7 Rules for Being My Mom Friend

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I’m not taking any resumes for new friends right now. Sure, it sounds a little harsh, but the reality is, it’s harder than ever to keep up with my friendships let alone my marriage and kids. Add to that my desire to pursue a writing career while being a mostly stay-at-home-mom, my inkling to watch an episode of TV or cook something other than macaroni and cheese once in awhile, and there’s nothing left. I’m spent.

With that in mind, I was inspired to make this list: criteria for new mom friends. Hey, if we were honest at the get-go we wouldn’t waste so much time on the playground chatting up other moms who might never pan out as besties, right?

How many can you relate to?

1. I have to like you. Okay, this goes without saying, but sometimes don’t you find that you end up hanging out with people you just generally don’t like? Whether it’s because your kids likes their kids or you want to get in good with the school PTA, stop it! Stop being around people you just don’t like!

2. My husband has to like you and your partner. Does this really need an explanation? He’s my spouse. We’re in this together, and if he doesn’t want to hang with you or your partner during our precious weekend or evening down time, we’re not going to go far as friends.

3. You don’t have to be religious, but you should have some sort of ethical or moral backing. What do I mean? Well, last summer my daughter stood up as the flower girl while her two uncles got married. We’re an open-minded family so our friends should be too. Oh, and on that note, I’m not a fan of petty, mean gossip.

4. I don’t really “do” play dates. Here’s what I mean. If we’re friends and you want to bring the kids into my home, fine, but don’t expect my snacks to be assembled in the shape of zoo animals, for me to have planned out a crafting project, or for me to make a meal from scratch for everyone. We are a Playdoh and pizza (and sometimes, gasp!, television) kind of crew.

5. You need to understand that I keep to a schedule and not judge me for it. This seems really simple, but it often botches up the best of my intentions with new friends. I don’t like hosting play dates past 6:30 p.m. most nights when I know we need to get ready for bath-time or the kids will be wired. I can’t chit chat leisurely on the walk up to school if we’re running behind. I’m not trying to be rude or mean, I just have to keep us on our routine or we all feel crazy.

6. You need to understand if I can only text you. Sometimes it’s really hard to make an actual phone call, so we might have 50 text messages back and forth about how we need to meet up and when and how and where. Don’t be a hater.

7. You can’t begrudge me my babysitting hours. I have a mom friend I’ve texted back and forth with for almost a year trying to set up that ever-elusive coffee date when both of us our child-free for an hour. It’s not that I don’t want to hang. In this case, it’s just that stuff always comes up like I need to get a cavity filled or I don’t want to interrupt my precious writing time (which I pay dearly for in babysitting hours). If I can’t always hang out even when I’m not in charge of my kids, please understand.

Whether you use my list or have your own “new friend criteria,” how do you decide what’s worth the effort of new friendship?

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Photo: Getty