Michelle Kennedy: She’s a Mama Matchmaker

July 13 - On The Dot
 
FIRST THOUGHT: Making New Friends

I’ve got a little homework assignment for you, ladies. Today, join a Facebook group for women in your community, or, if there isn’t one, start one. If I can do it, you can do it too. And you might be surprised by the supportive relationships you make. I started a group for women who live in my three-square-mile community and within three days, 190 women joined! One woman posted this comment to the group: “I’ve always wanted to be a part of a group like this and I’m so happy there finally is one! Hurray!” Like me, I’m sure you’ll make some new gal pals and feel more connected to the place you call home.

WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 1 in 4

What you’ll find when you meet women in your community is that they’re all a little different. They raise their kiddos full time or work from home or just plain work too much. And all that life stuff can catch up with a lot of ladies, moms especially, leaving them little time for friendships. When you have your first child, you feel all the feels—love, joy, anxiety—you name it. But it can also be a lonesome experience. According to a recent study, more than one in four new moms in the United Kingdom admit to feeling lonely. About a quarter of these moms have no family support close by, and 14 percent said they feel their friends simply go MIA after they give birth.

I get it: It can feel like a triathlon trying to get you and your baby out the door to meet your girlfriend at the coffee shop. But you’ll be happier if you do. And if she’s a mom too, she won’t even think twice about that spit-up on your leggings!

WOMAN TO WATCH: Michelle Kennedy, Co-founder and CEO of Peanut

Today’s Woman to Watch knows all about those feelings of isolation after having a baby. And as a professional success and tech authority, she decided to use her business savvy to do something about it. Michelle Kennedy is the co-founder and CEO of Peanut, a super-smart app to help moms connect.

As you might guess, this young London entrepreneur experienced her light-bulb moment to create Peanut one morning at 2 a.m. when feeding her baby. Her girlfriend squad was up too, but they were posting Instagram pics from the club, and as the first person in her girl crew to have a kid, her days looked quite different from those of her friends. That experience pushed her to create Peanut, often dubbed “Tinder for like-minded moms.”

As an experienced tech exec (She is responsible for naming the booming dating app called Bumble and formerly worked at Badoo, Europe’s version of OkCupid.), Michelle knew Peanut would be a hit with moms. As the Peanut website states, “Just because you entered motherhood, you didn’t stop being you.”

Whether you’re expecting a “peanut” of your own or already have kids, the app can help you connect with fellow moms in your area. And similar to Tinder, moms choose which other moms they’d like to connect with and can even create groups, perhaps a posse of moms to commiserate about the terrible 2s? Peanut also offers scheduling polls, so moms can spend less time going back and forth on availability.

Michelle says there’s a stigma involved in motherhood that moms aren’t supposed to admit to feeling lonely or even bored. She’s out to prove that just because she’s a mother doesn’t mean she suddenly aged or became uncool—and the same goes for other mamas! Peanut’s mission is clear: Motherhood is awesome and might be the “best chapter in your book, but not the only one.”

QUITE THE QUOTE

With Michelle Kennedy and Peanut in mind, I’ll leave you today with this quote from singing sensation and mom Beyoncé. She said:

“I love my husband, but it is nothing like a conversation with a woman that understands you. I grow so much from those conversations.”

This is Melinda Garvey signing off until next time. Remember, ladies, empowered women empower other women. Share On the Dot so more women can have a voice. Thanks for getting ready with us.

To learn more about our conversation, check us out at OnTheDotWoman.com and talk to us @OnTheDotWoman on Twitter and Instagram. We’d love to hear your voice.

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