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Old 08-16-2005, 04:29 PM   #1
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Friendship? Is it that important?

It's been awhile since I've had a good friend. We just moved to a new town and I'm not sure how to go about making friends. I'm 41 and just don't know how to start. I don't think I want friends from the work place, cuz you know how that can be.
I really have a hard time trusting other women. Women just seem so judgemental, and it's hard to find someone I can just be myself around. Any suggestions???
I've kept myself away for a long time, being married and concentrating on just that, nothing else, but I'm reallyg getting lonely. Husband can't fill a womans needs when it comes to interests
Am I really missing out? Any suggestions?

 
Old 08-16-2005, 05:55 PM   #2
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Hi, Pootsi I found that the best way of making new friends is getting involved within your community. Going to church and joining a group there may be a start. Or the local library at times has programs offered such as a book club or computer course sometimes knitting or fishing course. Find something that interests you and you will meet others who share that interest as well.

Look in your local paper for groups and activities as well. What interests do you have???

I may be in the same boat as you soon. I may be moving in the next month or so to an area 30 minutes from my closest friends. Although I will have the opportunity of seeing my friends I may take the opportunity to make some new ones. So in order to do so I may be taking some of my own advice.

To expect you husband to be your everything is not healthy and will eventually place a strain upon your marriage. Keeping busy with your own interests is important. It adds spice to the relationship and is attractive to your partner. I hope this helps.....I know it is difficult to make new friends as we get older but so long as you have interests and put yourself out there you will find others who are looking for the same thing.

I hope this helps....Goody

 
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Old 08-16-2005, 06:15 PM   #3
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Seems to make sense. I think there's strain right now going on. He's really into playing cards, I'm not, so he's been busy doing just that. I've been good, but I'm starting to get a little mad because I think I do depend on him to much.
I do like digital photography and home decorating ideas, since we just purchased a new home. I do have that to look forward to. I also know I need people in my life, more importantly.
Good ideas, thank you!

 
Old 08-16-2005, 06:40 PM   #4
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Pootsi ~ Do you work outsdie the home?? And do you have any children??? I kept busy with my kids activities.....was a Girl Scout Leader, Cathechist (Religion teacher), and was a puppy walker for the Guide Dog Foundation. Some of my best friends I met through doing things for my kids.

One mistake that we make in marriage is thinking that our spouse serves as our best friend. We sometimes lose interest in our own hobbies and gifts....I would recommend you definitely take up some courses in photography and decorating a new home is also fun. I made some of my own curtains and floral arrangements. Also learned some sponge painting techniques and put that to use as well. Many craft stores offer courses on decorating techniques which may come in useful as well.

How often does your husband play cards??? Do you do things together as well?? Make sure that you keep your relationship going in terms of date nights as well. I sense that you feel as if you are slightly disconnected with your husband. Moving is a stressful time in life....they say it takes up to a year to feel at home in a new place.

If you need some help in terms of reconnecting with your husband....I had some problems about a year ago and got some wonderful advice here which I would be more than happy to pass along. Meanwhile smile and know that things will get better once you look at things more in a positive way.

~ Goody

 
Old 08-16-2005, 09:21 PM   #5
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Hi Pootsie and Goody

Can I join you guys in the friendship search ? I might be moving soon---not too far away (about 45min or so), but far enough to be on the lookout for possible new friends.

As an answer to the title question: YES, I think friendship is VERY important!! I would be so excited if one of my close friends lived nearby, but unfortunately none of them live really close--so we have to drive 35min to an hour or two to even get together. I think I would be a lot happier to additionally make some new friends who live closer to me--especially when I move!!

Goody has some really great ideas!! I love to read, so joining a book club would be fun!! Also, volunteering somewhere could be a great way to meet new people and make friends.

Friends help lift us up when we are feeling down, they help keep us sane sometimes when we feel frazzled, and they are always there to lend their support and to laugh with. I would love to have a husband who was my best friend, but even if I had one, I know that I would also need girlfriends too---besides, who else would you talk about your husband with !!

 
Old 08-17-2005, 12:38 PM   #6
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Hi GG...sure you can join in I am sure you will have lots of insight as to how to go about finding new friends. Today I looked in the local paper where I will possibly be moving but most of what they had didn't spark my interest. I may stop by the library tomorrow & see what programs they may be running in the fall that I may sign up for. I have found that the local schools also have adult education classes and will be looking into that as well.

Pootsi ~ How are you today??? I was thinking how moving to a new area is sort of scarey....in my situation we have been living here for the past 2 summers and there are alot of retired people on my block. The lady across from me makes homemade jams and is friendly. We talk everyday while we read outside on our porches....I sorta adopted her as my grandmother. The house diagonally across the street is for sale so perhaps I will luck out with a new neighbor my age. We're considering selling our other home & full timing it so I totally understand what you must be going through. Making new friends is a concern of mine as well. Have you met anyone within your neighborhood???

