I know how I feel will change after Baby Shopaholic arrives - everyone says "you don't understand until you have a baby."
I feel that I am a very good friend and for my friends that have had LOs ahead of me, I always try to be understanding, accommodating, and go the extra mile to keep up with the relationship. This often means that I drive to their houses, bring them food, meet them according to their time & schedule, we do activities that are LO-friendly, heck, I basically help baby-sit sometimes!
This also means, that a lot of those friends NEVER come (or ever been) to our house (we've lived here 2 years). Some LOs I've rarely ever seen outside of their homes!
Today, I was on my way to meet a friend with twins (about a 20+ min. drive) early in the morning so we could "take them for a walk." I get a call telling me that they were being too naughty, she was having a nervous breakdown, and today would not be a good day. I understand. I really do. I can empathize with how difficult it can be. BUT... I wonder now that I am going to have my own LO, if some of these friends who are already moms, will now be too busy to reciprocate the way I have. I mean, will they come to see me at my house? Will they understand and make the effort to spend time with us?
Basically, will they be "there for me" as much as I have "been there" for them?
Moms - can you weigh in?
If you don't reciprocate after you had a LO - was the friendship just not worth the effort?
blogger / pomegranate / 3300 posts
I absolutely make an effort to go when people invite me places. My church group always does meals for our new moms and I always sign up. S my four children and I drive over to other people's house to drop off food. There are some things I am not comfortable with like beach days. I just don't think I can easily watch all four of mine at the beach safely so I pass on beach days but I Always go to play dates and stuff like that.
coconut / 8430 posts
I haven't been a mom for all that long, but I do think my friends have totally been there for me for the past few months! In fact the friends who are parents who came to visit us after we brought our LO home all brought us food.. it was amazing!
bananas / 9973 posts
@Oceanis723: Wow! You sound like a great friend! I have one who has just one 3 year old and makes going anywhere sound impossible! We've literally never gone anywhere with them outside of their home!
@sunny: That's so nice!
coconut / 8234 posts
Most of my friends with kids live far from me but they have all been super supportive and I am glad I have them--even if it's just for moral support. I mean, how many friends can you have on speakerphone while you are pumping your boobs???
I just wished I lived closer to them because a lot of my friends who don't have children that live close by don't really understand how my life has changed!
bananas / 9973 posts
@mrsjazz: I guess my point was that now that you are a mom, do you still make an effort to be there for those friends w/out kids? Or friends who are new moms?
admin / watermelon / 14210 posts
@shopaholic: most definitely. One of my closest friends is single and we go to a concert once a month, or at least watch a movie or have dinner. With my mom friends that are a little further away it's hard for us to get together more often than every 2-3 months usually for a birthday, but we all have two kids.
It just comes down to it being a priority so I make time for it.
honeydew / 7488 posts
@shopaholic: I definitely make an effort, but I have to say, it would be really tempting if a single friend were to volunteer to come to my house rather than meeting out (you are super considerate friend because no one except my SIL ever volunteers this). But we find ourselves itching to get out, so I always jump at the chance to meet people outside since I need to feel like I have a life rather than staying home all the time! I think things will change for you once you are a mommy. People will have to accomodate you, and you can take turns doing what is more convenient for the other. You may also just get together a little less, but you can make it count when you do get together!
coconut / 8234 posts
@shopaholic: I do make an effort to be there for all of my friends, but some of my friends have been less understanding of the changes in my life now that I have a child, so I will admit I don't make as much of an effort anymore with them. I am not completely writing off friendships, though.
pomegranate / 3008 posts
I attempt to continue to reach out and make an effort but I would say many (not all) of my friends with kids no longer do the same.
nectarine / 2085 posts
Several of my friends with kids just fell off the map. And to a certain extent, I did too for a little while after LO was born. I didn't really go anywhere, but I kept in touch via email, because I often sat at the computer and nursed. A few months into parenting I had friends over for afternoon tea and then I decided, "hey, I can do this!" so I invited another friend out for lunch (with baby in tow), and then did it again a few times. Then we moved far away, but I'm largely still in touch with the friends I saw in those few months before our move, and have visited them on return trips/they've visited us.
For what it's worth, I wouldn't totally write anyone off just because they disappear for a while after having kids. I think that it is easier to hang out with friends when your LO is really young or a slightly older toddler. The period between 6 mos-16 mos is an awkward fit for most adult social functions like lunch at a restaurant--they're still taking multiple naps a day, so scheduling is potentially tricky, and attention spans aren't long enough for most quiet distractions (think crayons/paper, or other "busy bag" type stuff--they're just not really ready for those).
nectarine / 2274 posts
I'm the first out of my group friends to have a LO. It's so hard trying to schedule time with them because keeping LO's schedule is priority. However all of them have been understanding enough and have visited me around LO's nap schedule.
I may not see them very often anymore, but I make an effort to keep in touch with them weekly, even though its just through text messages and emails.
GOLD / wonderful coconut / 33402 posts
I think my group of friends have all done a great job of keeping up with each other after having kids. Some are more social then others, but we still get together once a month for dinner for some girl time. We might not email as much but I still think we are still involved in each others lives.
When someone just have a baby, we all bring dinner. Then ask if they need a break, and go to lunch or something if they need to get out of the house for an hour or two between feedings.
bananas / 9973 posts
@Mrs. Bee: Wow! A concert a month with a friend! That IS making your friendship a priority!
@T-Mom: hahaha..maybe I've made it too easy and tempting for some friends - that's true. It's always "come to my place" for some people.
@pelikila: Thanks for the truth.
@honeybear: That's how I feel! Totally MIA once they had kids. I mean, I understand it's hard, which is why I make more of an effort, but I just don't know how that will translate once I have a LO too and can't always be the one to go the extra distance literally and figuratively.
I know which friends w/kids will still make the effort to keep up with each other no doubt. There are just a couple though, who I think might just think it's too difficult if I'm not the one going over still. I guess only time will tell...
GOLD / wonderful grape / 20289 posts
My rule is always whoever has the youngest kid gets to stay closest to home. For example, my friend had a baby first so I always went to her. Then I had lo and she came to me. Then she had another so we go to her again. We try to make it easy on whoever has it the hardest at the time.
Or we will meet in the middle.
I dont have many mom friends, but the ones I do have are mostly sahms so we like to get out of the house. Makes us motivated to keep in touch