Many of my friends aren’t married, so when I was pregnant with Alex, one of my biggest worries was meeting other new moms. I was lucky enough to find a group of wonderful women a few months after we had all given birth. We now get together on a regular basis to discuss feeding, pooping and other issues, and to let our babies play together. I don’t know what I’d do without them! If you’re having trouble finding the support you need, here are seven ways to make new mommy friends:
- Your birthing class (if you’re still pregnant). Before your baby is born, you will probably take a Lamaze or other type of birthing class to prepare you for the big day. If you happen to “click” with another woman in the class, get her name and phone number.
- A breastfeeding support group. Many hospitals and private lactation consultants run breastfeeding support groups, and because breastfeeding can be so hard, it’s especially helpful to talk with women who are dealing with the same struggles. Your obstetrician or pediatrician will likely have a list of local lactation consultants. The International Lactation Consultant Association has a list of certified lactation consultants.
- A new moms support group. Most hospitals offer a support group for new moms, and many small local mom-and-baby shops also offer support groups. Also, your doctor may know of a good group in your area. Many local baby stores also have a table or shelf where other business owners can leave advertising, so you might want to check those out as well.
- Exercise classes for mom and baby, which have the added benefit of helping you get back in shape. Stroller Strides gets a group of moms together for a walk and resistance band workout at a local park. Some of the resistance band exercises actually incorporate the stroller! If you practice yoga, check the studios in your area for a class that includes your baby.
- Baby classes. Kindermusik is a wonderful way to learn some new songs to sing with your baby. Many moms enjoy Gymboree or swimming classes.
- The park. There is a park with a path that goes around a lake near my house, and I’m never the only mom getting some exercise. It’s surprisingly easy to talk to strangers when you have new babies in common, so go ahead and strike up a conversation.
- The mall. The mall near my house is always so full of moms with strollers that I avoided it like the plague when I was having difficulty getting (and staying) pregnant. Many malls now have play areas and family lounges with diaper changing areas and breastfeeding booths, and these areas are an easy place to start conversations with other moms.