• Making Friends

Why do some women have such a hard time making friends: Nature or nurture?

Published: June 4, 2010 | Last Updated: December 17, 2013 By | 1,454 Replies Continue Reading

Many women write to me perplexed about why they can’t form close friendships. They try new approaches, put themselves in all the right places, see therapists, and read relevant self-help books. They consider themselves interesting, loyal, kind, and friend-worthy people. But for reasons unknown to them, they have a tough time forming the intimate relationships other women seem to have and that they covet for themselves. Many admit to not having even one close friend.

A recent study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology offers some clues as to how both nature (personality) and nurture (experience) impact our friendships. Researchers at the University of Virginia and University of Toronto, Mississauga studied more than 7000 American adults between the ages of 20 and 75 over a period of ten years, looking at the number of times these adults moved during childhood. Their study, like prior ones, showed a link between “residential mobility” and adult well-being: The more times participants moved as children, the poorer the quality of their adult social relationships.

But digging deeper, the researchers found that personality—specifically being introverted or extroverted —could either intensify or buffer the effect of moving to a new town or neighborhood during childhood. The negative impact of more moves during childhood was far greater for introverts compared to extroverts.

“Moving a lot makes it difficult for people to maintain long-term close relationships,” stated Dr. Shigehiro Oishi, the first author of the study, in a press release from the American Psychological Association, “This might not be a serious problem for outgoing people who can make friends quickly and easily. Less outgoing people have a harder time making new friends.”

Families often have to relocate—across town, across the country, or across the globe. Yet, in many cases, their kids and young adolescents haven’t yet built up a bank of friendships or garnered sufficient experience at making new friends and at handling rejection. So the conventional wisdom is to try to minimize moves for the sake of your child, whenever possible, and to move at the end of the academic year. Additionally, parents are advised to monitor and, if necessary, help guide their children’s friendships during the first academic year after a move, which generally is the most difficult.

Moves during childhood affected adult friendships differently because of the unique interplay between nature (personality type, which is determined in part by genes) and nurture (in this case, the moves) for different individuals. That makes the answer to the question of why some women are more successful than others in making friends extremely complex. And this study raises the question of how many other factors come into play that we haven’t even yet considered.

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  1. Melissa says:

    It has always been hard for me to make friends. I went to Catholic school 3rd through 8th grade and during that time I was put into the category of one that gets verbally bullied. My circle of friends was really small. It also didn’t help that my parents were really strict and I wasn’t allowed to do anything. When I got into high school (finally public school where there was more diversity) I guess I was still traumatized with the bullying and it ruined my confidence and even though I wasn’t bullied, I didn’t really have friends. Same thing going through college even though I joined a professional fraternity, I still didn’t make any close friends.I became a cop right after college but then left a year later when I got married to my first husband and he convinced me to be a stay at home mom. So for the longest of time I had no friends because we were always moving because he couldn’t keep a steady / permanent job. I finally divorced him and I found a job back in law enforcement as a school resource officer. I remarried with another officer in the agency and he is totally awesome and we are best friends but I still miss the womanly companionship and friendships that I never had. So in this agency I work for, I had a girlfriend (or so I thought) and we had very different lifestyle differences but we got along and always had fun when we would get together. Now we have drifted apart after I got married with my husband…..its almost to the point where I think she is mad at me for reasons I have no clue for except maybe for jealousy since I married and we bought a house together and her “boyfriend” ( well they don’t want their relationship to be labeled) hasn’t yet divorced his wife and they live in a small apartment. Trust me, during and after my divorced I lived back at my parent’s house and I never owned a house with my ex or had anything besides debt. So that’s one friendship that recently went down the drain after a few years. Now I met another woman who was recently hired and she rode around with me for a week as part of her training process and we got off really well! She is a lot older than me but she was nice and we even cracked the same jokes or even said the same thing at the same time. So numerous times, I tried to set up that she could come over and it seemed to be accepted with a gracious yes and she seemed excited but when it came to actual picking a date and time…..all I hear is crickets. Now she did offer a nice patio table and chairs set that was her mother in law’s and she came by with her husband to drop it off. I offered her to come inside and if they wanted anything to drink but she quickly declined and have me a quick hug and left. There is also another lady that’s a teacher here at my school and she stands out in the car line and we are always chatting and she tells me about her boyfriend and how she likes to go hiking but he doesn’t because it’s too hot outside. She then told me she got a new job at a different school district and I know of a bunch of trails out there and offered her to maybe meet up with me and my daughters and we can go hiking and exploring some wild caves. Mind you she is gorgeous and has the perfect body and I am cute and chubby but still active. She seemed really excited and I was like let me friend you on Facebook so we can keep in touch, but when I was searching for her name she was like “Oh you probably won’t find me because I had one of my friends set my profile to private since some of my ex’s were trying to contact me.” So I was like ok well you look me up and add me but that’s the end of it. Who knows if she will even look me up and I am expecting that she wont. What am I doing wrong???? I don’t ask anyone for money. I pay for my stuff and don’t expect people to pay for me. I offer for people to come and visit and try to set up times for get togethers but no one seems interested and I get very little response. I usually don’t ever turn down invites unless it’s not kid friendly and I have my kids that week since I do share them 50/50 with my ex…..I don’t know what to do anymore.

    • Livia says:

      I too have fought through the feeling of frustration of my inability to form meaningful relationships with other women. I can say that most of my life that I have had closer relationships with men than women. I used to have quite of few women who I felt were close to me, but as the years went on, I soon realized that I cared than they. I am quiet,but can become a social butterfly if I so choose, but when it comes to meeting other women, it feels so awkward and fake at times, and sometime I just like to be open and free in conversations without judgement. I am a loyal, and trustworthy women, always there for you when you’re in need, however, I soon realized that being so open to help, only lead to people mistreating me, as if I were a “doormat” or someone who was easily fooled. But the truth was that, a lot of the times, I took inventory of their actions, and began to distance myself from them, so that I could gradually end the relationship in peace. I used to be the one to initiate contact, but also realized that people will engage with you only if they are really interested in building a relationship with you. That is when I stopped chasing people. I though that I was proving my love and loyal-ness as a friend, but it turned out that I was wasting my time. I soon began to self evaluate, to pin point characteristics that were deemed turn-offs to others, willing to make adjustments without loosing myself in the process, but I always believed that people who really are for you, will accept you just the way you are..flaws, faults and all. I was told that I shouldn’t have expectations and allow things to just be, without force, without reason, but again, why must it be so hard to form basic friendships? I know that I am a little bit eccentric, but I love being different from the rest. I am family oriented and ethical, and I try to avoid drama and gossip at all cost..for I am one who tries to build and uplift others, and push them to reach their potential. At this point in my life, my husband is my only true friend, for without him and prayer, I wouldn’t know where I would be. I am 30, married for 10 years, with 4 children..so typically women my age are still out finding themselves, and enjoying life on a whole different level..so to a certain extent, I can see why I don’t attract women my age. But overall, I would just like to meet other women who are willing to be transparent, sharing their ideas and experiences, for the expansion of understanding and gaining new perspectives, for personal growth and development…I just want to talk and meet new people!

    • Francine says:

      It’s the exact way for me. I just don’t get it.
      At age 48 I’m tired of trying and even saying, well, I guess God wants me all to himself! (To sort of cheer myself up and accept my no-friends situation.). Sad, huh?

      • Lola says:

        Francine, I am the same way. I sometimes wonder if it’s not more me than them. I think I hold back from people because I don’t trust. My dad died a while back and only one of my friends showed up for the funeral. Wish I knew what to do about the friend situation but I don’t.

      • Shelley says:

        I’m exactly the same at 47. I had a few female friends in childhood, but due to moving, getting married young etc those friendships didn’t stick past that. I’ve somehow always felt more comfortable around men. A lot of people view that as strange, so I really haven’t had anyone close to me except for my family. My family are my best friends. Being single, there’s no real male companionship either. It’s very difficult to form friendships as an adult. People seem to already be set in their lives and not really looking for change. Or at least it seems that way. For the most part I’m okay with it, and try to keep myself busy. It does become lonely at times, and can be frustrating.