It's exciting making new friends at our age (Goody is 46 BTW ) but I think it all has to do with how open you are to new people. I hope that things get easier for you and please keep us posted as to how things are going in the friendship department.

~ Goody

Last edited by goody2shuz; 08-17-2005 at 12:39 PM.

 
Old 08-17-2005, 08:37 PM   #7
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Hi
Sorry for taking so long to respond!
I have one child, she's 21 and living with her boyfriend in Atlanta.
My husband and I moved from Florida to Washington. Seems like for the past 15 years we've been doing a lot of moving. Mostly due to better jobs, jobs relocating us (he's works in high tech.)
The longest we've been in one place was probably 4 years. The average 1 year. It wasn't so bad in the beginning when we didn't have as much and we were young and energetic. Now we miss being able to have friends and being able to be rooted. Forgot what that was like. I feel so overwhelmed all the time having no one emotional to really talk to and feel comforted by. My husband really does a good job with that but get's pretty overwhelmed, since that is such a stressful state of mind for him to handle, if you know what I mean. He's been so patient!
I think the lonliness has really been getting to me and I don't want him to stop his life for my needs.
I just have the hardest time getting myself to do anything, I think mostly in fear of not being accepted or not being able to fit in somehow.
My husband and I haven't had sex in atleast two years, and before that it's been another year and so on. Maybe for that past 5 years it's been like that. Mostly because of him. He says it's because he's unhappy with himself, he's about 100 pds overweight. And I'm sure it may have something to do with me being so dependent on him for everything.
We've been married for 15 years.
I wish I can have good friends to talk to and share with, I just don't know how to have a relationship with other women.
I don't know if I ever had a normal relationship with another woman, except for back in school. After that I had become a heavy partier and drinker and had always went to clubs with usually the same girls and everything was always about partying. Then of course there was work and that was always professional. I did have one good friend that I went out a few times with to eat and chat about partying and men, but like I said we were always drinking.
Now that I don't drink or party or go to clubs, it just seems like such a new thing to have to know someone (another woman) for anything else. I know that seems so awful and odd.
The ideas you've mentioned sound like really good ones though, and I know it's just about me doing it. That seems like the part I'm really stuck at. The decorating ideas sound really good! And church would be great.
It seems being here in this new town is really nice, but it seems people are afraid to talk to me. I'm very friendly and smile a lot. But I don't get the same back. I do notice that after 3 mths though people are finally starting to open up to me. Seems different than bigger towns and places. Maybe I'm being overly friendly, maybe to much at times. I just don't want to be in a negative situation, which I tend to get into a lot. I tend to judge myself by how others see me and get very upset when they think negatively of me. I think I appear to paranoid and sensitive sometimes.
Anyway, thanks for your help

 
Old 08-17-2005, 09:01 PM   #8
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

I am lucky enough to still see my best friend since 7th grade nearly every day. But I had to make new friends too. It is hard for me to do because I tend to be shy.

Having friends is really important to me! I also have several cyber friends that I chat with just about everyday. I have also met a few in person off of another site I belong to that has to do with the breed of dogs I raise.

My husband also has his hunting friends that come up all the time for hunting and fishing. I socialize with them too, when their wives come, but mostly it is just the men. It's kind of nice to have a break from each other.

Goody, that is so cool you walk Guide Dog pups!!! When I was 16, I was very active in 4H and I raised a German Shepard pup for Guide Dogs for the Blind. It was one of the best experiences of my life! Now I raise Jack Russell Terriers! I even have a one that helps with my seizures!

Pootsi, what about taking a class in digi photography at a nearby JC? Learn something new and maybe make a friend or two?

Shelly

 
Old 08-17-2005, 09:47 PM   #9
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Hi Pootsi !! Well, at least you are already making some new friends here, on the boards ! I can see how all of the moving around can make it hard to make and maintain friendships, but the smaller town you are in now sounds like a great place to start. Just keep smiling and being friendly (even if you get negative responses at times) and people will eventually warm up to you . Just get involved in things that you love and the rest (friendships) will come naturally over time as people get to know you. You can do it!!!!!! Just get up the courage to put yourself out there-----I'm going to do the same right along with you--- , and we can all compare notes on how it's going. Between you and I and Goody---well, one of us is bound to make a new friend-----which I think we all can!

As to your husband, I think you should spice things up a little . Dim the lights if he is feeling somewhat self-conscious and let him know how much you care about and love him. Then put on the moves and get things going again -----he won't know what hit him, but I think he will be pleasantly surprised!!

Anyway, keep us updated on how things are going for you!

