As a mum, nobody understands the chaos and charms of family life better than other mums. That's why we all need a mum friend.
You could find her at the school-gate or supermarket, but no matter where or how many times your busy schedules allow you to meet, she's always there to swap tales from the front-lines.
Having trouble finding your mum friend? Well fear not, because mummy-friending veteran Sherry White is here to give you a know-it-all guide to finding your BMFF (Best Mummy Friend Forever).
Step one: go to where the mums gather
"Join a mum’s group, go to the park, Chick-fila, your local play gym," White writes. "Starbucks on a Tuesday, the Urgent Care...If you want to meet other mums, you need to go where mums go."
Step two: actually talk to other mums
"This may not seem like sage advice, but if you want mum friends YOU are going to have to talk to them."
Fair, must people aren't going to be rude (to your face anyway). And at least you know that you have one topic in common to cover- the kids.
"Even if you’re not the best conversationalist, you’ve got perfect material right in front of you. Your kids! Most of our experiences our universal, so one small quip about discovering your kids booger wall beside their bed and the ice is broken."
Step three: Be yourself
It might be tempting to pretend that you organically blend everything for your kids and never wear odd socks, but if you really want mum friends you gotta show the real you. Embrace it, gurl.
White agrees: "People are going to love you because you are who you really are, no matter who that is...But, you will more likely find other mums just like you if you just present yourself as who you really are."
Another handy thing about being upfront is that you might find mums who are the complete opposite to you:
"But, the other cool thing is you will probably end up making friends with mums who are the complete opposite of you! Don’t shy away from that!! Some of my best mum friends are complete opposites of me and it’s helped me find a balance with my own parenting."
Step four: Don't take it personally
White notes that mum's tend to gravitate towards over mothers with similar family dynamics and child ages. So if you think that mum with the toddler is cool, be aware that they might not exactly want to hang out with your tween.
"So, don’t take it personal if no one wants to hang out with you and your ten-year-old," White elaborates. "There’s a mum out there with a tween herself who is dying to go watch the newest mum's night out movie while her kid sees another movie in the same theatre, and she's looking for someone to do it with. Look out for that friend."
Step five: Lower expectations
We're all busy mothers. Between working, feeding, clothing, cleaning, it's a wonder we can even check our phones once a day, never mind keep up a constant stream of texting.
"Don’t over analyse everything she says and does and what not. Just be a friend and you’ll make a friend."
Be understanding when they cancel on margarita night because their little one has a temperature. After all, you'd probably do the exact same thing.
"She’ll probably end up disappointing you if you expect her to fulfil all your friendship dreams and needs," White explains.
"Instead of looking at all the things she’s not, focus on what she is. Does she show up? Does she make really awesome cupcakes? Does she love your kids? Is she always down for Taco Tuesday? Does she make an effort? Okay, be happy with that."
The exception to the rules: The Unicorn friend
The unicorn friend is not only a mum friend, she's a life-long, practically-the-same-person friend.
"Sometimes…out of the blue…you will find a unicorn mum friend. She will be you in different clothes. You’ll be exactly what each other needs at that moment. She will laugh at all your jokes and be down for whatever. Hold on to her and cherish every minute!!
"But hold onto hope because unicorns do exist and they're lifelong friends who are worth the wait"
So there you go, grab your kiddies, head to the park/shops/pool and make yourself some mummy-friends, we promise you won't regret it!