  2. Patty says:

    I came back here because I had a flashback. It was when my daughter was six yrs old. We had a pool party for her birthday. I invited the parents to stay. None did. They dropped their kids off without a word, plopping towels and floaties on a chair, then leaving. I didn’t know whose floaties were whose! My husband and I were a wreck as we watched 16 five and six year-olds swimming, keeping them all safe. How dare these women do this! Then, they returned at the scheduled time to pick up their children and the kids were finishing their pizza. I asked the moms if they’d like to come in and have pizza or something to drink. They declined and stood near the door, arms folded, looking impatient just waiting for their kid to finish. It was so awkward. And mean. This is how the entire 13 years of my kid’s school life was for me. I tried to be nice, tried to talk, but no relationships were ever formed. I still don’t understand it to this day.

    • Patty says:

      Aaaand, I just want to add, I have NEVER played Bunko. It was popular for a while there when my kids were in high school. You need like 15 people to play. All the ladies were having Bunko nights. Never did they consider inviting me. I even kind of hinted at it. “Oh that sounds like fun!” “I’d love to play some time.” I am not a big nerd. I’m funny. I wear clothes that are in style. I’m kinda cute, but not so cute they’d be jealous of me. I make a point to NOT act flirtatious around their husbands. I feel like a pretty well-rounded person. It just kills me. I know it’s not all about appearance but I’ve tried to consider every angle as to why. I’m kinda giving up on it but it’s heart-breaking. I’m the one who will go to a conference for people who make, let’s say, wreaths. I make beautiful wreaths. I meet all the other wreath-makers. I smile, I’m complimentary, I talk. Then, the next thing you know, they all divide into groups and I’m left in the dust. Whyyyyyyy???

      • Lauryn says:

        So, you have spent time in school meetings and hallways volunteering your time and made a lot of small talk w/ these other moms? It sounds like there one mom who didn’t like you, (and you probably never knew it) ;she could stir the pot and turn all of the other moms against you. I have seen it happen to mothers and it’s unnecessary.
        Minor incident at my son’s birthday party, two moms picked up their children 1 hour after it ended ; told me I had spent way too much money on the party it was ridiculous. I was so shocked that I never spoke to them again; they didn’t answer their cells as I genuinely thought something had happened to them. So just expect many parents are catty and rude.

      • Cynthia says:

        Patty- My heart just aches reading your message and I feel so bad knowing what you’re going through! I am only 24 and married for just over a year, but it’s been the hardest of my life. I moved to my husbands country (over 20 hours flight from mine) and none of the women like me here! It’s been over a year and not a single female friend! I don’t understand it. Just like you I have examined it from various angles, I try to be very generous and not dominate a conversation, ask thoughtful questions, make eye contact, pay more attention to them then any male counterpart etc… I suppose none of them are married which could be a possible turn off to them, but my husband and I are both fun and interesting (at least I think!) and we throw dinners and go out dancing and have movie nights etc. There is also the fact that I don’t speak the language here which could totally be a reason to snob me (everyone speaks pretty flawless English though) but I am trying to learn it. I even have had some “deep and meaningfuls” with a couple girls who I thought were so cool and interesting and definitely felt a “click” with only to never have them write and invite me out afterwards. Of course I have hit them up and seen them since but every time it’s like starting from absolute scratch! It’s killing me- it’s so depressing I feel like avoiding them from pure shame and sometimes I just feel really negative towards them. Like it’s so mean? How can you open up to someone and talk for hours only to ignore them the next day. I have really good friends back in my own country so I know it’s possible…just not easy. Anyway- I just wanted you to know others are experiencing the same and remind yourself it says more about those women then you! Excluding others is ugly. Try and join a gym for women or yoga, girls into health and fitness tend to be a bit nicer I have found 🙂 good luck and ending <3 your way

      • Patty says:

        I’m not super duper outgoing, but not so shy that I would be a wallflower. I have wondered if one of the women didn’t like me so she told the others. Not sure. I did try to volunteer. I felt kind of shoved out of that. There were always too many volunteers and there was not really anything for me to do. It was just always really awkward. Felt like they didn’t want me there. It was the click of moms volunteering. Crazy! One time I was asked to Bring bags for the Christmas party. My daughter was in second grade. I thought surely they meant bags FILLED with little goodies. I bought little erasers and trinkets and FILLED the bags. I told the one mom in charge that I wasn’t sure so I went ahead and FILLED them. She screamed at me “I SAID BAGS!!!” Why she was one of the “popular” moms is beyond me. Maybe if I was a complete bitch I would have some friends. Seemed to work for this lady.

    • Wendy says:

      Hi, Patty,

      This would be actually pretty hilarious if I did not imagine the years of self- doubt and lonliness it caused for you. I’m going to run this by a relatively new friend I’m having lunch with tomorrow. We found each other after volunteering in various progressive political actions. After reacquainting after a breather on the activities, we realized we each have felt friendless ever since moving to this town. We each come from the US; she ftom LA and me from NJ, which it turns out are equally alien to the South!

      It may be the culture of the town. And it can be your cumulative bad experiences with the town that cause you to sheild yourself from more hurt and appear disinterested in the others. Franklly, the way you describe them – I would be genuinely disinterested in them! You might also be cuter and more uber competent and therefore cause more jealousy than you realize. Or, by offering and maybe insisting to host, make, etc. may be sending a message that it is OK to take advantage, which comes across more strongly than the ones about staying and joining in with you. Of course only “crappy” people would fail to offer help or kindness in return.

      Thank you for providing an interesting topic of discussion for my pizza lunch! Warm wishes!

    • Jennifer says:

      Damn, I feel bad for you more than myself. This is because I’m assuming you’re much older than me. While their behavior was rude (I’m not trying to defend them), I think they just didn’t feel like talking to someone. It’s no excuse to be rude. They could have politely declined your offer and gone about their day. Apart from my mistake of trying too hard, your story reminds me of one of the reasons why I don’t have female friends now.

  3. jannied says:

    I have no friends. It’s not because i’m not pretty enough or smart enough or kind enough or have no empathy. If anything I really know that social friendships cause productivity of happiness and wanting to be accepted in society. Women just don’t like me and treat me like garbage and shit. They have been doing this from childhood, jr. high, high school, adult hood and now older age. It sucks because I give alot of myself to people through compassion and kindness it’s just not returned. So I become alone for fear of being hurt. This has caused a significant amount of damage in my life and made me not trust people and has caused me grief and hardship. I hope to make positive friendships and hopefully meet a guy who will just take me away from this and build a life with me. I am so tired of this at 45. Also, at the job I feel like I’m against a wall as nowdays you have to know someone to succeed at the job. (for females only). Why is our world like this?

    • Julie says:

      Hi Jannied I understand your frustration. I haven’t had a female friend for at least 7 years now. I am still hoping to find a female friend that I can go for coffee with or shopping with. I find it so difficult to make female friends.

      • MonEliza says:

        Jannied or Julie–are any of you ladies in NY? If yes, it would be ideal for us to get together. I am in the same boat. Give of myself, wholeheartedly, and truly care, and am respectful with boundaries…yet have no friends. I might go with one girl to brunch every other month…but that’s about it! Otherwise, I am on my own. And I don’t have a husband or boyfriend, not that it is the same dynamic…but at least someone to spend free time and bond with. It’s truly hard to be alone and lonely.

  4. Karen says:

    Hi Chelsea,
    I’ve come to the conclusion,from my experience, that you will soon feel drained and used if you allow that person to continue to affect you like this. I’m not sure how old your son is, but if he is friends with her son, I would not interfere with that; however, it does not mean you can’t have healthy boundaries to protect your own feelings. Sometimes, people forget how to treat others with respect and consideration. Reminding them of this by setting limits may allow them to reflect on how they’ve been treating you. If they continue to lack insight on their own behavior, then you haven’t really lost anything but rather, you’ve learned something about their character.

    • Chelsea says:

      Hi Karen,
      Thank you for the feedback. I think you are absolutely correct about setting boundaries. It’s really a “must” at this point. I’m sick of feeling like a human doormat. It won’t be easy for me, since I’m one of those people who want to get along with everyone and feel awful when I don’t. I think this is going to definitely be a growing experience either way, maybe more for her than me, actually.

