View Full Version : Where do you meet your pals?

09-05-16, 10:06 PM
I mean, that "social circle" thing...

Years ago, I was in a group thing about emotions and communications. The idea is this:

1) Inner circle. Two people...maybe one temporarily if one of them has to move out of the area. You can share/tell them anything, even extreme things like you're tempted to divorce your spouse or commit a crime and they'll first show emotional support then be someone to bounce ideas off of. They're unlikely to attempt to persuade you out of it, just make sure you've seen all sides. And it's equal - you provide them the same level of support, etc.

2) Close circle. Approx ten people. This will include your spouse or romantic partner. These, plus the first two, are the people you spend most of your IRL time with. They're supportive, but you can't lean on them as much as the inner circle. If one or both of your inner circle people departs, you will first try to recruit a new one from the close circle.

3) Friends and family, typ 25 to 100 people. Face it, there are things you'd NEVER tell a family member, so they're excluded from the inner circle. This circle is folks whom you may have known for a long time or not, but you are in approximately regular contact - weekly or monthly. You do things with them, but they're not at the top of your call list when you get excited about something in your life.

I allowed my 60-80 hour workweeks to mislead me into thinking I had a good social network.

I don't.

Work is a nominally social environment, but now that I don't work a regular day job, people I used to work with treat me as "that guy outside the system" and there's sort of a hint that I'm the enemy because I managed to escape before the high blood pressure set in. So, I didn't manage any social continuity from work, save just one guy.

I'm also an outsider with many my age because I never had kids, and most my age do/did...and I often find that they're a bit suspicious that I may be "weird". I don't think I am...simply never met "the right girl" until I was 40, wasn't interested in starting a fam out of wedlock (not so weird) and having gotten hitched at 40, decided I didn't want to be 65 while sending my kids off to college.

I'm friendly. I can chat up people, although not very good with small talk. I can talk about the exact transcaction happening right now, like with a cashier at a store, things like "is this a popular brand of wine? Do you know what cheese goes with it?" but I have no clue if or how I could turn that into a friendship - aka trade phone numbers and later go do things together.

When you think of your pals, where did you meet? If it was some place where you buy stuff, how did you transition from customer/provider to friends?

I've gone to Meetups, but most in my area sort of expect something out of you - like the ability to play an instrument, which means I'd have to learn, and being as I'm building a little business, I don't have time for that kind of thing.

I gotta solve this, and it's gotta come from me, but I'm out of ideas.


09-05-16, 11:44 PM
Most of my friends I have met either by working with them, or we had a friend in common or something. Several of my friends were my husband's friends since he was a child, and then we became acquainted in that way.

I am not very good at being social, preferring to be at home or with just my husband or a couple of friends. I was better at it when I was younger, actually what I would do was drink or do drugs so that I could be more extroverted and sociable. Now, the idea of going out somewhere and having to mingle gives me the heebie jeebies. Even if I am hanging out with my husband, family, or friends, I mostly am quiet unless I get started drinking or being silly. In public, however, I'm quiet and boring.

My social circles are basically

1) husband, kids, closest friends

------------"circle of trust"-----------------

2) relatives and a few more friends

3) work friends and a few people I went to high school or college maybe, might hang out with these people once or twice a year

4) everyone else

09-06-16, 09:13 AM
My social circle used to mainly consist of several co-workers that I felt a strong connection to and the person I once considered my bff. We'd attend community events, concerts, go out to eat, nature hikes, shop, etc.

However, since leaving my job to save my sanity and health, my company is no longer sought after by those still trapped in the highly unethical system I used to work within, and my bff moved a couple hours away many many years ago, but it seems too far for her to wish to drive to visit. Yet I used to drive over there many weekends when I was still working. Feels a bit one-sided and that hurt my heart big time.

My not-so-social social circle now consists of the various healers I've met in the last few years, my husband, who is quite the introvert himself, and my mom, who depends on others to take her out to where she needs to go.

We tend to visit each other in our own homes and will occasionally go out to eat if we can find a place that offers vegan options on purpose, or at least a decent salad bar. We'll meet at local workshops, activism events, or simply because it's a pretty day and we shouldn't stay stuck inside, etc.

I host a few community events here and there, but since they've been designed to be wellness related, such as breathing meditations, plant-based eating, hula-hooping, etc., there hasn't been much of a turnout.

I also enjoy talking to strangers, but rarely make long lasting connections when I'm chatting it up with them. It's more of an "in the moment" socializing vs. socializing for long term friendship opportunities.

I tend to remember faces forever and will often verbally reconnect with strangers based on remembering crossing paths with them in certain arenas. Some people don't mind that while others tend to not appear very comfortable knowing a stranger recognizes them. People are strange. I've never met a stranger, but I've certainly encountered strange. :)

While I felt pretty let down by others for a while, I'm now grateful in hindsight to have had the chance to learn how to better be all-one with self and finally learn things about myself that I'd been actively and subconsciously avoiding for many years due to several experiences of sexual/domestic abuse. I finally feel like good company in my own company, if that makes any sense.

Little Missy
09-06-16, 09:34 AM
what pals? :confused:

09-06-16, 02:49 PM
...While I have lots of friends, I live at least an hour an half from any of them ....about 5 or 6 months out of the year I live in Michigan, staying with my best friend from this time of life ....I am still friends with my 2 best friends from grade school, lots of friends from my years in the Sonoma Valley, where I spent my 20s and up to mid 30s ....just a couple from my years back in LA .....

