If you’re a parent, you know this is a life-changing experience. You would have heard it at least a dozen times as a parent-to-be. It is a time when you will need support, guidance, and friendship more than ever. Friendships go through different cycles, and if you’re the first or the last of your friends to have babies, you may find that you need to connect with parents in the same space as you for a short period. The key as a new parent is to find your tribe, individuals who share your values and can support you through the ups and downs of parenthood. While it’s easy to connect online, actually finding that tribe can be easier said than done.
Here are some tips on how to find your tribe as a new parent:
- Join parenting groups: Joining a parenting group can be a great way to meet other new parents who are going through the same experiences as you. Many parenting groups include online communities, local meetups, and support groups. Look for groups that cater to your interests, values, and parenting style. You can find these groups through social media, online directories, or by asking your healthcare provider.
- Attend playgroups: Playgroups are another great way to meet other parents and provide your child with socialisation opportunities. Many cities and towns have playgroups that meet regularly, and you can often find them through community centres, libraries, or parenting groups. Attending playgroups not only provides your child with socialisation but also provides you with a chance to connect with other parents who are going through similar experiences.
- Participate in parenting classes: Parenting classes are an excellent way to learn new skills and strategies for raising your child, but they can also be a great way to meet other parents. Many classes are designed to be interactive, allowing you to connect with other participants and share your experiences. Look for classes that cater to your interests and parenting style, and be open to meeting new people.
- Attend family-friendly events: Family-friendly events, such as festivals, fairs, and community events, can be a great way to connect with other parents. These events often have activities for children, allowing you to bond with other parents while your kids play. Look for events in your local area and try to attend them with your family.
- Join online communities: Besides local parenting groups, many online communities cater to new parents. These communities can be excellent resources for advice, support, and friendship. Look for online communities that are active, supportive, and focused on your interests and values.
- Connect with the parents at your little one’s daycare or nursery school.
- Include your friends who are not parents in your life. They may not always be able to relate, but that doesn’t mean they don’t want to support you. Have the conversation that you want to stay connected with and find the best ways to do so. Be honest and tell them that your convos will be about your baby, for a long time and that’s ok. Tell them to include you in conversations about the guys or girls’ night out, even though you may not be able to attend. If you don’t respond to the messages, it’s not because you’re angry; you may simply not have the capacity with a new little one. Tell them that you still need them.
- Start your own group: If you can’t find a parenting group that meets your needs, consider starting your own group. You can use social media, online directories, or local community centres to advertise your group and finding other interested parents. Creating your own group can be a great way to connect with like-minded individuals and build a strong community.
Finding your tribe as a new parent is essential for your well-being and the well-being of your child and partner. You have so much to offer the world, and it has so much to give you in return.