The Key To Making Mom Friends: Connection vs. Perfection

making mom friends
My new doormat and relational philosophy. (You can snag it at Target!)

Every season of motherhood has its challenges. Whether your kids are little or they’re ready to fly the coop, the demands of parenting can leave you exhausted, overwhelmed, and doubting yourself.

But no matter what issues you’re currently facing as a mom, one thing never changes: you need mom friends.

You need girlfriends who understand what you’re going through because they’re right in the trenches next to you. You need girlfriends a little further down the parenting path who can offer their sage advice. And you need girlfriends just starting this crazy adventure who you can help and inspire along their way.

The problem is: we’re all so consumed with surviving our current challenges, that we don’t have the time or energy for friendship. We know we need the camaraderie, encouragement, and carpools (!) from other moms around us, but we don’t know how to make it happen and we’re too busy to figure it out.

Never fear, dear friends. It’s easier to make friends than you think. It starts with one simple step: invite.

How to Make Mom Friends

Don’t underestimate the power of an invitation. Asking a fellow mom to coffee, a play date, or a walk can be the simple beginning of a new friendship or the needed step to get to know someone in a deeper way.

I remember when my oldest was in second grade and he joined a basketball team. There was another mom on the team who I’d seen around, but didn’t know well. I asked if she wanted to grab coffee. That coffee date led to walks during practice and started a new friendship that is still going strong six years later.

Risk vs. Reward

Inviting another mom to hang out can feel risky. It’s like you’ve entered the mom dating world and you’re crossing your fingers she’ll swipe right.

But, the reward is worth the risk. Sure, not every invitation will lead to your friendship soul mate, but any chance to connect with another mom will leave you feeling less alone in your motherhood journey. And isn’t connection what we need?

Connection vs. Perfection

Oftentimes what holds us back from making new friends is our own perfection. Maybe you’re waiting for a sufficient window of time in your week or for your house to be perfectly clean. Perhaps you’re holding out for the trifecta to occur: the perfect moment when you’re available, clear-headed, AND showered.

Friends, let me break it to you, that perfect moment is NEVER going to come. Stop waiting for the ideal day or an impeccable home or flawless skin or for the stars to align. Life is messy and so are relationships.

And let me fill you in on a little secret: those imperfections you want to hide actually make you more approachable. That mom you’d like to know isn’t perfect either and she’s way more likely to reciprocate an invitation back to her humble home when you’ve relieved her of all expectations that it needs to be magazine-worthy.

Intimacy happens when you’re vulnerable while perfection only leaves you lonely and longing. By being your imperfect self, you’re inviting a woman to know you and giving her permission to relax. You’re taking the pressure off and that’s a gift to both of you.

My favorite wall sign communicating my heart for each visitor to our home.

As a recovering perfectionist, I know the tension of wanting to appear pulled together and for others to be impressed by me, my home, and my apparent winning at life and motherhood. But, that’s just a façade and eventually, it will all be revealed anyway.

Better to be myself from the start: vulnerable, disorganized, and utterly human. Because as much as I’d like to impress others, my soul would rather know them. Which leaves me with a choice: perfection or connection? I choose connection. I hope you will, too.

Forget about the toys and laundry and dust bunnies. Take a shower or don’t. Serve a homemade snack or open up a box of Cheez-its. The details don’t matter. Don’t let them get in the way of a potential friendship that will make all the difference in your motherhood journey.

Invite, welcome, and ditch perfection in favor of connection. You won’t regret it.


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