 
Old 08-18-2005, 07:16 AM   #10
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Hi Pootsi & all

Pootsi.....it's time to take a risk. I know that most of your concerns stem from the fear in making an investment in friendship that may not last too long if you should have to make another move. But you mustn't think that way. I am not going to fool you......most friendships that are real and forever are those that you make while in college. I have 3 best friends....one from high school, one from college, and one I met here. In each case I took a risk in opening up them in oreder to establish trust. It took some effort on my part but for the most part it came natural because these three people share alot of values that I have and share the same interests and are people I have over time grown to trust. And guess what!!!! All three live far away from me. One I never really met in person but I refer to as my CBF (cyber best friend) We make an effort to talk and catch up on things and they are my metaphyscial friends who seem to know just when I need their friendship & support. My best friend from college and I can resume where we have left off even after months of not speaking to one another. My high school best friend and I only speak 1 or 2 times a year and see one another every year or two. This is rare and I consider myself blessed to have such friends.

I also have my good friends....the ones I speak to and see more often. We met through common interests of our kids attending the same school. They are the friends I hang most with and although we know one another well I still do not trust them as well as I do my "best" friends. There is an element of competition and almost of being too comfortable that I personally find holds me back from totally opening myself up with them. If I were to have marital problems or be going through something very painful.....it would be my college best friend and CBF that I would trust most and seek support from. These are the friends I will be moving away from....they will be 30 minutes away but I am anxious to make new friends once we make the move.

So...Pootsi, I think that it's going to take some risk on your part. The first thing you need to do is make a conscious effort of putting yourself out there. Ibeeshell makes a wonderful suggestion of taking a course in digital photography. See if there is one offered nearby and this will allow you to meet others who share a similar interest. I want you to go out today to the library and look into courses they have to offer and sign up for as many as you can. Alos get your local paper...the town edition and look in there for community happenings. Perhaps there will be something there as well. Go to your church and inquire what groups meet there and sign up for something. The more you put yourself out there the more of a chance you have of finding somebody you want to get to know better. Take a cooking class if that interests you.

Second...you need to stop putting your husband in the realm of having to be your best friend on a 24/7 basis. This is unhealthy. Come here if you need to vent or unload to us rather than doing so to your husband. Once you branch out to others you will be able to reopen your intimacy with your husband. I have a question for you which I hope won't offend you. Do you complain alot to your husband??? Or share your unhappiness on a continuous basis with him??? Because if you do you must stop this right away. I guarantee if you do things will improve at home. You need to come here and share your frustrations....men get worn down and blown away by that. I often subjected my husband to alot of wind blowing and when I projected more sunshine he responded much more favorably to that.

I learned about the wind & sun theory here. If we act like the wind, that is, complain and bicker or nag as a man often refers to it, we act like the wind which only leads our spouse to want to find refuge in another palce far away from us. However, if we radiate sunshine and learn to approach him with warmth he will only want to get closer to seek it's comfort and glow. You need to bring more sunshine his way....bring the wind here until you find that friend. Let us be your friends for a while until you get settled and meet new people in your area. This way you will rebuild your relationship with your husband by taking some of the pressure off of expecting him to be your husband and best friend all at the same time. Do you understand what I am saying???

And Pootsi.....you don't have to party or drink to have a friend. If you want a partying friend then go to a bar.....but if you want a friend that you can have without having to party or drink then do as I have suggested. There's always knitting & crocheting...and you mustn't drink or party while using htose needles As a matter of fact it gets awfully cold in Washington so learnng how to knit could come in handy. And homemade Christmas gifts as well.....a scarf is easy and would give you something new to learn as well.

Ibeeshell ~ I walked one puppy and it was the greatest experience ever. She had some problems with pain in her joints from growing too fast which worked themselves out. I couldn't finish her training because I had to have major surgery and she was behind already due to her health problems and so out of love I gave her up to another puppy walker who kept in touch with me throughout. We attended the graduation together and it was a beautiful experience for if I hadn't given my puppy up whe would have failed and now she is with a lady in Kansas City who keeps in touch with me and tells me how well they are doing. Pootsi....this is another way to meet others for while puppy walking you get together with other puppywalkers.

GG ~ your advice is wonderful. Pootsi needs encouragement and you have lots to offer. You are right that we need to smile and project friendliness. I look forward to hearing more about that.

So, Pootsi....I think that the few things that have been suggested may give you a good start. Remember....we are your new best friends I intend on trying a few of the suggestions made here out today and will let you all know how it goes.

~ Goody

 
Old 08-18-2005, 09:22 AM   #11
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Pootsi, is there a YMCA in your area? They offer walking groups a lot of the times. Water aerobics are fun too!

If you have a dog, you could take it to a dog park to meet friends.

