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What Should I Do about My Baby Obsessed Couple Friends?

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Question: What Should I Do about My Baby Obsessed Couple Friends?
My husband and I just got married, and we are happy to say we have lots of couple friends. But we were among the last of the couples in our group to get married, and now our couple friends are starting to have babies. We’re finding ourselves with no one to hang out with on the weekends. When our friends manage to find a babysitter – and the courage to leave their little one home with someone else – they spend all evening talking baby to us. We don’t want to lose the friends we already have just because they have kids, but we’re not in the baby phase yet, and we want to fit in again. What should we do?
Answer: Many a couple has faced this dilemma. One friend has a baby, and everyone’s social life changes. There’s no question that your friends are going to have new priorities now that they are parents, and they won’t always be able to hang out with you. But you should still express your desire to remain close. Explain that you realize they probably don’t have as much time to go out with you, but that you’d still like to carve out some double date nights. If you’re willing (and only if you’re willing and it’s okay if you’re not) offer to hang out together at home with the baby once in a while. Also, be honest, yet kind, about the fact that you would like to nix the baby talk when the adults get together alone. Just tell your friends that while you want updates on how baby is doing and what parenting is like, you don’t want every conversation to revolve around the little ones. Let them know that you’d like variety in discussions as a means of staying connected and maintaining a well-rounded friendship. And it’s okay to mention that you’d like to talk about what is new in your lives once in a while, too. Just be sure to carefully choose your words, so that it doesn’t come off as offensive or sarcastic. You might try saying, “There’s lots of new stuff happening for us, too, and I want to share it with you guys.”

Just because you don’t want to lose your now baby-crazed friends (and you don’t have to), you should spread the net a little wider and look for some new couple friends, who are not having babies yet and whose current lifestyle is more closely aligned with yours. Joining clubs or teams, such as those that play softball or go bowling, is one way to meet other couples. Another is at events, such as charity galas, art or cooking classes, or on tour when traveling for a vacation. There are couples all around you, so you never know when the two of you might meet your match.

Think of the methods for finding couple friends in the same way you did when you were dating and looking for Mr. or Ms. Right. You should keep your eyes open always, let others know that you’re open to meeting new people, and be approachable. This means to take your walls down, be kind, and be willing to chat. Introduce yourselves to couples, who interest you, and strike up a conversation about anything from the weather to hobbies. At first, you’ll want to steer clear of controversy, so no religion or political talk. Ask them questions about themselves. Most people like to talk about their interests and passions, and it will give you a chance to vet these couples. Exchange e-mails or phone numbers if you think you’d like to hang out.

Follow up with those couples, who you both found interesting. Invite them out to dinner or a movie and coffee or an outing, such as mini golf. See how the four of you get along and decide whether to pursue a second double date. Soon, you’ll have enough couple friends with diverse interests and lifestyles with whom to divvy your time that you won’t mind a little baby talk with your original pals.

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