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Do you have fewer friends now?
Chrissie Swan's latest article

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#1 EBmel

Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:46 PM

We've just posted Chrissie Swan's latest article onto EB...

I actually used to be a really top-notch friend. Ten  years ago, BC   (before children), my ground-floor apartment in a groovy  inner city   cul-de-sac was home to great parties, generous home-cooked  feeds and   smoky all-night gabfests ... These days I'm lucky  to   tap out a text once a week. And I'm actually okay with that.                

I mean, sure, I miss the no-holds-barred fun I used to   have with my  old friends. But the fact is, the person I was 10 years   ago would have  nothing in common with the person I am today, and the   same probably  applies to those friends who have moved on from me for   more interesting  pastures. The 28-year-old Chrissie would be bored   stiff with my current  chatter about variable interest rates and Leo   calling his little Casio  piano keyboard his "punano". I'm bored just   thinking about it.

What do you think? Has becoming a parent meant that a few old friends have drifted away - and are you happy with that?

Edited by EBmel, 10 April 2012 - 02:07 PM.
Edited title - thanks to Bel Rowley for pointing out the mistake!

#2 Oriental lily

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:35 PM


But I think it takes effort to keep relationships going. Sometimes the effort just seems massive when your dealing with sleepless nights and small children.

We tend to socialse with a smaller group of friends and family that live to the same beat of the same drum.

So friends that also hav the restraints of kids.

I think friendship groups evolve over time. It's just something that happens as you move in to a different stage of life.

I do miss some friends though,but we are just different people now.

#3 EBeditor

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:41 PM

Yes and no.. I have lost contact with lots of people (except on facebook) but have also made new friends through my kids.

I found I was able to keep up my BC friendships with 1 child, but two children, moving away from the inner city, extended breastfeeding... I simply wasn't able to maintain some friendships properly, and yes that makes me sad.

With my 'lifelong' friends we can maintain our friendship even if we only speak a few times a year.

#4 rjflc69

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:44 PM

QUOTE (EBeditor @ 10/04/2012, 01:41 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Yes and no.. I have lost contact with lots of people (except on facebook) but have also made new friends through my kids.

I found I was able to keep up my BC friendships with 1 child, but two children, moving away from the inner city, extended breastfeeding... I simply wasn't able to maintain some friendships properly, and yes that makes me sad.

With my 'lifelong' friends we can maintain our friendship even if we only speak a few times a year.

I have to say I feel the same as Amber excluding living in the inner city.

Friendship is not always easy and takes commitment.


#5 Steggles

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:45 PM

I think I have more, and they are better quality. But I got married young and was ready for a different stage of life to my friends living the young single life - never was a party animal original.gif

#6 fruitbat72

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:47 PM


I realised only yesterday that my oldest friend (as in known her for nearly 40 years) and I hadn't seen each other since her father's funeral in November and had sent the last texts in Feb when our kids started kindy. So I sent a text and we are getting together next week.

This woman knows me probably better than myself and yet nearly 6 months can go by and we will not speak to each other unless via text or a brief phone call. I feel especially bad as I knew her family well and feel I didn't provide enough support after her dad's passing.

I think we get so caught up in managing the here and now that we forget our friends. I am lucky that the few close friends I have tend to forgive me for being less than vigilant as they are in the same boat as me (career, young kids, study, marriages). My NY resolution was to be more sociable so I am working on that. I find it hard to make friends so I need to nurture the ones I have.

#7 50ftqueenie

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:51 PM

I've always been the kind of person that has a small group of friends, so while I would say that being a parent hasn't seen the numbers dwindle I definitely don't see as much of my friends as I did before children.

It's just harder to find the time.  Before children we would be out on the weekends for dinner or long lunches.  Now we might catch up, but it's often with our partners and children as well.  In my 20s my friends were my chosen family, now I have a new family.  My friends are still there, and we all try to make the effort to see each other without our children around so that we can have long uninteruppted conversations.  we also enjoy seeing our children play together so I guess our friendship is just evolving.

I did laugh at Chrissie's acknowledgement that the person she was 10 years ago would be bored with the person she is now.   My 28yo self would NOT enjoy a weekend in my 38yo (sensible, flat) shoes.

#8 **Xena**

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:53 PM

I don't have anything in common with it. Not only have I not lost any friends despite still being one of the only ones in my friendship groups to have kids, but I have made a lot more friends since having kids and still only a handful of those have kids.

I am a mother but I have many interests outside my own children and I value what other people bring to my life. I treat people like they are worth the effort to stay in touch with because to me they are. Likewise I am also treated that way in return.

#9 Bel Rowley

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:56 PM

Seeing it's a mod-started thread I can't help being pedantic - title should read "Do you have fewer friends now?", not less.

In answer to the question, no, if anything I have more friends than I did pre-children, but they are different friends. It's been surprising to see how some friendships have cooled while others have developed. Most of my friends pre-kids were those I made at the residential college I lived at during my first two years of university, now probably my closest friend of that group is one I barely had anything to do with previously, but after both having our first child within a week of each other we've become close and I see her way more frequently than any of the others.

I like my life and my friends now. I do miss some things about the old days, but I suspect my 23 year old self would be bored with my 33 year old self regardless of whether or not I had kids. I've changed in many ways apart from becoming a mother.

#10 Lethe

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:56 PM

All of my friends had children before me, yet since bubs came along, I think one, maybe two have made contact or wanted to catch up. It's weird, I assumed we would have more points of contact but I assume everyone is bogged own with life and children stuff of their own. I realized after having a child that I was the one doing most of the work and now working full time and raising a child who has had health and development issues, I'm not able to maintain that. It has been a bit saddening, I have had an extended bout of depression post baby, bubs is 20 months and it still lingers, and it would have been nice to get a bit of support.

