When I first had Honey Bee, I was new to the world of motherhood. I was the only one in my group of friends married with a baby. The great thing about that was, that none of my friends made me feel like an outcast. I really appreciate that they didn’t let motherhood change our friendships. I felt fully accepted by my group of friends back home.
Then we moved. I had to make friends all over again. And as you know, making friends as an adult can be a bit challenging. I joined a few Facebook groups for moms around the area and quickly discovered that in order to make meeting friends easier, that I better label myself.
Finding Mom Friends
I found most moms labeled themselves according to their parenting choices. Some considered themselves crunchy moms, other described themselves as AP (attachment parents), others were very religious, some defined themselves by their diet choices and others clung to their identity as a military spouse.
As I mingled within each group, I felt that there was an underlying standard that I needed to meet in order to be fully accepted by that particular group.
Though I practiced certain philosophies and ideas within my own life and parenting, I never wanted that to define who I was a person/parent. There was more to me than that. And I never wanted my way of living to prevent me from meeting other amazing moms. The only thing an I cared about was what type of energy that person was bringing to my life. And how can we add value to each other.
How To Move Past Labels
Then the next challenge was moving past these labels and connecting with other moms. But how?
I discovered that once I demonstrated to others, that I was an easy going (non-judgemental), person, that it made it easier for others to let their guard down. From there we can get to know each other. Sometimes our encounters would lead to a friendship and other times it wouldn’t, and that’s okay.
Having this approach has given me the ability to mingle with different groups and people. I never hold on to certain ideals too tightly. Life changes too quickly, and I have learned to be adaptable. I also try not to label myself because I don’t want to be placed in a box. However, I do understand that is part of human nature. Labels help us understand the world.
If you are a mom without a label, I get it. If you are a mom who feels you need a label to fit in, I’m here to tell you that you don’t. Being you is enough. Never let labels make you feel inadequate, labels are just that…labels.