Sometimes, amid the coffee cups and barf-stained yoga pants at the playground, you meet your mom BFF. And sometimes, well -- sometimes, it's the opposite. In your desperation to speak to someone larger than the average hobbit, it can be easy to overlook glaring personality flaws. But face it: there are definitely some mom friends you don't need.
1. The Oversharer.
Moms worldwide meet, chat for three minutes, then move into a comparative discussion of vaginal injury. It's normal to talk about childbirth, boobs, nipple injury, and poop (your child's) within the first 10 minutes of meeting another mama. But move outside that mommy-experience realm, and you may be riding the crazy train. Things like infidelity, sex toys, drug use, and poop (hers) indicate a serious lack of boundaries. If she's telling you about her husband's vasectomy complications in the first five minutes of meeting, what's she going to tell you five weeks later?
2. The Gossip.
A whispered, "So, what do you think of so-and-so?" might be fun among friends. But if she's always striking up a conversation that way, she might be an inveterate gossip -- and you might be the next target. Your best bet? Pretend you have no idea who she's talking about. Or that you don't speak English.
3. The Swinger.
Unless you're into that, of course. But seriously: if she mentions her "open relationship" too many times, she's either dying to overshare about her sex life (see above) or asking you out. A normal kinky mama would wait to make friends before she brought you into the tribe. If the first five minutes involve a dating proposition, run.
4. The Peddler.
Beware the multi-level marketing maven. She's super into selling jewelry/tchotchkes/dildos and gets more cash if you, too, begin selling the same jewelry/tchotchkes/dildos. Most mamas who sell on the side are reputable, normal mommies making some extra money. It's the starry-eyed saleswomen you have to be wary of. You'll know them by their cult-like fervor and the way all conversation circles back to the awesomeness of their jewelry/tchotchkes/dildos. Do not under any circumstances give them your contact information -- unless you want to be harassed for the rest of the foreseeable future.
5. The Critic.
Mommy opinions are like poop: they're inevitable and sort of icky. Yes, we all hold strong opinions on diapers/birth/boobs/baby penises. But if a mama needs to constantly critique other mothers, she's not furthering the cause, she's validating her own choices. Do you really want to bond with someone by putting everyone else down?
6. The Hoverer.
You don't get a chance to talk to her often, mostly because she's always right up Junior's butt. But when she does strike up a conversation, beware: if you're not hovering, she's probably judging. Do you want to make friends with someone who insists you play with the kids during playdates? Go sit on a bench where she can judge you silently. Maybe take out your phone.
7. The Absentee.
On the opposite side of the spectrum is the Absentee Mommy. She doesn't notice her toddler's weeping the corner. Her kids dismantle the brick sidewalks with nary a word from her, all while her 4-year-old bashes babies on the heads with a truck. She's too busy staring vacantly into space or pecking away at her phone to notice. If she tries to talk -- and she will, because she doesn't parent her kids -- keep it casual. Otherwise you'll end up parenting them instead.
8. The One-Upper.
Does your kid know his alphabet? That's nice, but her kid can read. Your kid scored a goal? Hers made a hat trick and got nominated for varsity. Every conversation with the One-Upper turns back to her -- and how she's better than you. The One-Upper doesn't make mommy friends. She keeps sounding boards. Sure, she's actually fueled by a deep well of insecurity. But parenthood doesn't keep a scoreboard, even if she does.
9. The Drama Queen.
The playground shouldn't feel like The Jerry Springer Show. If her baby daddy's always cheating, she's feuding with another mama, and she wants to tell you all about it, stay away. The DQ lives to draw you into her mama drama, or at least make you pick sides. Stick around, and you'll end up holding her earrings while she throws down with Jaden's mommy over a stolen juice box.