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How do you find friends who care about you? Is it too late?

Hello, I just graduated college and am working in a major city in the US. I had a couple of friends in college but they all moved to different places. I’m married and live with my wife. Even though I love my wife and love spending time with her, I feel like I am in need of good friends to care about, and who care about me. As an early adult, I have no idea how to look for them. I read everywhere that they are hard to come the older you get.

I have a lot of friends on social media but it just feels like I am the one who tries to get in touch with them. It doesn’t feel like mutual friendship. We would hang out if I reach out to them. Tried to join chess club, given that’s one of my hobbies but people would only want to hang during chess club times and not otherwise. Is it too late? Should I just be content being by myself and my wife and not care about looking for better friends?

Thanks and stay safe.

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27 Comments

  1. Good friends are like art. You rarely go looking for particular ones. You accummulate them along the way in your interaction and being open to be a good friend yourself, acting the part and disengaging when needed. Let them be attracted by your personality and mutual interests.

  2. Do you have kids? One of my daughter’s stayed at a friends house a few weeks ago and I met the step-dad. Surprisngly we both got along instantly so we’re going fishing on Sunday. This friendship might not last but I’ll enjoy it while it does with zero expectations.

  3. The half life of friendship is about 7 years. That means if you have 10 friends 7 years later 5 of those have drifted apart from you. So there is always a constant need to seek out new friendships if that is what you want. It’s never too late to find close friendships.

  4. Is very difficult to find friends that truly love you! Yes especially when you have money believe me they will come if you have! But will run away when things go bad, looking for good friends that really care for you takes time, go meet some few out there interact with them start noticing there activity toward you and start picking one or two things about them, there you will know and also found true friend.

  5. Same boat. It is tough. I think I know what to do for myself, but the energy to get out of the rut is very substantial.
    I need to go out to more events. Trivia nights, bar bingo nights, dance things. Then join a random table and meet new people. Then ask for phone numbers (which is as easy as asking, but mentally makes me nervous). Then pave the way for the friendship through plan setting a consistent meetups.
    And this is all a risk, since you could pull the same people that don’t set things up or want to hang out. But eventually you’ll find a good friend.
    Step 1, get out of the complacency rut we all dig ourselves into.

  6. I would say the best way to make friends is meeting people who have the same interests as you so if you like a certain sport or have a particular hobby then you should join a club or organization focused around that activity and then just work on your social skills. A great place to start if you want to be better at making friends is by reading the book called ” How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie and then once you meet someone overtime as you talk to them and do things with them it strengthens your friendship and then you start to caring for each other as your friendship develops. For me where I meet people outside of work and school is the gym as fitness is my passion, so I just start conversation with people and the after I see them a few times and build rapport with them then I move onto doing things outside of the gym with them.

  7. Work can be a source of friends. Check out your neighbors. Also try some extracurricular activities. My wife and I met each other doing community theater and we have several good community theater friends

  8. Join a club for something you like. Straight up, it doesnt matter what it is. IF you like knitting find a knitting club. If you like biking find a biking club. Google is your friend bro!

  9. It really depends what you like. Try to find one thing you enjoy doing or are passionate about which may involve a group of person. you talked about chess, so I will take boardgames as an example. There usually are clubs or shops that organize events, where anyone can go. You go there, and you interact with people. You find a few people you click with, and you offer to organize a boardgame afternoon or evening.

    As you spend time interacting with those people, and particularly when you are hosting, there will be times where the interaction is about something else than the game. And the more that happens, the more you get to know those people and they get to know you, and the more it becomes possible to consider spending time doing things other than that particular hobby.

    Friendships usually take time to build up. And they take time to maintain. They usually also require not having too many expectations. Personally, I’m the kind of guy who can have news from someone once every three month or less, and still consider that person a friend, and have a wonderful time every time we meet, and deeply care about each other. But the fact that I don’t expect them to do anything means that the relationship is based on the pleasure we have to interact with each other. It means that the relationship doesn’t require work. I don’t expect my friends to write to me. And so, when they do, I know it is because they wanted, not because it was expected. And in return, they don’t expect me to write to them, and so when I do they know it is because I wanted.

    And since the relationship doesn’t require work, when one or the other is in need for care, it makes it much easier to give it for the other, who hasn’t had his quota of care for you eroded progressively by the expectations to put in work.

