(barely) Surviving the Mommy Clique

Being a Mom 55

I got pregnant with my first at a somewhat youngish age. It wasn't that shocking to be 20 and knocked up, at least, not as shocking as it would be to be 13 and knocked up.

Being puffy and bloated while obviously knocked up must've made me look a tad younger. At least, that's the story I'm sticking with, because it beats saying that "I looked like a pregnant leper."

Believe me, the two are NOT the same.

You can trust me. I'm a nurse. I know these things.

The first time I was deliberately isolated from The Mommies, I was 20, largely pregnant, and about to join a prenatal aquatics class. I foolishly swam up to the other women in the class and introduced myself.

Eyes a-rolling, they dutifully muttered their "hello"s before closing their Mom Circle to definitively exclude me.


Years later, I enrolled my now-4-year old son into an exclusive preschool (by "exclusive," I mean, of course, that it was ridiculously over-priced, not that it was any good), figuring a couple years and a wedding band slung 'round my finger meant I'd be In With the Moms now.

My husband and I happily walked into Back to School Night, cheerful smiles on our faces, as 30 pairs of eyes followed our path, glaring.

"Woah," I whispered to my husband. "What just happened?"

He shrugged.

After an extremely long lecture about the school, we then broke into "volunteer groups." Except that they weren't actually "voluntary." Failing to "volunteer" meant you paid the school an extra couple hundred bucks. Per parent.

I signed up for some bullshit committee like "International Festival of Celebrating Nations," because it seemed to be the least amount of work. Anytime I can slack is a good time for me.

It was like being in that pool all over again, only with more clothes.

I walked up to the group, introduced myself with a firm handshake, and stood there like an asshole as the other "volunteers" quickly formed a circle. Around me.

I was left on the outside of that circle, too.

My husband didn't fare any better.

What the hell?

I know my sparkling personality isn't for *ahem* everyone now, but back then, I was just an eager kid.

I spent years feeling like I was the worst parent to disgracefully walk the planet. Otherwise, I'd be welcome into the Circle of Moms. RIGHT?


Time and perspective have led me to realize that I'm not actually the asshole here.

For once.


friends, a mom's life, time for mom


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Cheer... Cheermom1108

That's how it is with me.  I cannot get into a mom's group because of my age, im only 21 and no one wants to include a "young mother" into thier circle. 

Madel... MadelynMc

I've definitely felt that way, but I always wonder if that's just my perception because I'm self-conscious about it. Hmmm.

Leanne Carnegie

I'm also a young mother (27 with two kids: 5 and 2) and I had that experience once.   I just never went back to that playgroup (and now run a competing playgroup that gets all their unsatisfied members!).    In my group, we range in age from 20-40 and we all (more or less) get along.  When we don't, it's not age that is the issue, more often it's personality.  

My son is in preschool (not exclusvie, but it serves the higher-income area in which we live) and all the other parents have at least 10 years on me.  Do I let it bother me?  No.   He's also in T-Ball and all the parents there (same neighborhood) have at least 15 years on me and we all get along great.  

Do they all wonder about my age behind my back?  I'm certain they do.   But, who cares.  Act like you belong and you belong.   If people are really so miserable so mistreat you, then you're in the wrong school/class/area.

Memph... MemphisSuzi

I seem to have the opposite problem -- I am 35 and just started our family.  I never quite fit in with the younger "hipper" moms.

Jasmine Mitose

i'm not even that young of a mom (23 when my very planned LO came along) & i've just made it a point to be better read than those that are trying to pull the "older, wiser, holier than thou" thing on me. all of that school cramming has come in handy for sure since now i do the same thing with studies & researcher names hahaha. honestly there's nothing like sticking it to some snobby mom who is quoting a 10 year old piece of parenting advice that has been long disproved! so age doesn't mean a damn thing mamas! and if some group of moms wants to behave that way then they aren't worth a single second of your time!

nonmember avatar Gertie

Sigh. I am in my early 30s. I tried my hardest to include/talk to/be friends with a younger Mom (20) recently. But it was always me calling... always me emailing... always me making plans... She always seemed to like me, but it got a little old!

I didn't want to bother her and I was afraid maybe she didn't dig hanging out with me because I was so old! But without her taking any initiative I was afraid that was the case.

So it goes both ways.

poshkat poshkat

for me it was not age, it was the fact that i was not rich like those snotty bitches. my son goes to a very prestigious private school for free because he gets services through the state. you would think since all of our special needs kids have most of the same issues we would bond over it. nope. i was shunned all year because i was not wearing the right shoes (sorry i wont pay to wear coach ballerina slippers because i have more important things to buy with my money like FOOD), or the right purse. i was never called back for play dates and we were invited to ONE birthday party back in september, all because we are not rich, own our own home, and my child does not wear named brand clothing. i know all this because i happened to overhear some mothers talking about it. im thankful that my DS is going to a school next year where my friends child attends so i know he will have atleast one friend. i will try again next year to be friendly to the mothers and hopefully i will have better luck

nonmember avatar Anon

Regardless of your age and social class, some groups just won't be a fit. Trust your intincts and move on to find another group that feels better to you. Don't waste energy trying to blame or find fault with the group you don't fit into. Surely they have all the same challenges and insecurities that you have; they have just happened to find a group in which they feel comfortable. That's not a crime. Or would you have them hold your hand until you feel more loved?

nonmember avatar Anon

I'm a 44yo single, work-at-home mom (adopted kids at 40), highly educated, living in a racially diverse household. My parenting style is a mix of the old-fashioned (spanking, responsibility, early PT) and modern (exposing my kids to many cultural/educational things at a relatively early age). Sometimes I click with people, sometimes I don't, but I don't sweat it.

Jasmine Rivera

Well, I was 20 years old when I had my son too.  He now attends the best pre-school in our area, which is pricey but is where all the doctor's, lawyers, and highly regaurding professor's send their children.  Am I intimidated?  No.  I really think being accepted into a "Group" all has to do with how you hold yourself.  If you act like an immature, 20-year old mother than continues to "party" on the weekends, not going to school, etc.  then they will treat you that way.  In my case, I would have to say that I have always been a little more mature for my age.  I am graduating college in two weeks, while working full-time at a community college and I am continuing to graduate school in the fall. I have been a single mother for a majority of the time, but my fiance and I now own a house in the nicer part of town.....all before the age of 25. 

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