Go to the mattresses

Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus. Perhaps outdated and a tad sexist in 2020 but I quite like the imagery. Sometimes you do question if you are from different planets.

The biggest way I seem to differ from my husband is how much I brew and stew on things, constantly needing to discuss and validate issues bothering me. Sometimes an eyeroll hits you right in the stomach as you plead for a bit of interest in the topic for the third night on the trot. I am not complaining, he is an excellent listener but he doesn’t need to process things the same way.

I’ve never met someone who can literally be thinking about nothing, but I am secretly really jealous. He would be amazing at yoga. Well the mind part, not so much the poses. Sorry George!

So for me, a solid tribe of women to discuss your woes is so vital, with many other benefits too, of course. You need a good variety so different factions can be helpful.

You will have your fiercely loyal “go the mattresses” friends. (Go to war.) My reference to this is from the classic film You’ve Got Mail as Tom Hanks refences the actual classic, The Godfather. These friends are wonderful as you could stab someone, and they will always come out on your side with comments such as: “Well they must have deserved it.” The friends who wouldn’t ask any questions but help you bury a body. You know the ones.

Then you have the realist friends. Happy to see your side but fairer to all and there to give reasoned advice. Solid, dependable women, who help you work through the problem.

Finally you have the really kind, never say anything bad about anyone friends. I love these friends and aspire to be them. If they ever do say anything bad, you know the situation is critical.

A problem shared is a problem halved and with a clever concoction of women, you can feel lighter after an hour of nattering. Validated in feeling how you feel and positive in an excellent solution to all your issues. Clear in the knowledge you will return the favour and be one of the above women for them.

It can be really hard to make friends as a grown up, you generally feel like a bit of a tit going up to a stranger and striking up a conversation. The tiny humans make the best crutch though. All initial conversation can be about the children and at baby yoga, groups, nursery or school generally you all feel the same. Equally embarrassed to make the first move.

If you are feeling a bit lonely, push out of your comfort zone and try and connect with another mum. You never know, they might be lonely too and it could be the start of a lifetime friendship. It won’t always work out but those gems that stick make this mothering malarkey a whole lot easier.

For me it is the yoga mums who I don’t get to see enough but are such uplifting women. Old friends who know me inside out. School mum besties who listen to exacerbated rants after a ragged drop off, PJ top safely zipped under a big coat. And gems who will happily get drunk too and sing classic tunes at 2am, surrounded by broken glasses we have no recollection of smashing. I salute you all.

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