You decided to stay home with your little one, and you’re loving it. The time with them is priceless but. . . something is missing. You’re lonely and miss spending time with your friends. You feel distant from all your former work friends. It also feels like your friends outside of work don’t get your life anymore. Even though you try to practice self-care, nothing seems to be working.
You’re not alone mama. Being lonely as a stay-at-home mom is a challenge. Especially in our covid affected world. What staying home with your kiddo once looked like is very different now. As a counselor in Orange County, CA I get it. Loneliness is a big issue, especially with stay-at-home mamas. You love the time with your kid but dream of evenings with your besties and a glass of wine.
Stay at Home looks different in our covid affected world
In our now “post” covid world, staying at home with your kids looks so different from what it did before. You have to hesitate before going to a library program if they’re even being offered. Going to the park is anxiety-provoking. Or your kiddo is just too young to play. The fact is, staying at home is not what it used to be. While things are opening up and beginning to feel safer, everything seems to be a dance.
Practicing self-care with a kiddo is difficult
When you are a stay-at-home mom, you HAVE to practice self-care. I know it’s difficult, especially as you’re caring for your family. But, it is vital. You have to put on your oxygen mask first mama!
Talk to your partner about your needs
One of the first steps to greater self-care seems obvious. But, it is easy to forget. Talk to your partner about what you need! Tell them you are lonely and need some extra support, or time in the evenings where you can go be with friends. Your working partner may not realize what your life looks like and might even picture it as an idyllic time of relaxation and chill (HA!). Often parents who aren’t the primary caregiver don’t understand the weight of caring for a young child. Don’t assume your partner knows what you are dealing with. You have to tell them!
You HAVE to take care of yourself!
I know, I know. You are a caregiver by nature. You want to take care of the people around you and you’re compassionate and caring. But, you have to take care of yourself, and often this means getting out of the house and meeting up with some friends. Trusting your partner or a babysitter to manage an evening with the kiddo is not too much to ask! You have to put your care as high of a priority as you put the care of other people in your life. You MATTER mama! Don’t keep pouring from an empty cup. You have to fill it up so you can be the best mom and partner you can be.
Self-care looks different for everyone.
Self-care is often stereotyped as bubble baths and a glass of wine. But, this isn’t what self-care looks like for everyone. Self-care for you may be a good book and a cup of tea at a local coffee shop. Or it may be a social gathering where you can get energized by a room full of people. Regardless of what self-care looks like for you, figuring out what lights you up and engaging in it is vital.
One thing is sure though, humans are social creatures. Regardless of whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, you need some social time! If you find your friends don’t quite get you now that you’re a stay-at-home mama, it might be time to branch out and make new friends (but keep the old, you know the saying).
An Online Therapist in Orange County, CA Shares Tips on How to Find Friends As a New Mom
Making friends as an adult is difficult regardless of where you are in life. We’re all so busy and if we aren’t forced to spend time together, it’s even more difficult to build strong bonds. Finding like-minded mama friends can be a challenge. But, once you find your crew, it’s downright magical.
Get out there, even if your kiddo is too young to play
There are so many ways to get out there. You can go to the library for storytime. Or, find events that appeal to you and your children and attend them or sign up for a class such as baby yoga. At the most basic, you can go to the park and play! Even if your kiddo is too young to play, time in the sunshine and being around other people feels good. You might even find another parent of a kiddo there you can introduce yourself to and get to know.
This, of course, is a very extrovert-centered approach. Introverts, I see you. It’s ok to go and not talk to anyone. For you, simply being around people might fill your social cup enough to take care of some of the loneliness.
Find a group of like-minded mama’s
It may be through another mom friend or a Facebook search. Regardless, finding your crew of like-minded mamas can happen online, or in person. You may be lucky enough to have a crew of friends who get you and your parenting style. Or you’re the first or last of your friends to have a child. Finding the people who get you is vital. Some people find friends through online forums like Facebook groups for local child-centered organizations. Others can make friends on the fly, at events and storytimes. Regardless of where you are in life, your people are out there!
Reach out to your friends!
The last tip is the most obvious. Reach out to your established friends. You may not have to make new friends! Your crew might already be there, waiting for you to come hang out. Often when we go through a major life change, we assume our friends in different life stages will not understand where we are. There might be some truth to that. But, for the most part, our true friends want to be there for us regardless of what is happening in our lives. Reach out to that person you haven’t heard from and set up a coffee or dinner date.
Consider Working With an Online Therapist in Orange County, CA
You may find that loneliness isn’t going away no matter what you do. If so, it might be time to consider postpartum counseling in Orange County, CA. Our team of caring therapists would be honored to support you in improving self-care practices. To start your therapy journey, please follow these simple steps:
Other Services Offered at Moxie Family Therapy
Postpartum therapy isn’t the only service offered at our Orange County, CA-based practice. Our team of caring therapists is happy to offer support for children, teens, and couples with a variety of services in person and online. Other mental health services include therapy for anxiety, therapy for therapists, clinical supervision, adoption therapy, art therapy, counseling for adoption, and play therapy. Feel free to learn more about us by visiting our blog or FAQ page today!