Unloading On Mom Friends Will Only Make Your Other Friendships Stronger

We’ve spent a lot of time here talking about the difficulty and rewards of making and keeping mom friends. I want to talk practically here: Moms with kids the same age as yours are an invaluable resource, and when you help each other, you don’t have to call on your other friends for things they might not be as willing to do. No one else can feel your pain as they do, and no one else can sit through you talking about that pain for as long as they can. (But keep those other friends around, because you’ll need a break from mom talk, too.) Count on the moms for these things, and all your relationships will be the better:

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1. Talk about your bleeding nipples. Even friends who have gone through breastfeeding before don’t want to talk about breastfeeding as much as the ones going through it right now. Go ahead, share your relative nipple size and leaking horror stories; these ladies won’t even flinch.

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2. Share wisdom on the minutia of kid products. How else will you know about the best diapers, strollers, baby carriers, bottles, food processors, sippy cups, baby sitters and schools? Your mom friends could give Consumer Reports a run for their money.

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3. Trade date nights. For those evenings when you need to go out but don’t feel the date will be worth babysitting dollars, you need a babysitting swap. Who else would feel like watching a not-quite-sleep-trained baby is money in the bank?

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4. Drinking playdates. The ultimate in multi-tasking is watching your toddler wrestle other toddlers to the ground for a toy truck while sipping wine and discussing your reality TV obsession.

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5. Confessing your weird worries. If you asked non-mom friends about that new rash/behavior/fever/missed milestone, they’d think you were paranoid. If you asked your own parents, they’d worry. Let the texts fly with the moms, though, and you will receive just the right amount of validation, even if they don’t have answers for you.

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6. Sick day emergencies. OK, you have other friends and family members who will no doubt come through in your time of need. But when you ask a mom friend to watch your sick toddler for a few hours while you make that mandatory meeting (or drag your own sick self back to bed), you know you’ll be able return the favor soon enough.

I know, it’s hard to go out there and find a good group of these ladies. It’s not like any old female who popped out a baby will do, but trust us: It’s worth the effort.

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