As we were closing in on our move to Indianapolis a few years back, I started to worry. I had been living in the Detroit area for close to ten years and my support system – my momma tribe – was all around me. What was I going to do in a new city with two small kids and not one friend to my name?
I’m blessed to now be surrounded by the greatest group of mom friends possible. And while I know I’m a little biased, I also know that Indy comes chock full of resources for any mom in search of support.
If you’re needing some extra love, here is a resourceful list of local, in-person parenting groups worth their supportive salt. Get over that hump of “will I fit in?” and take the plunge to say hello. Your momma tribe is out there!
Indianapolis-area Support Groups for Parents:
As the largest social and support network for moms in the Indianapolis area, offers a calendar full of fun activities in every corner of the city including playdates, MNOs (moms night out), workshops, regional PLAYgroups, exclusive events and more. There are no limitations on the age of children or moms (stay-at-home, work full-time, babysitters, etc.) in this group – all are welcome. Enjoy member discounts at local businesses, an online forum, and more.
MOPS, or “Mothers Of PreSchoolers”, is a national organization generally run through local churches but does not require their members to be parishioners. Groups typically meet 2-3 times/monthly throughout the school year, offering guest speakers and meals during meetings. Childcare is usually offered by the location as well. Many different MOPS groups dot the Indianapolis area. Membership is generally limited to moms with children preschool age or younger.
Another national organization with multiple local chapters, MOMS Club, promotes support for “the at-home mother of today.” Finding a chapter is easy – just fill out their online form and someone will be in contact to connect you.
Playdate & Mama Tribe meets every Wednesday morning at 10:30 at Sacred Spines Chiropractic, providing the chance for kids to play and mamas to relax, socialize and make friends. We have occasional guest speakers ranging from attorneys, estheticians, doulas, midwives, business owners and more. This is a great opportunity for expectant mothers, veteran mothers, grandmothers, caretakers, and the like to have a safe/warm place indoors to meet others and let the kids play. Complimentary refreshments and toys for the littles are provided.
As a Down Syndrome Achievement Center, Gigi’s Playhouse of Indianapolis offers a huge number of programs, including parent groups, open play, family nights and more. It’s a wonderful way to connect with other parents and build a supportive network.
Are you an exhausted single mom? Do you juggle absolutely everything in your household? Do you want to be the mom that cooks only organic, non-GMO, flourless, sugarless, non-allergenic, non-everything food, but sometimes you’ve gotta just go to Little Ceasars and grab that pizza? REJOICE! This group is just for you. And single mothers like you everywhere. Here’s to the ones that take life seriously…but not too seriously. Come laugh and cry with us! Come encouraged in your faith. Come hear each other’s stories over a glass of wine and food that you don’t have to prepare!
Let’s not forget that dads need support too! INDY Dads Group is a diverse community of fathers who take an active role in their children’s lives. The group meets several times a month, kids-in-tow, at parks, playgrounds, museums, parent-and-me classes, and living rooms across the Indianapolis Metro area. The group also organizes parenting workshops and dads-nights-out to give members an opportunity to socialize, learn, and support each other while navigating parenthood.
If none of these groups strike your fancy, that’s okay too. Meetup.com is a great place to search for social groups in your area. Check out your local school PTO or consider starting a group of your own in your neighborhood! Whatever you decide, your tribe is out there.