**Book received for review. All thoughts are my own.
Can I be honest for just a moment?
Relationships are not my strong suit.
Don't get me wrong, I love those I love deeply. I am loyal to a fault. And once you've crossed that friend barrier, you're pretty much in it for life. But actually making friends? That's a tough one! Ever heard the expression 'painfully shy'? Yes, that's me. Socially awkward? Yes, that's me as well. Actually, it goes deeper than that, I have extreme social anxiety...even the idea of having to make new friends is well...petrifying.
As a kid, friendships- though not without their challenges- are much easier if you ask me. You have the huge gap of your day where you are forced into a social situation. You have clubs to join where you meet others with similar interests. You have common experiences on which to build a foundation for a friendship. But as moms seeking out those mommy friends? It's much harder! We actually have to take the time and effort to make friends- on top of our busy lives as moms.(For us military/former military wives, it's something we have to do often too.) And for the socially awkward like myself- that's a nightmare. Melanie Dale had it right in the title of her new book...Women Are Scary!
When you show up at the park for the first time with your little ones spilling out of the van, scan the swing set for anyone you might recognize, and notice that all the other moms are already hanging out in pairs, you realize that your awkward adventure of finding mom friends has only just begun. Too many women are frazzled and lonely, isolated in their minivans while schlepping bags, strollers, and munchkins to and fro across town. It doesn’t have to be this way.
In this hilarious yet thought-provoking guide to “momlationships,” blogger Melanie Dale uses a dating analogy to help women get more intentional about bonding with each other.
“We are better together,” she writes. “We make each other better moms, better humans. We need each other, because mothering is just too darn hard.” Moms will discover how to make sure their kids aren't the only ones having fun, develop lifelong friendships, share their burdens, and join together to impact communities around the world.
To sum up this book in just one simple word: hilarious!
Honestly, when you make a Buffy the Vampire Slayer reference within the first 50 pages...you're probably going to be my best friend forever...or at least my new favorite writer. If I wasn't drawn in already, I certainly was then. This was only one of the many great pop-culture (geek culture?) references that made this book stand out. The blending of pop-culture, scripture and random gross kid stories that make you think, 'you too!?'... perfection.
But let's back up a minute. What's this book all about? It's all about the crazy confusing world that is mom friend dating...and let's be honest...that's exactly what making mom friends is like- dating! Just when we thought we left those awkward dating days behind us when we got married and started our families, we enter this adventure of motherhood and realize we cannot do it alone. We need friends to get us through.
If you're lucky , you stay near your old friends from high school, get married and start families all around the same time. No need for mom dating, you already have that built in 'momlationship'. I wasn't that lucky. Being a military wife, I was living across the country from all of my friends when my son made his arrival. I was also the first of my high school friends to become a mother. When it came to mom friends, I had none. It wasn't until my son was three years old and starting preschool that I truly began to develop those relationships and realize what I'd been missing. I met a great group of moms who all had children in the same special education classroom. Our children were all on the autism spectrum, with varying levels of challenges, but many of our experiences were the same. We were all also military wives who knew the additional hardships that that life brought us and our children. We bonded over these common experiences and became great friends. I knew I could count on them for advice, support...a shoulder to cry on on those days when my husband was deployed and the poop hit the fan (and walls and train tracks and floor). I quickly realized what I'd been missing...mom friendships are essential.
After moving to Indiana, I once again have found myself mom-friendless. This book offers great tips to help even the most socially awkward among us develop those oh so important relationships. Melanie does not pretend to be the expert to beat all experts on the subject. She's open, she's real, she's honest. I didn't feel like I was being told that I was failing at this mom friend thing, but that it truly was hard for everybody. I loved the realness. I love the humor. I love the Buffy references. I love the useful and practical tips. But most of all, I love the reminder that I am not alone in my struggle to bond with fellow moms...and just knowing that, makes all those women seem just a little less scary.
Do you struggle to make mom friends? Women Are Scary is a must read. You'll have to wait another month (until March 24th) to get your hands on it...but you can preorder it at Family Christian now!
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