Friendships are constantly changing and evolving and changing as we grow up. The first mass friendship extinction is after high school – suddenly, you’re not spending every day in classroom together, and you choose different career paths from uni, to TAFE, to going straight into the workforce, to travelling the world. You realise that maybe you’re only friends with these kids cause you had to be, and only the real ones stick with you through the next stage.
Then comes the second mass friend extinction, after uni. Your mates who’ve held you up all throughout your degree, through the tears, heartbreaks, and chundering in a bush don’t always last after you go your separate ways. People travel, move to different cities, get jobs and move up to a pay you can’t relate to, or even get married. The close one’s will stick by you, but the end of uni is the beginning of the rest of your life.
But we often forget that there’s another mass friend extinction, and that’s when people start having kids. These days it’s pretty normal to not have kids or get married, and the number of singles in their 30s is growing every year. The thing is though, there’s no real reason for you to stop being friends, so why is it so hard to survive? Here’s some tips to maintain those friendships even when you have no desire to look after a screaming toddler.
Be Excited For The Kid
Look, I know it’s hard to relate to the love parents can have for their snotty, scream-y kids. Babies can look like aliens, and you can’t understand how your friends are sacrificing Friday night drinks to watch Frozen with a two year old. But honestly? Try and see it from their point of view. This little child is made of them, it’s a miniature of your friend. If you love your friend, you def can get on board with supporting them through their journey, and it starts by hyping them up. Everyone knows having kids changes your life – by remaining excited and hyping your mate over their mini-me, you not only show them you’re a great friend who’s totally going to be there for them in this scary stage of life, but you’ll end up low-key hyping yourself too.
This GIF alone makes me want to have a baby. Like, imagine all the costumes I could put it in.
Go On Domestic Adventures
If your friends got kids, chances are they’re super flaky when you make plans, because it’s hard to organise time to the schedule of a babies sleeps and screams. Be chill about it and empathise. Make time to hang with your friend in seemingly boring errands – grocery shop together, go to IKEA together, pick a cafe to have coffee in which also has a play area. Hell, if they’re going to a baby shop just tag along and then grab a coffee/dinner after. If you really want some quality catch up, choose a place that your friend can make it to with a kid in tow. Sure, that means no Friday night club this week, but it’ll mean the world to your friend that you’re bothering to maintain something when they know it’s not easy.
Be Patient, And Just Remember How Much This Friend Means To You
Honestly, the truth is that if you really want to make it work with this friend, then you will. Be patient, be kind, be understanding. If you need to call them out for mommy-jacking everything, be nice about it. If you can have patience when your friend gets in a new relo and ditches you all the time for it till it settles, then channel that energy for this too. After your mate settles into parenting, they’ll start having the time and energy for you too.
Image Sources: GIPHY, NBC Universal Television Distribution.