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Maintaining Friendships
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Maintaining Friendships

I have had issues, as a 26-year-old woman, maintaining friendships with girls my age. I've lived in the same town my whole life but went away to high school and college. Since college I have tried and tried and tried to maintain closer relationships to the friends I've made over the years that live near me but do not feel like this is returned.

I call people and they are very wishy washy in returning my calls... There is one girl in particular who is having her wedding September 2012 which she asked me to be a bridesmaid in and I haven't seen her since October, haven't really talked to her since then either and there have been no apologies or anything. She's stated she still wants me to be in her wedding.

Is this something anyone else is experiencing? Is it part of being an "adult" and having work and relationships and other things in life just getting in the way? I mean... it takes no more than 10 minutes to call someone right?

Should I keep someone in my life who doesn't give a sh*t to see how I'm doing?

On the other hand... it is SO hard to meet new people to be friends with without looking like a desperate weirdo so I don't really want to lose the friends I have. Haha.

Any tips, suggestions, opinions?
Tags: Friendship, Relationships, Women
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Hi there.  I moved around a lot when growing up so where lots of people have those really "old" friends, I never really had that.  Consequently, as an adult, sometimes I see maintaining my friendships as a job.  I value the friendships so I do it but it can feel a bit like work at times.  And especially when I'm stressed or feeling overwhelmed or super busy.  

I just share this with you because perhaps your friend that is getting married really does love and care about you but is in that "zone" where she is just taking care of what is on her plate now and letting other things (like calling you) go to the back burner.  Not that it is right but she may be unaware that she is making you feel bad.

I do think being in someone's wedding is a big deal and if you don't feel close to her, it could feel a little awkward being a bridesmaid.

Anyway, here are some of the things that help me make connections.  If I have an actual activity that I do with someone, that really helps me become close and keep it going.  If you like to exercise at all, this is a great way to make good friends.  I did aeorbics two times a week and became really best buds with another lady that did the same class I did.  There are all kinds of places to do group fittness stuff and it becomes a routine and scheduled event with a friend.  I've done a Sat. morning yoga class and then gone and gotten coffee with a couple of girls afterwards.  Gone from home for about 2 hours and got a work out in and social time, both!  So, maybe something like that is an option.

I've made friends with ladies at my church in a bible study.  I've made friends at my public library when I joined a book club.  Things like that.

Also if you have kids, working on a school committee can make some great connections.  

I really crave my female friendships as you do.  Would any of these things fit into your life?  
I've had this issue at times and sometimes feel pretty isolated.  It does help me to get involved in some different things through my church or community so I can meet new people.  That's how I've met some of my closer friends recently.  Good luck!
Yes. I understand that she is busy but I have told her, twice now, that it hurts my feelings for her to make no effort to maintain the friendship. It makes me feel pathetic to be the only one calling to hang out and either being ignored or rejected. Twice she's bailed on plans we made and has never apologized.

I have met some people exercising but it is such a weird feeling to attempt to make a connection besides that but I guess if I want more female friends I have to suck it up and be willing to look like "that" girl. ahaha.

It's not like I don't have friends.. I just want more. hehe.

Thanks for the responses ladies!
LaDonna,  you and I have different ideas of what women look like when they reach out in friendship.   There are women I know who are constantly asking new people to do this and that,  openly getting others to join in planned events,  and I view them as very confident and inspiring.  I don't know what "that girl" means to you,  but it sounds like you feel like women like that are behaving desperately.

I have one friend in particular,  who is constantly inviting new people to go on our girl's happy hours,  movie nights,  women's Bible study,  etc.  It's a constant thing for her to say "hey I'm going to lunch with girlfriends I bet you'd like,  tomorrow,  at _____  you should come".  It's great,  and other smaller subgroups form off those kind of invitations as people find kindred spirits in the group.  She doesn't look desperate in the least.

If you have groups that go do different things,  it's really easy to include more.  And you're MUCH more likely to get a "yes" if you say "Hey I'm walking the 3 mile trail Saturday morning with friends,  you feel like coming?"   rather than,  "do you want to hang out sometime?"

Best wishes.  I wonder where your fear of looking foolish approaching new friends comes from -

Thank you so much for your response. I think my feeling like reaching out to invite new people to do things can be termed as "desperate" or odd because all the women I know how a core group of friends which they've had since high school, grade school, or college. I went away to school since high school and the friends I made there are all over the globe... I also went away to college and those friends all live in New Hampshire or surrounding areas so there has to be a lot of planning involved in seeing them, which we do and it's great.

It is good to hear that some do not view this as odd or desperate. I guess part of me also feels like i'm pretty old to be trying to make new friends, haha.

Oh well. I've never let my own misgivings stop me from putting myself out there so I will continue to do so :-)

Anyone in the Mass area?? Hahahah
  My family moved around a lot when I was growing up. It wasn't fun losing friends all the time. Now I just find it awkward trying to keep friends. I've just been hurt so much growing up by it and other things.
  When I met my husband I tried to become friends with a couple he knew. Eventually they moved into the same apartment building as us. When they moved in I had already had our 1st baby. They ended up moving away and barely stayed in contact with us. It was REALLY messed up. We shared a storage unit with them (Which I thought was a bad idea from the beginning but I trusted my husband). We were always the ones calling/texting/emailing them and they almost never replied back. We even went to visit them at the house they were living at, quite a few times.
  We went to their house for the key to the storage unit to get our stuff and he just happened to "forget" it at his uncles house?? really? He knew we were coming! We think they just lost the unit and didn't want to tell us.
He was supposed to be my husbands best man but backed out (days before) because of work. We understood that but his wife didn't even bother to show up!
  Not to mention that they've driven by our house when I was home twice and never even stopped in to say Hello? We live at a dead end!! So they had to turn around? I know this because they called my husband! and the one time they were still on the road and he told them to stop in and say hi!
  It seems obvious to me that they are probably acting this way because they don't like me?? I don't know what I ever did to them though. I am a nice person. I just have a hard time getting close to people because I'm used to people leaving my life.
It really upsets me the way they went about things. It makes me want even less friends.
I have 3 children with #4 on the way.
I'm not going to invest my time into someone who isn't even going to try to be my friend.
I feel bad about it sometimes, because they were my husbands friends before I even met him. It seemed like he spent a lot of time with them. I feel like it was somehow my fault that they stopped talking to him or being friends with him.
I mean, he still sees them every once in awhile and they share some words but for the most part we hear nothing. My husband works at the hospital(10yrs) and they worked there too at one point. Now the man works as an emt in a different county and his wife switched jobs about 2 yrs ago. It's weird. When he sees them they act like nothings wrong, everythings peachy. I hope they don't treat other people the way they did us.
Sad stuff!
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