Our Keepsake Journal is Here! 🎉

It all started during my second trimester with my first pregnancy. I didn’t even complain about the morning sickness during the first few weeks, but when the pregnancy symptoms no one told me about started—the projectile nosebleeds for example—I found myself in need of a good old-fashioned vent session. I turned to my cousin Emily, also pregnant with her first, and we began comparing pregnancy pain notes. 

Just like that, I had my first mom vent friend! Nearly 16 years later, the “mom vent” part of our relationship is still going strong. Through sleepless nights, breastfeeding, pumping, potty training, preschool pains, and now, *gulp*, kids who are about to start driving, venting to each other about the hard times of motherhood has helped us both get through them.

And praaaaise the Lord for that. Without my vent buddy, I’d probably be institutionalized. Cause this motherhood thing? It is NOT for the weak. And it was NOT meant to be navigated alone.

We need our mom community to hear us, validate us, empathize with us, and if needed, put us back on track if we’re straying in the wrong parenting direction.

Not that we need scientific validation of the vent friend phenomenon, but OF COURSE, science totally agrees. 

A 2009 study done by researcher Bernard Rimé showed that study subjects who were able to verbally express their stressors to peers experienced lowered levels of the stress hormone cortisol. So when you feel better after venting to a friend? That’s because you actually ARE better!

What’s more? Having a vent friend in your life isn’t just good for you, it’s good for your kiddos, too!

I kind of LOVE this . . . and it totally makes sense! Another study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association says that when mama has people she can turn to in times of stress, baby benefits! Smart Parenting magazine reports that Kaja LeWinn, a psychiatry researcher at the University of California in San Francisco, who served as one of the authors of the study says that, “This is because when mom has people she can turn to for advice and support, her parenting stress is reduced and her health is improved—factors which are both positively associated with child cognitive development.”

That settles it, mamas. If you don’t have a vent friend, it’s time to place a classified ad! What’s good for mom is good for the kids! We ALL need mom friends to be our “safe people”.

So grab a gal who can listen to you vent, empathize, offer advice, and give POSITIVE affirmation and encouragement (not one who will lead you from venting to a negativity spiral). I’m sooo blessed to have a few of these ladies in my life, and they are worth their weight in gold!

Do you have a vent buddy? What’s your favorite way to let off some steam with another mama?

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Jenny Rapson

Jenny Rapson is a follower of Christ, a wife and mom of three from Ohio and a freelance writer and editor. You can find her at her blog, Mommin' It Up, or follow her on Twitter.

The Last Text I Sent Said “I Love You”

In: Friendship, Grief, Living
Soldier in dress uniform, color photo

I’ve been saying “I love you” a lot recently. Not because I have been swept off my feet. Rather, out of a deep appreciation for the people in my life. My children, their significant others, and friends near and far. I have been blessed to keep many faithful friendships, despite the transitions we all experience throughout our lives.  Those from childhood, reunited high school classmates, children of my parent’s friends (who became like family), and those I met at college, through work and shared activities. While physical distance has challenged many of these relationships, cell phones, and Facebook have made...

Keep Reading

Friendship Looks Different Now That Our Kids Are Older

In: Friendship, Living, Motherhood
Two women and their teen daughters, color photo

When my kids were young and still in diapers, my friends and I used to meet up at Chick-fil-A for play dates. Our main goal was to maintain our sanity while our kids played in the play area. We’d discuss life, marriage, challenges, sleep deprivation, mom guilt, and potty-training woes. We frequently scheduled outings to prevent ourselves from going insane while staying at home. We’d take a stroll around the mall together, pushing our bulky strollers and carrying diaper bags. Our first stop was always the coffee shop where we’d order a latte (extra espresso shot) and set it in...

Keep Reading

Give Me Friends for Real Life

In: Friendship, Living
Two friends standing at ocean's edge with arms around each other

Give me friends who see the good. Friends who enter my home and feel the warmth and love while overlooking the mess and clutter. Give me friends who pick up the phone or call back. The friends who make time to invest in our relationship.  Give me friends who are real. The friends who share the good, the beautiful, the hard, the messy, and are honest about it all. Give me friends who speak the truth. The friends who say the hard things with love. RELATED: Life is Too Short for Fake Cheese and Fake Friends Give me friends who show up. The friends who...