      Thank you,

  5. Chelsea says:

    I am also a stay at home mom who’s had a hard time in our neighborhood Iwhere my neighbor has children my sons age and are practically best friends with each other (our two sons, not us). She is a lawyer and she always treats me very indifferently and would rather talk to my husband. I wouldn’t say she flirted with him, it was just very obvious that I wasn’t her preferred person. She was also very moody, and unless she was talking and the center of attention, she always acted bored or would start losing interest with obvious body language to let you know or even rushing you through wish “yeah, yeah,” while your talking She’s not extremely extroverted, she’s kinda monotone, ambiguous, and slightly intimidating. She is attractive, but by no means a head turner. I’d say I fall under the same category. The two friends of her I did meet were not very attractive and didn’t appear to be very high on the socioeconomic scale. I tried many many times different ways to form a better relationship with her, but it never developed into anything. All her conversations were either about her son, or something she did for/with her son. Very boring and superficial. I always felt like she was passive aggressively letting me know she was better than me because of her occupation or whatever. Honestly, when I add it all together, I can’t figure her out. I am a well spoken woman who has a degree and worked for many years until I had my two sons. I believe her husband has had an affair on her, she’s never told me this, I heard it from someone else. That’s happened many years ago though. I feel very uncomfortable around her and I really have gotten to the point where I almost hate her. At a party that she threw at her home, she maybe said three words to me. But, she wanted my son there, if it wasn’t for hr liking my son and wanting to keep her kid happy, she’d have no use for me at all. Lastly, we offered to help her and husband by picking her son up at the bus stop and letting him play with our son until one of them gets home. She doesn’t not pay us to do this. If you asked my husband, he’d say that they are thoughtless but he wants to be a better person than them so he continues to watch the little boy. They’ve even don every this when they were both home talking to a contractor in their yard on a Friday afternoon! I could add more incidences, but to top it all off, I was diagnosed with an illness that they are aware of. Tell me, I’m I just stupid to even speak to this person or should I continue to take the higher ground and allow the kids to play together?

    Thank you!

  6. Lauryn says:

    Kalisa and Karen,
    I can relate 100%. So tired too. My husbands male friends say I’m too smart and that makes other women jealous; that I should stick to superficial conversation . I hate that I have to appear less articulate to keep certain friends. I have noticed it’s easy to make friends w/ grandma age women in my church ; they don’t compete as much (but we have so little in common, I’m 2 decades behind in their place in life). Good luck to you girls 🙂

    • April says:

      I am curious as to why your reply was directed to Karen and Kalisa when many other women in the post articulated the same issues–feeling isolated and lonely because of not being able to relate to superficial talk, etc. in the “mom groups.”

      • Lauryn says:

        Amazing… please don’t judge. Honestly, their posts resonated with me more today. I appreciate all posts and friends on this blog who are seeking to help each other .

      • Maria Flesher says:

        I agree with you, and it is sad that our society has become such as materilistic society that it makes woman in certain cultures very competitive.
        Like you, I find myself getting along better with women older than me. I find that befreinding other women from other cultures like in my culture which are mostely hispanic, tend to be less competetive amongest other women from other countries. They tend to be more humble at heart, more secure in themselves no matter what their social status. We need to be for each other as women no matter what. What I see lacking in the women of today in America is that there is less and less empathy, compassion and humility of the heart. I notice that some women on this blog even cutting down others like that lady rooting and hooting the Aussie for not “bemoanin” what kind of a person would place that kind of comment on a blog like this? It was a judgemental remark on her part. Imagagine if a person in a deep depression state went to a psychiatrist for help and instead of listening to that person they would respond with ” does not help to be moan, or stop whining ” we really have to be careful how we respond to other’s depression, loneliness, and sadness. We don’t know how fragile they may be or what kind mental state they are in or what they are going through. We need to be supportive and have Empathy. Place ourseleves in their shoes, yes encourgement is very important and up lifting. But there are so many ways of showing and expressing empathy. We do not need to be little or degrade other’s suffering or feelings. By stating that they are “bemoaning” it’s like saying stop your whining and move on, lack of empathy, or respect. We need to have compassion and stop dog eat dog eating each other. Be respectful of others opinions, feelings and the right to voice themselves when they are deeply crying out for help there is a great need for communion wiht others. I hope this will help you not to feel that you are alone. I am there along with you. Please do not give up searching for those of us that would gladly love to have your friendship we can help each other by learning from each other and just listen and encourage. God bless kiddo

        • Lauryn says:

          This touches my heart. Having a communion of acceptance and knowing this is a place to voice our feelings is a rare find. It’s therapy in its purest form. Yes, thank goodness for older women friends and of any age. Fitting into that cookie cutter group of women established before “you” came along is tough. But we must keep trying…. As the Toy Story song goes “you’ve got a friend in me”.

      • Lady "M" says:

        Here is a great example why is it that “they are jealouse ” of me. It is not like that, I believe, it is like minded women who group to gather and have something in common. It is like trying to sit at a “neo-natal medical conference, and bringin in a speaker who is a ” architectect” to discuss the new treatments and for new born babies with underdevelope brains. Really? Or a Chef of a 5 star hotel to discuss Electrical engineering over what the chef next meal preparation entails. Yes we can all contribute on what we do for a living, but how can you expect others to have an intrest and knowledge of what you are an expert on if you are in the group of moms. It is not that they are jealouse it is that what they have as a group is one thing in common that they can reach out to each other for support and or advice, It does not make them less important. Because of what they have dedicated themselves to do in life such as raising a family, to having a career. Both intail sacrifice, hard work, but as a mom you sacrifice more, because you give up your self for others. It is more of a responsibility to raise children, and even than some of them juggle between jobs and being a mother, and wife. They need to discuss other subjects that to you may be lame or superficial. Maybe you need to go with a group that is like minded like you.

        • April says:

          Well-said, and I agree. We should pause before we assume others are jealous of us. I have a hard time fitting into some groups, and I do think it’s because of differing interests. And it’s great that other groups discuss whatever makes them happy. I (and I think others) are just frustrated that there’s a want of other discussion. But I take what you say to heart–that we need to go with a group that is like-minded. Not so easy to find in my experience. Hence, my blogging here. 🙂

        • Wendy says:

          I love the analogies of Lady “M”. Very intuitive and very well put. But, tis also raises the question for me of how to find the people also interested in architecture (in my case) or chef skills?

          This is why i spends o much time alone, in books I have no one to discuss with or in films on Netflix I watch alone. I’ve often found it a miracle to find someone who is both “nice” and “smart”. Many people who seem nice – maybe the older church ladies mentioned by one writer here – but do not have my worldliness or intellectual interests. Some who do seem pretentious or exclusive with their knowledge.

          I am attracted to sensitive, passionate people, which is one reason I tend to connect with artists. I’m more fortunate than many due to my art (renovating houses, which has enabled me to have some financial security, which may alienate others.

          I guess everyone must find their own way out – or rather, IN to society. In my case, it may be writing and in that way I may connect with other like minded people. The onus will be o me to write and distribute it. Ultimately, the onus will be on each of us to find what makes us happy and pursue it. That will also mean that we love ourselves enough to know we deserve to pursue this path to happiness .hat self-acceptance and self-love may (or may not, if we are surrounded by the wrong people) attract others to us. It’s all very complicated!

    • Karen says:

      Hi again,
      That’s funny, I too find that talking to folks older than me or to women/men of different cultures a more rewarding experience. I guess I find them more interesting! They seem more genuine somehow. There just seems to be so much pretense with Americans in general.

      • NAYARA says:

        Wow! It’s 3:30 am. I woke up feeling so lonely. Google “why I don’t have friends”, found this blog. I got my American citizenship years ago, but born in Brazil. Moved to Ohio when I was 27yrs. It’s very hard to be divided between 2 countries, 2 different cultures and today at age 44, I don’t have friends there or here.
        I understand the moving problem and I do have deep trust issues. My American grandmother (age 94), it’s a friend, so yes, I also do well with old focus.
        People back home find me snobbish, because I packed and moved. People here, find me stupid ( never went to school to learn English, after all these yrs still writing and speaking a broken English) or that I shouldn’t be bere, it is not my “real” country.

        I work from home. Sometimes I go an entire week without talking with another human. My dog is for fact, my companion and best friend. My husband treats me like a thrird world wife, we fight a lot and we don’t have kids. I have been fighting depression for over 7 yrs and have tried everything to connect with people, but I am too introverted, I have too many trust issues. It’s a lonely life. On my Facebook page, I show a successful and happy person who travels a lot, but deep inside me, I am just a lonely soul. I need to tell somebody that my life is just an empty, fake and lonely life without friends.

