parent opinion

'An open letter to all my mum friends: Please don't shut me out.'

This is an open letter to all my friends who are mums.

Watching your children grow has fascinated me over the years but watching you grow as parents has also fascinated me.

I’ve listened to stories of your mini triumphs, laughed at your ‘mum fails’ and looked through 1000 pictures of your children.

I admire how you are bringing up your children and getting it done. I’ve listened to you tell me how tired you are, but then you scold me when I say I’m tired too. You say ‘I don’t know what tired is’.

I’ve quietly accepted your ignorance when one of your children has had a birthday and you tell me ‘I wouldn’t want to come, as it will be full of kids’.  I’ve let you ask me time and time again when I am having children, even though the answer to the question is so personal.

To all the mums I know, your children are wonderful and such a blessing. I’m your friend. Or at least I thought I was.

I’ve shared the good, the bad and sometimes ugly with you. You’ve changed and mostly, in a wonderful way.  You are sometimes doing 10 different jobs while I am doing just one or two. This doesn’t mean I don’t understand you. I do shift work and I get tired too.

It’s a tired that you may not understand, but don’t scold me and tell me I don’t know the meaning of tired. I do.

You may think I don’t want to go to your child’s birthday, but I do. I want to share these moments with you as we have already shared so much together. Please stop thinking because I don’t have children I don’t want to be there. I do.

Stop asking me when I am having children. Just because you are established and have a family, I may not be there yet. I may not have a clue, I may be on a different path but I may also be very unsure. The actual question is so personal so please think before you ask.

You tell me you can’t make plans and take each day as it comes. Having a child has become quite overwhelming. I understand.

However, I see you meeting up with other  mums. This I understand perfectly. You’ve built a bond with other mothers.

But when I ask you to give me notice about when you want to catch up, it’s because I have a job that sees me working funny hours. I would love to catch up more than anything. I just need to make plans with you, like the plans you made to meet up with those other mothers.

Remember before you were a mum, we were friends. We shared a lot together. Just because I’m not on the same path as you, doesn’t mean you should turn me off.  Don’t ever discredit your friends that don’t have children. Especially the ones that you may have shared so much with.

Our journey’s may be different but how awesome are our stories?