Google The Unplanned Homeschooler: Are you a lonely mom?

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Are you a lonely mom?

How do you meet people and make new friends?

That was the question I kept asking myself. For years I was a very lonely mom, wondering how I could make friends and develop relationships when all the other moms I met were either too busy to hang out or seemed to already have all the friends they needed.

I loved being a mom, and was thrilled to be able to stay home with my kids, but I felt so isolated without friends to hang out with. My college friends had all gone in different directions over the years, and my closest mom friend was hours away. Although we talked on the phone just about every day, it didn't make up for the loneliness I felt.

Isolated by circumstance

My twins were preemies, born during RSV and flu season, and their doctor insisted that I keep them home, away from germs as much as possible. So I didn't get out of the house much when they were babies. By the time they were active toddlers, it felt like I was outnumbered by far more than two to one whenever I tried to take them out anywhere without my husband or another adult. Besides, it was hard to find mommy and me type activities that were welcoming to mothers of multiples.

I thought that when they started preschool, I would meet other moms, schedule play dates and build some lasting friendships. But it didn't happen.

Don't get me wrong. I made a few connections. But it was hard to break into the tight circles of new moms that had formed in my community and at church while I was keeping my little ones home the first years of their lives, and the moms I met from my kids' classes at school and their soccer teams seemed far too busy to make new friends.

Besides, the seasons zoomed by so quickly that just when I started to get to know a few other moms, the school year would end and I'd have to start all over. I longed for more.

I finally found what I was looking for when I pulled my kids out of school at the beginning of first grade and started homeschooling. I met moms who wanted the same lasting friendships that I did, and who had the same ideas about how they wanted to educate their kids and raise them in close knit families and communities.

It's a real community

I really love my homeschooling community. Over the past several years, I've been blessed to know some of the most amazing people - people I would have likely never met if we hadn't embarked on this same journey together. And my circle is not limited to a small group of moms with kids of the same ages as mine, who live in the same town and whose children are in the same classes.

I love that I have gotten to know moms from all over my area. I love that I have made lasting friendships that already span several years with no end in sight. I love that the friends I have made truly, honestly care about me and my family, and that my family truly cares about them. I love that when there is a need, we pray for one another and lend a hand.

Since we started homeschooling, I've found that I am not a lonely mom anymore. Great friendships, for both me and my kids, are among the most amazing fringe benefits that came with this often demanding lifestyle, and they are something I wish for all of you, too.

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