Making Friends is Hard to Do

May 15, 2009 at 5:44 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

I joined Facebook this week. I have 51 friends and counting. Most of them are old high school friends I had lost touch with. It’s amazing to me the intimate details I’m privvy to — the spouses they’ve married, the children they’ve had, vacation photos they’ve taken, where they’re living now, their interests, even what they’re up to at any given moment of the day. And yet I can count on one hand the number of actual friends I have here in DC. Two of them haven’t even seen me since I moved back. They’re busy, or I’m busy, or they live too far away, and I can’t jaunt off to dinner in the city anymore. My mom said having kids in common with others can help with new friendships. Eventually it might, but for now I feel more cut off from my friends here who don’t have kids. I’ve tried to connect with people here — I joined three mommy groups on Meetup.com all of which either meet up during the work week, or schedule activities not suitable for babies. I joined Twittermoms, in which I receive daily emails about virtual meetups that I’m not really very interested in participating in. I’m on a waiting list for Parents As Teachers, but they apparently don’t have a mommy group for my area. I’m looking for one-on-one, personal relationships, the kind I had plenty of back in Kansas City. I thought I’d have a leg up moving back to DC, but in some ways I’m starting all over again now that i’ve got Liam. I have less in common with my old friends here, and I have yet to find an outlet for making new friends. On Facebook you can categorize the friends you have — friends from high school or college, friends from work, people you’re related to — those constititute most of my connections. I remember when I moved to NYC, a good friend of mine fixed me up with one of her friends. We made a couple of “dates”, and the whole thing was rather awkward, like a real blind date. We didn’t hit it off immediately, and eventually we drifted apart. Making and keeping friends in a new city takes constant diligence; phone calls, emails, promises of dinners out to keep in touch. Things I don’t have as much time for now that I’m a mom.

So for now I must make do with what I have…a handful of people to actually spend time with face-to-face, 51 people I can keep up with online, and a blog that keeps me connected with everyone else out there. The connections might be superficial, but it’s all I’ve got.

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