        It’s a great blog, but I am self-aware of my poor writing skills. So, enough of poor writing.! Merry Christmas to all!

        • Annie says:

          I’ll be your friend!! I’m sorry you feel so lonely.

        • Arita says:

          Just came across your blog. I am across the Atlantic in the U.K. I can’t do much but please know that I am here for you.
          Your English is pretty good and not at all like how you think it is, believe me.

          You sound really lovely and kind and understanding. It is the depression and the unhappy marriage, r u trying for children?

          Please don’t feel alone, you have a sister across the world, just reach out.

          I will be happy to keep in touch, dear

        • Rachel F says:

          Hi Nayara,

          I know this was written months ago. Your story is very similar to mine. I am going to be 42 soon. I have friends but just do not feel they are real, more like if i go along with what they do I bet it’ll be better friendships or maybe not. However, I can’t change that I have different values, standards, likes, dislikes, experiences from all of them. I don’t to follow along just cause I want a closer friendship with them. I guess I just can’t. So, yes I feel lonely. I feel I do not fit in. I was not born here and I’ve been here since I was a teenager. I didn’t go to school here because I was already married. When I was able to go back to school I skipped high school and went straight to college. I think I am an extro-introvert. I do like to chill at home or with people that I can be myself so I don’t try to be fake because if i ever feel I have to I can’t help but feel miserable about it for days. I too have trust issues, I have had way too many betrayals in my life but whatever. I mean I don’t have any close members of my family living near me but far far far away. I think people find me snobbish too. I feel I should not have to fake to just be friends with people. I don’t and won’t to do drugs (that includes weed regardless to oh everyone does it so no big deal or whatever), I won’t get wasted, I will not be a serial dater or any other kind of stuff that people do these days then they think you are cool or find you accepting. I guess I have faced with too many of these types where I live. I am probably boring but it’s okay. I am a girly girl, I like going for HH, dinners, walks, hikes, movies, plays, and shopping and things likes that but it’s just so hard to find people who wants to do those things. Like other people here I too find it easier with older women. Anyways, I just wanted to say that you are not alone. I will be your friend. I may not live in the same place as you, but you can write to me if you like. Actually anyone who wants to be a friend write to me. Btw, your writing is well written imo.

        • Claudia says:

          Oi Nayara! I’m also Brazilian- American, moved to California 15 years ago. Sinto muito por vc está sentindo-se isolada, vamos entrar em contato? Peça meu email ao moderador. Abraço, Claudia

  7. Wendy says:

    With all the venal stupidity in the USA right now, and being cyber bullied by a scary man after I replied with Cuban healthcare stats after an aquaintance posted a cheer for Castro’s death, it is so refreshing to read the supportive and intelligent comments from amazing women on this blog. Thanks, all!

  8. MusicLaughs says:

    It gets really depressing. I always say I am over it-not having friends. It drives me crazy. But I am also very resilient and persevering so the next day I feel amped about meeting a friend. But I don’t have much time during the week so weekdays are out. Then I have such a good relationship with my boyfriend I like hanging with him on weekends, but I am ok with sacrificing one of those nights to hang with a female friend. Sigh. It doesn’t help that I am partially introverted and always deep in my thoughts, and I over think things. Like when I am around other girls I think they won’t like me or I am too boring for them, or what I say won’t be interesting enough so I just stay quiet. Then I leave feeling all down because no one wanted to make friends with me. Then I tell myself well you should have said something instead of being the quiet weird one. And I also have a limit on how many people I can be around before I start feeling too uncomfortable to try talking in the group: 5. There were 6 including me in the last group. It was teetering-can I do it? Yes I can! Then-no, you can’t do it, don’t say that. These thoughts happen and ruin the possibility. The other problem was that I am black and they were all white. I felt uncomfortable. I know, it sounds terrible. But it’s true.

    • April says:

      I related so much to your post. Sometimes I feel so strong and think that it doesn’t matter that I don’t have friends. Then some days I wake up so sad and lonely. I am an extrovert, but I suffer from the same self doubt–people will think I am boring, weird, etc. The difference is that I usually say things and people DO think that. Or at least, that’s what I perceive. Anyway, I feel your pain; thanks for sharing.

      • Maria says:

        I just want you to know,that you are not alone i am just like you. Wish we could form a support group of women who have a diffult time with maintaing freindships with our personality type. I am always feeling like the weird one. I have been told by a co worker male one that my problem was that i was too nice. Go figure. We are not boring or weird we are unique and different we dance to a different tune from your typical women clicks girlfreind groupies. I believe we are more genuine as human beings especially as women who dont do or form cookie cutter girlfreind clicks.

    • Shay says:

      I feel the same way.

    • Nikki says:

      I completely understand how you feel I myself just moved to a new city for a fresh start and yet I am still having trouble making friends. I spend a majority of my time with my boyfriend and we do have fun but I honestly wish I had a girlfriend to talk to. I’ve made a few acquaintances that seem really nice but then things just fizzle out and I’m left feeling like it was some how my fault. I just wanted to let you know you are not alone in this and I hope things get better for us both!

      • April says:

        Where did you move to?

        • Nikki says:

          San Antonio! I used to live in Houston but I needed a change and I love it here. It’s so beautiful and people are so much nicer in my opinion. Unfortunately I’m having a hard time trying to make friends here and I’ve been here almost a year. It stinks because it reinforces my feelings of doubt in myself and my capability. I really do like spending time with others even though I’m an introvert and its been tough pushing myself out of my comfort zone!

    • Lynn324 says:

      Despite race I think I’m your twin. I think my issue started when a super close friend of mine started telling me lies. I was in denial for awhile until my husband pointed it out to me and when I thought about it the puzzle came together, she was. It hurt terribly. I gave it a test. My final straw was to see if she’d invite me to her daughter’s first birthday, nope. Who doesn’t invite their supposedly BFF to that even if it’s not a party. We were tight. No more, you can’t be friends with someone who lies and hurts you. I am an introvert so when I am invited to large gatherings it makes me a little nervous. I have a long time friend I live by but she has 2 others that she hangs out with and it would be nice if some how my friend would include me with just the girls. My husband & I get together with her & her husband but just can’t seem to get in the circle with the others they hang with. Get invited to some big gatherings my friend has that’s how we know some of the other friends. Ugg. Just feel on the outside and think my biggest factor is rejection & afraid to move forward after a deep friendship ended with so much hurt. I just don’t know how to move forward. I know rejection is always possible & should know just to move on but need to get to the starting line. I do have some close friends but they all live out of the area. Suggestions to making friendships that are in the area?

    • Wendy says:

      I think you are just perceptive, smart and cool. I mran – look at your nom de plume? Look at the fsct that yo challenge yourself by bridging to “another culture “? Maybe the 6 around you just are not that interesting to you. Maybe they even patronize you. Sttangely, I felt similar as one of only two white women in a group of black wimen. They were all upper middle class cinventional Neo-Liberals and my background is a father with a 4th grade education so even though I’m maybe as comfortable as they are and finally as educated, I felt uncomfortable with them, so quit going to their dumb dress up lunches and focussed on starting a local Green Party, lobbying for the homeless and other social justice and now, moving to Errooe where I “fit in”. If you feel weird it may be because its not the best group for you. They may be mean girks, jealous or you just are not comfortable because you are afraid they won’t accept the real you so you have to hide it from them. Its a lot of effort that mught be better spent elsewhere and with others.:>)

  9. Christine says:

    November 25, Friday, 2016.

    Wow! Never thought I’d respond to this! I moved a year ago and for the first time in my life, I am having difficulty making friends. It doesn’t help my self esteem & confidence are at an all time low,& for the first time in my life I was let go from a job, I hated anyways. I am single & want to meet some inspiring, attractive, ambitious, fun, cool, trendy, single women to hang with.I used to model years ago & through failed male relationships, estrangement from my siblings due to the death of my parents, I have gained 54 lbs. I look & feel awful & it isn’t helping me to meet new friends. I want my old self back.Where I live it’s mostly families, but I still can’t seem to meet women my age who are single & aren’t tied to their families so much. HELP! Very lonely in Vancouver, Canada.

    • Christine says:

      9:22 a.m.