#11 Feraldadathome

Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:58 PM

I have fewer (gaaahhhhh!!) pre-child friends, but a greater number of friends overall.

#12 suzy-c

Posted 10 April 2012 - 02:02 PM

I had my son at 18 and have struggled to make and keep friend relationships ever since. I always seemed to be at a different stage to the people around me. I was not compatible with my young friends who stopped asking me out, because it took too long to organise babysitting.

Later, in my bakery days, my workplaces were all older men. Then when I was finally able to go to uni, I was a mature age student and surrounded by 18yr olds again. I don't have any friends with children, although I would like to have some. (Brisbane northside, if you're available!)  biggrin.gif

#13 CallMeFeral

Posted 10 April 2012 - 02:06 PM

I have probably no 'deep' level friends anymore (i.e. the ones who I would share EVERYTHING with), and I really miss it. It's probably not so much been due to children, as distance - my best friend is in the UK, next one moved to Brisbane, and although I'm still close with the bestie, it's not the same as when you can be in each other's daily lives.

I have no idea how to change it. sad.gif

#14 virtuallotus

Posted 10 April 2012 - 02:08 PM

Of course, I just don't have as much free time anymore. Duh.  tongue.gif

#15 sarah_jane

Posted 10 April 2012 - 02:12 PM

I have different friends now.

But I would have expected to change friendships between 17 and 27 anyway, regardless of children.

I still have my very best friends, that I've known since primary school. I talk daily with one, weekly with another. I still put a lot of effort into friendships- but I have time without my kids to do this.

I have more friends with children, and common interests (uni as well) but these take less time and are less involved.

It's just  a life thing for me, not a children thing.

#16 sarah_jane

Posted 10 April 2012 - 02:13 PM

double post.

Edited by sarah_jane, 10 April 2012 - 02:17 PM.

#17 allie-jane

Posted 10 April 2012 - 03:05 PM

Another  very refreshing and worthwhile contribution from Chrissie Swan. Thanks

#18 Squeekums Da Feral

Posted 10 April 2012 - 03:09 PM

I have less friends now than before i had dd. Kinda almost a loner some would say. I'm not that fussed by it, not like i can pull a 4 day bender anymore anyway lol

im happy with a good tv show, movie or book these days

#19 vanessa71

Posted 10 April 2012 - 03:28 PM

One thing I never expected to do, once I got over the age of 25, was to make new friends. I have to say that it's been the opposite and have met some wonderful people, with a special few I could call very close friends.

I was never one to have lots of friends, but I have more now than I ever expected to have.

#20 BeachedAsBro

Posted 10 April 2012 - 03:29 PM

I have different friends. More online than IRL, however those online have become very near & dear to me & the few that live in NSW, I've met, so they're IRL friends now original.gif my DIG also introduced me to some new wonderful friends.

On counting friends from school, I only speak to two now & that's ok. Part of growing up is learning that it's ok to walk away from toxic friendships & develop new ones.

#21 Pearson

Posted 10 April 2012 - 07:23 PM

Before I had DS, I had the partying life, and as he got older, we started this up a bit more, parties out the back yard, some other kids over, it was a bit of a party with everyone, not like before, everyone was cool.

Now, since DD, no real parties anymore, would rather be at home with the kids.

#22 JingleBlitzenBells

Posted 10 April 2012 - 08:18 PM

Yes absolutely.  My single childless friends would be bored silly with my life now.

I once did have that urban myth experience of someone saying to me "so what do you do?"  when I replied "Well I've just become a mum" his eyes glazed over, he smiled weakly, said Oh and walked away.

DH and I burst into laughter because we never thought that people would actually do that.

I also find as I get older, I am more picky about what friends bring to my life and what I can contribute to theirs.   I am more selective these days as I truly have no patience for people who have OTT expectations on what friends should and shouldn't do.    I have lots more acquaintances, but less true friends and that is all good because these true friends accept me as I am and vice versa.

#23 FeralAndIKnowIt

Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:03 PM

I think mostly my friendships are just different - definitely not as close to some anymore and closer to others that I wasn't to before having a child. I think it's because I've changed, much more than I realised I would, and as a result there are times where I feel pretty lonely.

#24 ~shannon~

Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:16 PM

QUOTE (CallMeAl @ 10/04/2012, 02:06 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I have probably no 'deep' level friends anymore (i.e. the ones who I would share EVERYTHING with), and I really miss it. It's probably not so much been due to children, as distance - my best friend is in the UK, next one moved to Brisbane, and although I'm still close with the bestie, it's not the same as when you can be in each other's daily lives.

I have no idea how to change it. sad.gif

Me too Al. I moved to a new town last July and have since made a few friends, but no one yet who I could call close... hopefully over time I will. My three closest friends live a million miles away and we rarely email, text or phone. And it's not just that I'm not putting in the effort to maintain the friendship, they aren't either. We are all too busy with our children and our lives... I always try to remember birthdays and special occasions, and have sent presents for various reasons. I skype two of them occasionally, but it's not the same as sitting together having a coffee and chat. I miss them a lot.  sad.gif

#25 threeinnyc

Posted 11 April 2012 - 08:58 AM

Yes esp all my childhood friends live O/S. But it doesn't bother me, its part of being an adult; people move on etc.
I have few but very good friends, I'm happy with that happy.gif

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