The Loneliness of Putting Yourself Out There as a Mum

Sunday saw us board a plane and begin our new life in Qatar, finding our feet and throwing ourselves in, despite the loneliness that can entail.

flight, wing, plane
the actual view from our window, somewhere over Manchester

The acceptance of every, and any, invitation.  Coffee mornings?  Sure.  Play dates?  Great thank you.  Swimming?  Wonderful.  Still the loneliness can be there.

It’s part and parcel of the process, putting yourself out there.  Meeting new people, forging new friendships.  Getting up and heading out every day even on the days you want to hide away and speak to no one.  To not have the same conversation again, the small talk, the introduction.  Except you can’t, because now it’s not just about you.  Putting yourself out there isn’t just for your benefit, it’s for the little people in your life.  You can’t just hide under the covers and promise that you’ll go tomorrow because chances are they are climbing the walls.  You have to go today.  You have to go now.  You have to swallow all those feelings down and head out, brave enough for all of you.  Confident enough, for both you and your children.  Pushing away the loneliness.  The fear.

Today was my first organised meet up.  Swiftly followed by another on Wednesday.  And I’m sure that I will be looking for another on Thursday.  Then it’s the weekend with the husband, house hunting some more, before heading back to trying to get out and meet people again on Sunday.

And, at times, it’s lonely.  You’re surrounded by people, making conversation, smiling, laughing even.  You’re not alone but you’re lonely.  Surrounded by people where you have to take a deep breath and throw yourself right in.  Where if you’ve had a bad night they don’t know you well enough to just let you sit there passing you coffee until you feel like you can open your mouth.  And when you finally do open your mouth it’s to garner sympathy from those who know you best.  Instead you’re being positive Polly.  Chirpy, upbeat, my kids don’t sleep haha.

The relationships are waiting but they aren’t there yet.  They need building.  Nurturing.  Lovingly watering to grow.

It starts with the small talk, then progresses to the big talk.  More often than not as a faster rate than you’d expect when you are an expat.

From acquaintances through to friends to mummy soulmates.

The awkwardness of number swapping, the worse than a first date will they or won’t they text.  The should I or shouldn’t I.  The over complicating of a very simple process “fancy meeting for coffee, for soft play, for a play date”

Knowing that you’ll be glad that you went, that you text, that you pushed yourself out of your comfort zone.  But right now?  Right now it’s lonely.  It’s tough.  It’s hard.  It’s the start of a new adventure, a new chapter.  It’s exciting.  It’s thrilling.  It’s game changing.  It’s lonely.

But it won’t be forever.  This is short term pain for long term gain.  The friends I made in Dubai are still friends now and I know that the ones that we make in Doha will be the same.  We will get there.

And until we do?  Well I’ll just keep on going out to coffee mornings, to play dates, to swimming.

And when we get there?  I’ll still keep on going, because if I can offer someone the hand of friendship that gets offered to me. If I can make someone feel that little less lonely.  Then I will.

Follow our new Qatar adventures over on Facebook

view from doubletree hilton doha qatar



  1. August 23, 2016 / 11:01 pm

    I can relate to this living in the town I grew up in. This is how I feel everyday, but I’m not brave like you and put myself out there. The fear of rejection cripples me. I admire you so much doing this and your boys are going to benefit from your efforts. I hope those friendships blossom for you and can’t wait to read your adventures X

  2. August 24, 2016 / 10:20 am

    I hope all goes well for you all on your new adventure, it’s great that you put yourself out there instead of accepting that you don’t know anyone, I’m sure you’ll soon have a great network of friends around you again.

  3. Yamina Usman
    August 25, 2016 / 8:18 am

    In the same boat as you.Moved here from Aberdeen last month and trying to find my feet.
    Have 2 boys 6 and almost 2.
    It will work out especially of you give it a fair try like you are doing …but it takes time and fair share of anxiety/loneliness as well.
    Take care and best of luck!

    • Laura
      August 25, 2016 / 6:06 pm

      Thank you Yamina, you too and if you ever want to meet for coffee or soft play when the big ones are in school please do drop me a message, Facebook, email, whatever!x

  4. August 27, 2016 / 5:23 pm

    Well done for being so social! I remember the horrible months of living in a hotel! Our kids have a bit of an age difference (our daughter is 5 months )but feel free to get in touch if you need coffee or mummy related info

    • Laura
      August 28, 2016 / 4:43 am

      Oh that would be lovely, the big one starts school next week I hope and just having the baby is much easier so that would be good!

  5. August 29, 2016 / 6:13 am

    Welcome Laura.
    Im an expat wife in Doha too. Bunny is almost 5 years old and Monkey is 6 months old. I completely know what you mean. I blogged on the same topic just the other day. If you fancy yet another meet up, let me know.
    Making friends as an expat –

    • Laura
      August 29, 2016 / 1:46 pm

      I would love another meet up!! Loved your post, it’s so right it’s about finding “my person” x

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