Friendships after baby: How friendships change once you become a mum

Friendships after baby

One of the biggest mind benders  when I became a mum which I totally was not prepared for was what friendships after baby would look like. I just had never given it any thought, and then to see many friendships fade, some disappear completely when you are at one of the most vulnerable times in your life, and then some surprisingly strengthen and then of course new friendships develop out of the blue can mean that your friendships can look very different in motherhood.

I feel the change we experience in friendships as mums  is something that so many of us go through, but something that so few of us seem to talk about openly. But wouldn’t we feel much better if we did? If we knew that we all experienced these changes on some level?

So to get things out in the open, I asked fellow parenting bloggers to share their experiences of friendships after baby here:

Friendships after baby

Priorities change…

“I think when you become a parent, your priorities change and sadly you don’t get to see your friends as often as you once did. If they are true friends it doesn’t matter though as when you do meet up, it is just like old times. Your friendships definitely grow stronger as you rely on your friends for support and someone you can be honest with when times are tough.” – North East Family Fun 

Some friendships deepen

“My best friend and I have been friends 25 years! and our friendship hasn’t really changed. Its adjusted to fit with children but we are still really close.” – The Mum Diaries 

“I was one of the first of my friends to have children, so I had no idea how our friendships would change now I had other priorities. I am so pleased to say that my friends adore my little boy – I love watching them with him because it is clear how much they all love him. I feel so lucky to have such wonderful people around me who have supported me throughout my pregnancy and getting to grips with new motherhood. And now many of them are pregnant, I am looking forward to supporting them in the same way.” – Something About Baby 

“I am the only one of my friends with children. It has affected our friendship in a sense that they really consider going out and if I’ll be able to make it! That is lovely. I have made 7 very special friends that throughout the past four years I would have lost my marbles without them.” – Life Through Rosies Lens  

“I was the first of all of my friends to have children and it did affect our friendships for a good few years. By the time I had my fifth baby they were having their first and it was only then that they all said they realised exactly how much your life changes and they were hugely apologetic for not being more supportive of me through those early baby days. I consider myself very lucky to have an amazing group of friends, across several different circles, but my BEST friends are the ones who have been there for me through thick and thin, who were there through my pregnancies, my births and the hard times that followed. I could probably count those people on one hand. ” – Five Little Doves

Some fade or disappear, others grow

“For me it completely depended on the individual friendship – there were some people I grew apart from but others I got closer to. Having my daughter opened up a whole world of potential new friends and now some of my ‘mummy’ friends are my closest which is great. In fact one woman whose daughter went to the same nursery as mine has ended up being one of my best friends despite an age difference of 24 years – we would never have met if we weren’t mums.” – Better Together Home 

“I’ve lost the majority of my friends since becoming a parent. Some are no longer close friends as they don’t have children and believe I should parent different. We still see them occasionally. The ones who weren’t close friends but do have children have now become close friends. However 1 was my best friend and I now love her so much more because although she doesn’t have children, she loves mine so much!” – Mummies Waiting

“One of my friends basically told me she didn’t want to be my friend any more, after I had kids. She was single, no children, and said she found it really difficult being around people who had what she desperately wanted. It made me really sad because we had been friends for such a long time and I had tried so hard not to let my relationship with my husband, or the fact I had children, affect my friendship with her.  On the positive side, I have made loads of fantastic friends since becoming a mum. My NCT friends are fab, our eldest are now seven and we are still good friends. Since my eldest two children have started school, I have got to know some of the mums of their classmates, and made some really good friends.” – Cardiff Mummy Says

“I’ve lost and gained friends. I had just emerged from the newborn fog and was beginning to feel human again when my Grandad passed away. It was then that I realised my old friends had disappeared as not one of them contacted me to see if I was ok. It hurt for a long time. Luckily I had made some amazing new friends who were there for me and still are to this day. I think having kids makes or breaks friendships. I was just surprised at how superficial some of my friendships had been.” – Life Love and Dirty Dishes 

