A baby is a notorious game changer, altering everything from mom’s body to her relationships. Although some lucky mothers will sacrifice little more than their wardrobes, most will say goodbye to something more significant, watching their pre-baby jobs, homes, and even friendships fall by the wayside.
Motherhood is all consuming, and many new moms can’t find the time for showers, let alone all-night dance parties or Sex and the City binges. So if the friends you once indulged these activities with haven’t joined you in the adventures of parenthood, does that mean the friendships are over too?
That’s what Kendra Gilbert asks in a recent online letter to her best friend. A single gal, she misses all the good times she used to spend with her bestie, now a mom to a four-year-old, with another on the way. But that sense of loss, (and the righteousness that almost always comes with it) cuts both ways, as mom Janine Kovac demonstrated in her notorious Dear Doris letter, a patronizing but heartfelt lament for a single girlfriend who wasn’t ready for kids yet.
Relating to friends via online letters is new, but the factors that make and break friendships are as constant as they’ve ever been,and whether or not you stick with your old pals while baby is sucking away all your time depends on the strength of those friendships to begin with.
So if your pre-baby relationships were based soley on drinking or shopping or shared television tastes, it’s unlikely they’ll survive the status change, and that’s okay. But if the drinking or television were just activities you shared because something deeper compelled you to spend time together, then maintaining the friendship is worth the effort. Relationships always take work. Relationships after baby take even more.
Life is always changing and so are friendships, but one thing remains constant: if the only way you communicate important feelings to your estranged friends is through open letters on the Internet, they’re probably not missing you very much anyway.
DO YOU AND A FRIEND NEED TO BREAK UP?