-17 22:36:20

You seem very critical of people which is an interesting perspective especially as you feel so judged ?

Maybe you've just had bad luck but I think you need to open your mind a bit. I have lots of 'mummy' friends and none are like what you are describing.

Mummyme87 Mon 06-Mar-17 10:45:46

My DS is 2yr 8m and have been taking him to groups since about 6weeks. He is very sociable and outgoing, great speech and interacts well with adults and children. I compare him to other children his age and see a difference when looking at children who haven't been integrated in social settings as frequently. Personally I think it's vital, children learn from seeing others

TwoDogs9 Mon 06-Mar-17 10:51:55

I feel very awkward going to baby groups too and I've lived here all my life! I think you just have to get on with it for the sake of your child. You're bound to meet a few people who you can gel with eventually. Good luck smile

farfarawayfromhome Mon 06-Mar-17 10:54:17

i'm so with you on all of the above. i tried a few groups and loathed them all.

my DD is now 3.5 and perfectly developed and social - didn't miss out at all by not going...

cynicaltothecore Mon 06-Mar-17 10:58:18

Do try your local library's rhyme time and story time. Our one is really friendly, wide variety of people, quite a few who don't have English as first language (and a mix of languages so English is the common language). It's great fun and most areas have something like this.

BertrandRussell Mon 06-Mar-17 10:59:10

I have to say I do get a bit pissed off by the "oh, I can't stand baby groups" subtext "I am so much more interesting than the others" line.

It's like the people who talk about "school gate mums" as if they are some other, lesser, species.

geekaMaxima Mon 06-Mar-17 11:13:48

I have to say I do get a bit pissed off by the "oh, I can't stand baby groups" subtext "I am so much more interesting than the others" line.

I don't agree that's necessarily the subtext. I can't stand baby groups either, but it's for exactly the same reason that I can't stand book groups, wine clubs, and other organised gatherings. I'm quite introverted and find chitchatting with groups of strangers draining and just not at all enjoyable. confused

OP - if it's any comfort, I gave up on baby groups with DS1 after a couple of months because I used to dread going but felt it was something I ought to do. With DS2, I didn't bother at all, and I'm much happier and more relaxed as a result.

DS1 went to a childminder when I went back to work, and he socialises with loads of other kids there and at playgroups they attend. He settled into nursery no problem and has friends there. What I did in the early months made zero difference!

thepatchworkcat Mon 06-Mar-17 11:31:13

I'm an introvert too and not great at socialising (although I keep joining things and then often regret it!)

But I must say I found it easier to go to a baby group than an adult thing as you've always got the baby to talk about or distract attention. If it all gets a bit much you can go off and change a nappy or pretend baby needs a nap or feed or something. And I agree if you do the short free low key type of thing e.g. In libraries then it's not too much pressure, doesn't last too long and you haven't spent a fortune.

But I wouldn't worry too much about DS making friends. He'll make friends at nursery if he goes. Like people have said baby groups are primarily to help keep mums sane and get out of the house I think. I do think you should persevere a little though, you might find it really helps you, even if you just get one friend out of it. I've made a couple of great friends through my baby.

It's a shame you've found it hard talking to people, but I think maybe you've been unlucky! I'm sure there are other parents out there that you could 'click' with.

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