As a fairly reserved person, making small talk with other moms can sometimes be a challenge for me. What should I talk about? Do I have anything in common with this woman? How can I appear like I’m not a total freak? This can leave me somewhere between smiling politely through awkward silences and fighting the urge to spill some of my most intimate family secrets.
Being a mom, however, has given me a lot more practice in navigating conversations with other parents. Whether it’s sitting in the bleachers of sports practice or at a Mom’s Night Out, there is always the opportunity to talk with someone new.
In some ways, finding another mom is the easiest type of small talk out there. There is already an established similarity.
But for some, having a go-to list of topics is helpful. Here are a few topics of conversation that can get you through most interactions with other moms.
Do: Share your struggles. If done playfully enough, letting off a little steam about your children is a great way to build connections with other moms. Share your child’s eating habits (picky, overly strange, or constantly hungry). Vent about how their clothes end up everywhere but their hampers. Discuss your sons’ wrestling contests around your house. People like to know they are not alone in their struggles.
Don’t: Act like the the weight of the world is on your shoulders. Moms want peers to laugh with through life’s little challenges, not feel like counseling clients.
Do: Ask about what these moms know. Moms love to be experts on something and share their knowledge with others. Ask which parks keep their children most entertained. What is a hidden jewel of the community? What is their opinion of a bounce place or baby music class. Moms can teach each other a lot and let each other in on secrets about their community.
Don’t: Stalk this woman. Keep conversation light and friendly. Friendships take time and don’t happen automatically, so don’t ask for her exact schedule for the next week.
Do: Find something you admire or notice about her family. Is it the child’s manners? Is it her athletic ability? Create an opening with this mom about her favorite topic, her children.
Don’t: Watch out for giving backhanded compliments, and steer clear of awkward issues like money. Small talk should be kind and focus on the big picture.
Do: If you’ve made it this far, congratulations, you have officially read at least one mom blog post. Follow other moms on social media. Whether you have the time to dedicate to being a loyal follower or listener or just get the gist from a meme or Facebook post, staying up to date will give you something on trend to chat about.
Don’t: Discuss your positions on anything controversial. Small talk should be light and fun. Save your big opinions for those who know you.
Leave your go-to mommy small talk topics below.