I fretted about a million things during my son's first year of life, but making sure he was socializing with other children actually kept me up at night. He had playdates, of course -- his very first friend lived three floors above us -- but was he around other kids enough, I wondered? In fact, I was so wrapped up in his social development that it never occurred to me I could use a little help making new mom friends. After all, the playground crowd isn't always the easiest to break into. Mamas are often either too busy, too tired, or too shy to strike up a conversation.
In lieu of uncomfortable chitchat at the bottom of the slides, some mothers are trying a new way to meet friends: speed dating. As Today.com reports, these just-for-us services are starting to crop up around the country and work the same as regular speed dating. You and a perfect stranger are given a few minutes to meet each other before you both move on to the next person. At the end of the event, you write down a list of the women you hit it off with, and the next day, you'll receive an email with your mom matches. And from there, hopefully, an honest-to-goodness friendship will follow. "It's really just meant to be a fun thing that helps moms find someone that they connect with, helping them build their village and introducing them to someone they may want to go through this journey alongside," says Robin Hieatt, a Texas mom of two and founder of Moms Matched.
Personally, I think the idea of mom speed dating is a stroke of genius. We're notoriously strapped for free time -- and let's face it, the gig can get kind of lonely -- so why not streamline the friend-making process? Sure, I imagine having to be chatty (over and over again) with a stranger is a little awkward, but so is trying to make a connection at the playground. At least here, you're around other women who are going through the same life-changing experience and, like you, just want a buddy to share it with. And -- best part -- you can have an entire conversation without stopping to wipe away tears, pick up toys, or clean off a bottle.
Tell us: How did you meet your mom friends? Would you ever try something like speed dating?
How to Help Baby Be More Social
Image of two moms courtesy of Shutterstock