Mom's Night Out should avoid certain topics. Why?
Because MNO is in it's own special category. The word "out" indicates it's not the norm. It's all together different from other nights. If you are "in," your normal routine continues. But when you're "out," it's important, even sacred and requires some intentionality.
So in the spirit of keeping Mom's Night Out separate from what is normal, Here are my 7 off-limit topics during MNO: # 7 Baby Poop
Seriously, this one should be obvious. At the dinner table, I train my kids not to talk about potty stuff. Has your kid ever told some gross booger joke or reference the toilet or farting while you're trying to eat?
But somehow this taboo practice doesn't seem to apply to mothers. Because of what a mother goes through, we have carte blanche, but that doesn't mean we should use it during Mom's Night Out.
It's essential to have transparency, but let's take a break from the details for one night and go drink coffee or chips & queso, without talking about poop!!
#6 Cleaning Systems I love hearing advice on how to organize my space better. I used to even guest blog for a friend about cleaning. But during MNO, this topic should stay home.
Homeschooling is my job. There's a time and place for planning and obtaining resources, but not during MNO.
I love my children and I spend all day, every day with them. I want to do this. I cannot express in one sentence the value I place on maintaining the authority God's given us, as parents, to teach them each day. However, just like anyone else, I need a break from work.
#4 How little sleep you're getting
Being a mom means late nights, middle of the nights and early mornings. Either it's the newborn phase, they're sleep training, having bad dreams, potty training, sleep walking or sick. We all need more sleep.
I'm tired of talking about it now and it's not even a Mom's Night Out! This topic leads to a complaining spirit in me so it's off limits because it's not profitable.
#3 Bodily Fluids
The Mom who wants to tell you about how her kid threw up, peed, or pooped on her can stay home from MNO. If you're that Mom, let me tell you something that may shock you. Every mother on the planet has been thrown up on.
Sympathy doesn't need to hear the details. Here's the perfect phrase for you to say the next time you're tempted to talk about bodily fluids at a MNO, "It's just been one of those days."
Talk about a huge time saver!
#2 Cute Kid Phrases Etc
Oh man. I am SO guilty of this one. This one is a never-ending road. Why?
Because every kid is cute. Every kid does adorable things.
But at a Mom's Night Out, this kind of conversation piece can take over the entire night and before you know it, it's 1040pm and you said you'd be home at 1030 and you still haven't connected at a soul level with your girlfriends.
Save the cuteness for Instagram and give Mom's Night Out its own space.
#1 What your husband is doing wrong
Mom's Night Out, for Christian women, isn't a free for all whiny session about our husbands. It's tempting to tell the weaknesses of our spouse, especially if we're wanting some sympathy or validation. But it's a mistake to bring it up in this setting.
Why? 1. It's gossip. 2. It violates the trust between a husband and wife. 3. I'm not treating him like I wanted to be treated.
Venting is natural, and sometimes it helps. Having that close, sisterly friend that you spill the raw truth of your feelings to makes all the difference when you're at odds with your husband. But that's a private conversation with a close sister-in-Christ, not a conversation piece for group discussion. Ideas for great MNO: 1. Game Night - One of my favorites! It only needs index cards (or pieces of paper) and pencils for everyone in the group. 2. Speed "Dating" - Find out as many facts about a person that you didn't know in 1 min and switch - You'll be amazed at how easy it is to feel closer to someone when you know tiny facts about them. We did this once and I learned that one was in a beauty pageant and got Miss Congeniality, another could play an instrument and I finally fessed up to practicing isolation dancing (aka the robot) as often as possible, especially in public places. 3. Fill in the blank and explain why - "I'm most passionate about the issue of _________." - This can spark side conversations when people want to understand one another or find common interests. 4. Play child-like activities together - mini-golf, bowling, twister or relay races - you won't feel like talking about your kids if you're acting like one!
The next time you join other women out, take the opportunity to connect your souls, not just vent about mommy routines. What's your favorite thing to do with the women in your life? Which of my "off-limits" topics do you feel most tempted to bring up? What do you think makes for a great Mom's Night Out?
If you haven't subscribed to my blog yet, be sure to click below so you can get my free eBook "The Three Gates: A Foot-in-Mouth Prevention Guide" which talks about the internal struggle of when and how to know if something is worth sharing out loud.