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Community Home & Relationships
03-17-2017 09:41 AM
A good place to start is your church. When I moved to a new state almost 2 years ago, the church that I joined offered a 10 week program "After the Boxes Are Opened" which I signed up for. My group had about 20 women and we met once a week sharing experiences, questions, answers, service provider recommendations, etc. After the 10 week program ended I suggested keepinging in touch with monthly luncheons. From that group I learned about several other women's groups that provided additional "special interest" groups; book clubs, golf, out to lunch dates, montly excursions etc. If your church or temple doesn't offer a program, I'm betting it does offer some volunteer opportunities. Volunteering is an excellent way to network and meet others.
Also, check out local "meet-ups". No one will kow you are "here" unless you let them know.
03-15-2017 10:19 PM
Regarding the suggestion of joining a "meetup" group, I belong to one and a person is under no obligation to go to any event they cannot fit into their schedule or do not want to attend. They are very fun and a sure way to meet people with the same interests.
03-15-2017 09:49 PM
03-15-2017 03:38 PM
Here is part of a column I wrote about making friends in a new location. I'm the AARP author of "The Single Woman's Guide to Retirement." Most of these suggestions could apply to you, depending on your location:
- Move to a master-planned community or active-adult community. These communities usually have full-time lifestyle or membership directors who coordinate activities. (Hint: newer places are often better because cliques haven’t formed. The average age of the residents is also younger.)
- Sign up for a class at your local university, community college, or school system in a subject that interests you. Tuition is often waived or greatly reduced for mature adults.
- Reconnect with friends from high school or college. Interestingly, many old flames who reunite end up getting married.
- Check out your library for free activities such as lectures, book clubs, computer classes, and entertainment (I’m on the Board of Trustees for my county library and I’m amazed at the number of complimentary offerings.)
- Volunteer. Join a cause you’re passionate about (Politics? Becoming a docent? Working at a food bank? Community Theater?) and meet others with the same interest. Or, try something outside of your comfort zone (I volunteered for a build with Habitat for Humanity and learned how to lay tile).
- Meet Up. MeetUp.com connects you to groups who live close by and share common interests, from astronomy to bridge to biking to gaming. Don’t see your passion listed? You can start your own MeetUp group. (Depending on the group, there may or may not be a charge.)
- Consider a part-time job. Not only meet people, but helps pay the bills.
- Join a team or learn a group sport. Your county may offer low-cost tennis, pickleball or golf clinics. Or, join a gym (but only if you’ll really go).
- Go on a trip with a singles’ group. Consider ships with singles’ cabins, such as Norwegian Cruise Line or Royal Caribbean International, or book tours that waive the single supplement, such as OAT (Overseas Adventure Travel).
- Cultivate online friends. There are online book clubs, free games you can play with people you know or don’t know (Words with Friends and Trivia Crack come to mind), forums where you can discuss opinions about various topics, and Facebook and LinkedIn allow you to connect and stay in touch personally and professionally. One caveat with Facebook: beware of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). It often looks like others are living a perfect and perpetually fun life, and it can cause feelings of anxiety and insecurity. If that’s you, don’t do Facebook.
- Get a dog. Visit the local dog park, and strike up a conversation with other dog-lovers. You’ll benefit from the exercise, too.
- Check out your local places of worship. If you’re religious, there are abundant opportunities to get involved, and many religious institutions offer vibrant singles’ groups.
- Take matters into your own hands. Ed started a “cigar night” in his backyard to meet some other men in the community. Claire started a book club by knocking on her neighbors’ doors and inviting them to her house for coffee, dessert, and an organizational meeting.
Social support is sometimes called “Vitamin F” – the “F” stands for friendship. Be sure you get your dose of this all-important nutrient.
Jan Cullinane, author, The Single Woman's Guide to Retirement (AARP)
03-15-2017 03:28 PM
I have also found that the best was to ensure that I have friends is to be a friend to others.
03-15-2017 02:29 PM
All of this "friending" and "unfriending." I just say hey, let's go have a cup of coffee.
I've found people everywhere, grocery stores, the coffee shop, thrift stores. Everywhere I go, someone knows me.
All you have to do to find a friend is be a friend. Be genuine, care and listen.
03-15-2017 01:35 PM
Sorry to hear that. My wife and I left our friends behind when we moved because of her new career.
The first neighbor I met due to getting my mail. We have a rural house now and the box is at the road. I pulled up to it with my van and got the letters out. When leaving, the vehicle slid into the ditch and was stuck in the snow. Along came a guy, saw my predicament, and pulled me out. He lives down the road.
The second neighbor I met was the lady across the road. She came over with a house-warming gift and we chatted by my door for half an hour. I since have gotten to know her husband too. We talk whenever we see each other.
03-15-2017 01:23 PM
I agree about the "Meetup" group. Fill out a profile of he things you like to do & you will FIND MANY people to hang out with the same interest. It's FREE! GOOD LUCK.
03-15-2017 01:17 PM
When I moved from Connecticut to Massachusetts, I went from a large town that I had lived in for over 20 years to a very small town where I knew no one. I started to make friends by volunteering a few housrs a week at the local hospital, thenI went to some of the groups that our senior center ran. On Thursday they had movies, and I always enjoyed going to those. I also went to the health club att he same time two days a week and met people who were working out at the same time as I did. I will admit it did take time for the people to become friendly as it was such a small town, but I was patient and willing to help when asked, and spoke up rather than just listen at discussion groups and meetings. This year I am going to volunteer working with elders doing coloring books and hope to meet more people that way.
03-15-2017 12:52 PM
I have found meetup groups have connected me with many people in my new home after retiring that have similar interests and activity levels. Just google meetup for your city or surrounding area. There is no risk and little expense at most for the activities that connect you with other like-minded individuals and groups. Good luck.
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