The Parent-Friendship Trap

Tracy Moore reflects on friendships rooted in parenthood:

I know what you’re thinking: Wow, do I even want to make parent friends!? Aren’t my old regular friends good enough? The answer is: yes you do and no they are not.

Try as your old friends might to adjust to you plus baby, they can and should only have to adjust so much. There is nothing better than commiserating over an annoying teacher or childhood development phase with someone staring it down on the same lack of sleep as you. If you discover that you both actually like even a few of the same new bands, restaurants or movies, lock that shit down. Because when you find other parents who are as laid back as you are (or aren’t), as flexible as you are (or aren’t), and as approximately cool as you are (or aren’t), it’s easy and fun and it reminds you how friendships work anyway: You get together sometimes, you like their company, and it’s pretty fun.

My real advice is this: Stay open-minded, lower your expectations, and remember that it’s really about your kids. So do make the effort to expose yourself and your kid to as many types of people that are out there, while also understanding that if your kid doesn’t like the kids of your parent friends, the whole situation is hosed. Try also to compartmentalize the friendships the way you might “friends with benefits,” aka, “play date with good snacks” or “play date with Pinterest mom” or “playdate with free stock market discussion.”