To think it's IMPOSSIBLE to make friends in some towns...

(172 Posts)
IncaAztec Wed 05-Dec-12 20:29:44

I moved here last year with DC1. Everyone has lived here since the year dot. Its very hard to meet anyone, let alone anyone who wants to go on a playdate/be friends. I won't name the town but I think my experience seems to be common in small provincial ones with few incomers.

I have tried to make friends but am foiled at every turn. An example: At a baby group (dull, but an example), I offered another Mum I had met and chatted to before my seat as she is very heavily upduffed. She took it and went off to talk with her friend, leaving me alone. Not even a Hi!

People are borderline rude at nearly all the playgroups. I go for my DC's sake these days. Anyone else in the same boat or want to name and shame their unfriendly, cliquey, rubbish town?

MrsMangelfanciedPaulRobinson Wed 05-Dec-12 20:33:05

My town is the same! You're not a local unless you've lived here for at least 50 years, and if you try to make random chit chat with someone in a shop, or even someone serving at a till, they look at you like you've just asked them for a million quid!

slalomsuki Wed 05-Dec-12 20:36:45

I agree. In my town, we have been here 15 years, it's only now that I am being accepted in a small way and that's only because I work locally. DH works about 40 miles away and he is still regarded as an outsider.

They all seem to marry someone they were at school with, have friends that they have known from primary school and live in the same road as they grew up in as moving away is too much of an adventure.

baublesandbaileys Wed 05-Dec-12 20:36:54

yup I'm pretty outgoing and have settled in well in lots of towns (moved around a bit) except one!

cannot be done there IMO as a newcommer! I did all the usual tricks which would usually land you at least one or two coffee aquaintances (EVERY playgroup, netmums meet a mum, evening classes, just generally being friendly and approachable and approaching people..)

didn't make one friend, even an aquaintancey friend

its not me! honest! I've made friends everywhere else I've lived!

Notalone Wed 05-Dec-12 21:04:45

Name and shame these towns because other posters may feel more reassured if they realise they are not alone and it is not just them. I will begin. I live in South Yorkshire and love the town I live in now, but I previously lived in some mining villages which were just hideous. I never stood a chance and all because I speak differently.

And now over to you. Where are your unfriendly towns?

1605 Wed 05-Dec-12 21:10:55

I'm from a suburb of Warrington. I left as soon as soon as I turned 18 and have never been back. Everyone is the colour of orange tango, thick as shit, married to their brother's best mate, and fiddling the social.

Pretty much the same here in Leics. Everyone seems to be from here, have extended family locally etc. I have moved around quite a bit ever since I was at uni, but have been here for 5 years. I have one or two friends here and a few acquaintances who chat to me if they see me but wouldn't be interested in socialising. It makes me really want to move back down to my hometown where I know more people!! My DC go to school in the village next to our town for various reasons, mainly DS1's SN. A couple of people have asked whether we live in the village, and when we say we don't, they stop the conversation and make no further effort to be friendly. Argh! I used to be really extrovert and great at making friends in my hometown, don't know if it's just the area or if I have changed (due to finding it impossible to make new friends here!)

3b1g Wed 05-Dec-12 21:19:13

I found this to be so true with DS1. I ended up making some friends in the next town over. Even when he started school, all the mums had known each other for ever, all had older children who were friends with each other. It made me a bit miserable, tbh.

The mums in DS2's class were much more friendly and less exclusive. I try to make an effort now if there's a new parent who has just moved into the area, because I remember how lonely it was.

emsyj Wed 05-Dec-12 21:34:53

I think some areas are definitely like that unfortunately. A friend of mine lived in [no names mentioned] for something like 8 years and managed to make ONE friend despite trying various evening classes, social groups, working at a fairly large company with lots of colleagues etc. I can honestly say she did everything she could and she is quite a friendly sort of person. Everyone she worked with had lived there all their lives and had their own friends and nobody was interested in meeting anyone new.