“Being a young mum meant I was the first to have a baby in our group of friends. There priorities were different and I ended up feeling quite alone. I now have a new circle of friends and whilst I still see my old friends from time to time a total clash in our interests means I tend to turn to the mum friends I have made. It’s much easier trying to explain why you can’t stay out late, feeling so tired all the time or can’t/won’t get a babysitter to other mums who know exactly how it feels. – Tantrums to Smiles

“I am not really friends with anyone I was friends with before I had children. I have met most of my close friends through my children or my blog. As soon as I couldn’t go drinking and didn’t have anyone to leave my new baby with, I was no longer involved or invited to anything. I tried to repair some of the friendships afterwards but the effort was all on me so gave up in the end. I love my new friends though. I am really lucky to have them.” – Mummy And The Chunks 

“Most of my friends don’t have kids yet and some of them just don’t get it at all. I was really hurt a while back by finding out some of my friends were being critical and mocking me for missing a wedding when I was pregnant and in the throes of hyperemesis gravidarum. I know that you don’t understand unless you’ve been there but the friendships haven’t been the same since and that saddens me. I have made new friends too though so it’s not all bad!” – Naomi Palony 

“I lost pretty much all of my friends, most of them I’d known for over 10 years. Friendship just disappeared as soon as I had my first baby. I’ve only got one long term friend left and our friendship has certainly improved since having children.  I have also made several new friends since having children, mainly those with children the same age as mine.” – Amy and Tots  

“I think having children showed me who my friends really are/were. Those who only want to see me now both my kids are at nursery and school but who didn’t want to do anything when I had them both home full time, aren’t friends. And I have no issues in telling them that. I don’t have a big group of friends but the ones I do have are happy to see me with or without my children and treat them how I expect them to be treated.” – Mayflower Blogs

“Being a parent of a special needs child means even those friends with children see you less. It’s very lonely at times and you feel so far out of the social world. I lost a lot of my friends once my son was born as I felt awkward going to see them. It’s only recently, now he’s older (10) and I have 2 daughters that I see some of them more often but always in the evening. It’s hard to socialise with friends in the day (if he’s not at school I mean) as his behaviour is unpredictable and I rarely get a chance to sit and have a cup of tea.” – Living With A Jude 

So it looks like overall, many mums lose friends after baby, and struggle with that over time, but make new friends thereafter, and the occassional few are lucky to have seen friendships really deepen after baby.

What has been your experience of friendships after baby? Do leave a comment and share below.

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38 comments

  1. I loved this post!! I think for me it’s a combination. I have a very good friend from school (she isn’t married with kids) who I know I can see after a few month and it’s like we haven’t been apart. I also have really close friends I only met since I had the girls.

  2. Very true post. Priorities and lifestyles change after becoming a mum, so it’s only normal that friendships go through a transition as well. While some fade away, stronger ones don’t – even if one friend is a mother and the other isn’t. But the best part is the new ‘mom friends’ you make along the way… often, these new friends becomes your besties for years to come!
    #coolmumclub
    Nicole – Tales from Mamaville recently posted…5 Simple Ways to Make Learning FunMy Profile

  3. I’m 29 weeks pregnant and can already feel how some dynamics change. Simply not being able to join in the same events when you have a very large watermelon protruding from you, or friends making future plans that you know you simply won’t be able to make, but smiling sweetly and saying “yes, yes, that sounds like a lovely idea, count me in for now” but secretly knowing you will be in a fog of baby sick and poo by then.

    But then there are some great friends that will always be there for you no matter what, they are the ones that for me are normally telling me to pull myself together and just get on with living no matter how big the watermelon is or how much sick I think will be in my hair!

  4. I am shocked at how many people lost friends after having a baby. I would say keeping in touch with old friends is more difficult now as life is so busy but when I do meet up with them it always feels like no time has passed at all. Mum friends are amazing, I struggle making them but the mummy friends I do have are some of my best friends xx #coolmumclub
    Wendy recently posted…Baby update – Alex is 4 monthsMy Profile

  5. I’ve found that friends without children don’t understand how much your life changes and seeing them becomes harder because they think a baby just sits in a highchair end of. On the other hand I’ve made some awesome new friends too! #coolmumclub
    Helen recently posted…Games my one year old lovesMy Profile

  6. Great post, but also a little sad that we sometimes loose people close to us just because we have had a baby, which is usually when we need them the most! I lost contact with two really close friends but my mother tells me now that you don’t loose “close” friends you loose the fake ones and I think to a certain degree she is right!

