To wonder why I am so socially inept?(17 Posts)
I have lived in a new town for 4 months now. So far, I have got to know the grand total of zero people.
I don't know how it's done. I have one dd at school, but have not met anyone that way. I volunteered at the Christmas fair hoping to get to know some people but I was just on my own ladling out mulled wine and no one spoke to me.
Youngest dd is 3 and I have only been able to find one local toddler group, which is on a day I work so I can't go there.
It's a small town so not masses of people about. There are no local facebook community groups or anything. I am
a bit of a gobshite quite outspoken once you get to know me but I am just rubbish at making the first move, as it were. And no one has approached me, I must have a 'fuck off' face!
I am a single parent which I think is not the norm around here, and I have had a really shitty few years having been in a domestic abuse relationship, and then 2 years of court hearings after it, and I guess that's battered my confidence a bit.
How do people do people integrate into a new place? I need help!
PTA meetings? Church? Other social committees? Invite your older children's friend to play along with the mum?
Do you have surestart centres? They run groups which are a great way of meeting people
Try just saying hello to a few people?
I actually went to church! Even though I am not religious. Most of the people were OAPs and no one spoke to me.
I will maybe enquire about the PTA, though generally with those kind of things childcare is an issue (broke so can't afford babysitters).
I am in a HA house and have been waiting since we moved in in nov for the HA to come and plaster dd1's room so I can decorate. Poor thing still has her stuff in boxes and she is sleeping on a mattress on the floor. Her room looks like a prison cell, and I'd be too embarrassed to invite anyone over yet. They are allegedly coming on Friday, but I'll believe it when I see it as this is the third appointment, they didn't bother turning up the other times.
No surestart centre, the nearest one is in a neighbouring town and I think that would kind of defeat the object as it's people in this town I'd like to get to know.
I guess I could say hello to people. It's hard though because the school gates would be the obvious place, but as dd1 is year 5 they all come out under their own steam, and the parents don't actually have to be there to pick them up IYSWIM, so there's no one place that mums from her class congregate.
re the church thing, most do family services once a month, i attended ours in the run up to having dd christened and the families were lovely so might be worth finding their website as it should have service info on it and if not it may have an email address for you to contact and ask - lots of churches run playgroups too but don't always advertise it. MIne does it once a month which unfortunately i can't go to very often as it clashes with other things we do.
Google Water Babies as they often do taster sessions (free of charge) or gym tots as your local sports centre may run one
have you looked to see if there is a local mumsnet that meet up near by?
Perhaps try mumsnet local.
Having a bad day with links
4 months is very early, do give yourself a break! Especially in areas where new faces are unusual, it can take a while before people settle enough for everyone else to be truly open.
DH and I have both been expats in one way or another for most of our lives, and always feel that it takes 1 year to make proper acquaintances and 2 years to make real friends. That may seem a long way right now, but the trick is usually just persistence. Keep showing up at the places that have any appeal, try any hobbies or clubs that have ever appealed and plug away with kid stuff, and soon people will start seeing you as part of the home team! Our biggest rule is to say yes to every invitation in the early days, you probably won't make friends with the first set of people you meet, often it's the extended second set who are much more your type, but you have to be out of the house to find them. Lots like dating, really . Good luck and
Also, congratulations on doing this solo, it takes extra guts but I'm sure you will meet your sort of people soon, and in the meantime you will be a fantastic role model for your DCs about making new friends
Do you have any friends or family from before who could come and visit or have long gchats while you settle in, so you don't feel too downhearted?
I would try the sure start any way, as if it's the only local one you may find that mums from your town also use it.
It's worth a try. I really hope things turns around for you.
Could you start a Facebook community site? There might be lots of you in the same boat?
Completely agree with Sunnysummer. 4 months is really early days.
I relocated to area where I knew no one.
4 months in, I still didn't know anyone other than very superficially. I am now just over a year in, and I am finally starting to make proper friends (as in go out in the evening with/round for coffee/send random texts to). It does take time - I did it through the PTA and childrens birthday parties. Agree with the 'don't refuse any invite' - we did a number of village events that we wouldn't normally have bothered with and it all helps to get your face well known.
One thing I do wish I had done earlier, is be more proactive in my use of facebook. I didn't friend request peoople for about a year as i thought they wouldn't want to be my friend, but one day I was (superficially) talking to someone who happened to mention facebook in passing, so that night I friend requested her (so it didn't come as a bolt from the blue). She accepted, and having that window in to her life, and vice versa, and liking/commenting on each others statuses, accelerated our friendship. I have subsequently friend requested other school mums, so have quite the community now. No one has ever refused a friend request, so as soon as you know someone vaguely enough to consider it, make contact via facebook!
I move a lot and I find it ridiculously easy to meet people, I genuinely don't know why and I don't want to be smug so I am trying to think why I can do it. I suppose I don't necessarily look for 'friends' just people to get to know and things to do.
I always go to church (maybe try a few?), volunteer for the PTA, look out for other volunteering opportunities, check every single notice board to see what goes on in the community (I don't do facebook - too old fashioned ). I suppose I just make myself get out and about - agree with 'never refuse any invite' even if it doesn't sound your sort of thing. Is there a sports centre, does it have a creche where you could leave your little one?. You say you are working some of the time, can you meet anyone there? Who looks after your younger child, are there any opportunites there to meet people?
Can your older child invite someone to tea and then ask the mum in for coffee when she picks up?
Not that I would suggest this purely to make friends, but have you ever considered getting a dog? The closest friends we've made since we moved we got to know via our dogs. Because we're always out and about with her pretty much everyone in the village knows
Prudog, they have no idea what mine and DHs names are us.
I also think 4 months isn't long. it sounds to me like you're doing all the right things
We moved back to DP's hometown in May last year and I'm struggling even though he has (only male) friends and family here so don't beat yourself up about it!
These things take time, especially if you struggle with childcare, but keep going and be open to invites, even from seemingly odd places!
Thanks everyone, some good suggestions. I guess I have a paranoia about people not liking me, because of the domestic abuse and the fact that I'm a single mum, I just feel that people will judge me. I am so poor at the moment, and can't afford any new clothes and drive a crappy old car, and it is a bit 'boden brigade' round here, and just feel that once anyone got to know anything about me they would think I'm not worthy. I know these are my own insecurities and maybe not true but I think that's what's stopping me approaching anyone.
I did have a dog, for 9 years, but because I am out for such long days at college I didn't want leave him here on his own, so he is with a friend right now. I will be getting him back soon though, and the weather will start warming up, so maybe I will get to meet some people out walking him.
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