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How many friends do you have?

(28 Posts)
Countingfriends Mon 29-Oct-12 17:30:13

I was panic stricken the other day when I realised how few friends I have.

My kids have left home - just after uni ( no- not an empty nest syndrome) but I still work - self-employed from home. This means I see no one some days except DH. He has been ill recently for 2 years and is approaching 60. It suddenly made me realise how very lonely I'd be if he wasn't around.

I have 3 old close friends. One is a neighbour but they plan to move in a few years. My other two friends live between an hour and 2 hours away. I see them maybe once every 6 weeks as they are both very busy with family and work. I have maybe 4-5 other friends who are not super-close friends but met via work, and we meet up maybe once every few weeks.

I'm not the type of person to make friends easily- I tend to be a little hesitant at first to suss people out. My parents are elderly and live miles away and my brother and I have little in common- he's unmarried and no children.

I've this inbuilt resistance to joining clubs etc " just to meet people" but what else can I do? At the moment I can spend days and days alone except for seeing DH and my work clients.

madeiracake Mon 29-Oct-12 17:44:14

I think six genuine close friends is meant to be about average isn't it? so it sounds like you're doing ok, especially if you have a DH which means you're bound to be spending quite a lot of time with him. I agree working from home can be isolating though (have the same problem) - are there any clubs you could join where you actively want to do the activity? I usually find that's more effective. Or you could do volunteer work?

Countingfriends Mon 29-Oct-12 17:50:04

Clubs and volunteering are possible but my work is almost 75% of the week which leaves little time. I am aware that although I do have friends, they are not on the doorstep- only my neighbour is nearby.

I'm a bit annoyed with myself I suppose because I found my mum's way of having friends very OTT- where she lives people drop in all the time and it's open house. I could be like that where I live but I like my privacy to an extent so have always been a bit cool towards potential friends- because I didn't want to get over involved with people I might not like once I got to know them better!

Also- and this is a bit of a bugbear- DH has no friends at all. He has not made any effort with the ones he had over the years and they have drifted away. So we have no connection with anyone except my friends.

wednesdaygirl Mon 29-Oct-12 17:50:34

Im the same children grown and i work from home i have loads of people i know but no real friend
Ive never had a mum and grew up with my dad and brothers so feel more connectioned to dh friends.

Inneedofbrandy Mon 29-Oct-12 17:53:05

I have 3 close friends that I've been friends with since teenage years. A few aquaintances. I did think the other day if I ever got married it couldn't be a big wedding.

I do get quite lonely but better to be lonely then be took advantage of and taken for a ride.

Countingfriends Mon 29-Oct-12 17:53:07

But don't you worry wednesady about if you are on your own? I'm okay now but DH's illness and his dad's early death have made me realise that unless anything changes I may be a lonely old woman. Maybe I shouldn't think so far ahead. DD plans to move nearer- in time she may have a partner and family and it could be different, though I don't want to rely on her for company!

FlatCapAndAWhippet Mon 29-Oct-12 17:55:25

I have 4 friends. They are close friends, that said we see each other occasionally but its that old doesnt matter how long its been since we were last together, things are always the same and it seems like yesterday.

I have another not so close group of friends whom I met through DD's nursery a couple of years ago, we go out every couple of months or so. They are lovely and we have a great time but they're not my close pals.

I'm a single parent and spend nearly all my time with DD (5 yo). But she is my best friend in the world. grin

PeggyCarter Mon 29-Oct-12 17:58:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

qo Mon 29-Oct-12 18:01:04

Three proper friends - one who lives about 15 minutes away and the other two live 3 hours drive away.

RedGreenRouge Mon 29-Oct-12 18:14:05

7 very close friends but three live abroad. 3 close friends and all live abroad. I am fairly close with dp's friends and also with my best friends' friends. Quite a number of my close friends I got to know through working with them. Is your job a sociable one which would allow you to become friends with your clients if you found that you really liked them?

Having proper friends is fairly new to me. From 12 to 17, I had two friends in a good year. I was worried about growing old alone. So things can change quite a lot.

madeiracake Mon 29-Oct-12 18:17:15

But on the other hand if you were on your own you would probably invest more in your social life outside your marriage eg you could move closer to your other friends, so things would probably balance out. and they'll probably get less busy when they retire/children grow up.

I live abroad at the minute so I know what you mean about wanting time with old and trusted friends not hectic all hours socialising. It is not the same.

madeiracake Mon 29-Oct-12 18:20:35

o yes 8 close friends at home (but I'm single) and 1 maybe 2 here, ahem.

