The Secret to Finding Mom Friends You Actually Want to Hang Out With

Today, I am excited to have Melanie Dale here to share her secret to finding moms friends. When I met Melanie last fall, I immediately had a smile on my face. She had just finished writing a book called “Women are Scary: the totally awkward adventure of finding mom friends” and explained the cover to me. It went something like this:

There are 2 moms on the cover, but they are going to be cake pops. And one mom is going to be taking a bite out of the other’s head.

What? I was oddly mesmerized by this quirky little author. You have to watch Melanie’s hilarious book promo video below to see what I mean, and then go buy her book. It’s as hilarious as she is.

The secret to finding mom friends that you actually want to hang out with. HIlarious and sweet


The Secret to Finding Mom Friends You Actually Want to Hang Out With
By Melanie Dale

When you’re a mom, you live in this freaky little world where sitting on a bench side-by-side with total strangers screaming at their kids is totally normal. It’s called soccer practice, or dance class (maybe with less screaming), or whatever rehearsal.

You spend hours of your life elbow-to-elbow with other moms, and you don’t know their names, only their kids’ names, because they keep shouting at them to DRIVE IT DOWN THE FIELD or STAY WITH IT or OTHER SPORTS TERMINOLOGY. You’re mostly there for your kid, not to make friends.

Also, if you’re like me, other moms can be intimidating, because they all seem to have it together and you’re just glad you made it to practice. More than once I’ve sent my daughter into tap class without shoes, because who the heck knows where those are in our house? I tell her to just imagine the tippy taps in her head as she stomps her pink tights on the floor, and I collapse onto a bench with the other moms who must be better than me. I can’t even look at the other moms, much less talk to them.

But then.

Someone leans over and says, “I’ve done that before.” I’m sorry, what? I didn’t hear you over my Immense Shame. “I’ve forgotten the shoes, I’ve shown up late, I’ve left the bag at home. Me too. Me too.”

Some of my greatest friendships have started with a “Me too.” You take a second to turn your attention from the kids and turn to each other, lock eyeballs, and share a moment of solidarity.

This parenting thing is so freaking hard.

These awkward moments sitting on benches butt cheek to cheek with total strangers aren’t going away any time soon. Creepy side eyes and contrived small talk are here to stay, as long as your kids want to do anything besides sit at home by themselves.

So when it’s awkward, when you don’t know what to say, say something encouraging. Because we all need to hear it. “Me too” someone. “Me too” the heck out of someone.

And if you actually do have it all together and are always totally prepared and perfect, maybe you can just make this a quiet moment. Shh. The rest of us are just trying to figure it out.

The secret to finding mom friends you actually want to hang out with is to let them see you not just as Blonde Girl’s Mom, but as you, the woman you are, the one who’s doing the best she can, the one who’s kind of quirky and not always perfectly together. Be yourself, in all your messy glory.

Finding real mom friends may take some time. Not everyone’s going to like you, and you’re not going to like everybody. And that’s okay. But. No matter how you get there, it’s worth a little awkwardness along the way.

In this crazy world of raising tiny humans, nobody has time for perfection, and we’re all going to fail. Over and over. We need each other; we need the encouragement; we need the me toos. This week I forgot my daughter’s lunch and my other daughter’s snack and my son’s water bottle and Hat Day. (Darn it, not Hat Day. That one was a blow.) And my friends, the ones I actually want to hang out with, were there with “Me toos.”

You are not the only one dropping balls. We are all dropping balls all over the place. And we’re picking them up together.

How to make friends you actually want to hang out with.



Want more mom dating advice?
Check out Melanie’s new book, Women Are Scary: The Totally Awkward Adventure of Finding Mom Friends at for help on rounding the bases of mom dating.


Melanie Dale is a geek on a God-ride, a minivan mama and total weirdo who stinks at small talk. Her laugh is a combination honk-snort, and it’s so bad that people have moved away from her in the movie theater. She adores sci-fi and superheroes and is terrified of Pinterest. Author of Women Are Scary: The Totally Awkward Adventure of Finding Mom Friends, she’s also a contributor for Coffee+Crumbs and an advocate for Children’s HopeChest. Living in the Atlanta area, she blogs at about motherhood, orphan care, adoption, and sometimes poo.

