schoolyard parents(11 Posts)
Hello all. I'm feeling gloomy and would love some advice.
Today was the end of term for my 10 year old DS. I suggested a meetup next week with one of the mums I feel most comfortable with - she said yeah, sure, I don't see anyone; it's actually quite a blessing. 2 other parents then come over to join us, and the 3 of them start talking about who's driving to something they have all obviously arranged, mentioning another 2 families from the class.
I'm always friendly to everyone, but nobody ever asks DH or I to do anything with them, despite nobody having an issue with us (truth is, we've never been close enough to any of them, not fallen out, DS is well-liked). Everyone is in their groups, and we aren't in any of them.
We did organise a BBQ a couple of years ago, but 2 of the couples had fallen out which kinda spoiled it. Then I picked myself up, invited 7 of them to come over for my birthday cos DH was away. 5 of them turned me down, because they didn't like the others I'd invited, and although I said I understood, quietly I was crushed. Now they've all regrouped, and DH and I are nowhere....
What do we do? Where do couples go to make friends with groups of other people? I feel like we must be really unlikeable.
Having had to distance myself from a parent at school quite recently, I am now happy to be friendly to parents at school, but not do any outside socialising other than if there is a group meet up (at both of my DC's schools there is normally a Mum's night out sometime during the year).
I think to invite other parents round without there already being an established friendship can come across as being a little desperate (and I honestly don't mean that unkindly).
The parent cohort at your DS's school sounds a little drama lama with all the fallings out / getting back together again, so it is perhaps a blessing that you aren't so involved.
As for how to meet new friends? I don't know, we have friends we have known for years, I have made new friends through sporting activities, and I socialise a bit with my siblings. I think you have to let things develop naturally, and beware the friendly Mum who wants to be your friend because she has worked her way through all the other parents who know what she is like and are sick of her!
That is SO rude to talk about arrangements you've made while someone who isn't invited is there!
I would move on from these people. They sound like hard work, always falling out with one another and making it up again. Most adults I know do not behave that way! There are nicer, saner people to spend your time with.
I think it's great that you're being proactive and inviting people out for events. It takes a bit of getting used to doing that, and it's easy when you're not accustomed to it to feel a bit nervous and sensitive about it. Just keep on asking, though, and I bet you soon find yourself surrounded by people who genuinely like you and are interested in socialising.
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When my elder son stared reception there seemed to be a core group of mums that were very friendly with each other and I felt a bit outside that group. They all lived within houses of each other. I actually have become very good friends with some other mums I would meet as we walked to school. I think having one to one conversations helps to build up a friendship. I think it's hard to form a close friendship when you go out as a group. So I would say invite one or two mums out for a coffee or a drink and build up a relationship.
Thanks all. We did all start out as quite a sociable bunch but friction started in a couple of places (DH and I weren't involved in any of it) and things haven't recovered. Things are so bad that we don't even have a class meal out because various people refuse to go if others are going. Having said that, folk have subdivided into little groups, and they do seem to do things.
I know you're right when you say they sound a bit divisive, drama lama etc, but yesterday just stung a bit more than it usually does.
Do you have friends from other parts of your life?
I made friends with a few people from my DCs primary, but now they are at secondary and the children don't see each other every day, my friendships with the other mums has faded a lot. I still have my friends from other parts of my life though.
I've accrued four very good friends through dc's school but I will say that some of them I've only become friends with in the last year or so despite having known them for five years. I see them all seperately and on a couple of occassions have orgainised a group night out. Only recently has DH met their husbands in a social way and although we may once in blue moon do something as couples or a group generally speaking I regard them as my close friends who I socialise with individually.
I think what I'm trying to say is all this class mum's and dad's group friendships/social gatherings strikes me as a little manufactured and based on little else other than the fact the kids are in the same class rather than true friendship
I would concentrate on developing your own friendships and let them naturally progress.
You're not unlikeable. You just don't have your core group of friends yet.
If some of the parents have an established friendship that you're not part of, then they have an established friendship that you're not part of. It's not a reflection on you.
Just do the usual thing of having short, then longer, conversations with the people who you are drawn to, and let any friendships blossom naturally over time. Nature abhorrs a vacuum, and if you currently have space for more friends in your life, then some will come to fill that space. Be patient, be open to others, and all will be well.
i chatted to other mums at the school but i wasnt friends with any of them...they all got together, had nights out, bbqs etc....but i never went as i worked full time and had other things to do when i wasnt....if they hadnt been the parents of my childs friends i wouldnt have chosen them as friends, so i kept away from their petty squabbles (even a fight in the playground!) i have enough friends that i dont seem to have enough time to see without anymore, especially ones that stand around gossiping for hours in the playground in the mornings, and then turn up at home time smelling of booze
school in the middle of rough housing estate sorry if that sounds snobby, im not
PotatoFace I recall a very genteel lady turning up at school in the car to collect her child, absolutely hammered. She was four times over the limit. She did let herself down a little when she fought the police officer who was arresting her. Not limited to rough housing estates, trust me.
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