Becoming a parent is truly a joy. There are so many wonderful moments and so much love to share with your new little one. However, while bonding time is essential, at some point, you also need to get out in the world and meet new friends or at least keep in touch with your old pals.
As a new parent, you likely have your hands full, and you probably have less free time than you did in the past, but there will be opportunities to make new friends. THere’s how to practice self-care and enjoy time with your new baby while forming healthy relationships along the way.
One of the reasons why you may think that you can’t make friends is because you are constantly tired. There are plenty of reasons why you may be experiencing a lack of energy. The need to be up all night while constantly worrying about the welfare of your child can lead to feelings of burnout and mental distress. The lack of sleep can also lead to sickness. All of these issues can affect your energy levels.
The good news is there are ways you can find your energy again, and it could inevitably lead to finding new friends. For instance, although you may feel tired, the act of exercising and engaging in aerobic exercise can actually help to boost your energy levels. So, use that to your advantage. Bring your baby for a walk outside and see who you come across during your travels. A trip to the park may present you with several other parents, and you can strike up a conversation. The experience is also good for the children because they can play with other kids and improve their social skills.
This exercise and walking routine is also a great way to get out of your comfort zone, and in many cases, that may be the only way to make new friends. Plus, it is essential that you try to eat right and practice self-care so you can stay in good shape and be there for your baby.
If you go out for walks, but you never see any other parents around, then you may need to go online and complete some research. Search social media platforms like Facebook to find local mommy groups. Many neighborhoods have their own page, so start there first. If you find a mommy page, ask where they meet and express your enthusiasm to join. If no such group exists, then create your own!
Sometimes, the answer to finding friends might be right in front of you. Most of us have some type of inner circle, even if it is only a couple of friends. Use that as a starting point. The objective is to look at your current relationships and find ways to strengthen them. Then, you can use that group to meet their friends, and you will see your inner circle grow.
You can strengthen your current relationships by talking with them and learning about their lives. You should also support your friends when they are going through tough times, even if that means that you are simply a shoulder to cry on when they need it. Most importantly, you need to make time for them. You shouldn’t just expect them to call you and not reciprocate, or eventually, the phone will stop ringing. The chances are that some of the people in your group will be parents, so you can relate to them in that way.
Try the same strategy with your family, especially if you hang out with them more than your friends. Reach out, invite them to do something, and ask them to invite their friends, and you can create a happy group.
Finally, if you have a neighbor that you rarely speak to but you know they also have kids, then take this time to knock on their door and say hello. It is amazing when your child can grow up with a friend across the street, and it will be great for you as well.
While we talk about getting out and talking to the people you meet, there are other more purposeful ways that you can try to meet people and make friends, especially if you consider yourself an introvert. For instance, you can start a carpooling group, where you and other parents take turns bringing the kiddos to daycare or other events. This is a great way for you to say hello to other parents when you pick up their children and then say hi to them again when you bring the kids home. Stay involved and see where these relationships lead.
Another idea is to create an event for other parents. When you bring your child to school or daycare, consider handing out invites to a mom’s or dad’s night out. This can be a trip to the bowling alley, a craft show, hors d'oeuvres at your place, or anything else that you think the group might enjoy. Even if you only get a few parents to attend, you can still craft those new relationships into lifelong friends.
Finally, you also have the opportunity to join an existing parent’s group or parent’s night in your town. Check social media, the city website, and other references to see when these groups may gather. These are other people who are looking for friendship, so as long as you go there with an open mind and you make an effort to speak to the other parents in attendance, then you have a good shot at making friends.
There are many ways you can find and make friends as a new parent. By being more social, you will feel better, and you give your child a better chance of accessing the healthy social interactions they require. Enjoy!
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