Having a baby changes all of your personal relationships, for practical and emotional reasons. You simply don't have the same amount of time to devote to friends as you did before becoming a parent, and are often tired and a little preoccupied. In other words, dealing with someone else's needs and wants can sometimes be overwhelming. So, it's no surprise there are some classic fights all BFFs have when only one of you is a mom. Honestly, it makes sense when you consider your entire life has changed and you need to reassess just how the special people in your life can still get your time and attention.
A monumental event, like having a baby, usually means your priorities need to shift and responsibilities need to be altered. Sometimes (if not almost all the time) this can cause a few too many hurt feelings. When I was in the postpartum fog, I had a completely one-sided argument with a friend of mine who, I thought, had abandoned me. It turned out that just because I had a baby didn't mean her job and her personal responsibilities ceased to exist. She couldn't just drop everything to come see me all the time. Who knew, right? I guess some moms (read: me) forget their child-free friends are not on maternity leave, so meeting up on a Tuesday morning isn't really practical.
Friends are important, especially when becoming a mom can erode your sense of identity and independence. Holding on to your BFF is more important now than ever before, so ride out the arguments you are bound to have, now that one of you is a mom. I can assure you, your BFF (and the relationship you share with them) is worth it.
When She Makes Last Minute Plans
Once you have a child, last minute plans to grab some dinner and paint the town red usually go the way of the dodo. It's not that moms can't let their hair down and have a good time, it's just that we need a little more planning and preparation than we used to (to book a sitter and, you know, wash the baby sick out of our hair).
When She Bails On You
Once you have planned a night out with a new mom, the cruelest thing you can do is to cancel at the last moment. A lot of logistical planning and preparation has probably gone into her being able to hang out with you, including possibly having to express her milk, find a responsible person to babysit, and locate something to wear that makes her feel comfortable.
So, canceling will likely cause an argument, especially as she was probably really looking forward to seeing you (because she misses you).
When She Criticizes Your Parenting
Before you have children, many women can be quite judgmental about parenting skills (or the lack thereof). If your BFF starts a sentence with, "I would never," or "My future kids won't," then you know a big fight is imminent.
When She Just Doesn't Get It
When you've only had an hour (or two) of sleep, and you're dealing with all the postpartum hormones and responsibilities of new motherhood, the last thing you need is for your child-free BFF to be inconsiderate. Things that were once easy for you to do, like dropping everything for a gossip session, just can't happen. She may be feeling forgotten as your life changes, so try your best to assure her that although things are going to be different for at least a little while, she is still an important part of your life.
When You just Don't Get It
New parents can be known to a get a little wrapped up in their parenting role and new life, and forget that actual life does continue on around them (and even without them). Your friends and family still have relationship issues, career updates, hobbies, and interests that have nothing to do with your new bundle. It's important to let them know they're still important and deserve attention.
When She Forgets About The Little Ears
Who hasn't dropped the occasional 'F' bomb or said something inappropriate before, right? However, some child-free friends completely forget that their words can be overheard by little ears and, well, that might make you uncomfortable.
When You Leave Her Out
Sometimes we are so concerned about boring our child-free friends with baby events, christenings, or first birthdays, that we can unintentionally leave them out. While us moms may have had the best of intentions, this truly can make our child-free friends feel snubbed.
When She Wants To Be Left Out
On the other hand, inviting your child-free BFF to every baby milestone and celebration can be a little too much. Why not have an open invitation to her, but give her an out so she doesn't feel compelled to attend.
When Your Kid Misbehaves
It can be really embarrassing when your kid misbehaves. Whether it's a toddler having a tantrum or a preschooler being rude, our kid's behavior often feels like a reflection of our parenting. We can find ourselves on the defensive, imagining that our friends are thinking badly of our kids or our parenting skills.
When You Don't Ask About Her Life
Your BFF wants to know all about your little one and your new life, but she also has her own life to contend with. Don't forget to ask her how she is doing, what's new in her career and personal life, and be sure to sound genuinely interested.
When my baby was little I would send my friends e-mails because I found it too hard to concentrate on a phone call. I wanted them to know I cared, without the constant distractions of kids being kids.
All The Assumptions
Most misunderstandings between BFF's, especially after the birth of a new baby, revolve around assumptions.
You may presume her life is so glamorous and care-free because she doesn't have a baby and, as a result, you can unintentionally project a superiority that you have your life together and are more mature. Where as she may unconsciously suggest you aren't fun or independent anymore, now that you're a mom. If your friendships are important to you, as they should be, then try to drop all the assumptions and cherish your best friend forever.