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How have your friendships changed since having children?

(13 Posts)
dingledangle Wed 30-Sep-09 13:35:12

Since having my two DC I have noticed that my relationships with long term friends have changed (ie people who I knew before having children) and the relationships that I have made with people who have children are very shallow (ie really revolving around the shared experience of having children the same age).

As I am now approaching my late 30s, it is increasingly difficult to make new friends. I am generally an outgoing person but I do find that I can meet up with people initially but things tend to fizzle out after a couple of meet ups.

I wonder how other people have gone about making new and lasting friendships?

I am not a person who likes having lots and lots of acquaintances as I find this quite shallow and generally unfulfilling.

Perhaps I am heading in to mid life crisis territory......

Is this usual!!!?

crunched Wed 30-Sep-09 14:25:13

Don't be downhearted Dingledangle.
My 3 are all at school now, and I can see the friends that I made at ante-natal classes,mums and tots etc. have mostly dwindled away- leaving a couple of real ones- because it was only our situation that we had in common.You have obviously already seen the light regarding these relationships, but they are still important, not just for you, but so your offspring have contact with others too.
I agree it's quality not quantity that counts. It is sometimes hard to replicate those intimate friendships made at school, uni etc.My 'old' friends have also changed, but I think we should hang on in there as we swing together and apart throughout our lives.
Our child rearing days are over in a flash and I see my (81 year old)Mother get loads of pleasure from contact with friends of years ago and I never remember them visiting us when I lived at home.
Nowadays maybe our frinds will be made on websites like these.Then we can cast our nets much wider!

juicychops Wed 30-Sep-09 15:26:53

i used to have many friends before i had ds from school and past jobs.

i was the first out of ll my friends to have a child and once he was born and i couldn't go out anymore i just lost touch with most of my friends. i text them occassionally but dont see them really.

i have just 2 close friends now who i see regularly and who make time to see me as well as me making time to see them and i dont hide anything from these 2 people. they both know me extremely well and i think we will be life long friends. one i met on mumsnet! the other is an old primary school friend.

and i have 3-4 other friends who i see every few months for a catch up.i am selective what i tell them sometimes as they arn't close enough to divulge my deepest secrets!

i would rather have just a couple of close friends who understand me and my life than millions of friends like i had before who just dont understand what its like having a child or who are trying to make you keep up with them.

juicychops Wed 30-Sep-09 15:29:28

i also have 2 'mum' friends too but i suppose i must have got quite selective over the years in who i keep in touch with as these mum friends i also get on quite well with.

dingledangle Wed 30-Sep-09 15:58:45

Thanks juicychops and crunched.

I think I am having a bit of a reflective day today.

freename Wed 30-Sep-09 16:23:05

Ditto so lurking....

just a thought, in my younger days it didn't matter how or where I met people but now with a DH and DCs in tow I find friends need to fit in with them as well if we are to have a social life. I rarely just go out on my own like I used to do before. Perhaps that hinders things because you are looking for a whole package?

dingledangle Wed 30-Sep-09 17:41:45

I also think I am not going to put up with the same sort of plop from people that I would have in the past so I am more selective in making friendships perhaps.

I did try and approach new people today at school gates. These are people I have talked to in the past and have not felt we got on very well. To be honest I wonder why I bothered as we were not on the same page at all. I felt a bit silly after our conversation. But I think it was worth the effort to be friendly.

Still I will keep trying.....

sarah293 Wed 30-Sep-09 17:53:51

Message withdrawn

stillfrazzled Wed 30-Sep-09 17:54:49

I've posted about this before - have made about three or four really good mummy-friends and have got much closer to my friends who do have kids - that's the positive.

Of my two pre-DS best friends, one is fantastic and we meet often and DON'T talk babies, which is wonderful.

The other has stopped contacting me at all.

V mixed bag, TBH. The absent best friend stings, but on the whole it's all good...

freename Wed 30-Sep-09 19:17:46

dingledangle it must be an age thing...I feel my tolerance level for other people's 'plop' as you say has also decreased. There are some mums who 'collect' people because they might come in useful for various reasons but are not interested in them on a daily basis. This is a world away from how I relate to people. I don't want to be used like that. F off. Perhaps that's another thread though.

dingledangle Thu 01-Oct-09 12:46:28

freename I think I know what you mean about people/mums who 'collect' people for various reasons. I was treated like this before the Summer. Strangely now school has started this person does not speak to me. It is amazing the lengths she will go to. She seems to develop tunnel vision for example, or finds an interesting piece of fluff on the floor. Odd as our DDs play together as they are in the same class. It will make for some awkward situations in future. I just will have to deal with that as it happens. Like you this is not how I relate to people and whilst I don't want to be best friends with all and sundry some civility would be nice. Sometimes I think my children have better manners!

Whedonzgal Thu 01-Oct-09 13:23:47

I'm lucky to have a close circle of friends who have remained as such. I was the first to have dc and my friends were wonderful in that they always came to me if it was an evening thing & I couldn't get out, or met up somewhere child-friendly if during the day.

It took a year or two of adjustment, but after dd I found that I no longer cared that I wasn't able to go out for drinks with, for example, work colleagues who i previously considered friends. I only ever really go out with my dp and his friends, or my close circle. Colleagues, and making new friends, are much lower on my list of priorities now! I'm very happy with that, I feel like finally my heart is where it should be- pre-dd I felt lonely, bored, and depressed at home, I wanted to be out and socialising all the time, and was looking for something to belong to I think. Now, as a mother, I am very much rooted in myself and my home and any trips out and socialising is a bonus, an addition, not the be all & end all it used to be.

I think I would feel very differently if I had no friends at all though!

globex Thu 01-Oct-09 14:21:33

Since having my son different friends have come to the fore.

I think the reason is because I'm no longer the big drinker/socialiser that I used to be. I guess previously going out with me would have meant the pub and a late night. Now I'm a little bit safer because I'm much happier to meet for coffee, dinner, theatre, etc.. I still love going out for a drink - but its rare and a real treat - and I'm so happy with that.

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