Countingfriends Mon 29-Oct-12 18:23:50

I can make friends with clients in a roundabout way- some of my work is with younger people for some of the time so making friends with their parents is possible. Other avenues are other freelancers in the same type of work at networking events. I think volunteering is one answer- I've made almost all my friends through work or former volunteering so that's an option.

MunchMunch Mon 29-Oct-12 18:25:12


None I could phone for a chat/moan.
None I could have a night out with.
None I could meet for a cuppa.
None I could invite round/go to their house.

However, things have improved slightly. I'm doing a course with dd through her school (course is supposed to be for adults but I was doing it so dd could do it and I did one for ds1 when he was in primary school) I have met a few other mam's so now have someone to chat to during the course and say hello to at drop off/pick up. I also walk to school sometimes with my mam's next door neighbour.g
I hate being billy no mates, its embarassing and lonely but I hope that will change in the not too distant future. <crosses fingers and toes> grin

Inneedofbrandy Mon 29-Oct-12 18:31:16

Munch where are you, I'd be happy to have a coffee and a natter.

MunchMunch Mon 29-Oct-12 18:33:13

I'm in the North East.

Countingfriends Mon 29-Oct-12 18:33:45

Oh Munch that is sad- would you not go to a MN Meetup?

Have you relocated? Have you no old school chums or work mates?

Inneedofbrandy Mon 29-Oct-12 18:45:03

I'm in Bristol but I'm sure if you start a post calling all MNers in the north east for a coffee loads would reply!

MunchMunch Mon 29-Oct-12 18:53:01

No I haven't relocated as such, I've lived on my estate all of my life but I moved to the otherside of it about 7 years ago but tbh I've kept myself to myself as I don't want neighbours knowing my business iykwim.

I'd love to think I'd go to a meet up but in reality I'd be too shy and I often struggle to find things to talk about. Any parties I go to is usually through df's family and thats maybe once a year (went to a wedding at the weekend)

My old school friends I lost touch with after leaving school at 16, apart from one, we were inseparable until I was about 20 when boyfriends complicated things (loooong story) I friends requested long lost school friends on facebook and sent a few emails asking how they were etc and apart from the emails responding back I got the feeling they weren't really interseted.

MunchMunch Mon 29-Oct-12 18:54:53

InNeed, I think I'll have a look on the local boards smile

Lavenderhoney Mon 29-Oct-12 19:05:45

This strikes a cord with me. We move a lot due to dh job, abroad and so on.

I have two close friends I can say anything too but they are a 7 hour and 3 hour drive away, so just email really. I don't know anything about their day o day life. Or they mine. So no shared experiences binding us now.

I have a mate in the us who I can say anything too but haven't seen or 20 years.

I have new friends but it takes time, then we move. I have no family to speak of and dh family don't speak English plus we only see them on holiday.

My dh is my best friend. He is very sociable but his bf died 4 years ago and he has never replaced him. He has tons of acquaintances too.

I find it hard tbh. I am very open and friendly but people don't seem to make efforts to see me - it's always me inviting and once I did an experiment and didn't contact anyone and no one called me for a month. I am doing something wrong but have no idea whatsad they are pleased to see me when they are there.

When the dc go i have no idea. Or dh. I dont want a cat!

desparatelyseekingsomething Mon 29-Oct-12 19:19:27

I have one very good friend (of 20+ years) but he lives miles away, and one good friend locally. Also a couple of quite good friends that are local but which I do not get the chance to see often. There is only one locally that I think that I will stay in touch with once we move.

I'm hoping to make some new friends but am not sure how - in particular how do you take a possible friendship outside work/hobby-club etc. I'm fairly good at meeting people, and getting to the chatting about everything stage but rubbish at getting to the stage where I'd "see them socially".

ThingsthatgoSgreekinthenight Mon 29-Oct-12 19:43:33

I too have none, I have lived here 20 years and am thinking about leaving and am quite sad to say I only have one family that would probably come to my leaving party.

I hate it, I hate not having someone to chat with, confide in. Its Shit basically.

Inneedofbrandy Mon 29-Oct-12 19:45:43

There is lots of christmas MN meet ups going on. Please check them out and go. (I need to take my own advice)

Autumnchill Mon 29-Oct-12 19:50:52

3 including husband that I would feel comfortable discussing most things with.

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