Some moms strike gold when it comes to their mommy groups and happen to meet lifelong best friends through their kiddos. But even if you have amazing luck with some fellow mothers, there's still going to be years to come of classmates or teammates with mamas who know how to bring the drama. No matter how nice your kids play, there's always going to be some degree of politics when dealing with relationships between adults. Instead of letting it drive you insane, keep these important points in mind as you try to navigate the egos, personalities, and varying relationships among your groups of mom "friends."
- Cliques Will Form — and That's OK: You survived the catty girls from your teenage years, and you'll make it through the cliquey moms at your child's school as well. As long as you appreciate yourself and go into the situation accepting that groups are going to naturally form, they'll seem much less daunting than they did during your youth.
- Your Friendships Will Influence Your Child's — If You Let Them: It's important to remember that whether you like another child's mom or not, these kids might be in your child's life for the next 18 years. You better learn to play nice now to avoid problems down the line. Plus, it would be a shame for organic friendships not to blossom between kids because of parents.
- Another Mom's Disciplining Techniques Don't Have to Influence Yours: If you don't agree with how another mom disciplines, you can use it as a learning opportunity. Instead of making a scene or avoiding her, have a conversation with your little one about her actions and the reasoning behind them. This can be a valuable teaching moment for your kid about respecting different points of views.
- Every Opportunity Is a Chance to Poach: If you don't want someone to poach your nanny, favorite babysitter, or best finds, be careful not to brag about them. Every mom is looking out for her family's best interest and might not lose much sleep over taking what you feel is "your" weekend babysitter for good.
- A Judgment-Free Zone? There's No Such Thing: Just because moms surround you doesn't mean that they'll be understanding. From public meltdowns to showing up late because someone lost his or her left shoe, there's always someone ready to stand in judgment. However, the only way that this can break you down is if you let it.
- Play Dates Can Be More Stressful Than Real Dates: Dating can cause anxiety, and that doesn't change when you're setting up dates on the playground. Put yourself out there, don't sweat whether or not you and your kiddo get a second date, and remember that you're doing this to help your child foster new friendships.
- There's Always Going to Be "That" Mom: No matter the location or the hobby, there's going to be the stage mom, the hoverer, and the oversharer. Don't be deterred by labels, and find qualities to appreciate about each mom in your kid's circle. Your child will learn inclusive (or exclusive!) behaviors from what they observe from you.
- The Bait Will Always Be There, but It's Up to You to Take It: There's going to be another child who has done it better — or at least another mom who wants you to think so. It takes two people to have a competition, so if you brush off comparisons, you'll avoid the drama. Instead, take comfort in knowing that you're secure enough as a mother not to need to know how your kid stacks up.