To wonder if most people are drawn to their 'own kind?'

(65 Posts)
Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 16:47:03

Im not talking about marriage or even close friendships. Im talking about generally.

Grew upon in London and now live out in the sticks where its mainly white. Im obviously mixed heritage but very gregarious. My close friendships have been nurtured over many years and are from different races and backgrounds.

However ive noticed that in a newish group most people have closer friendships with those of the same race. Ive noticed that though many of the people in this area socialise with me, they are never really close to me. If someone new moves into area of same race as them I notice that they seem more comfortable in each others company than with me. There are a couple of exceptions.

It doesn't really bother me as everyone is perfectly nice and accepting and I don't feel isolated... but it has made me think...

Is this in my mind or am I instinctually less preferable until you get to know me?

Or maybe I reek of B.O!!

velourvoyageur Fri 11-Dec-15 17:24:03

gleich und gleich gesellt sich gern

People have an easier time of if they stick to people similar in manners, language, religion etc. Then they just have to react to people as they want to be reacted to, in many cases. You use the same social code and have the same "indirect speech acts".

as long as you don't use coconut oil as deodorant I'm sure you're fine

velourvoyageur Fri 11-Dec-15 17:25:49

oops sorry, didn't think in context of your OP
People might be a little wary but it's their problem not yours. Please don't think it's anything you're doing wrong!

00100001 Fri 11-Dec-15 17:29:29

I think its just human nature. You see it all over.

Lets say on a desert island, you had 100 black Muslim women who were all tories. They'd still separate into smaller factions based in something they had in common.

Its only a problem when people exclude or harrass based on any differences I suppose smile

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 17:29:34

Thanks for answering velour. You could say I am very 'store's or English as some people often tell me this in surprise. I do honour my other heritage too though this is harder in the community I am now.

Despite how I act I feel like I am still other to a lot of people, though that might be more to do with me being a former Londoner?

MrsTerryPratchett Fri 11-Dec-15 17:31:36

<sniffs> You're fine OP.

It depends on the person. I live 5000 miles away from my place of birth. I tried really hard to make friends with people here. It was hard. Then I realised that some people don't want to travel, know different people, step outside their bubble. Now my friends seem all to be immigrants (like me but from all over), people with mixed heritage, people who have moved long distances and people who don't 'fit' somehow.

People like to live inside their own heads and not be challenged too much. Good for them, it takes all sorts.

Jw35 Fri 11-Dec-15 17:33:00

Yes I've always thought people are attracted to those like themselves. It's why you have so many cliques and clubs etc. it's an important part of belonging. I didn't know this so much when I was younger but I did feel it. It's not deliberate discrimination and I think generally people are getting better at it. London is very diverse so you don't tend to have these kind of issues there. I think living out in the sticks can highlight these things.

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 17:33:31

I guess it made me wonder. I saw two women chatting today, inviting each other for lunch. They hardly know each other but share same name and look very similar. I have often had hooting chats with both but try seemed more naturally at ease with each other.

I wasn't angling for lunch but noticed they had the same vernacular too!

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 17:34:44

Yes, guess it does. This is very different from London

LetGoOrBeDragged Fri 11-Dec-15 17:39:48

I think people do form groups based on common background or interests. Football fans spring to mind.
When I lived abroad, the thing I found hardest was not having a common cultural frame of reference. People were nice and friendly but I missed being able to talk about something from home and having the other person just 'get' it.

I don't think it is as straightforward as being a racial divide though in all cases - people are funny and it's hard to say exactly what criteria they will use in order to divide themselves into groups.

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 17:41:31

Letgo, but I do share common interests, and cultural references. I'm just other

IndridCold Fri 11-Dec-15 17:50:03

It is certainly as much to do with shared interests.

I also live in the sticks, and when DS was at school all the other parents were from the same, British, white middle class background as me. Although we were always friendly we just never socialised because they were all into sailing, riding, shooting and I am more of a book club, European art movie type of a gal.

Blu Fri 11-Dec-15 17:50:12

Everyone's different in London, or they are in our road / school / work, so I think it becomes second nature to just expect to chat to a real diversity of people.

Beyond that, I think people make bonds with those with shared values. That's the key to something lasting .

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 17:54:38

Ingrid, good point. I too share your interests. No one else does here, at all. No one.

thegiddylimit Fri 11-Dec-15 17:55:27

It's probably unconscious bias, in the same way that men often tend to form male workplaces, excluding the female other. Not right but difficult to challenge or change.

SleepyForest Fri 11-Dec-15 18:00:08

I went to a new group last week. I clicked with one woman, who it transpired , also grew up on a dairy farm. We had a lot of stories to share that would not have made sense to the other people in the room.

Op, you describe yourself as a Londoner. I suspect that you need to look out for someone else who loves London too.

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 18:06:00

OK... but I am genuinely interested in them, their lives. I don't just want to hang with Londoners.

Tiisha Fri 11-Dec-15 18:08:54

I disagree about London (born and bred here). There are definitely segregated groups based on the same factors who may occasionally make polite convo with one of the other groups.

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 18:09:20

I really like people who are different from me. I don't think I would hang around with someone like myself ll the time as it may get a little dull.

thegiddylimit Fri 11-Dec-15 18:09:30

Blu in what way is everyone different on your road / school / work? There's a metropolitan middle class mindset that likes to think of itself as terribly open minded but I'm willing to bet there's not many class distinctions on your road / school / work even if people do have different skin colour.

In rural communities and small towns people tend to mix with the people they have known all their lives, in cities with people they are the same age/class/profession as, because they are all incomers with no roots where they live.

Tiisha Fri 11-Dec-15 18:09:36

...but I am sure it is much more noticeable elsewhere.

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 18:12:07

But the two people in my example barely know each other

Tiisha Fri 11-Dec-15 18:13:25

On the school run, I find myself pretty much excommunicated from people whom I have forced conversations with for many years because we are getting to a change of schools and nobody can really be bothered anymore given lack of things in common. Of course, if I talk to THEM they would happily converse but I cannot be arsed. It is hard work. There is a pubby clique who are very much bonded over their love of vino who will gregariously greet one another and have obviously clicked. I am a proud teetotaller. I could go on.....

stickygotstuck Fri 11-Dec-15 18:16:32

Spam, things are different out in the sticks. Have you been there long? It takes a while to really adapt. I really doubt it's a race thing. But yes, I think you hit the nail on the head - the herd mentality is a natural instinct and it certainly makes life easier for people who are not naturally predisposed to seek out the new. If you are, then chances are it's all down to a difference in outlook.

However, are you totally sure that you never experienced this feeling of 'otherness' in London? Or was it easier to miss it because there was more variety, if you like, around you?

Some people feel 'other', always. I know I do. I live a bit in the sticks now. But I also felt it when I lived in big cities. I am 'other'. And that is fine (although sometimes it seems more acute and hurts a bit).

Does that make any sense? confused

Spamfaced Fri 11-Dec-15 18:18:46

I didn't feel it in London. Yes there were segregated groups but there were crossovers too

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