Nobody ever told me that once you pass 50, a lot of your best friends get super-busy and it’s almost impossible to get together.
This was supposed to be the time of life when people are finished raising kids and have plenty of time to have fun and hang out. Right?
But it hasn’t worked that way.
A couple of my friends go on long trips several times a year with their husbands. And have grandchildren they spend a lot of time with.
Two really good friends moved to other states.
Another has a full-time job, a fiancée, rental properties and an aging mother that keeps her busy.
And my sister lives 700 miles away.
I want only the best for all of them, but that means sometimes when I want to do something on the weekend or a holiday nobody can “come out and play with me”!
What’s the solution?
When my son and his wife moved out of state to go to grad school, he joked that I could get a pet to take their place. But I can’t get a dog because I’m always at work and out and about.
And online dating prospects look more and more bleak the older you get …
I’ve joined Girlfriend Social – a website that’s like online dating to meet platonic female friends — and that’s how I met a wonderful friend who, unfortunately, moved last year — and several nice friends I meet for lunch regularly. But there are very few women registered on the site who live near my house.
I continue to do the things I’m interested in by joining Meetup groups, library book clubs and other activities. And I occasionally meet nice women there or through mutual friends – made a great new friend when the mom of the man next door retired and moved to town and a new friend from the library book club, too. I even asked my doctor if she wanted to get together and we took a walk on the beach and had dinner afterwards one night and ending up laughing most of the evening!
Also made a great, fun new friend when I went on a women’s kayaking and hiking weekend in North Carolina through the local walking Meet-Up Group. We drove up and back together and realized we both like the same kinds of activities and are always looking for new adventures.
I swear, though, it makes me feel like a grade schooler again to approach potential friends for the first time about getting together.
You can’t just smile hopefully and say, “Do you want to be my friend?”
And if you suggest doing something together too soon and you run the risk of the other person thinking you’re creepy and/or stalker-like.
But sometimes you only have one chance meeting and the opportunity is gone.
Even if you do mention getting together and exchange contact info, and the other person responds positively, if you don’t have all the confidence in the world you still sort of wonder, “Is she just being polite or does she really want to get together?”
I guess that’s what men feel like when they ask women for dates.
Only making new female friends as an empty nester is weird in a slightly different way.
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