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Lacking communication skills to make friends

Published: November 13, 2016 | By | 5 Replies Continue Reading
A young man feels he’s never had the communication skills to start and maintain relationships.


Dear Friendship Doctor,

I have no friends and it is difficult for me to start and maintain relationships. I consider myself an introvert. Although I go places and am around people, I do not start conversations. If we do talk it goes no further than the environment we are in.

It seems so easy for other people to meet new people, but not me. People do not gravitate towards me either. I am the only child so it even more difficult. I am 33 and I do not want to continue my adult life without friends. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.

Signed, Taylor


Hi Taylor,

Yes, people vary in their tendency to be outgoing, reserved or somewhere in the middle, based on inborn differences in temperament and experiences. If you tend toward shyness or introversion, that doesn’t mean you are doomed to be without friendships.

Although it takes some effort, there are many ways to learn and practice communication skills. In the past, someone wrote a guest post on this blog about how the international organization, Toastmasters, helped her achieve self-confidence and people skills.

It might be worthwhile for you to check out the organization and see if it appeals to you. My sense is that you might find yourself among kindred spirits.

Hope this helps.

Best, Irene

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Category: HAVING NO FRIENDS, Shyness and introversion

Comments (5)

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  1. Kimi says:

    I feel the same way and in the same situation and really need help thank you.

  2. emi says:

    I am totally agree here. Uncountable therapies are available here to overcome your fear and social anxiety. You can take help of doctor. You should have to try some yoga, meditation, try to join friends groups, parties, social get to gathers,Read some motivational quotes by famous people every morning to get inspiration. tindiquotes.

  3. LadyMary says:

    Taylor it would help you to explore why you don’t initiate conversation. For example, if it’s fear, that can be overcome by slowly stepping outside your comfort zone starting out small and gently graduating to larger fear-conquering experiences. If it’s no desire to open your mouth and put forth the effort, then accept the reality that friendship is work, a sacrifice. There are times during friendship when you have to humble yourself and put yourself last.

    I would like to reassure you that you are not alone. Many people would like to acquire and maintain healthy friendships but are unsure how to navigate the process.

    I encourage you to be yourself and never try to be someone else for the sake of gaining a friend.

    Make a list of your interests, select which of those are important to you and find a local club to join. A good example is photography. Even small towns usually have a photography club. You could find like-minded introverts there.

  4. Suz says:

    Dear Taylor,
    I feel your uncomfortableness in what you are saying. I lacked any skills as I came from a household of dysfunctional parents – I did not learn any skills other children would have learned from watching, listening and interacting with my parents as many usually do in life.

    I started attending a psychologist for treatment (that’s another story) and realised my personal skills such as communication lacked any real ability or knowledge. She has coached and fostered my learning how to just talk to someone to make new friends with baby steps. For me it’s mathematics in a flow chart of how it works! Still confusing but possible to make inroads to make some positive steps at least to start.

    It’s not easy as like any practice a lifetime of retraining yourself takes time. Learning the process to talk to others – balancing listening firstly and appropriate type of responses isn’t easy. Don’t give up though, I’m older than you!


  5. Amy F says:

    Therapy can be a great place to develop and practice communication skills in a safe environment without fear of judgment.

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