The other day I was perusing Instagram, and I stumbled upon a D-list celebrity’s page, and she’d just made a sponsored post for a newish app called Peanut. It’s basically like Tinder for mommies – you sign up, and it shows mommies near you, and you can swipe a certain way if you think you have something in common, or another way if you think you don’t, and when you find someone, instead of hooking up, I guess you can meet at a park or coffee shop for a playdate…
The post was kind of ridiculous – it was like the least believable sponsored post EVER like, “Being in the spotlight, I’m subject to so much scrutiny from judgmental mommies, and I’m always on the go, so it’s hard to do playdates with like-minded mommies, but now that I’ve found this app all of my problems have been solved, and I’m meeting up with the funnest, smartest, most amazing moms lately!!!”
Yeah I bet celebrities troll Tinder-like apps for moms in search of friends…
ANYWAY, even though new friends are like the last thing I’m searching for at this moment, I was intrigued. (Perhaps because I married my high school sweetheart and missed out on the dating/hookup app phenomenon?)
So I quickly purchased the app to see what it is all about… And like, is anyone in my area actually on it?
After purchasing the app, I had to give permission for the app to access my location, and then I had to create a profile. I signed in with my no-friends Facebook account, so I didn’t have to spend time adding pictures, and then I answered questions about how many kids I have, which, because I was trying to do this fast I only included Joel, and I didn’t include Matthew and Finch.
And then I had to choose three “characteristics” about myself, as a mom, and I, of course, chose “hot mess” as number one, and then two others that I can’t remember, but my selections certainly weren’t anything that would have suggested that I remotely have my shit together in any way, so I know “fitness queen” and “organic nut” and “fashionista” were ruled out immediately. I think I might have also chosen “homebody” or “Dr. Google” (i.e. paranoid). I basically made myself look AWESOME.
So I skipped some more steps that were allowed to be skipped, so then my profile was rendered “complete,” and it was time to dive in.
Much to my surprise a picture of a mom, I guess in my neighborhood, popped up, and I swiped to see another one, and another one, all in my area, and by the fifth one, I realized I’d accidentally “waved” at each of them. “I hope they don’t wave back,” I thought.
With Mark’s help (I’m not that smart) I finally figured out how to swipe without waving, so I continued somewhat mindlessly scrolling through profiles, simultaneously wondering if I could ever be social enough to actually meet anyone in this way… And I concluded that no, I probably couldn’t, for so many reasons, the main one being, I AM NOT A NORMAL MOM NOW, which I was reminded of repeatedly in my swiping.
Like one picture showed a child holding a bear, and I wondered if it could be a bear similar to our Matthew bear – a bear made in memory of a child gone-too-soon, it’s weight that of the child’s. But nope, I’m pretty sure it was just a basic stuffed animal.
Tons of moms listed their only child as a “peanut,” one still in the womb. And all I could think was, “I hope it all works out for you, because it’s sure going to suck to have to deactivate this if it doesn’t.” I mean, it seems a little presumptuous to sign up for a playdate meetup app when your baby hasn’t safely made it to the outside (#justsaying)… But of course this is just my tragedy-laced perspective, and I’m sure it’ll work out for them just fine. But I simply can’t relate to anyone else’s certainty surrounding pregnancy outcomes or anything else in life, really.
Speaking of peanuts, there were a handful of moms claiming to have an eight or nine month old as well as a child recently born… Like, I didn’t think this was super possible, but I digress.
Also, people loooooove themselves some professional photos, which, who doesn’t, but sometimes they just perpetuate this aura of perfection that’s so prevalent on social media already when really maybe the husband’s secretly using the Ashley Madison or Grindr app or something…
The last straw that made me ultimately deactivate the Peanut app is that this one mom’s profile picture was of her baby, and this baby was sleeping on its stomach on a white sheet or something that I can only presume was intended to be a cloud, and secured to his or her back was this giant set of white angel wings. Yes, a living baby. (I could tell because unfortunately I have experience in this area.) Wearing a set of angel wings. I shit you not. It almost gave me a coronary – the thought that someone could dress a living baby as an angel as though it’s just no big deal. Because, in my world, angel babies are dead, and only babies whose siblings are dead are adorned with rainbows…
So, as mentioned, I deactivated, concluding that this way of meeting “other like-minded moms” isn’t the way for me. Not that I wanted or expected it to be. I mean, of course, I don’t know by my 20 minute existence in there whether I could have met a good friend or two. Maybe someone out there shares my experience or doesn’t share my experience but is extraordinarily cool or something, but, right now, I concluded it still isn’t worth it for me to try… If there are any new mom friendships out there to be made, at this point, they’ll have to be made more organically.