Early in my pregnancy with Annabelle, like most first time mums, I had a bazillion random questions and didn’t really know where to direct them. Being a younger mum (I was 23 when I fell pregnant), I didn’t have too many friends with babies yet and I am an only child so I don’t even have any nieces and nephews. A friend suggested that I join an online mothers group via one of the big baby websites, I looked up a few and found a “due in group” for the month I was due via Essential Baby!
We started a private Facebook group and there were about 75 of us all up, from all different parts of the country. It was a really good place to post questions I might otherwise think were silly to ask, and a lot of woman in the group were not first time mums so it was great to have a variety of mums, both in age and experiences as my support during pregnancy. Of course when you have that many people grouped together there is going to be a difference in opinion and sometimes there were some posts that got super-heated (like the immunisation debate). There were also a few people that always had me rolling my eyes into the back of my head upon reading their posts, but overall it was a really lovely supportive group of woman, some of whom I have now got to hang out with in person and chat to regularly.
When Belle was about 6 months I actually ended up leaving the group because there were some really nasty comments and arguments (not directed at me personally), but I just decided I couldn’t be bothered with the drama of those few who just loved to rub people up the wrong way. I do, however, have a lot of the girls as friends on FB and still catch up with some in person from time to time. I would definitely recommend to anyone looking for somewhere to direct their questions or even just a place for some support, a ‘due in’ group is fantastic place to find it! Even if you don’t stay, you can make some pretty amazing friends while you’re there.
When Belle was born, I also attended my local mothers group that was run by the local shire. I received a letter in the mail when she was about 3 weeks old and toyed with weather I really wanted to go because I had already been a part of online group and I was a tad on the anti-social side in the weeks after having Annabelle. The thought of having to put pants on and meet a bunch of strangers had me feeling a bit unenthusiastic, but I figured I could at least give it a go and if I hated it I just didn’t go back.
The mothers group it’s self was a bit lame and the lady who ran it was weird. However, most of the girls were about my age and seemed really nice. The official group ran for about 6 weeks – however we continued to catch up outside of the group. Within a few catch ups the group sort of split in two, as a couple were totally weird and I really struggled to spend more than 5 minutes with them before wanting to punch myself or them in the face! But again, when you’re lumped in together with a bunch of people where your only known common interest is you had babies around the same time doesn’t guarantee your all going to be besties for life.
So would I recommend mums group to anyone? Abso-freakin-lutely! Because even though the actual mums group was pretty lame and some of the woman were not my cup of tea, the friends I did make I now consider two of my best friend and our kids are just as close. They are such an amazing support and I even though we may not always see one another, I know that at the drop of a hat they are there for me ready to give a helping hand! It’s also amazing that our kids have friends they will grow up with from birth, and hopefully we will get to send them to the same schools and they will be friends for life (we also have arranged for Annabelle to marry one of the boys, they’re getting married in Tahiti and we’ll have boob jobs by then and be MILF’s – no pressure or anything)
Did you attend a mums group? What was your experience? Would love to know what your experiences were!