Myself and 3 others walk 5 or 6 jacks every night one mile. We have a lot of fun gabbing the whole time! One of the walkers is my neighbore, whom I lived across the street from for 2 years before I got to know her. (Like I said, I tend to be shy) Now she is one of my dearest friends and she is like another grandma to my children! I can't believe it took me 2 years to talk to her!

Anyway, there really are alot of ways to meet people when you really stop and think about it.

 
Old 08-18-2005, 12:36 PM   #12
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

wow! you sound like me! I dont meet many other women who have trust issues befriending women. I feel they can be judgemental, too, and never seem to be as open (esp w. my sense of humor) with them as I can with my guy friends...I always wished for a female best friend, and while I have several that I can totally open up to conversationally & love, I never feel like I can totally be my goofy self around them. There are definately sillier, less inhibited parts of me that are only reserved for my old guy pals...I am still not sure why...

 
Old 08-18-2005, 02:57 PM   #13
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Well Pootsi and all, I did go up to the library and although the fall programs are not yet available I did notice in a brochure that they did have a digital photography course that ran for one evening this summer. Other programs offered are computer courses, book club, movie nights, some craft instruction such as crystal necklaces etc. There are also bus trips to go to plays, Christmas shopping and to NYC. That's at my library. I was told that there are more things offered in the fall. We live on the water so they also offer courses on Striped Bass Fishing and Inshore Fishing as well as Transformational Breath which is a program for stress and pain management. I wish I had seen that earlier because I could have used that. I was told that a newsletter that had a list of the fall courses would be mailed out sometime next week and I think I will definitely sign up for a few things.

Shelly ~ I never realized that you were in the 40 something age group. Somehow I thought you were younger but it's nice to see another "mature" poster here since we seem to be in the minority. The YMCA sounds like another great idea worth checking out. I have a lab and she is too strong to walk since I have some back problems.....I use to but I would take a Jack Russell anytime over her!!!

Daria...welcome I understand what you mean about not finding anyone you can be your goofy self with. I can only do that with two people....MBF(my best friend) and my CBF (cyber best friend) Unfortunately they live far away but friends like that are so hard to find and I couldn't imagine finding another friend like them. Doesn't mean that others aren't as important and I find that getting to know people in general is fun and worthwhile. It's a challenge but I think it makes our lives more balanced and happier.

Well...just wanted to share my library findings and look forward to what others find as well. ~ Goody

 
Old 08-18-2005, 05:54 PM   #14
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Oh yeah, I definately am the "wind" to my hubby. I don't allow myself to show my anger anywhere else because it seems so ugly, not that I'm that bad, but I don't want to lose control and start crying and all that. People can't imagine me being angry at anything. I find myself gritting my teeth towards the end of a work day at times. Then when I go home, I'm still holding onto all the stress and I'm in a bad mood the rest of night. I end up going to bed late and having nightmares all night.
I think I have an anxiety disorder.

I love animals, the puppy walking thing sounds So fun!

Thank you for your encouragement, it really does help me!

 
Old 08-18-2005, 06:10 PM   #15
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Re: Friendship? Is it that important?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pootsi
Oh yeah, I definately am the "wind" to my hubby. I find myself gritting my teeth towards the end of a work day at times. Then when I go home, I'm still holding onto all the stress and I'm in a bad mood the rest of night. I end up going to bed late and having nightmares all night.
I think I have an anxiety disorder.

I love animals, the puppy walking thing sounds So fun!
Pootsi ~ Why is it that you think you have anxiety disorder??? From what you say you seem to do okay at work. Perhaps joining a gym may help out as well. Exercise will work off the stress and it puts you out there to meet others too. I know that there's a program at Curves that my sister in law goes to which is only 30 minutes and she has met other women there. Perhaps that's an idea of killing 2 birds with one stone!!!

The puppy walking is good and sometimes you are able to bring the puppy to your job depending on what you do. I didn't work but I took the puppy to my daughter's concerts at school, to sports activities that I was watching, to stores, to pools, anywhere where she would be exposed to people. You might really want to consider it. Amazingly in my situation when I went to the graduation after having to give the puppy to another woman to finish up the training, even 4 months later and the dog knew me. She had a way of putting her head on your shoulder and doing a soft moan when you hugged her and she only did it with me and sure enough when I hugged her she did it. I couldn't stop crying and knew I did the right thing. It's really something I would recommend....and all the puppywalkers do training programs together which will enable you to meet others as well.

You need to find ways to alleviate your stress. Moving to a new area places alot of stress on you. It is up there on the most stressful things in life so give yourself some time to adjust. And know that we are here to vent if you need a friend ~ Goody

Last edited by goody2shuz; 08-18-2005 at 06:16 PM.

 
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