      • Anne says:

        Hi Christine

        Don’t despair. I really felt for you reading your reply above. I moved away from Ireland when I was 19 and lived abroad for 15 years, including 2 in Canada. I discovered through time and experience that I am a bolshy introvert, i.e. actually quite shy and uncertain but with a drive to prove the opposite. I found it incredibly difficult to make friends and found it a shock as I had very close friends all my life up to that point and to compound matters, I worked as a nanny in Toronto at the beginning of my journey and only had the company of a naughty 6 year old boy most of the time. But over the intervening years I have made friends and used the principal of ‘fake it till you make it’. If you join social groups and are friendly and sincere when you meet people, you will make good friends eventually. The trick for me was to relax, it sounds basic, but I tried to accept rather than ignore the fact that I was shy, and lived in the moment when I was with people. Now, despite being rejected by some people, as we all are, I have lots of people who do like me and I have more self worth than ever. I am a single mother of a 12 year old girl, have reached the grand old age of 51 and live back in Dublin where I grew up and have made some lovely friends. They don’t need to be intense friendships like we all have in our youth, but all friendships are valuable.

        Best of luck,

        Kindest regards,



    • Darlene says:

      Christine, maybe start on getting more fit? Not trying to focus on your weight, but I know Vancouver well enough to know that there is a HUGE outdoor sports and fitness community there. You will meet lots of fun and positive people that way and it’ll help you shed the weight and feel better. Some of the nicest people I know are outdoor amphitheater enthusiasts, it just seems to attract positive people.

      Vancouver is a great city, but is known for being a bit lonely. I think you need to tap into a specific community to find people you can connect with.

      You have the skills to make friends, you need a lift and to believe in yourself again. Best of luck!

  10. Karen says:

    Hi Kalisa,
    I read your blog, and I actually feel the same way. I work full-time and live in a neighborhood surrounded by stay-at-home moms. The career I’m in involves teaching and helping others. I also make time for volunteer work. I’m also a mom and a wife. On the surface, I have nothing to complain about; but I find myself feeling lonely most of the time because no one around me seems to have “time” for friendship or has any interest in talking about something unrelated to gossip or themselves constantly. No one can seem to handle discussing deeper issues affecting our lives like politics, etc. So, I really don’t see the point of these conversations. I try to play along, but I end up sounding silly (at least to myself) because I can hear myself pretending to be what I’m not–I mean, how long am I supposed to listen to someone going on and on about themselves or being unable to speak about anything but their kids, their new car, their next manicure appointment??? LOL, I mean, it gets to be so boring! I have had 3 close friendships in the last 10 years. One friend moved away and I never heard from her again. Another friend’s marriage was on the rocks and she chose to go on another path that I couldn’t tolerate, and another friend stopped calling after my mother died. Just dropped me. We had been friends for 10
    years. No support, nothing. Just gone. So much for having a “friend in need”. I won’t go in to how I had been there for her for all her trials but I had hoped for some reciprocation during my dark hour. Instead, I found myself alone and looking around in disbelief at my situation. What the heck is wrong with people these days???

    • Wendy says:

      I agree! What is wrong with people these days?

      It seems it became “responsible” to silence all talk of politics when the Congress became so partisan. That is hooey for a lot of reasons. First, our country was founded on political and religious freedom and dissent, so exercising these rights our ancestors sacrificed for is Patriotic. Second, there really is no difference between the Democrat and Republican. As we have seen in this election cycle and I’m the actions and inactions of President Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, they are all on the same military-industrial bank and oil complex payroll. So the big “off limits” topics polite women are not suppoosed to offend by discussing are all hooey. Mixed gender bathrooms? Walls to keep out immigrants? Seriously? Who cares when we can no longer afford healthcare, schools, roads and have to work longer hours and can be let go at any time, cannot drink municipal water, but have plenty of money to fund wars and give banker billionaires bailouts? This is so wrong on many levels, and the media keeps us dumb by only covering “stories” on celebrities.

      I think people are exhausted and eager for the escapes you described; new car, hair do, etc. you. I found deep thinkers in the Bernie Sanders movement, leading me to other issues. I can go to those meetings and events. Oddly, friends from 30 years ago have been resurfacing, and this has been great though they live far. I quit the progressive and self righteous church Id attended 25 years and left the fancy ladies lunch group, and while still lonely, am not faced with the constant reminder that I am wasting my time. I’m writing my observations as essays and preparing to
      move to Europe where people have not been brainwashed to be brainless.

      • Karen says:

        Hi Wendy,
        You make some great points. I like how you delved into meaningful activities rather than stay stagnant with shallow people. You’ve inspired me to molt out of my shell and get involved with activities and causes that are worth my time. Wish I could move to Europe, as the USA seems to be sinking into stupidity–and worse–apathy!!!

        • Wendy says:

          Hi, Karen,

          Europe was a crazy idea til I researched cheap retirement countries. I’m self employed with rentals here, which makes me very lucky, but have not found anyone yet to manage while I’m gone. A lot of people can work overseas either with special skills visas or virtually providing services from abroad.(The hassle with that is usually time differences).

          In history people have always migrated for various personal, religious and economic reasons. Its challenging but not impossible.

    • April says:

      I, too, agree. No one has “time” to just sit and chat about literature or what’s going on in the world. Most women my age have children and their entire lives revolve around them and that’s all they want to talk about. I have kids, too, but I also write stories, read books, see shows, etc. Sometimes when someone is going on and on about their kid, I can’t help but to say “you must be very proud.” I know I shouldn’t but sometimes I just can’t stand how people just talk at me about their kids’ accomplishments, etc. I just want a real friendship and I fear I will never find it unless I pretend to enjoy chatting about self-centered topics that seem superficial to me. Well, this really makes me sound like a jerk, I realize. I just had to vent that. Thanks.

      • Karen says:

        Hi April,
        You don’t sound like a “jerk” at all. Our culture has shifted to a very self-centered one in which many people have lost their awareness of issues outside themselves. The media doesn’t help. I have observed that most of what is broadcast on TV seems to feed the “me first” culture, and I think when you listen to what people converse about, it becomes evident that selfishness has become a “virtue” in place of compassion for others and giving back. It’s really quite the social phenomenon! I guess the solution would be to model the virtues we espouse by showing folks how it (life) should be done:) Volunteering, joining a book club, a political movement– whatever. Maybe that would show others how not to be a total bore going on about themselves and actually doing something to benefit society and the collective intellect! Imagine that!!:)

        • April says:

          Thanks for your kind reply. I volunteer with the local food pantry, the farmers market and play music at a local assisted living center. I tried to initiate social awareness in my daughter’s girl scout group and the leader told me that it’s “not what girl scouts is really about.” I was surprised to hear that. I am usually seen as the odd one out, a bit of a rabble rouser. I will always be me, I guess that I just wish I had others around me who had similar views that I could connect with.

    • Maria says:

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts… your are hitting the nail dead on.. nobody want to talk about true subjects that impact society like poltics or faith or family issues in an intelligent pro active conversation. Just superficial materialistic self engranduering and gossip negative critsizing conversations. What happened to true friendship being supportive to each other about real things that matter. Im also very much alone. Thank you ladies for sharing. God give us all strength through our time in need.

      [Last name removed by moderator. To protect yourself against possible spammers, please do not use last names on this blog. Thanks!]

  11. Jennifer says:

    I’ve always had issues making female friends since middle school. It was because I acted and wore my hair differently from the other females. I was excluded and called weird and the females constantly taunted and picked on me in middle school (and so did the guys). It wasn’t better in high school. While I wasn’t bullied as much in college, I did receive some rude comments on how “weird” I was and how bad my hair looked.

    I tried changing my attitude and not posting negative things all the time on social media too because I felt that that was what was driving some females “friends” and acquaintances from me (ironically, the males never complained about what I posted, only like 2). One female didn’t like what I posted and threw shade at me on Twitter. When I called her out on it, she deleted her post. I tried to make up for what I did, but she was rude AF to me. Several months later after the whole thing, she deleted me off every social media.

    I’m about to try to change the way I carry myself and how I look and dress, because I also feel that this is a contributing factor on why I don’t have a lot of female friends. I was always mocked for my lack of good style and hair styles by other college-aged women too. I want to change this because I feel like I unintentionally attract weird, older men but make other women hate me.

