Hey to all non-parents out there, you should probably know that your new-mom friends are a bit sensitive right now. They’re sleep-deprived. They’re facing new dilemmas and challenges every day, struggling to find answers to tough questions and just praying they raise their child correctly. They’re financially worried about things like, “How will I send this kid to ballet lessons one day, let alone college?” So maybe take it easy on them. Be gentle. They were there for you when you were a wreck after that one breakup and couldn’t be left alone for three hours. And they were there for you when you didn’t get that job you had been counting on and dreaming about. So maybe it’s time to be there in return and know about these ways non-parents can be pretty mean to parents.
Teasing the mom clothes
Even though your mom friend laughs along with you when you make fun of her maternity clothes, it probably hurts a little. She spent a lot of time in the store trying to find something that didn’t look like maternity clothing. So, please, tell her she looks adorable.
Pressuring them to return to work
Stop asking your mom friend when she thinks she’ll go back to work and if she misses work and how she’ll catch up when she goes back to work. She believes she is currently doing the most important job in the world—and, she is. So focus on that.
Not really asking about the kids
Sometimes, it’s the thing you’re not doing that is the problem. Having a kid kind of consumes a woman’s thoughts and entire day. So, treat it like that. Don’t just allow for two minutes of kid talk, and then change the subject. Kids are the only subjects that’s been on her mind!
Grimacing at the noisy kids
Try not to look grossed out when the kids spit up or annoyed when they’re loud. Your mommy friend is already exhausted and at her wits end with all of that—she doesn’t need to also feel bad about how it affects her friend. And it’s really not a big deal.
Not going to the birthday parties
Go to the birthday parties and the little special parties your parent friends throw for their kids. If you love these friends, then you should also love their kids and want to celebrate the milestones that are important to them.
Taking them away from the kids
While your mom friend could use an occasional night away from her kids, you shouldn’t only choose venues and activities that aren’t child-friendly. Try to meet her halfway. Try to show that you are aware of this major life change.
Or just not inviting them
And do still invite your mom friend to do things, even if you’re 99 percent sure she won’t be able to come. She shouldn’t feel like she’s being punished and kicked out of the friend group for having kids.
Asking, “Are you glad you had kids?”
Um…what?! They’re kind of here now so, this question is a bit of a moot point. And, it implies that you think she isn’t happy she had kids.
Joking about increasing birth control
You may think you’re quite the comedian when you pretend to swallow your whole pack of birth control kids any time your friend’s kids act crazy, but it actually insults her.
Always requesting a babysitter
If the first words out of your mouth when you call your friend to hang are, “Can you get a babysitter for this night?” then she’ll start dreading answering your calls. Remember, babysitters are expensive, and she wants to be with her kids. So try to make a plan that lets her bring the kids.
Never offering to babysit
Oh, and if you’ve literally never offered to babysit, that’s messed up. Helping friends means helping even with activities that aren’t really up your ally.
Saying, “It was your choice to have kids”
Just because your friend chose to have kids, doesn’t mean you can say, “You chose to have kids” every time she complains of being tired. You probably complain about things you chose to have in your life, too, like your boyfriend or your job.
Avoiding their home
Her home isn’t some off-limits, poisonous hazard zone. So, visit her there from time to time. Don’t make her feel like she’s isolated in some fortress.
Complaining about too many baby pics
Be careful about complaining that other people post too many baby pics on social media. It makes her feel insecure about posting any.
Treating them like aliens
Just don’t treat your friend like some alien being that you don’t understand. Try to embrace this change in her life, and accommodate the needs that come with it.