Having friends online can be as much of a support system as real life friends.
2am: Anyone awake. I have a baby with a fever and no idea what to do.
2:05am: I’m here
2:05am: Me too
2:05am: Shame man, what is her temp?
2:05am: Oh dear, have you tried...
This is the beauty of being a mom in the 20th century. I can guarantee that the messages of support, advice and camaraderie will flow until the fever has broken and we have both fallen asleep, and that we will wake with more messages the following morning, following up on how she is and asking if I got any sleep and what my plan is now.
I have often heard people complain about technology taking over the world, cyber friends taking over from real friends, and of technology getting in the way of forming real relationships. To demonstrate just how untrue this is, let me introduce to you the world of the mommy bloggers
and the moms who tweet.
When my little girl was a newborn I was a young mom stuck with minimal support. I had no idea what I was doing (as none of us do!); I was far from home and in need of guidance and a shoulder to cry on. It started when I was in labour with a tweet that snowballed. Before I knew it I had moms all over the world, cheering me on and sending positive birthing vibes.
This turned into moms sending breastfeeding advice
, pain relief tips and just a tweet or two saying “we’ve all been there, this too shall pass”. It was what I needed to hear on those long nights that were spent walking up and down rocking a restless baby or, and let’s be honest here, locked in the bathroom hiding out for 10 minutes alone time.
Those moms were my go to guide when I needed to know about nappy rash, medicine dosages and starting solids. Not the piles of books gathering dust next to my bed but rather the moms that were in the trenches
with me, who were covered in milk stains and with bags under their eyes. Those moms shared their personal experiences with me, and together we got through it.
Two years down the line and some of those moms are my closest friends. How can you be close friends with someone you have never met you may ask? Easy, by sharing experiences, secrets, ideas and laughs. A physical presence is a bonus. In today’s day and age, when we are juggling toddlers, work, marriages and life’s challenges, close friendships sometimes fall aside.
As much as I would love to meet the girls for a drink after work or a quick coffee catch up, it seldom happens. Life is just too busy. The saving grace is that I know that I have excellent “friends in my phone” that I can rely on day or night for a laugh and some good advice, even if it is to tell me to suck it up and get on with it. Sometime that is just what you need to hear.
Disclaimer: The views of columnists published on Parent24 are their own and therefore do not necessarily represent the views of Parent24.
Have you found support online from fellow mommies?