Do Moms Prefer Friends with Older Kids?

IMG_1425Hot Mess Momma Seeking Friends for Playdates: Mom, age 31, with two children, ages 3 and 1. One very “high energy” child who, when she is happy, she is ecstatic. When she is upset, she is very dramatic. She has no “inside voice,” and a dirty pink teddy bear goes everywhere we go. Also, proud mommy of an easy-going 1-year-old.  He occasionally puts everything in his mouth and he does enjoy nursing for the heck of it, so I will be flashing you at some point in our friendship. Me, well I’m a mess to be honest. I have a little obsessive-compulsive disorder with being perfect, have anxiety like no other, and rarely do I look like a supermom. T-shirts and huge diaper bags are my everyday thing, but we have tons of fun and love is very apparent in my home. Seeking mom-friends for playdates.

So, after reading this, would you want to be my friend? I recently read an article about moms with older kids who just prefer to hang out with moms who have older kids. It seems that these moms may consider themselves more experienced and mature, and it seems that they may see us moms of babies and toddlers as inexperienced, annoying, and even a little bit of work.

This has been very real for me lately. For so long, I was a mom of 1. I had a well-behaved sweet little girl. We had several good friends here in Indiana who had children of the same age. We got together for play dates at the park or stroller walks with Starbucks and life seemed easy. Enter baby 2. Enter my sweet little girl turning 2 ½. All of a sudden, I noticed a shift. Moms who I thought we would still hang out with, seemed to not want to be around us. They were past the baby stage. They didn’t care if I had been up every 2 hours or if Levi hadn’t pooped in 3 days. Their kids were past that stage. They wanted to be around moms who had more freedom, moms who could go to Chuck E. Cheese and sit and chat, not chase babies around.

Well, moms, here is what I have learned. True friends prefer YOU. They prefer you with your hot mess. They see you on the days when you have bags under your eyes and they offer you coffee. They come entertain your preschooler so you can get some alone time with the baby or get a nap. They are right there with you when your toddler hits you in Target to share in the tears, laughs, and stories. True friends aren’t annoyed when you show up for a play date at their house and your kid pees on their bed or you forget about their expensive décor and it goes crashing down. True friends don’t have a preference, because your friendship is more meaningful than the age of your brood.

While motherhood does come in seasons and life changes rapidly, this is something I do know. I am thankful for the friends who prefer me. My friend Christina has been a life-saver to me during my motherhood journey. While we have shared in the same struggles, we also have very different children. She is always a text away to encourage me, laugh with me, or cry with me when I need it. Do you have a Christina? I hope you find one if not.

So next time someone acts like they are put off by you and your little ones, just remember that you are amazing. You are the mother you are supposed to be today, and someday you will be the mom of older kids. For now, nurse in public, make some organic baby food, and push that double stroller like a boss.

Karyn Meyerhoff is a mom of two in Northeast Indiana where she lives fully, writes boldy, and loves her babies.

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