90% of new mums admit they feel lonely. Finding other parents you have things in common with is key to continuing your social life and feeling supported. But where do you find them? Here’s our guide to making mum friends.



You haven’t enjoyed a full sleep cycle since last year. Netflix and chill has become Netflix and bounce 40 decibels of colicky baby on a yoga ball. And every day you wake up to face another ten hours to fill… alone. It’s times like these that you really need your friends around you. Only thing is, most of your friends are at work. Or in a bar. Or just, you know, casually enjoying their freedom.

A survey by Channel Mum suggested that more than 90% of new mums feel lonely after having a baby. But find yourself a good Mum Friend and it doesn’t have to be this way. Mum Friends don’t expect you to remember the right word for that thing you’re holding (it’s called a baby). They want to go to a café with a changing table and ramp access; and they carry spare baby wipes in their handbag; they just get your life.

But do they really get YOU? Just because someone is also a parent, it doesn’t mean they’re going to share your love of early morning Pilates or heavy metal festivals. Here are six ways to find new friends who won’t shame you if you order a spritzer when everyone else is drinking flat whites. Or who have the same jogging buggy as you – whatever floats your boat.

1. NCT

A pregnancy expert is discussing breathing as part of an in store parents to be event for Mamas and Papas. An expectant mother follows her instructions and practices breathing.

If you have a baby on the way, chances are you’re at least considering signing up for a National Childbirth Trust course. While advice on pain relief during labour and baby poo colour charts are helpful, there’s something truly essential on offer here, too: eight new friends who are about to have kids exactly the same age as yours.

When it comes to babies, things change dramatically from one week to the next. So the importance of knowing other people with little ones born within a month of yours can’t be underestimated. The key is to identify which of those eight could blossom into a meaningful friendship and get bonding early.

Suggested chat-up line:

“Do you come here often?”
(If they don’t laugh at this, you probably don’t need them as your friend.)


Image of Ella discussing making mum friends.

“I made some really nice friends at NCT; normal people who I could have a drink and a chat with without needing to have had a child. It’s been really beneficial to have friends who are going through the same thing with a new baby – lots of tips, and they don’t judge you for sounding hysterical when you’ve had two hours’ sleep.”

Ella, 34, Chorley


2. Peanut

An image of the Peanut app for helping you make mum friends.

Described as Tinder for mums, you might already have heard some buzz about this free app for iOS. Easy to set up and use, and never needing more than one hand at a time, the idea is to connect mums who share common interests but might not otherwise have found each other. If you’re a single mum or your child has special needs, for example, and you’re specifically looking for others in a similar situation, Peanut could be a lifesaver.

Suggested chat-up line:

“Finally, someone else who thinks Game of Thrones is overrated! Shall we celebrate with a coffee this week?”


3. Your good-old local services

A pile of multi-coloured books stacked on top of each other.

It’s easy to overlook the more old-fashioned options for meeting people. However, if you’re looking for a wide cross-section of parents who live near you, you could do a lot worse than visit the local children’s centre or library. Plus, if you don’t use them, you lose them. A good library will serve you well through rainy days with a toddler and teenaged printer breakdowns alike. If you spot someone you think might be a winner, try an open-ended question like “how are you finding it?” to get a conversation going. If you’re lucky, it might be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

Suggested chat-up line:

“Ah, yours loves The Hungry Caterpillar as well? It always makes me crave chocolate cake.”


An image of Phoebe and her child, as she discusses making mum friends.

“There’s nothing better than mum-stalking at library rhyme time. I have my eye on a chic hippy-looking French mum at the moment.”

Phoebe, 28, Edinburgh


4. Hoop

The Hoop logo for an app about making mum friends.

This incredibly useful app pulls together all the kid-friendly groups and events going on near you. Just select your child’s age and a radius, and it’ll bring up everything going on nearby. But the real genius here for our purposes is that you can filter by type of activity. If you’re into health and fitness or yoga, you’ll almost certainly find a like-minded bunch this way. But you can also search for more niche interests. Arthouse baby cinema screenings, family-friendly comedy events and even baby raves – with Hoop, if it’s happening you’ll hear about it.

Suggested chat-up line:

Do you want to bring your baby back to mine? We can drink tea and watch my subtitled black-and-white film collection.”


5. Online forums

An expectant father sits on a sofa holding a laptop while his pregnant partner kneels next to him, also looking at the laptop screen. They are in a modern looking house that is stylishly furnished.

You may be thinking, this is all very well if you live in a big city, but what about those of us who are out in the sticks with no baby hiphop singalongs within 100 miles? Most of us will be familiar with Mumsnet from googling ‘baby screaming inconsolably’ at least once a week. But did you know many parenting forums also have specific threads for local areas as well?

Mumsnet Local Talk and Netmums Local Chat both have boards for every area in the UK. Don’t write forums off as merely places to ‘discuss’ weaning techniques. There are also some brilliantly supportive threads for those having a hard time. As well as celebratory threads dedicated to everything from TV programmes to crafts to political persuasions, too.

Suggested chat-up line:

“So what are the chances this Brexit thing is actually going to happen?”


6. Just do it yourself

A pregnant woman is sat on a sofa in a brightly lit living room with an open laptop. She is typing on the laptop.

This one might seem daunting at first. If it takes you until noon to get your deodorant on, how are you going to launch a new mothers’ group? It really doesn’t need to be that complicated, though. There’s no need to design a logo, rent a space or even really know what you’re trying to achieve. Just create a quick WhatsApp or Facebook group. Then add the parents you already know, whether it’s through NCT, a forum or work. Tell those people to invite their favourite Mum Friends and watch your little chat thread grow into a network of connected parents, all of whom will have someone in common with at least one person. You can keep it as a virtual support network or set up a simple way to meet. Maybe in the park on the first Thursday of every month, for example.

Suggested chat-up line:

“Hey, I think I met you at Emma’s birthday last year? We finished that massive bowl of crisps together.”


Image of a pregnant Stephanie discussing making mum friends

“When lots of my Mum Friends stopped breastfeeding sooner than me, I wanted to find and connect with mums who were in a similar situation. I set up a WhatsApp group called Extended Breastfeeding Mamas, and invited mums and their friends who were breastfeeding babies past a year. The group was a great source of advice, comic relief and moral support.”

Stephanie, 33, London


By Jodie Elphick

Jody is a writer, editor and parent of two. Her fun hobby is copying all the lifestyle advice in the Guardian and then putting photos of it on Instagram.


If you enjoyed our guide to making mum friends, don’t forget to check out the rest of our Advice Once Baby Arrives