    #coolmumclub
    kerry recently posted…Never ending laundry basket!!My Profile

  7. This is such a good post and something that is really close to my heart at the moment. I am losing a lot of friends as they don’t realise that I have to put my little boy before everything else, which sometimes means I have to cancel, or change my plans. it is really hard and I don’t have any friends with children so I do feel incredibly isolated #coolmumclub
    Busy Working Mummy recently posted…Am I classed as a young mum?My Profile

  8. My friendships definitely changed after having children. For the most part, my friends didn’t have children and so I felt quite isolated. Also, with four children I literally no longer had the time or energy for nights out or mid-week meals and it did slowly chip away at friendships. That said, my true friends were there throughout, always will be! #coolmumclub
    five little doves recently posted…Kicks Count – If I had known then what I know nowMy Profile

  9. I loved reading these. I’ve moved area since becoming a Mum so I’ve made lots of new friends and carried on other friendships long distance. But definitely just deepened those friendships. #coolmumclub
    Annie Willmot recently posted…JoyMy Profile

  10. Great post! So much changes when you have a child. I’ve made so many new friends from having children and hardly see my old friends.
    Some of my new friends I feel like I have known all my life as we have so much incommon.
    Having children opens up so many new doors!
    #coolmumclub

  11. Friendship changes around my pregnancy and birth shocked me. Many of my friendships stayed the same, others developed in a way I wasn’t expecting and some just faded which I wasn’t surprised by. Two very bad experiences left me shaky though, a close friend from work just literally decided I no longer existed and wouldn’t even acknowledge me and one of my oldest friends made it clear she no longer valued my friendship. These both hurt a lot but in the long run I know I’m better off, far better off. #coolmumclub
    Briony recently posted…Feeling Calm #51My Profile

  12. My only friends are on the internet now, it’s very sad.
    That’s a joke btw 😉
    You already know how much I love this post! It’s always good to see the unsaid being said – especially by you pickle! #coolmumclub
    MMT recently posted…#coolmumclub week 57My Profile

  13. I’m pretty much the last one in our group to have a baby but we have all stayed friends through thick and thin. I used to like the cuddles then giving them Back when the crying started ha! Having a baby really made me appreciate what they had been going through. Although now all we talk about is our kids when we get together – you never switch off do you!
    Kat recently posted…The Bedtime TagMy Profile

  14. Love this post. I think true friendships will stand the test of baby time! I can count on one hand the friends that have stuck by me and their friendship is so precious. The true kind. The kind I can go weeks and sometimes months without seeing and nothing changes. That’s the kind to hang on to! #coolmumclub
    Jaki recently posted…Saving Money With A Greener HomeMy Profile

  15. It sounds like so many of you could relate with so many different aspects of this post. I thought it was so important to get it all out there so thanks so much for reading my lovelies xoxo

  16. So interesting to read the others’ comments. Definitely agree that some friendships deepen and others don’t make it through the baby years. I think we are in survival mode and we surround ourselves with the people we need to make it, not in a selfish way – it’s a natural thing; we gravitate towards people with similar things going on. I still love going out with single, childless friends but I obviously see them way less now. #coolmumclub
    ShinnersandtheBrood recently posted…In Conversation with Over Heaven’s HillMy Profile

  17. It seems that i’ve lost many friends i had previously but i think its all because everyones lives are so busy – i dont see my remaining friends often but whatsapp is a wonderful thing and i know they read my blog so at least i know what ive been up to! #coolmumclub

  18. These are lovely quotes and a great post – I can relate to it. I agree so much changes when you have a child, and in my cases I’ve experienced a bit of everything. Priorities and lifestyles change after becoming a mum and this translates into friendship as well. -Nicky

  19. Very true. Things do change. I think it’s mostly the shift in priorities. I think that also having kids can be the push that causes you to break away from any toxic friendships you once had – it no longer seems worth the energy to bother with people who you know are not healthy for your life. #coolmumclub

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