  10. It’s never too late. It’s just different. The thing that we have to realize after school is that friendships take effort and intent to start now. Also how friendships function changes.

    Friendships are often formed with people who have similar interests and/or are going through similar experiences. That’s what school does. We take classes or join clubs/groups/teams with new people that have similar interests and are going through similar experiences. Then school makes us spend time together and get to know each other.
    Once we leave school we have to consciously put ourselves into situations to meet new people with similar experiences and/or interests. From there we need to put in the effort to become their friend. Get their phone number, invite them out for drinks, be the friend to them that you want them to be to you.
    Then, even if we do that, it doesn’t always work every time. Sometimes, it just takes a while getting to know each other. Once people start having kids, their kids eat up huge amounts of their time; they might want to be your friend but all their time is taken up by kids.

    Adult friendships tend to be a bit more planned and distant. My best friend and I might go weeks between seeing each other where, in school not seeing each other for 2 days would’ve been a long time. Now instead of calling up a friend and asking “hey, want to go hang out tonight?”, it’s more common for me to text them on Monday or Tuesday and ask if they want to hang out ‘this weekend’. That way we can negotiate a time that fits between all our responsibilities. Sometimes that results in us planning to go hang out 3 weeks in advance.

  11. All my friends moved across country and most my friends are through my gf. It doesnt bother me, but if I was single I would probably force myself to be more outgoing. I wouldn’t look for a friend, just go out and be socialable and approachable and usually over time you make friends. Its much harder the older you get, but dont force the issue.

  12. Its never too late. It can get more difficult as we no longer go to college. I meet new friends at work, but those friendships can end when I change jobs. That probably says something about the friendships too. In recent years I have used the app MeetUp to meet new people. Its a super chill way to meet people that have the same interests, because you use keywords in their search engine to find your hobby. I definately recommend it.

  13. I read a LPT once that in order to get people to like you, act as if you are very excited to see them even if the acquaintance is fairly new. Like when they walk in, put a big old smile on your face and light up the room with your excitement at seeing them.

  14. You need to go out into the real world and meet people. Social media “friends” are not friends. If someone is not willing to help you move a sofa on a Saturday afternoon, they are not your friend.

    Try joining some physical hobby clubs: martial arts, hiking, rugby, board games, etc. You’re just not going to make good friends if your life is behind a computer screen.

  15. There are a lot of good people out there. There are a lot of people with similar interests as you out there. I think the key to good friendships is being able to pick up on good people, with an intersection of shared interests.

    When I graduated college I moved to a different city with my girlfriend. I knew nobody there. But I went to the local game shop to play games. One guy there was a little boisterous, but funny, and talked about another common interest. I caught him after rounds and asked some questions and exchanged numbers. He helped hook me up.

    Then he would reach out pretty often, maybe once a week, to hang out and play games. That’s all. I am not only an introvert but a homebody, so for a while I just said I couldn’t and had to look for work. I liked the guy, but was nervous about leaving my comfort zone.

    One day I realized how fucking genuine this dude was. Hooked me up, played games with me, and just wanted to hang out. So I started pushing myself to hang out more often. It was SO clear how nice of a person he was that I started keeping an eye out for that and realizing that at a certain point I need to put effort into these relationships as long as I can really key in on that value of being a good person, which I was able to pick up on in later relationships.

  16. If someone doesn’t genuinely care about me, I don’t consider them a friend. They could be an acquaintance, co worker, cashier at a gas station I frequent, etc.; they could be a lot of things, even friendLY or courteous, but not necessarily meet the criteria of a friend.

    I’ve heard people say thee are two types of people: those with a lot of friends and those with a few close friends. Personally, it seems as though through different chapters of life I’ve shifted from one to the other, not limited to one of those types.

    To respond to your question, no it isn’t too late; heck, people meet close friends late in life in retirement communities, so don’t be discouraged.

    For me, I just be myself. If people in general don’t like me, that’s fine. Be outgoing, listen to people, and try to relate with them. A damn good friend is the one that listens to you and will tell you when you are wrong; not just take your side and tell you what you want to hear.

    Be the friend you seek to find.

  17. I attract good people, but I try to project goodness. I’ll “go out of my way” to do things for people. If people know how to respond in kind, I know that the person is worth keeping around. I guess I try to be a giver, and other givers realize I won’t take them for granted.

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