    I feel very bitter at the fact that I only attract older men at my job (it’s male-dominated) as friends and acquaintances, yet other women either aren’t interested in being friends with me or just cut me off for unexplained reasons. I honestly wish I had more female friends because I want to do more girly things and I want to be more social, but Ive given them too many chances.

    I think my lack of social life is what contributed to me making sh*tty and desperate choices when it comes to friendships in high school and college. All I do is attend online school, work my part-time job at Fedex, and go to my dance classes (of course I’ll, but I fear some of the women won’t be interested in friendships with me and the cycle will continue) .

    I can’t stand other women because my friendships never work out with them, whether it’s my own fault or not. I feel like I’m better off without them because the majority of them always let me down in a way and I’m tired of being burned many times.

    • Wendy says:

      Hi, Jennifer,

      Well, you must be gorgeous! Seriously!

      One thing you said about having a sh**ty attitude alienating others. Well, sometimes you just can’t help it. If you have been scarred, left when vulnerable with no one trustworthy to help, it may not be possible to act cheery, unless there is really something wrong with you. Unless you stuff it, or deny your feelings. I think you deserve to feel as you do, regardless of others.

      What I have learned finally at 61 is that I ticked a lot of people off because despite being naturally smart and very pretty and healthy, i had no idea and had low self esteem. I was scarred by an unhappy childhood with alcoholics, then my mother was essentially murdered by my brother, for money, which his NJ attorneys took. I was traumatized that the Morris County NJ surrogate court was a part of it and that my mother knew what was being done to her and neither of us could get anyone to help us. Yes, bad. But once I started doing things in her honor, charitable work, standing up to others without a voice; the homeless and organizing against developers in my own neighbirhood, for example; I began to own my beauty and my scars. I stopped being afraid of anything!
      I hope you will not waste years worrying about your hair or being weird. Of course, if it feels weird to who you are now, by all means change ir, for you! But, I bet some women may br a bit jealous of a beauty and a power you may have without realizing it. Cheers!

      • Jennifer says:

        Excuse my hostility. I was obviously in a bad mood when I wrote this.

        I still think 50% women are unlikable bitches that are hard to get along with. I can try to strike a conversation with 50% of them and they just snub, ignore, or are completely uninterested in me.

        You mentioned that I’m pretty? Well, to be honestly, I was constantly picked on for being ugly as a teenager, so I’m always scratching my head over it.

        To be fair, you were going through a hard time, why are people like that towards people who’ve gone through a lot? Do they not realize that nobody’s life is perfect?

        The truth is, I only wanted to change myself because I felt I have some traits that genuinely a problem. I felt that if I don’t carry myself well, I would come off as unattractive and that drive people away. I know the hair part sounds petty, but that’s why happens if you’re raised in a predominantly African-American environment.

        • Wendy says:

          I do not think the hair part sounds petty at all. (And you brought me a sweet memory of the time my daughter brought a black friend home from kindergarten for a sleepover. The following morning i had no idea how to replicate the neat hair style she arrived with.)

          One thing another mentioned – maybe you are around people without your interests. The bi-racial world straddling is certainly something most people in the US would not “get”. Therefore you may think these people are boring, shallow or “bitches” for acting alienated by you.

          Then again, to say “50% of women are bitches” is disturbing. That statement might reflect you being overly hard on them – and yourself. Maybe they have been through a lot they are not able to process well, too. Maybe they are shallow, have trust issues that make it hard to open up to anyone different than themselves. Maybe they are bigots. A friend once said, “Someone may be a horses ass, but there are other parts to that horse.”

          When you ease up on yourself, you may find the number of total bitches in the world drops to manageable levels. But I would still trust your gut and find the peeps who share your values and more worldly experience.

          Now, I’m off to do something with my terrible hair. Really!! I recently stopped going to my overpriced hairdresser, who, always made me feel uncomfortable. As a bonus to saving over $100 a month, I now feel empowered by doing the color myself. ;>) Warm regards to you, Jennifer. (BTW – some of the most beautiful women in the world were considered ugly ducklings for long periods in their lives.

          • Jennifer says:

            Please don’t attempt to do a black girl’s hair if you have no experience. Natural hair is extremely hard to tame and it breaks combs lmao. Did you try consulting with the girl’s mother?

            Yes I 100% agree with you that I may be trying to befriend people that have little to no common interests with me (because I thought about it), because nobody wants to be friends with people they share no common interests with. But that’s no excuse to lead someone on, claim someone as a friend, and then suddenly delete someone off social network websites and/or suddenly stop responding to texts. Just tell me why you don’t want to be friends anymore because suddenly ignoring someone and cutting someone off is hurtful and dirty and it proves you meant nothing to the other person.

            Those females are in no way “boring” or “bitches” for not being interested in me (They’re not obligated to be interested. It’s not pre-school when you force friendships.). Some of them are because I can hint the bad body language/vibe when they aren’t interested. One girl I went to college with outright ignored me when I simply tried to greet her at a Greek cookout. For another girl, the second time we were at a Greek Cookout, I was able to get the hint that she didn’t want to be associates with me (I didn’t want to be friends with her because I saw she already had a set of friends). The third time I saw her, she mean-mugged me despite the fact that I had NO intentions of talking to her at that moment (because I got the hint that she wasn’t interested). For one girl when went to my old college, when I went to a fashion show and I tried to be nice to her, she ignored me with a frown on her face (it came off as “why is this annoying girl trying to talk to me?”).

            Saying that 50% of them are bitches may seem harsh, but I can understand why I said it. Because spending years being an outcast and without a lot of friends and being verbally and sometimes physically assaulted by some of your peers for looking and acting different from others is just as harsh (plus those girls and guys to be fair seemed EXTREMELY unlikable and were the worst bullies).

            I don’t think I’ll forgive myself for not being liked too much by my peers growing up because I have to build my social skills from scratch and spend weekends all alone. My 24th bday is coming up and I’m not very excited because I’ll be spending it without many girl friends like I always do. This is why I find myself envying some women who had better childhoods and a lot of girl friends growing up because they seem happier and have a lot of fun.

            I can bet you that I’m irritating you with my attitude, but it’s pretty hard to have a good attitude towards this subject when you’ve been snubbed and hated on many times even after you’re not a teenager. Being a Debbie downer sucks because people think you’re annoying, but if your life isn’t as fun as you want, then is wont be easy stepping out of this. I think this is why I’m still trying and not giving up because nobody likes or wants to be friends with Debbie Downers. For the ugly duckling part, I never believed it, but it’s pretty cool.

            • Wendy says:

              Hi, Jennifer

              You are not irritatiing
              me at all.

              I turned my frustration and rage into activism – Standing Ridge, BLM, ending pipelines to prison, and now organizing my conservative neighbirhood against a development. At some point we all get sick and tired of being sick and tired.

              Angel’s hair would have griwn back many times over. That was 20 years ago. And I was loving and careful.

            • Nicole says:

              Jennifer, I enjoyed reading your posts. Some of what you described is exactly like me.
              I am white, 32 years old and I grew up in a predominantly black/Latino neighborhood. Imagine a poor white girl, the daughter of an illiterate alcoholic with frizzy hair, over weight and all I ever had was boys clothing. I had 0 self esteem. At the age of 12, My father committed a crime which I took the blame for and spent 18 months locked up for it. When I got out, 0 gratitude. No loyalty, 0 appreciation. My mother ran off when I was 3 years old and the last thing she ever said to me when she saw me @ age 18 was too disgusting to type. I was on my own since the age of 16 years old, legally emancipated by the court after I was once again removed from the house 18 months after I was released from lock up. I know all too well what it’s like to be an outcast.

              I kept my sanity by reading books. I never got in trouble. I was mocked, called a lesbian, in hinds sight I can see why in the few photos I do have why people thought I was… but hey.. for an over weight girl, men’s clothing was the cheapest option. I had to raise myself, (washed clothing out in a bathtub) which always smelled moldy. That didn’t help make friends.
              Describing your childhood scars, I understand shaped the person you are today. You do not NEED to permit the past to dictate your present let alone your future. I spend my free time watching documentaries, I am self taught religion, (Islam, I reverted to Islam age 18), Christianity, Judaism you get the point, history, philosophy, I studied nursing, anthropology, politics, cultures etc..

