Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Not Welcome

Posted by Anonymous.

I live in an elitist town.

What does this mean? It means I will never measure up. I will never be good enough to be in the "hip mom" circle.

Most of the time, I'm okay with that. I know I'm educated and my child(ren?) will grow up to hopefully be educated, caring people.

I don't care that I'm not the most fashionable mom at the park. I spend my money on things that bring pleasure to me, like books and photography equipment.

But sometimes, it really hurts.

Like tonight.

I went to an open house for a new toy lending library. I was hoping to get some business exposure (I have a home party business selling toys) since I figured that anyone willing to shell out $100 a year to borrow a few toys would be willing to buy some of these good quality educational toys.

Everyone at the open house was wearing a cute little dress and looked like they had just come from having high tea. I was wearing a decent shirt (no baby snot) and casual pants.

I tried to smile and act like it didn't matter that no one was talking to me.

The "owner" introduced herself and I was able to talk to her for a few minutes about our business possibilities since we had spoken on the phone.

Then one of the "committee" members came up and was introduced. And proceeded to monopolize me right out of the conversation by speaking only to the owner and facing her. Hello, I can read that body language a mile away. It says, "you're not welcome here".

I was so hoping to break into this circle for my business, but I guess I'd have to be "one of them" to do that. And that's not going to happen while I slouch around in my flip-flops, taking pictures of everything and not caring that I have dirt on my butt.


Anonymous said...

Oh I have been where you are. It sucks and I am sorry that those hussies hurt your feelings.
The small town I used to live in, I did not fit in, I didn't fit into their church, their idea of the "traditional" woman.
Anyway...don't let them get you down. Find another group of women...I know they are out there!

Anonymous said...

Bitches like that aren't worth you time. I know how it feels - I'm having a hard time breaking into the cliques in the town I've just moved to. But I've decided it's worth holding out for friends who don't care so much about being hip and are open and willing to meet new and different kinds of people.

Anonymous said...

I hear you!

I used to think that peer pressure and cliques ended in High School. Yeah. That lasted right until I had a kid in school.

Anonymous said...

I can so relate......mark my words though, they are the insecure ones. People who need to exclude others tend to be the one with the issues.....Keep your chin up! You will be the talk of the meeting and that makes you very important!

Unknown said...

@shannon - What the hell are you calling people 'bitches' for? Is that necessary? Really? Men don't even have to do it anymore, they have women doing the dirty work for them.

Anyhoo, it's doesn't feel nice to be excluded. Especially when it's done in an openly rude way. Either ignore that person's attitude and press ahead or move on to new and more exciting ventures. Either way, you'll find success when you keep focused and stay true to yourself.

flutter said...

This happens everywhere, not just elite towns. It astounds me that some people have never progress past junior high

justme said...

i am in a tough town too. i have been lucky to steer clear of those moms but once my girls are in kindergarten it will be impossible. what is a toy lending library ???

Anonymous said...

i feel for you and know how it hurts.. my pet peeve is people who slowly maneuver others out of the group.. i am constantly saying "lets make the circle wider, i don't like to have my back to anyone!!" .. mostly people will chuckle and move out to include everyone. there will always be people who need to be the center of attention.. it hurts until you realize (or try to help yourself realize!) that it's really about them.

you sound like a great person..

addy said...

What bitches. I know what you mean - we live in an area like that. I say screw em. I would rather be the flip flop wearing, photo taking "outsider."

T with Honey said...

That stinks big time! This kind of snobbery and rudeness is inexcusable. And if the only purpose for you being at that event was to get into the circle, meet some of the local moms and make some friends or acquaintances for purely personal reasons I'd stop right there.

But as much as it stinks, and it does stink, when it comes to promoting your business then maybe you should consider compartmentalizing your life. If I want to get ahead at work, vie for that project lead position, I HAVE to dress the part whether I like it or not.

People are superficial and continue to judge others based on looks even though we should be above that. Until that changes if you want your business to be a success you may need to make some special work wardrobe purchases.

Putting the FUN in DysFUNctional said...

I know it sounds so cliche, but you don't want friends like that. You're a better person who understands what's truly valuable in this world.
Good luck with your business!

Anonymous said...

I agree with t with honey. You may want to invest in some clothing that helps you look more put together if you want to appeal to them from a business perspective, and from a friendship perspective (if you want that too).

It sucks to not fit in, I can understand that. Maybe I'm one of the 'bitches' that people are describing here, but I think caring about how you look vs. looking sloppy says a lot about you (this is coming from someone who has more sloppy days than I'd like to admit).
You want to look like you care about yourself and that you find these people worth looking nice for. I see it almost like dating, I would be put off by a man who wore sweats to a date, mainly because he didn't care to put enough effort into his appearance for me.
I can see how this situation could be difficult, especially if you define yourself as someone who does not care about clothing and appearance.

Anonymous said...

I do have to agree with some of the commenters that you should dress the part. I think people's reaction to you would have been different had you been dressed professionally (since you said this was a business opportunity). I was at a party one year where I met the incoming president of my kid's school's parent-teacher organization. She was wearing a nice pantsuit. I was very impressed with her. Come to find out later she's a troubled woman, but she made a positive impression on me that first time and I was always willing to give her the benefit of the doubt.

The other thing to consider? If these women are moms who don't get out of the house much or don't work, they may like to dress up for social events. There's nothing wrong with that. Sometimes I'm the most overdressed one in the room, but that's just me. I like to dress up.

However, rude behavior is just rude behavior.

Mel said...

Don't let the Stepford moms get you down. You're way cooler than that. Yeah, sometimes we all envy the pretty mom, or the fashionista mom, or a whole townful of both, but they are so not worth it.

Take it from a geek mom: life's more fun when you own the geekness. Or quirkiness, or whatever your awesome personality trait happens to be.

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a hurtful experience.

And wow. I am blown away that some commenters think that a decent shirt and casual pants isn't dressed up enough for the opening of a toy library. Sounds very appropriate to me.

Anonymous said...

I am so happy (and lucky) to have good mom-friends who, like me, have "grubby" days. Some days I don't have the time or the energy to pull a cute outfit together. I'd much rather spend that time racing toy cars with my son on the kitchen floor.

If you lived in my town, my friends and I would welcome you!

Anonymous said...

You know my motto? If you can't join 'em...beat em. Preferably with a big stick. Ok, that's not PC, but it sure makes for a fun mental moment doesn't it? (-:

Gina said...

I agree with Jane. Your town must be elite if the women are dressing to the nines for a toy opening. I would have messed up too by wearing pants.

Keep your head up. You are teaching your kids the important things in life... and they aren't things.

areyoukiddingme said...

Maybe it will help to realize that there are people like you out there. All of my friends are relaxed - but I only see them one on one, not in a group setting. Oh well, I don't even put on a dress to go out with my husband. Why would I do it for a bunch of women I don't know?

I have an excellent "competitive woman" radar, and generally try to stay away from the elitists who are trying to outdo one another. I don't play those games and I'm not interested in people who do. But I fear that my daughter will not be able to make friends, if I can't adjust my attitude towards those kinds of mothers. I have a few years yet...