Keep Reading

A Friend Gone Too Soon Leaves a Hole in Your Heart

In: Friendship, Grief, Loss
Two women hugging, color older photo

The last living memory I have of my best friend before she died was centered around a Scrabble board. One letter at a time, we searched for those seven letters that would bring us victory. Placing our last words to each other, tallying up points we didn’t know the meaning of at the time. Sharing laughter we didn’t know we’d never share again. Back in those days, we didn’t have Instagram or Facebook or Snapchat or whatever other things teenagers sneak onto their phones to capture the moments. So the memory is a bit hazy. Not because it was way...

Keep Reading

I’m Thankful for the Community We’ve Found

In: Friendship, Living, Motherhood
Community on street having a picnic

It was the end of the school holidays, and the return to school after Christmas was looming. The children had had two weeks at home. The general sense of routine was lost for the boys, with late nights and relaxing days watching YouTube while playing their Switch. I was eager for routine to make a reappearance through school. As we headed into the weekend before the start of school, Josh had a cough and then a fever, and it became clear this would not be the week I had envisioned. By Monday morning the boys appeared more lethargic than usual,...

Keep Reading

Invite People Over, It’s Always Worth It

In: Friendship, Living
Family greeting friends on front steps of house

I meticulously vacuumed and mopped, water streaks practically mocking me with the contrast of dirty to clean. Tending to the floors was always my least favorite chore, but now that people were coming over, it was a necessity I couldn’t ignore. I obsessively worried that crumbs would stick to guest’s feet during dinner and that thought alone sent me into round three of detecting those that were camouflaged. When the new couple arrived, I was relieved they were wearing socks. I had set the table with extra linens and placemats to which my perplexed children inquired, “What are these?” as...

Keep Reading

Find True Friends and Hold on Tight

In: Friendship, Living, Motherhood
Friends walking away with arms linked

I’m a mother of two young boys, ages three years old and three months old. Since the recent birth of my youngest son, I’ve transitioned from therapist and social worker in the workplace to stay-at-home mom. I’ve come to realize I’m no expert on parenting and there are many things I’m uncertain of as a mother, but there is one thing that I’m completely sure of . . . we all need the real mom friends in our lives. The real mom friends are the ones who show up authentically for you in your life and provide you with the...

Keep Reading

I’m the Friend Who Flakes Out Sometimes—Thanks for Loving Me Anyway

In: Friendship, Living
Group of women on beach, color photo

I recently read a quote that said, “Sorry I’m late, I didn’t want to come.” It resonated. Not because I don’t love my friends. I do. Fiercely. Wholeheartedly. But, I’m that friend. You know the one . . . the last commit, the first to leave. The one who chooses option C when everyone else chooses options A or B. The one who doesn’t initiate the plans. And struggles to show up to the ones that are made even though they are with the people closest to my heart. The one who politely declines opportunities for reasons that are sometimes driven solely...

Keep Reading

Here’s to the Friends Who Don’t Hide Their Messy Parts

In: Friendship, Motherhood
Two women sit in a field with arms around each other

To the friend who invited me over without picking her house up beforehand . . . thank you.  You had no way of knowing, but I’ve been especially weighed down by the feeling of “I can’t keep up” lately—and when I walked into your beautiful home and saw dishes in the sink and laundry scattered here and there, I let out the deepest exhale I didn’t even realize I was holding in.  Because seeing your mess? Your less-than-perfect? It didn’t make me think any differently of you, but it did allow me to give myself the grace I desperately needed....

Keep Reading

I Didn’t Know How Much I Needed Other Mothers

In: Friendship, Living, Motherhood
Two mom friends smiling at each other

I read somewhere the other day that when a child is born, a parent is too. In my first few months being a mother, I’m learning just how odd that sentiment is. In an instant, I became someone new. Not only that, but I became part of a group I didn’t realize existed. That sounds wrong. Of course, mothers existed. But this community of mothers? I had no idea. It took us a long time to get where we are today. Throughout our journey with infertility, I knew in my heart I was meant to be a mother. I knew that...

Keep Reading