              Providing someone speaks English, I can carry a discussion with pretty much anyone from any where. My point is start being a good friend to yourself first. Learn other people’s cultures, belief system. Open yourself up to different experiences, cuisines, hell, watch every travel channel documentary there is. See how the world lives. The common denominator? Most people are miserable. Either economically depressed but often happier, or in a place like Denmark, cold, isolated, but fantastic healthcare. A more homogeneous people. Feed your brain so your brain doesn’t eat itself.

              Generally speaking, people are FAKE. Society conditions people to act fake and much of it has to do with self preservation. If everyone you met poured their hearts and souls out to you telling you their tales of woe, it would make you uncomfortable. Eventually, you would tell the individual, ‘look you were dealt a shitty hand in life, move on, get over it’. Everyone is guilty of letting another individual down. 100% you’ve done it yourself and perhaps the person was too polite or embarrassed to tell you like you’re too embarrassed to admit to others how deeply rejection hurts you.

              Peer reviewed studies have proven attractive people have easier lives. People gravitate towards them because human beings are attracted to physical beauty. Many women who had their lives handed to them, when their beauty fades, they find themselves miserable, lonely and unable to maintain themselves economically once the husband upgrades to a younger, more attractive wife. Or, she’s widowed. There are far too many variables but don’t think for one moment those who appear happy with their smiles, fake laughs and frenemies have it as easy as you think. Many ugly ducklings focus on academics, then find the love of their lives and have stable family lives since they were mature enough to mate with a man who shared the same goals. Again, far too many variables to name them all. No one gets through life unscathed.

              I for one have the mindset that 100% of people are bitches to some, angels to others. Men included. Examine whatever interests you have. Start volunteering your time in places where people share your passions. When I got married in 2005 and had a daughter I stayed 7 years with 0 friends. It was not until I went to college to study nursing that I made a single friend outside of my house hold. I still see that same friend perhaps 3 times a year. I have my best friend living back in my home state who I get to talk to maybe once a week because she’s moody as hell but we’re always cool. We accept each other for who they are unconditionally. I learned to accept myself for who I am. In time, I hope you learn to do the same.

              Another tip for you. Not sure if you’re like me on this. When I speak to someone even if it’s just typing through a computer. I read/listen to whatever their issues are. Ask basic questions about their lives to understand their personalities and what made them the way they are (this is called emotional intelligence). Then MOST often than not, the individual tells me flat out it creeps them out how well I understand them. It makes people feel uncomfortable when others can see right through the facade. If you do this, stop (unless you’re trying to get rid of the person). People for whatever reason want to feel unique. When you easily make them comprehend they’re no different than any other imperfect human being it freaks them out.

              Do not conform in order to find friends, have patience. Volunteer your time. Offer a helping hand to a co worker in need. Listen to their problems and hold yourself from talking about your own issues. The best of friendships can take a considerable amount of time to build up. If you conform yourself to fit the mold in order to make a friend, the real you will end up showing up which will just drive the potential friend away. Remember, when you first meet someone, you meet their representative. When you’re strange and creepy like myself who happens to be an open book, it’s too much for people to handle. (I personally find comfort in it since I value quality over quantity).

              Everyone has insecurities my friend. Some are just better @ hiding it then others. You’re not weird, in the grand scheme of things, certainly NOT unique. I wish you the best of luck <3

    • Maria says:

      Im there with you.. being there for other women friends but they are never there for me. I get burned too. Got tired of it. To the point i feel there is something wrong with me.i try to hard sometimes to no avail afterwards i feel used. So i keep away. Don’t despair your not alone dear.

      [Last name removed by moderator. To protect yourself against possible spammers, please do not use last names on this blog. Thanks!]

      • Jennifer says:

        Honestly, I don’t think I want girl friends anymore or to even join a sorority. I’ve. been rejected too many times by females for friendships and I get dropped like a hot potato over petty things. I envy women who don’t have problems making girl friends because I feel like they are more likable and better than me at something. I try & try & I still get burned.

        At the same time, it’s sad that I have this problem because the majority of my interests and hobbies can only be shared with mostly females.

        I noticed that I get along with guys better and attract older men (like 35-45 years old) for friendships, but it’s pretty annoying. It’s because I don’t have much in common with them. Why are older men so fascinated with young girls?

    • LilyoftheValley says:

      Same here.. tired of being burned. Women can be so cruel.

      • Jennifer says:

        I feel like I’m so dumb for having this problem and allowing myself to be a loser growing up.

      • Jennifer says:

        Oh damn. I regret posting this. Anyway, I feel like while I tried too hard with some people, there were some females I didn’t think too hard, and the friendship ended the same way. This just teaches me that at times, it can be your own fault or some girls just suck lol.

  12. Wendy says:

    Wow! You could be right!

  13. mayzie says:

    What a great website this is. After reading all the article and comments I have to say I now feel normal. It is normal and ok not to have friends.
    Someone once told me I was a shy extrovert. When I say to people “im shy” or “anxious” in groups they don’t believe me. I look like I am confident and I am apparently very capable. I don’t feel capable but if someone thinks I am I let that be.
    I feel so full of life and energy when I am with like minded people. When I am lonely I am afraid I fall in a great big heap.
    I have a wonderful husband who is an introvert. He has adult children he and grandchildren he barely sees (His first wife died).
    I needed to feel positive. I talked to my darling husband and finally figured out what works for me. I belong to different groups where there are activites Walking/Cycling each activity is about three hours a day most days of the week. I get my ‘dose’ of people and that really seems to ‘do’ me for the rest of the day.
    The other way I seem to cope is travelling. We travel in Australia (where we live) in a campervan (small motorhome). Husband loves to be at home and I love being out so we split the year into small chunks and each have our wishes. That works out great as well.
    So in summary what I thought I wanted was a meaningful friendship what I have is casual acquaintances. When I had what I thought was meaningful friendships I was anxious and trying to please all the time and then upset because the person would use me and then I wouldn’t hear from them again. Now I find that the casual acquaintance is what really suits me.
    Thank you for all those that shared. You have made me feel so much better.

    • Wendy says:

      Brilliant! I love your coping strategies; you have taken matters in to your own hands instead of bemoaning what isn;t and “should be!
      Leave it to a sensible Aussie….

  14. Lee says:

    I have been goin through some friendship books to resolve my feelings toward a long term friendship. I realized it was toxic and she did me a favor by fading away. It’s complicated because I am so very close to her children. I think I was stuck in the anger phase for years and didn’t realize it.it shook me to the core because I loved her so much and put great effort into making her feel secure, even when I moved an hour and half away. It blew up in my face. It scarred my sons first bday, and my first Mother’s Day will always have a bittersweet reminder. I am working on healing, but it raises questions. I do have other friends that are close but we are long distance. But I’ve had so many failed friendships over the years I can’t help but wonder what my flaw is. I do like a lot of non girly activities that I feel make it harder to find someone. I get along with men a lot easier and still have some, but being married makes them difficult to maintain. It would be nice to find one, I have made a lot of casual friends through a club but only one has gotten to the point of getting together outside of the organization. In review of all my friendships I remember being very lonely in the beginning the neighborhood girls really didn’t like me and only hung out when the others weren’t around. I was often rejected at school because I dressed differently. The few I did find always seemed to move away. I’m moving again to North Carolina with not much to lose – hoping new possibilities will develop. To read some threads help validate the what’s wrong with me syndrome.

    • Lynn says:

      I have been reading these posts for 2 months now, and commenting, and it hit me the other night. This may sound conceited, but I love myself. I am a good person-honest, funny, sane, caring, loyal, etc. The past friendships I’ve had, which I thought were deep, but I guess proven not, made me doubt myself and think something was wrong with ME!! Now I realize THEY were the ones with issues and very shallow.
      I just want all these ladies on here to know they are good people, and even if they don’t find a “best” friend, to enjoy the people that have been placed in their path, even if for a short time. Sister love is great(I am blessed with 3) and I actually consider them my friends, too. So when I review all my relationships, including my husband, 3 kids, and siblings, I feel very fortunate and realize maybe I have all I need after all.

      • Wendy says:

        I like your thinking! As I have aged, I realized how much i held myself back worrying about what others thought of me, instead of what I thought of them! Im a difficult friend, for sure because I am demanding of myself and of those I chose to spend time around. Recently a friend from another country visited me and within a few days commented out of the blue, “You are too good for this place!”. I now see nothing wrong with moving away from shallow people who are stingy, dishonest or stupid. But, you are right that we have to love and appreciate ourselves most of all and be willing to spend time with ourselves.

