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10 Signs You're a True Mom Friend

Photograph by Twenty20

I'm fortunate enough to have two best friends, one who lives locally and one who is halfway across the country. The local bestie and I met when our now 8 year olds were infants and we were in a Mommy & Me group together. We've been thick as thieves since and our families have, too.

One of the reasons our families have grown so close is she is a fabulous mom friend. It's different than just a best friend with whom you can swap stories and bury each other's skeletons; a great mom friend doesn't just have your back, she's got your entire family's too. She's there for your kids and loves your kids as unconditionally as she does her own.

The truth is I've had a lot of close friends in my life, but none have ever been so special as the friends I've made through motherhood. My mom friends are like a tribe, a tribe I couldn't live without. There isn't a mom I know who doesn't have her core group of mom friend with whom she confides her secrets, asks for advice and celebrates her successes. You probably do, right? So you know your mom friends are great to you, but are you an equally good friend? Here are 10 signs you're a true mom friend.

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1. A true mom friend loves your kids as if they were her own.

She doesn't have to think your kids are perfect, but she treats them like they are.

2. She never judges your parenting.

We're all raising our kids differently and she would never judge you for the way you're raising yours—even if your kids go to bed later than hers.

3. Mom friends notice when they haven't heard from the other in a while.

Time flies when you're having fun and when you're a mom. Good friends notice when they haven't heard from the other in a while and check in even if it's not her turn to call.

4. A true mom friend offers to help without being asked.

It's easy for moms to feel buried and we often refer to ourselves as "sinking." Good friends notice when the other is sinking and offer to help even when her buddy says no.

5. Mom friends never dish on each other's husbands!

Even when you dish on your husband, your bestie doesn't chime in. She gets that you're just venting. But if you and he split, all bets are off!

6. She never gets catty about your kids.

She's honest about your kids when needed, but never catty. And she never, ever talks about your kids behind your back. If she does have a concern about one of your kids, she tells your privately and politely because she cares enough to intervene.

7. A true mom keeps your secrets and your kid's.

Moms should be able to talk openly with friends about anything their kid is going through without feeling like it's going to be on the front page of the school parking lot news. Kids should never be fodder and a true mom friend knows that.

8. Real mom friends hold your grudges, too.

In the back of every mom friend's brain is a list of the teacher who didn't like your kid, the lady at the grocery store who asked if you were pregnant six months after you delivered and the parking lot mom who said she was surprised your kid tested gifted. Real mom friends forgive, but they don't forget on your behalf.

9. A true mom friend celebrates your successes and never your failures.

All moms will have parenting success and failures. Her good friends will celebrate the highs and not the lows. And her friends will reciprocate in kind.

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10. When other people don't have your back a true mom friend will.

When your name comes up in the gossip mill, a true mom friend never stands by and let's you be the subject of the day. She'll stand up for you not just passively sit by and listen.

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