HullyEastergully Wed 05-Dec-12 21:37:48

that is so grim! where are these towns?!

Mandy2003 Wed 05-Dec-12 21:39:24

The first village I lived in after I moved from London was terribly unfriendly - I'm sure people there would rip your arm off and beat you to death with the sticky end if they got half a chance!

But then I moved to another village 2 miles up the road and its fantastically friendly - the complete opposite grin

nearlymerrychristmasbutnotyet Wed 05-Dec-12 21:46:21

Yanbu, Ive lived somewhere like that and loads of them were related too. Complete sh*****e, couldnt wait to move. You couldnt order a takeaway without a load of old biddys breaking their neck to see what you were getting, who is that at her door etc etc etc grin

nearlymerrychristmasbutnotyet Wed 05-Dec-12 21:48:42

meant to say terribly unfriendly wont really look at you if you walk past them but nosey as hell as who goes in your house etc

kfs Wed 05-Dec-12 21:49:52

Y'all live in my town. Suburb of Leeds.

jojane Wed 05-Dec-12 21:55:19

I think towns are the worst places to live, I have loved in cities when younger and most people are away from family etc so willing to make friends and you are always meeting friends of friends etc etc, I have also lived in small villages - 1 shop and 1 pub type places (love in one now) and find that people are very accomadating, everyone will chat to you from the 90 year old woman at the bus stop to the 15 year old waking the dog. When I had ds1 we lived in the nearby town and it was so hard to meet any friends, worked with lots of people but the already had their established friend set, toddler groups were very clichy, I hated it and am so glad we moved to this village, have made some really great friends.

ooer Wed 05-Dec-12 22:01:06

I live in a small town, around 10,000 people, interestingly in my own age group have made friends only with other "incomers". Having said that, the neighbours are all friendlier than city folk (where I used to live) and prob all think I am really standoffish!

Creamtea1 Wed 05-Dec-12 22:03:18

Yep have experienced the same, noone wants to be your friend as they've all lived here for a million years and are married to school people and still friends with school people. No room for new outsiders. But then again women here are pretty bitchy and cliquey so it could be more than just the town.

Oh god. You're scaring me. I'm about to.move to a small town. Will I have no friends?!

HumphreyCobbler Wed 05-Dec-12 22:14:57

some small towns are nice, honestly. I live in between two and have found people very friendly.

HumphreyCobbler Wed 05-Dec-12 22:15:42

sorry, that wasn't very sympathetic. It sounds grim OP

Heroine Wed 05-Dec-12 22:16:00

Read 'watching the english' by Kate someone or other - she explains how the English will stand next to the same people at the same busstop morning in morning out and won't speak to them for fear that they will never be able to stop talking to them no matter how they feel, but that if someone falls over in front of the bus stop they will all be chatting about how they nearly did that once, or practically slapping each other's backs with mirth and concern.. but then next day shut down to the usual crap nod-at-best shit social skills.

I heard recently that 'the english don't like to look up in case its raining' its more like they are afraid that they will lose a bit of their soul if two souls collide

( I am english origin by the way, just been somewhere else too!) The English think their unfriendly coldness is the correct adult way to behave and are quite shocked to find that the rest of the world is different and they are the weird ones!

The rules are relaxed in cities btw,.

gimmecakeandcandy Wed 05-Dec-12 22:16:51

Name and shame these places!

IvantaOuiOui Wed 05-Dec-12 22:17:49

It was like that when I lived in Whitehaven. Now I live in a suburb of Warrington and people are nice!

Come to Newcastle! I can't get nowt done around here for people stopping to chat / cooing over dd / asking for directions. I love it.

It was sympathetic to me Humphrey - thank you!

FWIW, I've always found that if I make the effort to talk to someone then they respond really well. Other mums in parks / walking babies in the street are particularly responsive.

<prays it's the same in new town or I'll be very lonely!>

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