I am going to start this off by saying, I love my mom friends. Like, REALLY love my mom friends! They are great at giving advice, letting me know I am not crazy, are available for kid play dates, and are in this mom thing right along with me. But, I have realized just how important and necessary it is for me to have non-mom friends.
I recently had a girls day with two of my good friends (who happen to be child-free) and I realized something in my time with them. I felt like me, the real me. I didn’t feel like the mom-me that consumes most of my identity. It was a breath of fresh air and exactly what I needed (exactly what I think we all need from time to time).
Since becoming a mom, it has been easy to feel like I have become this washed up on the shore version of myself. Exhausted all the time, running from point A to point B to point C and then back to point A only to start the marathon all over again. Often times when I am not with my toddler, I am thinking about him or talking about him. When I am with my mom friends, this is exaggerated and most of the time we talk about kids, snot, the reasons we drink coffee and wine, doctor’s appointments, how tired we are, how we have no time for our significant others, and how hard this mom thing is. All of these conversations with my mom friends are valid and needed. But, giving myself the opportunity to not talk about these things has been just as important.
During my time with my non-mom friends, we talked about work. But, not just the woes of work, what we’re doing at work. Our accomplishments and what we hope to do in the future. We talked about our relationships, what works, what doesn’t, and ideas to improve. We laughed, A LOT, and not about things our kids have done. My non-mom friends were able to offer me advice from a very different perspective than I was used to and it was great advice, really great advice. I hope I was able to do the same for them.
So, the morale of the story is that mom friends are absolutely necessary. We need our mama tribe (without them, I’d never be able to do this mom thing). But, be sure to spend some time with your non-mom friends. Make friends that do not have kids and try not to write them off because they “don’t get it.” Go to them for advice, make girls dates, and give yourself the freedom to explore another side of you.
I am 100% sure my two good friends have no idea what they did for me during our last girl’s date and maybe they never will. But, they are just as valuable to me as my mom friends and I am already looking forward to our next mani/pedi girls day.