It can be daunting moving to a new city and becoming a new parent. It’s hard enough to make new friends as an adult—adding a child on top of that and you have quite the task. The good news is there are options for parents to meet other parents in Charlotte. Our new assistant broker/Realtor Siobhan shares her story and advice for finding your parent friends as a new or expecting parent.
Q: Tell us about what brought you to Charlotte.
My husband and I moved the Charlotte somewhat on a whim four years ago. We came here for a long weekend to take a break from house hunting in the Philadelphia suburbs and throughout the trip, we kept saying to each other, “we could live here”. After we got back, my husband’s job gave him the opportunity to telecommute and we took it as a sign to go for it. Within six months of renting an apartment in South End, we were under contract on our home in Villa Heights, and two years later had our son. Charlotte is definitely home now.

Q: How did you get into real estate?

When we first moved to Charlotte, I taught high school Civics and Economics for CMS. I loved teaching, but after I had my son, I was not ready to go back. I stayed home with my son for the first year, and then had an opportunity to work part-time at Plaza Presbyterian Weekday School where my son was in the ones class. The part time hours and flexibility gave me the opportunity to really think about what I ultimately wanted to do and I’ve been interested in real estate for so long. I’m a people person and I was encouraged by so many people to explore a career in real estate. I took the classes at the beginning of the year, and then was connected to Genevieve through people at my preschool.

Q: As a new mom in a city, how did you meet other potential and current parents?

It feels a little daunting at first. When my husband and I first started trying, most of our friends were just getting married or not quite there yet. I ended up meeting some of my first ‘mom friends’ in our neighborhood at a cookout, and then another neighbor invited me into a few different Charlotte mom-centric Facebook groups. And once my son started school at Plaza Presbyterian Weekday School, we made so many more parent friends. Also, you start meeting other families in so many different places just like you do when you first move here. Just instead of seeing someone else with their dog in the brewery, you are seeing a stroller. And just like dating or making friends, you have some hits and misses as far as developing a relationship goes.

Q: How have you used these groups to meet people IRL?

The online community in Charlotte is really incredible. In the various groups, you have meet ups, opportunities to buy/sell baby goods and maternity clothes, and they function as support/neighborhood forums. I also ended up in a group of women with similar due dates and we have gotten together many times over the last two years. I do not think anyone would describe me as being shy, but I think there is less stress about possibly meeting someone online before setting up a coffee and play date.

Q: What are some of your favorite spots to visit as a family?

We love Free Range Brewery because they have the great space set aside for kids to play, and NoDa Brewing and Resident Culture have great areas for kids to play. We love NoDa bodega (also huge plus is the excellent changing table they have in the unisex bathroom) and recently checked out Snooze and it was awesome for all of us. You know you are a parent when you excitedly let your partner know about adequate changing areas. We always recommend to our friends to go out often when they have a newborn because its so easy to take them with you when you can just set them in their car seat. We often went to Letty’s when our son was first born and we have always loved Haberdish, but miss when we could eat our chicken without sharing!