We sat and talked for about an hour while our kids played. We let them eat bagged chips and watch Netflix. The only negative is that we didn't open a bottle of wine. As I left her house, I realized something important that needs to be shared:
Single Moms need certain qualities in a friend.
Maybe I shouldn't speak in the collective 'WE' until this is confirmed by a group of my peers...
People ask, "How do you do it?"
I HAVE TO. There is no one else that is going to make dinner, calm a crying child, or wipe up vomit at three in the morning.
So, here are a few tips on
How To Be a Friend with a Single Mom.
1. LISTEN - this is true for any friendship but a single mom really NEEDS you to listen, to hear her.
2. SYMPATHIZE - a single mom doesn't want pity, she knows you can't fully understand, but validate her.
3. HELP - she might not admit it, but she needs help.
There have been many times when I just wanted someone to see things from my point of view. My day might share a lot of similarities with other moms, but at the end of the day; I don't have anyone to talk to. It is so nice to just talk with a friend.
It is even better when that friend tries to understand her day. I don't need you to nod your head and murmur in agreement. I need you to try to imagine life in my shoes. Sometimes, I don't want to hear your version of the same situation, I just need to know that you heard ME. (Hopefully this is true of other single moms and not just because I am a bitch.)
A single mom can always use some help. There were many years that I wouldn't ask for the help I really needed. Sometimes I wouldn't ask for any help at all. A good friend can sense what you need and do it before you even consider forming the request.
BONUS TIP: Do not compare your husband being out of town to being a single parent. Just don't.
I appreciate all the friends I have. However, tonight I think I made a new BEST FRIEND. Why? Because she is also a single mom.
This is going to be a new feature at CoCo And Twins. Friendship Fridays. If you are a single mom, send me an email with a list of the qualities you look for in a friend. If you are friends with a single mom, let me know what ways you think your friendship has helped her. Maybe I can expand this list.