        • Lynn says:

          Tomorrow night I will be attending a “new neighbor” dinner in our community (we’ve lived here just over 9 months), so I’m hoping to meet some nice ladies for casual friendships…we shall see!! But if I don’t, it’s really ok, too.

          • Wendy says:

            Exactly! And at least you will get a meal out of the deal, if nothing else! I hope you come away with some social feelings og warmth, as well.

      • LilyoftheValley says:

        That’s beautiful. I definitely don’t beg anyone for their friendship because I love myself too, in a healthy way.

  15. Quan says:

    I have no friends and it is difficult for me to start and maintain relationships. I consider myself an introvert. I go places and am around people,yet I do not start conversations and 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.

    • Felicia says:

      Being introverted is not easy. I am your fellow introvert. First, don’t be hard on yourself at all. This is difficult for most introverts. Accept that this is not easy try to find things that are popular for when you run into others to talk about. If it’s something new and interesting that’s great! Knowing stuff is a sizeable part of conversation. Find a way to ask open ended questions about them and don’t do the why? Why? Why? Thing that’s terrible and juvenile. Be yourself and a confident self and you’ll be fine. If all else fails hire a therapist! They can sit and chat for an hour and you’ll be wiped out afterwards :-). I found a meetup group called introverted and loving it. What area are you in? Want to keep in touch and text?


      • Irene says:

        Hi Felicia,

        Welcome to the blog! As tempting as it may be, this blog isn’t set up to link people for either romantic or platonic purposes.

        However, since so many people do want to form In Real Life friendships with people they “meet” here, I have set up a special Facebook group for that purpose. Here is some information about the group:


        Best, Irene

        • Maya says:

          I noticed a Huffington Post article on the Facebook page. It’s an article that expresses a negative opinion of Mr. Trump and Mr. Pence. Since the Huffington Post is very much a liberal site, I’d rather not see it. Politics are very polarizing and I wish there were limits on what could be posted. I understand that there are various topics discussed but this may turn to drama if someone disagrees or expresses a conservative view. I’m not against discussing the topic of why people “unfriend” others for their political views but naming specific candidates isn’t productive. Just my opinion.

          • Irene says:

            Hi Maya,

            I can’t seem to find the post you are referring to on Facebook. Can you find the link on the Facebook page and sent it to me in a Facebook message?


    • Erica says:

      Thank you for your honesty, I feel the same way and just keep wondering what’s wrong. This blog has made me feel a little better!

  16. Kalisa says:

    I would love to start a group with like minded women! How do you propose we attempt it?

    • Irene says:

      Hi Kalisa,

      A number of posters have asked for a way to connect with others who are interested in online friendships. I created a Facebook group, called The Friendship Blog Connection, for that purpose. This might be a place where you can interact with a new person, begin a friendship, and then take your conversation to the next level off the page.

      Facebook calls this type of group a “closed group:” Anyone can see the group and who’s in it but only members see posts. There are currently more than 800 people in the group from all around the world.

      Here is more information: https://www.thefriendshipblog.com/something-new-check-out-friendship-blog-connection-facebook/

      • Lee says:

        It’s a good idea in theory but the facebook makes me apprehensive. It seemed fun at first to try and find people you lost touch with but now it seems like high school all over again. Who has the most friends the most interesting life. Some reach out to to just merely get you as a friend. I did do a thing with social Jane but I never got any responses but one. A lot of them seemed to be divorcees who neglected their friendships and are now trying to make good.

    • Erica says:

      I’d love to be part of a group! I’m not on FB though, actually because of this -it’s just too hard to watch others have people around them!

  17. RJ says:

    I’ve been struggling a lot lately with the feeling that I can’t seem to start and maintain close friendship. I constantly wonder what it is about me that people just don’t stick with, they like and gravitate to me, but maintaining the friendships just doesn’t seem to happen. Most would label me as an extrovert, but I didn’t move at all as a child so I don’t fall into the studies this article talks about. It’s extremely lonely sometimes.

    • Erica says:

      I agree…and it’s hard to know what it is in our personalities that makes us this way! I mean, I don’t think I’m controlling or demanding or annoying…

  18. Amy says:

    I am a little relieved that other women fell the same way I do. I do not understand the need that women have to have a certain other friend at an event or they won’t attend. I too get along better with men just because they are more polite and don’t talk through me like women do. And all the women who don’t seem to fit in, I have tried being friends with them, but you know what happens; As soon as the women in the more mainstream group start talking to them, they say goodbye. I do think this is an American women’s condition though and I don’t experience this in friendships with as many women from other parts of the world. And the suicide rate among white women they have been talking about lately– I believe this disengagement is contributing to it. I see people from other cultures get together and have big parties regularly. I don’t see this often with whites. Hmm

    • Karen says:

      Hi Amy,
      I have noticed this, too. I am 49 years old and the only friend I have lives on the other side of the country. I have lots of acquaintances–mostly at work–but I find women in my community to be quite shallow and superficial. Seems like they’re either fixated on competing to see who can acquire the most material objects: cars, clothes, jewelry, and manicures. Or, they are stay- at- home moms who can’t seem to converse about anything other than their children. I have never felt to isolated and lonely in my life. I am a college educated woman with a full time job and a child, and I can actually converse about a variety of subjects, but no one seems interested! I’ve tried church, but there, too, they look at me with dollar signs in their eyes and not much other interest. I am also a very compassionate person, I demonstrate caring toward other people in various ways, but again, no one seems to reciprocate. I have traveled to other countries, and I’ve seen how people socialize all the time with informal, warm, gatherings, etc. No so much here in the US. I don’t much care for this! Is it just me?

  19. amy says:

    I see all these women with all these close women friends and in all honesty, it looks exhausting to me. I think it looks nice but the undertones of it to me are too much. I see my sister in law dropping everything to help her friends or vice-versa… Even when it is extremely inconvenient for her. Then if something goes bad for her she expects them all to come comfort her. If they don’t then they are horrible, she hates them, etc. The other side of it that I don’t like is a group mind. They all have to do all the same things. Then they manipulate each other at times. I see them get mad at one friend or another and then completely tear them down. Couple days later they are friends again. It seems very high school to me. I don’t have super close girlfriends but I do have friends. Our priorities are our families and our jobs etc. I moved around a lot so it is nice to not have to constantly validate my friendships to maintain them. I do find I make friends with men easier. My friendships with men to me are easier to maintain and I care about them more than my female friendships. Maybe cause there is no cattiness with men. My best friend at the moment is a woman. She is like me though more laid back, work a lot. Then my other best friend is a gay guy. The only people I feel totally 100% devoted to and would drop everything for are my husband and daughter. Sometimes I do see those friendships and wonder why I can’t form them. Would be nice to be able to trust anyone enough to be able to talk to them about everything in life. If they wouldn’t use it against you ever. For me though I have lots of friendly acquaintances. I guess that is good enough…

    • Wendy says:

      Love your obserations

    • An says:

      Have you ever thought the way you perceive/treat other women is why you haven’t been maintaining female friendships? It’s easy to blame others, make sweeping generalizations of a demographic (age, sex, etc), and exclude yourself/a few people from that demographic, when you yourself don’t want to improve in relationships. I’m curious to know how the ‘maybe men cannot be catty’ statement came about, because in my experience, I had both men and women ‘reject’ me for little or no reason. Maybe you putting a man before a well-established female friendship is a cause. Maybe your internalized misogyny ‘shows’ and therefore repels other women, thus making you socially inept. Maybe your relationship with men disrupts how you maintain an improving friendship because you’re too blinded by their sex. Maybe you haven’t been giving enough to non-familial folks like you were supposed to, in order to maintain an ideal friendship.

      Yes, others can be at fault for a relationship ruin but it could also be yours. That is why I am focusing on myself so I can determine whether a friendship could be worth. Folks tend to say I have no friends because they weren’t ‘true friends’, but I’m starting to think more than that. My depression worsened to the point where I could not improve socially. I know I didn’t choose to be depressed, but that still contributed. And when you hang around the ‘wrong crowd’, you usually get the wrong results. I think people are taking the ‘let others see the true you’ over the top when there are some things about the self you need to tame. (I almost said change, but I didn’t in order to add more emphasis on both ettiquette/’neutral’ willingness to conflict-solving.)

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