Meeting Other Moms

As seen in Brooklyn Family Magazine and on NYParenting.com

Dear Sharon,

Do you have any suggestions for creating a network of other parent friends here in the city? This is our first child and I’m feeling lonely and cut off. We haven’t been living in New York very long and I don’t have a network established yet of close friends. Any advice would be appreciated.

A new mother

Dear new mom,

Congratulations on your new little one and welcome to New York!

One way to meet other parents is by regularly visiting neighborhood playgrounds and parks. They are good places to make friends and gather information about local resources. If you are shy, encourage yourself to say hi to a friendly looking mom or dad, he or she will probably be more than happy to get to know another parent and share helpful ideas. One of my nieces met her closest mom friend when her baby was an infant in a playground a few blocks from her house. The now 8 year boys are still best buddies today.

Online groups are also a great way to gather information, receive support and find out about or organize mothers groups in your area. If you search the Internet for “parent groups in New York City or your borough or neighborhood” you will find a wealth of listings to check out. Joining an Internet parent group can give you a regular opportunity to be in contact with many other moms and dads. Some have thousands of members while others, representing an assortment of neighborhoods or focused on different commonalities, (i.e. parents of teens, single parents etc.) are smaller. Each group usually discusses common parent questions and local resources for families.

Many neighborhood cafes also welcome new moms and their babies. If you look around your area in the afternoon there could well be gatherings of parents and children getting together for company while sharing a snack or cup of coffee or tea together.

Local libraries also often sponsor children’s book readings and other events. Stopping by the library in your neighborhood could produce some new ideas and some new friends.

Of course Brooklyn Family Magazine is a wealth of information about music, dance, exercise classes and much more that you can attend with your child. Parent centers, such as Families First, on Baltic Street in Brooklyn are listed here as well. Choosing something in your neighborhood can increase the likelihood of meeting other parents who live nearby.

Watch for street fairs close to home as well. Organizations and family centered businesses often have tables with helpful information.

New York has so many people “hurrying” around that it can seem hard to find kindred spirits in the hustle and bustle, but there are lots of neighborhood pockets that are a lot like small towns. If you keep yourself reaching out to people you are likely to find openhearted parents who will be thrilled to have you join their circle of friends.