Being a new parent can be isolating.
Mother's groups and play groups are a fantastic way to connect with other new mums, share advice and sometimes, just have a good ol' fashioned complain.
As helpful as many people find the groups to be, one mum has admitted they are just not for her — putting the call out to see if any other parents feel the same way.
"With lockdown easing I was looking forward to getting to a toddler group with my two-year-old," the mum explained on Mumsnet. "All I can think is that's 40 minutes of my life I won't get back," she continued, listing "reasons she found it dire."
"Trying to keep a toddler fixed to their mat (COVID) when all they want to do is roam the room," she wrote. "Putting a mask on to roam the room to try being them back to their spot but then they can't hear you properly due to muffled mask sounds."
Also pointing out "no one was really talking" and instead just singing to the music, she said between that and the "baby voices the mums were using" it was all too much.
"Maybe I'm just not cut out for part-time work," she said dubiously. "I have three days off with little one in the week and can't stand the thought of baby groups again. Back to the walks I go."
"Anyone else find them hellish?", the desperate mum asked the forum.
The fatigued mum was definitely not alone - with many mums chiming in with a very similar opinion.
Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto
"They were, without exception, terrible"
"I tried baby groups, breastfeeding support and play sessions. They were without exception terrible. The other mums ignored me and talked among themselves, the toys tended to be filthy and not in great condition, and they tried to give my DC sugary squash to drink."
"The only one we attended more than once was the toddler art group, which was a tenner a pop but at least the equipment was good and there was fresh playdough and paint and a variety of art activities."
In total agreeance
"I haaaaaaaaaaaate play groups with a burning unholy passion for all the reasons you've said!
Hated them pre Covid, and won't be going to any now they're opening back up."
Find your people
"No. This is not good. Try a different one. I went through loads. Then I found my people, who are still my people 10 yrs on through birthdays, get togethers, baby showers and BBQs. No one spoke in a baby voice.
In all honesty, the group was about us as mums (occasionally dads) and the children were secondary. We enjoyed it and as an extension, they enjoyed it because we did."
"I hate them too! DS does groups with more purpose or structure because I can tolerate them. So swimming lessons, gymnastics, just started toddler rugby (running around) we did do a music group when he was smaller but it was ok and based around basic instruments and rhythm.
None of the parents took it very seriously. I had no interest in making friends with people because we'd had babies around the same time. I've got friends thanks."
"Awkward and twee"
"They are awful. Its good to see the toddlers having fun but I found them awkward and twee tbh."