As a stay-at-home mom, I spend a lot of time with other moms. (And I do mean a lot.) Sometimes it’s because our kids are similar ages or because we signed them up for the same activities. Other times it’s just to schedule a play date and, honestly, wear my kids out so they’ll go to bed on time. And then there are the times where it’s simply because I think the other mom’s personality is amazing and refreshing, and I crave being around someone else who gets me and what I’m going through.
But I’m just gonna be honest with you: When I first meet another new mom, I often find myself secretly wanting to skip over all the small talk, and get right down to the business of whether or not we’re destined to be awesome mom friends. If I could simply ask a series of vaguely uncomfortable, slightly awkward, and — okay, fine — downright nosy questions in rapid-fire succession, I think it would really help weed out the ones I’d like to spend more time with. (Versus … well, the others I’d do anything to get out of a carpool with.)
So here they are — my Top 13 kinda nosy questions that (for better or worse) would give me a little more insight into who you are, and whether or not we click.
1. What’s your (honest) meal plan for the week?
And no, I’m not checking to see if you feed your kid non-GMO veggies. I’m honestly just looking for some easy ideas here that don’t involve my famous PB & J. Because at this point, it’s been on pretty heavy rotation for a while now.
2. If you have any guns, are they locked and stored away safely?
For me, this one’s a biggie — and would probably result in a pretty quick friend elimination if the answers were yes, and then no. If I can’t trust you to store your guns safely, I wouldn’t feel comfortable to drop my kid off for a play date alone.
3. What do you drink on a play date at 9:30 AM? … And what about a play date at 5:30 PM?
Right answers: Coffee or tea in the morning, and wine or margaritas at night, of course.
4. What activities are you and your kids into right now?
Don’t worry, I’m not expecting you to be a DIY master who completes at least seven kid-friendly Pinterest projects a week. (I’m certainly not.) I just want to know if you leave the house, and how you do it. (And also, if you have fun or inexpensive activity ideas to entertain these kids all day — because this summer has been a LONG one so far.)
5. How does your family handle budgeting?
Yes, yes, this one’s especially nosy, I know. But wouldn’t we all like to have a peek into how other families budget, prioritize, and make financial decisions? If for no other reason than to just know if we’re on the right track ourselves?
Have any good savings tips? What do you spend on groceries in a week? Please, let me pick your brain.
6. Where do you work, and do you like your job?
It’s pretty cool to hear anyone talk about something that they’re passionate about, though I always hope that people feel this way about what they do whether it’s in an office or at home, like me. And of course, I’m always up for hearing the downsides, too, if you need to vent. (Who doesn’t like a little office gossip?)
7. What’s the one thing you would have done differently so far with your kids?
To be able to answer this question shows that this mom puts a lot of thought into parenting, and that she is going to be able to have intense conversations if that’s the type of friend I’m looking for in that moment.
8. If you could have one night out with a free and trusted babysitter, what would you do?
You know, if this were to ever magically happen to us.
9. Who is your favorite Disney princess?
Because my daughter will want to know.
10. What is your favorite college football team?
Because my husband will want to know.
11. What do you and your partner fight about the most?
I know; this will probably never be a socially-appropriate question. But if it were, I feel like it would tell you a whole lot about the relationship, the honesty of a friend, and the way she handles conflict.
12. What one “mom chore” would you forever outsource if you could?
There are so many to choose from, I often wonder which one tops most moms’ Most Hated Chore list. My answer? Laundry, hands down. (With dishes running a close second.)
13. What’s one part of parenting that you’re going to do differently than your parents did?
I love this questions because it tells me how me how intentional and analytical another person is, while also showing me a little bit about their relationship with their parents. If they can manage an intelligible answer while balancing children at a playdate, I’m super impressed.
So maybe it’s not socially acceptable to barrage a new potential mom friend with a bunch of nosy questions, but man, wouldn’t it be interesting? We could sure both cut to the chase a bit faster.
In the meantime though, I suppose I’ll keep my questions to myself. But if you happen bump into me at the grocery store or the library, I can’t promise I won’t be wondering one (or more) of these, at any given point. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!More On