....and while others may laugh, I am in love with Facebook, as it was that site that enabled me to get back in touch with all those people I just wrote of ....and it's how I stay connected to them all .....with just a few face to face meetings during the summer and fall months .....what's really nice is that we fell back into the closeness that we once lived in .....

....But I was really lucky in being a part of the scene up there in the valley.....meeting people was impossible not to do ....and we had a 50 year reunion of my grade school class ( Catholic school goes 1 to 8, so we were together longer than most) ....and I met people there I wasn't friends with then, but am now because I discovered what great people they are .....we decided to have reunions every 3 years because it was so great ....

.....For new friends, I fell into the blog "I Can Has CHeeburger" ...and found a wonderful community of fellow cat loving friends and we have "cheesemeets" whenever someone is
traveling near a place where another lives ...and all who live anywhere near that at all come too ! ...the blog is long gone, but in the 8 years since we all started, friendships have grown's where I met the lady who I stay with every winter...and this will be 9 years this year .....

...BUt my life has been unconventional even for a person with ADHD .....

...The one piece of advice I would give look on facebook for anyone you used to be friends with ....go ahead and go back as far as you like .....what delights and astonishes me is that while I was a rabid political person during the Vietnam War, and an avowed hippie, I stuck my head in the sand for many decades....and on FB, I have discovered that almost all of the friends I have from the previous times of my life are just a rabidly pro-people/anti big business as I am ....( OK I am a little more than most, but not by much) ....

....So while I am bereft of people who I can see on a day to day level ....I still feel surrounded by friends ....the internet has made a huge difference in my life .....during the years I spent in LA, ( where my family lives/lived) and where I was married, were years that I felt so alone most of the time .....

....Nowdays I get plenty of human interaction when I do shows, I was a vintage watch dealer for 7 years, but for the last 2 years I have morphed into a jeweler using vintage watch dials and movements to make a large variety of jewelry ....and I am moving from the antique shows I do with my roommate, to arts and crafts shows because I should do much better there .....2 years of doing the antique shows have given me confidence to break out on my own,.....the response has been phenominal ...and believe me, selling at any shows means you talk to dozens and dozens of people all day long a pretty much optimal setting ....they're out to have a good time and buy stuff ....I'm there to make selling the fruits of my long labors....and I get to show off !...

09-08-16, 02:56 PM
Short answer is that I don't, really. I want to have that circle of friends, but meeting new people is about as much fun as bringing the cat into the shower with me. Having friends is awesome; making new friends is... hard, uncomfortable, sometimes painful.

My best success has been with finding an interest and meeting new people who share the interest. In my case it's board games. That way you can focus on the game when conversation lags, and the social side of things can happen more naturally.

I've known people who have met good friends through quilt guilds, habitat for humanity, horticultural societies, walking/cycling groups... Whatever your interest there's likely a way to turn it into an opportunity to meet people.

The hard part for me is taking the next step and taking the friendship out of context. I have work friends, but I have no clue when and how to take that friendship outside of work.

09-08-16, 03:13 PM
I've got no one in my inner circle (maybe you guys...), hubby in my close circle and then 8ve got lots of family members who drive me crazy and lots of acquaintances. Most of the people I meet socially are friends or acquaintances of hubby. Every once on a while I make a friend at work but it usually fizzes out after a while. I made some friends in my smoking breaks (talk of sharing an interest. :lol:) but those fizzled out as well after I quit smoking.

I also.don't know how to translate people I meet regularly and get on with well into friends.

Sorry..just realised I'm probably the worst person to answer your question. ...:lol:

09-08-16, 04:29 PM
What matters to me is less how many friends I have, but how good of friends they are.

I've met some of the kindest people on these forums, actually. Some I am close with, others I've come to know off-and-on or just have fun chit-chat, and others I admire from a distance/secretly appreciate their kindness.

I'm not much of a "friend seeker" in real life (although I do have a couple good-quality IRL friends who love me) and the close friends I've made on here have been my friends for years.

I actually met my husband on this very forum. I'm closer to him than I've been with anybody. He's my best friend.

I'm extremely picky about what friends I have though (as of the past 2-3 years) because I used to have so many toxic people in my life.

Little Missy
09-08-16, 04:32 PM
At The Skate Castle.

09-08-16, 05:10 PM
Online and at support groups like in Fight Club ;)

09-08-16, 08:08 PM
I'm kind a loner when it comes to close friends. like someone said a couple posts ago I've problems with toxic people in the past. now they I've been made aware of it keeping my distance from toxic people is much better than being used and abused. Cause once you realize how people can be you feel really stupid. Just be yourself and you do develop a few good "pals" who love you for you.

09-08-16, 09:14 PM
I've really only got 1 friend left that lives in the same area I live in who I met in middle school (though didn't become friends with till high school). Made a penpal friend I can talk about anything with through this forum too but we live on the other side of the world from each other.

That's pretty much it for me and friends remaining. I'm pretty close with family though.

Are there hiking or biking meetup groups in your area? Don't need skill for that. Can meet people through volunteer work too I imagine. I need to do something too but I just can't get off my butt to do it.

Little Missy
09-08-16, 09:18 PM
volunteer work???:eek:

09-09-16, 09:19 AM
Online dating sites? :scratch: