Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Mommy Dating Game

It’s been a month since we moved to the Hottest City in America, and I have to admit, in that short time, I’ve become desperate for companionship. The companionship of other women, that is….preferably women with children. (Nothing against childless women. I just envy you too much right now to seek you out.)

Finding new mommy friends in a new town feels oddly like a singles scene—and not in a sexy, adventurous, Carrie Bradshaw-sipping-cosmopolitans sort of way, either. It’s painful. I feel like a lone fish in a vast, dark, 110-degree, concrete sea. I might be wearing a sundress and strappy sandals, but that’s not a fashion choice. It’s survival.

When you move to the Hottest City in America, in June, you find that most people are indoors, and wisely so. I’ve been trolling the usual hangouts—the YMCA, the public library, Target. I’ve been going to bars….coffee bars. Partly to screen out the Mormons, but also because, the mommies I want to be friends with will enjoy an artisan latte now and again. Or, at least a tall iced coffee or frappuccino.

I’m scoping out women everywhere. In the past week I:


1) Struck up a 15-minute conversation at the grocery store with a woman who paused to tell me my kids are gorgeous. “Aren’t they?! Let me tell you ALL about them….and by the way, do you know of any other gorgeous kids in the neighborhood? They don’t even have to be gorgeous….just available.”

2) Knocked on the front door of a neighbor’s house after I heard the sounds of children’s laughter drifting over their back fence. (No one answered. I’ll try again later.)

3) Sent emails to the moderators of 6 different local Meetup and Yahoo groups, requesting to join. I carefully crafted each note in an effort to make myself sound hip, fun, someone any mother would want to be friends with….yet down-to-earth and not-too-pushy, because no one wants to be friends with a self-promoter. (It’s a fine, fine line.) Regardless, no one has written me back. Yet.

4) And, more than once, I’ve lingered in the baby food aisle at Whole Foods, hoping for a chance encounter with another healthy-minded mama. “So, how do you like those Earth's Best teething biscuits? Should I go with wheat or barley?”

I was thinking I could just write a Mommy Personals Ad. I have a history of writing personal ads for single friends who are now (ahem) happily married. Maybe something like this:

MARRIED, WHITE, OUTDOOR-LOVING FEMALE WITH 2 ADORABLE, BRIGHT, NON-BITING CHILDREN SEEKS OTHER MOTHERS FOR CONVERSATION AND FAMILY FUN. RELATIONSHIP NEED NOT BE EXCLUSIVE OR LONG-TERM. NO PREFERENCE FOR RACE OR MARITAL STATUS. ENGLISH-SPEAKING A PLUS. CALL: XXX-XXX-XXXX

That’s pretty good. Except Miles does bite. But everyone embellishes their ad anyway, right?

Maybe I’ll post it on the bulletin board at the YMCA.

7 comments :

  1. No Mommies at the YMCA??? I would have bet that you would strike gold there!!! Great Personal Ad! Very funny!

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  2. @Ronnie: there are LOTS of mommies at the YMCA...it's just a matter of finding a way to strike up a conversation when everyone is plugged in and working out. I think the key is chatting at the childcare when I drop off/pick up the kids, but even then people are rushing...

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  3. How about MOPs? Do they have groups in Phoenix?

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  4. what a great post -- i know there are lots of lonely moms out there whose hearts will resonate with this -- I do, and I am not even in that stage anymore...:)
    And -- it's so true about the rushing... very convicting for this 'rushing' mom..

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  5. Hi, just found your blog from the Ohdeedoh post and I was like, "Someone esle who lives in Phoenix reads this site!?" I swear I am the only person I know who actually reads a lot of blogs. I also live in Phoenix and as a new mom, I do not know any other stay at home moms (well I go to school at night). My few friends with kids, work all day. I plan on reading more of your blog, you can check out mine and if you ever want to meet up or anything just email me flyabuv at gmail dot com

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  6. I joined a mom/playgroup after my son was born. It's great to have a way to get out and meet new people, but I don't feel as though I've made any friends - not in that, hey, let's hang out without our kids way, you know? Without the babies we have no common ground.

    Making friends as an adult is HARD.

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  7. Hey, I'm mormon and would still love to go get lattes (or hot cocoa for moi!) :P

    Don't worry...all the moms & kids will start trekking out of doors now that the weather has cooled off. Go to your neighborhood park in the mornings and you'll find lots of other moms! Friday mornings seem to be our parks busy day, but you may have to scout out yours every day until you find some friends. :) Then you can casually chat while the kids play and if they hit it off, it'll be easier to set up another play date "for them!" ;)

    Also, try to find a neighborhood preschool to sign her up, even if its just two days a week. You'll get to meet other kids and moms in the area that way!

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