S3E4: How Having Kids Changes Your Network with Guang Ming Whitley https://traffic.libsyn.com/secure/reliantsproject/s3e4-how-having-kids-changes-your-network-with-guang-ming-whitley.mp3 Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadIn this episode, I speak with Guang Ming Whitley. She is married to a friend of mine from university. He introduced me to her when I passed through Los Angeles on business many years ago. Guang Ming wears many hats. She’s the CEO of the Whitley household and stayed home for many years to raise 4 wonderful children. She has written both fiction and non-fiction books. She is also an elected official in her local town council. Most recently, she co-founded Aenea, a mentorship program for young adults.In this episode we talk about: How deciding to become a stay at home mom impacted her relationships Some of the changes she noticed in her network as she had more children and they aged How her and her family navigated the challenges of finding people they all wanted to spend time with The importance of networks for young adults When she thinks it’s a good time for young adults to start cultivating networks of their own SHOW NOTES What her network looked like before she had her first child [3:30] Joining the “mommy network” [5:15] Challenges of relating to people who don’t have kids [6:13] Value of parenting classes for creating networks of new parents [7:12] What matters in friendships when you have very small children [8:35] “Dating” other families [9:03] Importance of these relationships for stay-at-home moms [9:52] At what age do the kids start driving who you spend time with? [12:00] When children start having relationships independent of their parents [13:25] How does family fit in? [15:44] Maintaing a separate identity in addition to motherhood [17:00] “You can have it all, you just can’t have it all at the same time” [17:30] Using the structure of a book club to collect friends and as platform for running for public office [18:02] How each family member’s network intersects [19:00] Cultivating a rich, diverse network [21:05] Keeping in touch with non-local friends [22:25] Something nice to say about social media [23:39] The difference between being out of touch and losing touch [25:40] The role of age in making friends as a mother [26:02] What holds mothers back from cultivating networks [27:05] Maternal mental health organisations promoting human connection [28:45] How do you think about your kids’ networks? [29:33] Aenea video on importance of young adults building their network [30:11] When is the right age for a child to start building their network [31:14] SELECTED LINKSConnect to Guang Ming Whitley: LinkedIn American Legion Auxilary Girls State Aenea Building Your Network Aenea video Learn more about other life events that impact your network and how to reduce their impact here.