Thursday, November 6, 2014

On Kindred Spirits

Welcome To the The Mother magazine's Blog Carnival: "Friendship and Connection" The Mother magazine is a holistic, natural mothering publication. It is with great pleasure that we share this topic with such a talented group of bloggers. You will find links to the each of the other posts at the end of this one. We hope you enjoy them! 

At times, I envy the ease with which my toddler makes friends.

When we are at the park, now that we're (mostly) past the how-dare-you-play-on-MY-slide phase, making friends is generally as simple as "I'm small; you're small; let's play!"  And off Bug goes with whatever other little kid happens to be there that day, while I look on wistfully.

Best buddies.  (For real, actually.)

As an adult, I find that making friends is actually pretty hard.  I like to think that I'm a nice, likeable person.  And it's not that hard to find people to socialize with.  The mother of that child at the park, for example.  There's always basic conversation about their child's name, age, siblings.  If the other child is young, I might ask about the birth, or whether they're breastfeeding.

And yet, the conversation rarely goes much farther than that.  Seeking out new people in other contexts is usually the same.  Whether you find people on sites like, meet them in a group class of some sort, or even stumble across them serendipitously at Starbucks, it's hard to find people you really click with.  You can usually tell a kindred spirit when you meet one, but meeting one in the first place seems so rare.

I think that one of my biggest problems is that I overthink friendship.  When you're young, it's easy to find some simple similarity and run with it.  We live in the same apartment complex.  Or we have English class together.  Or even we both like cats.  But as an adult, we think much more deeply about the people we associate with.  And I think being a mother makes it even worse at times.

Sure, we both have preschool-age children is an okay starting point.  But how does she parent that child?  And how is her parenting style similar to mine?  Did she breastfeed, or did she go straight to formula?  How does she handle discipline?  Does/did she use cloth diapers?  How does she intend to school her child?

And more importantly, will she still like me if I do things differently?  You can laugh all you like, but I find that as an adult we all care much more than we like to admit about what others think of our actions.  Kids fight and make up easily, but adults don't always handle differences of opinion so well.  If you're outright against spanking your child, another mother who uses physical punishments on occasion might not want to be your friend.  If you're still breastfeeding your two-year-old, another mother who weaned promptly at six months might think you are more than a bit weird.  If you would never even dream of taking your child to McDonald's, another mother might think you are some stuck-up health nut.

These scenarios can go either way, of course; you may be just as uncomfortable by the way she parents as she is by you.  And the end result of any situation like that is usually that the other mother ends up cancelling playdates at the last minute, or declines your invitation outright.  You may see each other in other social situations, but future conversations are awkward or stilted.  Eventually the friendship fades away completely, and you delete her number from your cell phone.

Still, I keep on trying.  Because you know what?  Sometimes you have to go through a lot of acquaintances before you find a true kindred spirit.  It's hard to find good friends, people you can truly connect with - as Anne of Green Gables would say, people who are "of the race of Joseph" - but it's worth it.


Thank you for visiting The Mother magazine blog carnival, read further and enjoy the other fantastic bloggers!


Hope in the Heartache, Light in the Darkness

"A child heats your lap with a fever that rages fire. Your chest heaves, holding an unimaginable weariness like a weight pinning you to the floor. Tears threaten at your lashes. In this moment you want to cry out; for help, for understanding..." Follow Starr and The Mother magazineFacebookTwitter

The Mama Club

"The internal battle between the nurturing unconditional Mama and the pregnant woman who watches pandemonium unfold from outside of her own body is already raging at this early morning hour. I can feel myself unraveling. I know I am going to yell. I know I have to contain myself. Pull it together. Breathe. Get the Coffee in the Cup. Try to Connect."
Follow Kati from THE BEST THINGSFacebookTwitter

The Dream Friendship

"For me a true friendship is built on honesty, love, trust and belief in each other. When you have a friend with this kind of connection life is so much easier, especially the journey of motherhood." Follow Vicky from MOTHERING A DREAM •••

Twins and Friendship

"After I had my twins and the weeks turned into months I began to feel afraid the words may ring true. I began to feel estranged from my old self, as if she had died but I had just then realized it. I felt as if I were imprisoned in my own home..." Follow Miranda from Twinning ItFacebookTwitter •••

The Red Thread

"I feel blessed by the integrity of those women who I call friends, and am deeply thankful for the bonds that knit our lives together, even when we’re separated by long distances and busy lives. We connect at a heart level." Follow Veronika Sophia RobinsonFacebookTwitter •••

On Kindred Spirits

"At times, I envy the ease with which my toddler makes friends. When we are at the park, now that we're (mostly) past the how-dare-you-play-on-MY-slide phase, making friends is generally as simple as "I'm small; you're small; let's play!" And off Bug goes with whatever other little kid happens to be there that day, while I look on wistfully."

Follow Holly from Leaves of Lavender


Where Moms Make Friends in the Digital Age

"Before the Internet, moms met each other at Mothers’ Centers, when they dropped off and picked up their kids from nursery school, at child birth classes, in their neighborhood where moms used to knock on each others’ doors for tea and a chat, and at work"

Follow Laurie Hollman, PhDFacebookTwitter


  1. It really is hard to make friends as an adult, it makes you really appreciate the friends you do have.

    So happy to be apart of this Blog Carnival with you! I am also in it, mine is the blog Twinning- It. :D Love your blog, happy blogging!

  2. Lovely post! So honest and true. Thanks for sharing this. I feel so similarly! It's nice to know that there are others thinking the same things.

    The other day at the co-op my son started playing with another little boy. They were crashing toy cars together. Suddenly, my son stopped and said, "Are you my friend?" To which the other child replyed, "Yes." My son said, "Okay.Let's crash." And they resumed the car crashing play. I so often wish I could say that to other Moms and know that they will be willing to deal with the crashes that might come along.

    So nice to be blogging alongside you! Kati @