What these ladies did to turn a friend’s day around, and what they received in return

Love what these ladies did to turn their friend's day around. |the House of HendrixI love women. There is a universal bond between us that has its own language. We all package it differently, but deep down we understand that a great haircut or a few pieces of sea salted dark chocolate really can make us feel better, even if just temporarily.

We recognize the irony of wiping down our kitchen counters 10 times a day trying to control life even when our bathrooms haven’t been cleaned in weeks.

A while back I wrote a post about girlfriends, which had more than a million views. The comments and stories taught me that women crave authentic, deep relationships with each other, yet our insecurities and fear of being judged often get in the way.

This morning I had the privilege of seeing women at their best.

For the past year I have met with a small group of ladies who get together weekly for a Bible study in my friend’s home. These are not your ‘Have-it-all-together’ kind of ladies. They are real women with real struggles who are doing the best they can.

My friend, Michelle, has been battling a condition for 8 years that has her in periods of intense, chronic pain. Can you imagine 8 years of pain? She is understandably exhausted in body, mind and spirit, yet continues to push through with a smile on her face and a determination to not be defeated.

When she said that she simply didn’t have the physical energy to come to our small group this week, we understood the struggle behind her words. Simply cooking dinner for her family uses up everything she’s got.

My friend, Trisha, e-mailed our group suggesting we meet across town at Michelle’s house this week. I secretly wondered if Michelle would even want us in her home. However, that email was a spark that turned into something beautiful.

We showed up today at Michelle’s house IN OUR PAJAMAS because…Who wants a bunch of women in cute outfits in your home when you are in pain, right?

But my girlfriends didn’t just wear their jammies. They had their heads filled with ridiculous curlers and were wearing those oversized-cushy slippers not meant for the outdoors. They looked fabulous!Love what these ladies did to turn their friend's day around.

Each woman brought her own cleaning supplies too because…

Do you know what 12 women with cleaning supplies can do?

Deep clean a house in 30 minutes.

So as these curler and jammie-laden women got out of their cars with Swiffers, buckets, and feather dusters, my heart began to melt, because women get it.

A clean house when you are absolutely exhausted can turn your day around.

A gentleman walking his dog stared at us in the driveway and said, “I’m not even going to ask.” We laughed.This is why women rock. Absolutely love what these ladies did to turn their friend's day around.

How would you feel if 12 women with curlers and feather dusters showed up at your house. This is why women rock!

As we went inside our friend’s home, everybody scattered. No cleaning plan was necessary because as women we already knew.

Girlfriends at their best. Love this story of friendship

One woman immediately began stripping beds and starting the laundry. Another few headed straight for the master bathtub.

This is fabulous! ADORE how these women turned their friend's day around. Girlfriends rock!

There is nothing like girlfriends! This story of what these ladies did to turn their friend's day around proves it.

Several women were stocking the refrigerator with dinners for the week.

I saw a friend pull out new board games and place them on the breakfast table for their children, while another took measurements to fix some broken curtains.Such a genius way to make a friend smile. Must read

We wrote out verses and words of encouragement on colorful index cards and taped them on mirrors, cabinet doors, and bedside tables…surrounding this home with encouragement.Hang words of encouragement or Bible verses were hung on mirrors, cabinets, and drawers.

To keep Michelle from trying to help, we gave her a deep tissue massage while her house was being cleaned. She closed her eyes and moaned as the burning sensations through her limbs lessened. As her pain fled, the checklist of things she deeply desired to do for her family got done.

Women understand. We need each other because life gets hard.

After we finished cleaning, we circled together giddy with excitement to pray. Why women need each other.

One woman summed it up perfectly,

“This is the most joyful day I can remember.”

It truly was. Every woman there was invigorated and filled with delight from simply cleaning our friend’s home.

But that would never have happened without one thing:

a woman being vulnerable enough to humbly allow us in to see her dirt.

THAT is what makes this story beautiful. It was her willingness to be real which permitted 12 women the gift of overflowing joy.

Women don’t mind each other’s dirt. We crave the authenticity of it.

We’re wired to connect on a level beyond the superficial, but it requires vulnerability, and that can be scary.

Michelle reminded me of this today.

There is no greater privilege than when a friend welcomes you in just as she is…and just as you are.

Let’s stop striving for an image of perfection, and instead be exceedingly gracious in our judgments of both ourselves and others. THAT invites authentic relationships.

But more than anything, being real with our girlfriends gives us the opportunity to turn each others’ days around, and we need each other to get us through the dirt.


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