Today’s blog post is Mama Drama, the thing you wished was hung up with your high school poms poms. When I see quotes about motherhood, they revolve around raising children, family traditions, managing the house, and maintaining the “self” in the years that require selflessness. Nobody talks about the evolution of friendship in motherhood, the way your friends undoubtedly change when you have children, the way your friendships revolve around your kids, and the way turmoil in adult friendships ripples all the way down to the friendships of children. 

This year I found myself mixed up in a misunderstanding wherein multiple girls in my friend circle accused me of mom-shaming them. A comment made in jest, poking fun of my own tendency to Irish exit because I cannot function after a night of late-nighting was skewed. Despite my efforts to explain my intention, the dynamic you may remember from high school (multiple girls against 1 presented itself). The interesting thing about exclusions in motherhood is the ripple effect through your family. In a group of women where I used to feel comfortable sharing my heart, I no longer feel comfortable sharing a conversation – not because of the original misunderstanding rather because of the situations that have since unraveled.

This experience has taught me to raise my girls to be better, to encourage all of my children to lead with an inclusive heart, to accept apologies, always give friends the benefit of the doubt, and perhaps, most importantly, to encourage them to walk away when they are being excluded. No friendship is worth sacrificing yourself or allowing others to diminish you. As I look back on times in my life where I experienced a similar feeling of exclusion, I realize now that the exclusion was never about me: it was about those who feel they have the “power.” Walk away, surround yourself with people who make you feel accepted, who trust your word, and go out of their way to remind you that you are welcome. And moms, if you find yourself in a situation where the “ripple effect” affects your children, speak up once, and then move on.