I’m not in the Nursery Mums Gang. They won’t let me in. I think this is why:
I don’t drive a white Audi Q3 ( and I don’t barge my way into the nearest parking spot to the door with it)
I don’t have blonde hair complete with extensions carefully arranged on top of my head in a ‘messy bun’ that took 45 minutes to achieve
I don’t have a weekly spray tan
I don’t wear Ugg boots and a Barbour jacket on ‘scruffy days’
My children aren’t dressed head to toe in Hatley or Oilily upon arrival at nursery
I don’t obsessively buy every new range from Next for my kids’ play wear
I don’t own one of those awful plastic Ted Baker bags or the matching flip flops
Yeah, I think that’s about the crux of it.
I’ve though about it and concluded that even if I rectified some of the above in an effort to join the Nursery Mums Gang, I still don’t think they’d let me in (or if they did they’d soon chuck me back out) because they’d realise I don’t give two hoots about keeping up with them. It must be exhausting being so competitive and constantly checking what your ‘friends’ are buying to make sure you don’t lag behind. I just couldn’t be bothered with it. We’re mothers for crying out loud, not Mean Girls. (Although I’d love to be a Mean Girl – “If you’re from Africa why are you white?”)
I’d seen comedy sketches poking fun at competitive school mums before I became a mum. I particularly remember a French and Saunders one many, many years ago about mums pulling up to school in increasingly bigger 4×4’s, until Jennifer Saunders turned up in an actual tank, haha. I had no idea how absolutely realistic the basis for those sketches really were.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m no crunchy mum myself. I like to wear a lot of make up, I have manicures and wear a Biba leopard print faux fur jacket for the nursery run. My kids sometimes wear expensive clothes but only when I happen to like those clothes and not because I buy them solely based on the brand or price tag or because that’s what all the other mum’s are dressing their kids in. My kids wear cheap clothes too, it just depends what I like.
But it’s not the members of Nursery Mums Gang’s penchant for semi-designer brands or their competitive nature when it comes to image that gets my goat. They can wear what they want with as much gusto as they can muster for all I care. And when they dress their kids, I’m sure they’re putting them in clothes that they like, just as I am. But what really grates on me is their completely obvious disdain for anyone who doesn’t fit in with them and also how pathetically clique they are. They don’t even try to hide it. They never EVER crack a smile for me, even if I’m giving them my biggest beam-face. They talk about socialising knowing I can hear but have never suggested I join them for their coffee mornings, even in a polite, through gritted teeth, we’re-inviting-you-but-please-don’t-come sort of way. If I try to chime in when they’re chatting I’m either ignored or curtly given a one word answer.
Is it just me this is happening to or is the bitchy Nursery Mums Gang a common phenomena?
When I moaned to my husband about it he offered me a simple explanation. ‘Maybe they just don’t like you.’ Yes. Maybe. Except they don’t know me, so any dislike is based solely on my appearance. How dare they take against the faux fur like this?!
Anyway, I don’t mind not being in the Nursery Mums Gang. I doubt I’d have much in common with them. There’s a dad who does the drop offs and pick ups in his battered old Ford Fiesta and a mum who’s a P.E teacher that comes in a tracksuit and I’m in a more subtle (but way more cool) gang with them. We don’t loudly arrange Tapas evenings or compare our Michael Kors watches in the corridor (yes, both of those things actually happened) but we do have little chats about how our children are getting on and how good the BBC adaptation of War and Peace was. They’re much more my cup of tea and I’m thinking of arranging a bigger and better Tapas evening with them anyway.
Screw you Nursery Mums Gang!