I love living in the suburbs, but I could do without the off-the-wall stereotypes. For example, we don't know every Target cashier by name, cruise country roads on the weekends, or spend every ounce of free time volunteering at our child's school. Anyone who parents in the suburbs knows life is more complex than that. That said, and as a suburban mom, there are some stereotypes about suburban moms that are totally true, or at least, in my experience, pretty damn close.
I've lived in the suburbs most of my life, so when it comes to raising children there I've heard all the stereotypical jokes and unnecessary assumptions. Before I had my daughter, however, I never intended to be a "suburban mom." Actually, I fought against that possibility for as long as I possible could, and fancied myself a lifelong "city girl" for as long as I could.
Then I found out I was pregnant and all that suppressed suburbia mindset came out in full force. By the time I had my second child, I went full suburban mom and haven't look back since. It just feels right, and there's no stopping or denying it. Now, I embrace the stereotypes I used to despise, and relish the fact that I have the opportunity to raise my kids in a safe, loving environment... even if it means admitting the following is totally true:
They're Multi-Level Marketing Machines
I know suburban moms are the Queens of multi-level marketing jobs, because I've had one. All those damn pop-up parties for makeup, clothes, candles, jewelry, and tupperware aren't for the faint of heart.
Maybe it's a temporary side-hustle, or maybe it's a career pivot, but make no mistake: we totally expect you to buy all our stuff (that you probably don't want or need).
They Wear Pajamas Outside
I can't remember the last time I put on actual clothes. Living in the suburbs and working from home go together like pajama tops and bottoms. When leaving the house for any non-work related reason, our clothes are equipped with stretchy waist bands.
They Have 75 Travel Mugs
It doesn't matter how often a suburban mom does or doesn't leave the house, i's imperative she have a wide selection of travel mugs... just in case.
(Bonus points if at least two cups say something like "Do Not Approach Until This Cup Is Empty.")
They Plan A Month's Worth Of Meals At Once
City life is brimming with bright lights and bustling streets. I imagine those moms grabbing something from a food cart or bodega on the way home from work or during a mid-afternoon walk with the kids.
In the suburbs, you sometimes have to drive a bit to get anywhere that matters, so that means there's a lot of planning involved when it comes to feeding the family. I have drawers full of printed plans and recipes I typically cry over a couple days a week (or month) and, when I'm lucky, my kids beg for the same two meals over and over... because kids.
They Know Their Way Around A Superstore
Knowing where everything is located at any of the major stores is a survival tactic suburban moms use to get in, do their business, and get the hell out. In my old small town, it was only a 10-minute drive to the store, but when you added in shopping time and impatient kids it was a task.
Just like city moms can probably get me to the nearest subway stop without incident, I can get you to the exact location of that one body wash you love in three seconds flat.
They Probably Have A "Live, Laugh, Love" Plaque
I'm not knocking all the inspirational phrases on plaques and pillows — I have one that says "Hope" — but it's definitely a staple in any suburban home. Maybe it's so we don't forget our roots, or maybe it's a reminder that even when life feels like it's standing still in the middle of nowhere, it's still flourishing.
They Know Every Single Neighbor
If you're a suburban mom, you've probably baked your neighbors cookies, watched their kids, or cried on their shoulder. It's honestly one of the best parts of living in a quiet neighborhood.
When you don't live near theme parks or beaches, you have to get creative when it comes to your kids and their playdates. Thankfully, there's usually a park, river, field, or trail somewhere and, at least in my old town, these places were the most peaceful, coveted places to be.