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to ask about class divide in friendships?

(13 Posts)
200thousand Sun 11-Feb-18 23:24:22

So... just curious really! Trying to make some new mum friends with varying degrees of success.

I don't have a massive income or house, but I do have a reasonable career and am proud of my achievements and independence. as far as I am aware, I don't think I am particularly bothered by other people that have more than me by way of property or income or whatever, but I do feel there's an unspoken weird thing when meeting new people (parents especially) and there's a clear wealth divide.

I try to downplay myself in a kind of humble way so as to seem down to earth, but I think occasionally maybe this comes across as me acting with deference in comparison to others (Which I also don't mean to do!) but really I am trying to make them feel comfortable. Probably with the unintended outcome of looking like I feel somehow less than them (does that sound confusing!??). Sorry if that doesn't make sense, BTW, it's a weird point to put across.

Is there a way of broaching a class divide when someone else has so much more than you? I don't want to come across as apologetic for being less, or boastful / competitive, or jealous, I just feel it comes across that way sometimes even when i really don't intend it. Some weird subconscious thing!?

What's the best way to act?? Do others feel this as well?

ButteredScone Sun 11-Feb-18 23:28:06

It’s like anything - people prefer it if you are just yourself.

Having said that, although babies are great at crossing barriers, If you are feeling like you really have to modify your behaviour then I’d look for people you feel more at ease with.

Calvinlookingforhobbs Sun 11-Feb-18 23:29:06

You are massively otherthinking this. People are people. Live you life. And do a bit more travelling.

BetseyTrotwood Sun 11-Feb-18 23:36:53

Agree that you are overthinking it. People of all walks of life connect in the right circs.

When I moved from one end of England to the other, some people assumed I was a snob and swerved me when in reality I was just a bit shy and had a southern accent.

Just be friendly and start up conversations- you'll find your people.

Slanetylor Sun 11-Feb-18 23:37:34

200thousand!! I'm exactly like this, I always have been but could never really articulate it. I was very shy when I was younger which some people assumed was snobbery. I was also a very high achieving student in school. So I always downplayed my achievements to show I wasn't snobby I suppose. I still do this now even though I don't need to downplay anything anymore as I have a very modest life blush

TheDowagerCuntess Sun 11-Feb-18 23:38:36

Thinking of a way to 'act' and 'behave' is where you're getting it all wrong. As you can tell, because your act is causing people to make incorrect assumptions about you.

Why don't you just relax, act normally and be yourself? Then, if you get it wrong, as least you know it's just because you're not compatible with the other person.

200thousand Sun 11-Feb-18 23:43:19

I think you're all right! Maybe it's an issue because we're just not necessarily compatible in the first place, wealthy or not.

is it that hard to find people you click with?? I'm struggling a little.

that said it takes time to build up relationships, and you're always "waiting for the other shoe to drop" as it were... hence feeling a bit apprehensive about situations, backgrounds, conversations, did I say / do anything wrong. I guess some of it is natural anyway?

Deshasafraisy Sun 11-Feb-18 23:46:13

Just act interested, if you show an interest in someone and be relaxed and pleasant you’ll be fine.

WhatsGoingOnEh Sun 11-Feb-18 23:52:06

I can’t make out how you actually feel. Are you downplaying yourself to people you feel have less than you do (in order not to look arrogant), or are you doing this to people who have more than you, in order to show you’re not envious, or competitive..?

I think it’ll look a bit odd either way. Most female friendships I have are great fun, and usually start out as a game of one-down-woman-ship, with us all confessing to weaknesses and failings, as a way to bond and laugh. But you are taking it a bit seriously!

I do feel for you though. We moved towns 3 years ago and I’ve really struggled to make new friends here. I still don’t feel I’ve found “my” people. It hasn’t helped that DS1 is at secondary school - very hard to meet parents as you don’t do school run anymore - and DS2 started at a junior school where the mums were all quite cliquey as they had all met at infants. But now I just think, sod them! And have made friends through work and other things.

WhatsGoingOnEh Sun 11-Feb-18 23:53:51

Could you find some evening classes or hobbies that you really enjoy? Maybe you’d meet more of your type of person there as you’d all be interested in the same stuff?

Arealhumanbeing Sun 11-Feb-18 23:55:53

I try to downplay myself in a kind of humble way so as to seem down to earth,

Don’t. People can detect inauthenticity and they will withdraw from you.

It sounds as though you don’t particularly like yourself. Why do you think seeming ‘down to earth’ will endear you to people? What does being down to earth mean to you?

Maybe practice just being yourself? Don’t act or try to be a particular way. Just take it minute by minute and see what happens.

200thousand Sun 11-Feb-18 23:58:17

Arealhumanbeing: I think I am usually pretty down to earth. I guess I mean I just try not to brag if that makes sense? I probably worded it badly.

I guess I have some social anxiety is probably the answer but it comes out awkwardly on occasion. I guess I have to work on that?

Thehogfather Sun 11-Feb-18 23:58:32

I've never had this issue. I come from a very mc background, more upper mc than first generation iyswim, and my accent and other aspects reflect this. Plus I have quite a few academic interests.

I also became a young lone parent and live in a deprived, but traditionally working class area.

The only people I've found a class issue with are those pretentious social climbing twats who assumed due to my accent I was the genuine article, and were keen to share their snobby thoughts about working class & deprived people. And thats because they themselves have no class. Otherwise every other class I've never really even thought about it being an issue or changed my behaviour to fit in.

I have friends who come from generations of family living in notorious areas, and others who come from generations of landed gentry. It's really not an issue, I don't see anyone as better or worse than me. Except pretentious wankers.

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