Mommy Friendships | Think Before you Speak (Part 1)


Joy is launching a three-part series today on the tricky territory of mom-to-mom friendships. Enjoy!

I found this little bit of word art pinned to Sarah Powers’s Pinterest board the other day and I wanted to stand up and scream YES!!!!!!!

It seems that the easiest way to lose a friend is by saying the wrong thing.

As a woman who sees the world in black and white (married to a man who sees in gray), I can be the worst offender of saying hurtful things to my dearest friends. It’s not that I mean to be hurtful (and, I would argue that most share in my innocence), it’s just that the way I see the world can come out of my mouth as 1) passionate 2) opionionated or 3) harsh. Do you know someone like me?  Have you been hit by a friend who, though well-intentioned, has spoken words that were just not helpful?

Mom-to-mom friendships are filled with a landmine of opportunities to say something that might offend. Did you deliver naturally? Did you have a planned C-section? Do you breastfeed? Do you love it? Sleep with your children in your bed? Sleep schedule? All of these polarizing debates can be a breeding ground for arguments, hurt feelings and judgment. Lots and lots of judgment.

I frequently leave play dates worried that I said something wrong and being so thankful at how gracious my friends are to me. I feel as though I can make mistakes, say the wrong thing and they will extend me grace and love me anyway. Women who exude a gracious heart seem to only say things that will benefit the hearer.

On the playground, while our little ones are testing out their gymnastics stills, we moms usually share what problems we are battling at home. It is much easier to talk about the negative aspects of our lives than it is to remember the positive. Why is that? Regardless, speaking Truthful, Helpful, Inspiring, Necessary and Kind words may help us build up the women in our lives (and our children) rather than break bones with words that feel like sticks and stones.

I’m going to give it a try today. Who’s with me? Do you have other tips or tricks for building friendships with the women in your life?

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  1. I often leave get-togethers wondering if I have said too MUCH. I don’t worry as much about sounding harsh, but I do think in my over-eagerness to connect and share, that I talk more than I listen. I am trying to be conscious of asking questions more than offering my own story. Thank you for encouraging our introspection! 🙂

    • Sarah, YES! I agree – asking questions is a great way to be a good friend! I often get so excited about a topic that I can talk about my view for far too long – putting the focus on others and being genuinely interested can help gain better understanding of where a friend is coming from! Love it!

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