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To ask how I can make some new friends

(2 Posts)
Middleagednbored Tue 11-Apr-17 17:48:29

I'm in my 40s and have lived in the same area my whole life. I do seem to know a lot of people locally - mums I chat to on the school run, neighbours & other local people. If I go to the local high street I will invariably find at least one person to say hello to or even stop for a chat with. However, despite having lots of acquaintances, I appear to have few real friends.

I have 3 good friends from school who I now only see a couple of times a year if I'm lucky. I have 3 or 4 other friends from my past who I meet up with very sporadically. There are also 2 or 3 families/couples DH & I were friendly with in the past but who are no longer local so only see them very rarely. We both still have some family members reasonably local, so I guess they count as friends! My school run days are drawing to a close and while I know lots of people at the school I would say I've only made perhaps 3 proper friends over the nursery/primary school years. There is one in particular who became a very close friend and a near constant companion and confident over the last few years. However, for reasons I won't go in to as they could be identifying, she has started to irritate me in a number of ways over the last year or so and I can also see that our lives are veering in different directions. I do wish to remain friends with her but also want to distance myself a little, make some new friends and not be so dependent on her. The question is, how?

I'm quite shy and don't make friends that easily. I work in a small office and get on well with my colleagues but we're of different ages and backgrounds and while we do occasionally have work nights out they're not really friend material. A local, large employer is currently recruiting and is offering more hours and money than I get at the moment. As I soon won't need to be around for school pickup, I'm tempted to apply. However, I'm happy in my current job and there's no guarantee the new job would provide the social scene I'm seeking, even if I were to get it!

Would be grateful for any tips. I do go to an exercise class but they're quite cliquey and seem to be in groups of friends so have never really got past the smiling/nodding phase there!

DorotheaBeale Tue 11-Apr-17 17:56:55

Try a different type of class? Art, history, a foreign language - whatever's available in your area. Or see if there are any opportunities for volunteering, maybe something outdoors, with summer coming on? You'd at least get to meet a whole new crowd of people, even if none of them turn into close friends.

Do you have any hobbies or interests you've had to let go a bit while your children have been young? Is there something you could take up again and join a group or club?

Shared interests are often a good way to start a friendship.

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