Making friends after 30

I’ve just read article in the New York Times about making friends after the age of 30. The article explains that proximity, repeated unplanned interaction and a setting where guards are let down are the key ingredients to making long term, long lasting friendships. This is why university is a great place for creating friendships

The article continues saying as we grow older, we know ourselves better and therefore, become more “picky” as to who we make friends with. Younger, we expect our friends to be loyal to the end, but as we age we understand this is not always realistic.

I thought about Desperate Housewives the exact image of friends, meeting unplanned, loyal to the end, but how unrealistic is it? The show appealed to so many people I wonder if this is the kind of friendship we all long.

Most of us make friends in the workplace. This is where we are most likely to meet lots of people with the unplanned interaction factor. When I was younger I always tried to keep my private life separate from my work life, and work friendships always tended to develop once I had left a company.

Another major hurdle is distance. It’s difficult to keep up those friendships when any encounters need to be planned.

We all move a lot more than we used to. We change the places we rent. We change company more often and we even move to a different country.

Then there is Facebook.
Does facebook really help to foster friendships or does it maintain friendships under artificial respiration.
How many people do you have on facebook ?
How many of your contacts have you met in the past year ?
Do you sometimes feel that you are keeping contact for nostalgia ?

So how do we make and keep friends when we are no longer in university.

I recently discovered a website called Meetup which creates groups that people can attend on a regular basis and meet people. At first I thought it was an artificial way of making friends but then I realised that it is logical. To be friends with someone you need a common interest. It helps break the ice and you can begin to learn to appreciate each other.

So I have signed up for a few groups and will make an important effort to go to the meetings once I have moved to the Greater Manchester area early next year.

When I arrived in Montpellier two years ago I didn’t have any friends here. I made new ones and very solid ones. I have to admit, leaving the friends I have made here in France behind is not going to be easy, but after reading the article and in particular the comments I am looking forward to meeting new people.

Have you moved ? Did you make new friends and how did you do it?
Have you read the NYT article and do you agree it is difficult to make friends the older we get ?

I’d be really interested in hearing your comments.


8 thoughts on “Making friends after 30

  1. Hey sweetheart. I sure hope we can make friends after the age of 30, being 30 and having just moved to the other side of the planet! I mostly used Twitter to meet people outside of work. Threw myself into those friendships a lot more than the work ones where I am being more cautious being in such a small office but things are looking promising. 🙂 I am sure it will be fine!


    1. Hey darling
      I understand you saying you put more into the out of work people and I think you’ve made the right decision. I’ve definitely made the decision to go to these meetup meeting, meet people and get out and about that way. I’ll put a bit more effort into Twitter too.
      Thanks for popping in

  2. Hi! I moved to the North East of England from Birmingham and did not know a soul. I am beginning to develop solid friendships now after three years (through the workplace) but I’ve realised that the MOST worthwhile friendships have been the ones I’ve really had to work at, where initially, the friendships didn’t immediately happen… Three years sounds like ages, but I’m cautious!!! I’ve also made HUGE efforts to maintain long distance friendships with all of my old friends in Brum. It’s worth the effort. I hope you enjoy being back in the UK and that you keep in touch with your friends in France. I am most jealous of your experiences in France – I’ve enjoyed reading your musings!
    It’s interesting to note that friendships develop whilst blogging too… tentative, but with shared interests. 🙂


    1. Moo
      thanks for these encouraging words. I will most certainly maintain the friendships I have build in France and I can see wht you mean when you say the best friendships are those where you have had to work at them at the beginning. Maybe that is also key to sucess. I read an article where one person said she doesnt give up until she has asked/initiated something about 3 or 4 times and came to the same conclusion that by working it the friendship devloped much better.
      I am going to enjoy being home and you’ll hear plnty more musing and stories about France here !

  3. friendship, a great subject.
    Since a long time, I’ve wanted to have a friend’s group like in DH…
    NOw, the time is passed and…no one. It was very difficult for me to see that at 35 years old, I’ve no friend like that, too much movies !!!
    Friendship and love are not the same than in film, no charming, no to the end of life.

    We change, we move…
    and we find.

    One day, friends appear in a place (to take a tea and a cupcake…), in a commun interest (blog-roll is a good way too, today I have a couple of friends who are very important for me).

    So I’m agree with you “to put all your chance in the same basket” with Meetup

    If we stay in this non realistic way (for me) to have a group, an unic group, it’s important not forget that all our friends are differents, and if they love us, they don’t love them each others necessary… . We are the line between them.

    so commun interest are important, very important

    PS : sorry for my bad langage, I do effort

    1. Hey Lunefantasy don’t apologise for your English I understood it all! and you are right. There is no point in hoping to find this group of people like DH or Friends where everyone gets on with everyone else. Of course groups centered around the same interest are going to work better but as you say we are a line between them.
      Thanks for the encouragement and of course you can always meet friends and become very good friends in a coffee shop 😉

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