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I suck at making and keeping friends

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Forumites,

I'm wondering if someone can help me out with just general socialization. I've never been the type of person who could easily make friends. I seem to make good friends while they're in the same geographical vicinity but then once we're no longer in the same place, it's like someone took a machete to the wire (i.e. we got along really well as classmates but once one of us graduated we totally lost touch, we were coworkers and got along really well but as soon as one of us changed jobs that was it, we were good friends while they lived in Dallas but as soon as they moved I never heard from them again etc.)

Part of my problem might be my lifestyle. Between my job and my family I'm extremely busy and I get really tired easily, so even when I have a "friend" it can easily be a month or two before the next time I see him. Where *that* gets really frustrating is when he tells me about himself, and it's so long before I see him again that I've forgotten everything he told me!

Don't know if this is relevant to the discussion but it gets REALLY frustrating when I can't find people who share my interests. For one example I love to play poker. I only know one who person who even likes to TALK about poker, but I only get to hang out with him a few times a year (and he's not only an excellent poker player but a great teacher! I sometimes try to imagine how much I'd be making at the tables if he'd been able to give me a lesson a month for the last 3 years!). For another example I love to go on cruises. I do have a couple friends who like cruises but our vacation and financial schedules just never seem to mesh. Nobody likes the Indianapolis Colts that I know (maybe I need to move to Indiana LOL! No way, winter is too cold there). The particular videogames I like, TV series I like etc. - nope, nothing. Makes me feel alone.

Now all of that I can somewhat understand because they're somewhat unusual hobbies, but I also love to play tennis. Tennis is a popular enough sport that I should be able to make friends with a few people who play tennis at approximately my level and always have a few numbers I can call to play, but nope. Can never seem to make it happen.

That brings up another interesting point - for tennis, there are what are called "ladder" websites where you can enter your rating and send an email to anyone on the list and ask to hit. I've met several good hitting partners that way, but have just never been able to make a human-to-human connection, I can't tell if they're just not interested in making friends (just want to get some exercise and need another person to do it etc) or if it's me, but I can just never seem to connect human to human.

Since I'm already rambling, I'll throw in how jealous I get of my wife all the time. She's the type of person who just walks into a room and exhudes charisma. Everywhere she goes everybody she meets just loves her, always wants to hang out with her, always setting up "girl lunches", going out to drink and dance on the weekends, going to concerts etc. It's not just her powers over people that make me jealous, it's that everything she truly loves to do, she has 2 or 3 close friends who ALSO like to do it that she can share it with.

I just feel like an uninteresting person sometimes, like I'm not capable of making someone want to hang out with me.

If this didn't make sense it's because I'm really tired as I type it, but I hope I at least got the idea across.

Feedback welcomed and appreciated.

I suck at making and keeping friends

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Forumites. LOL, you make us sound like ancient mineral deposits. ;-D Actually, where I'm concerned, you're not so far off!

First off, if a change in location is all it takes to sever the umbilicus then this is showing quite distinctly that what you're basing your friendships on is mere superficial CIRCUMSTANCES in common. Lasting friendships are made via recognition of moral values/principles, because once you hit teenagedom these never really change. Fluctuate only a little (if they're genuine). But not change. Thus not even distance can cast them asunder. School friendships are a notorious case of this because you're kids with no control over where you're plonked and with whom in the first place, meaning the total group out of whom you have to choose 'friends' might not include sufficiently anyone of your particular feather deeper down. After school, those circumstances that you had in common CHANGE, meaning - basis for friendship gone = feelings and needs gone, POOF! Same goes for co-workers whom you again don't get to choose/are foisted on you. *Hobson's choice*.

In order to get with birds of the same genetic/moral feather you need to be in a place where those hidden genes get expressed in the open - hence the seeming cliche of, join a club or take up an interest...one that caters to a long-term, very definite hobby/interest/belief/obsession, e.g., your all-time favourite type of environment, whether that be beach, specialist cinema, ice-skating rink or tennis club, some sort of human rights group, hikers/cycle club, pottery night class, martial arts class, art gallery; certain car appreciation clubs (e.g. Subaru have one)..that sort of thing.

Furthermore, and oh-so fortuitously, it's when you're happiest and most confident whilst engrossed in doing something/being somewhere you love that you strike as most attractive to other people.

Yes, obviously if you're time-limited then whatever bond is achieved is going to start wearing off in the interim before next seeing him. But the solution to forgetting important details is to write them down on a pad following each meeting or phonecall (notes onto paper act as an external extension to the mind, giving you greater available brain power).

I heard there are online poker clubs/societies; have you tried googling? Also, cruises are PERFECT for single people looking for friends or lovers! Google 'single person cruise holidays' and you'll see. But if you already belong to a tennis club then I can only presume you want this overly much to the point where you're trying too hard rather than allowing it to happen naturally/automatically or feel socially uptight as is 'smellable' in your sweat and makes people suspicious of you (= stressed out without visible source of danger and in a place that encourages sweating, equals, is he mentally a bit ill?).

Why can't your wife introduce you to some of her friends? Have none of her girlfriends got husbands or boyfriends to go out with in a foursome? After all, you and she are supposed to be one team, meaning your problems/unhappinesses are HERS, no?

I suck at making and keeping friends

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Mineral deposits hahaha - sometimes I feel like that too :)

Thank you for taking the time to type all that. I think a lot of what you said about circumstances in common changing when someone leaves makes sense. Working on it!

Funny you said what you said about a notebook - I actually bought a small notebook and wrote CRS on the front of it - Can't Remeber "Stuff"! I figure it would work. Who knows.

I'll keep trying tennis clubs and poker clubs. I feel like when I go the people just feel so cold and isolated, like they already have their whole lives mapped out and they're just taking a quick detour to play tennis and then go back, or play poker and go back. It's quite possible that it isn't all my fault, that I just keep running into people who just aren't interested in making friends. Who knows.

With regard to my wife's friends, yes, I've met most of her friend's husbands, and with only a couple minor exceptions they just don't seem to be interested in me. Don't know if we just don't have a lot in common or if they just don't care. Maybe they're just sensationally busy with their lives and don't have time to meet up (we're all from the Dallas area but that doesn't mean we're neighbors - if one person lives in Arlington and the other Frisco for example that's an hour drive in non-rush-hour traffic!)

Thanks again for the response, I'll keep trying.

I suck at making and keeping friends

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No, CEASE "trying". Just start frequenting places where other people wanting to make new friends tend to home in on, and it'll happen naturally.

It always happens naturally, anyway. It's like dating - you always tend to bump into a suitable partner when you're *least* expecting it, which is precisely because our jumped-up conscious controllers aren't sticking their noses into and jeopardising what is subconscious business (for a change). So we don't actually "make" friends in any concerted way, our vibes and very subtle behaviours do the communicating (that we have a friend vacancy) which someone on the same wavelength who happens to have the exact same need at the exact same time in their lives picks up on. And then, if the click's strong enough, one of you suggests swapping details or arranges a future get-together.

I have to say, though, that despite younger men hang out in packs, it seems to widely be that the majority of blokes, as soon as they marry and/or start a family, tend not to give that much of a toss any more. Do you suppose perhaps you might have a more strongly developed 'female' side, meaning, you're more of a pack animal than your typical blokie loner?

This thread has expired - why not start your own?

B-2