I recently had a play date for my older son lately and It got me thinking about the past. When he was younger I longed to go out for playdates and thought we were really missing out on them. I felt he should be with kids his own age, having fun and playing, getting socialization time. If you know me in real life, or have been following me for a while, you probably know that before he turned 3 we rarely went out or played with anyone his age. I know now that it was due to the frustrations of trying to play with someone, and not knowing how to; as well as a lack of communication. All these turned his frustration into physical side effects. They had him hitting, biting and slapping other kids his age or younger. I was mortified and so upset anytime we tried to go out of our way to have a play date; or play with someone at baby gym.
Now 2 1/2 years later, we are able to go out in public often, and are able to have fun with other parents and kids. Is he developmentally held back from not participating in play dates? Not at all. I also know now that my youngest son won’t be missing out on play dates if we are too busy.
Are the necessary for babies and toddlers? In my opinion, not really.
But, are they necessary for moms? You bet your a$$ they are!
I am lucky enough to have a job where I get to talk to moms daily, but I know for a SAHM, they aren’t always able toget that mom talk time. Now that we have play dates occasionally, I see how important it is for other moms just to talk to someone who “gets it”. It’s hard enough they might be home all hours of the day talking to someone who can’t communicate back. Talking to another adult who is going through what you are, and can relate, just makes you feel so much better. might help you get through one more day of crying, hitting, teething, or a child who won’t give you a break by napping.
Moms need friends too. Its great for de-stressing, and might “get it” more than your husband ever will. It’s so important to find moms who you can resonate with, because mommy’s mental health is important! We are responsible for our children at least 50-80%, if not 100%, of the day. We need other mommies to talk to.
So maybe, even if it’s tough, try to go on a playdate once in a while for your sake; but don’t stress yourself out about them! Find other women that understand YOU.