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Making Friends As An Adult

MakingFriends

I’m just gonna put this out there – it’s hard to make friends as an adult!  Once you are out of school, there isn’t an obvious way to establish new relationships.  It can be really awkward and hard at first.  You can’t exactly walk up to someone and say, “Wanna be my friend?”  I know I’m not the only one who feels this way – a fellow City Moms Blogger in Reno recently wrote a post on this very same topic!

After moving back to Houston post college I tried reconnecting with friends that I grew up with, but due to proximity and growing apart nothing really stuck.  Throughout my twenties, most of my friendships were work-based – very convenient, but unfortunately not long-lasting as you change jobs.

Never has my lack of girlfriends been so apparent as in my late twenties when I was planning my wedding.  My husband managed to maintain a tight relationship with “his boys” that he grew up with.  His groomsmen list was way past the double digit mark, and I was pushing it to fill up one hand of bridesmaids.  It was after our wedding that I decided I needed to invest in some girlfriends!  And no I don’t mean invest my money. {Isn’t that what a sorority is for?  Kidding!  I can say that since I was in a sorority…although a match.com type service for girlfriends isn’t a bad idea…I digress.}  Making friends truly is an investment of your time, but so worth it!

I’m happy to report that since my wedding almost five years ago I have the most amazing friends a girl could ask for.  Some are moms, some aren’t, and we are actually all very different.

If you find yourself relating to anything I said above, browse through some of these suggestions, put on your brave girl panties, and get out there!  Also for a good laugh, checkout the book MWF Seeking BFF by Rachel Bertsche.  I talk more about it here.

Join a New Organization

I think this is the best way to make friends, but sometimes the scariest.  I didn’t meet my true, lifelong BFF until my late twenties.  We worked together, yes, but really became besties while we were in graduate school together.  I met all of my other girlfriends {after my wedding} while volunteering at the Junior League of Houston.  Honestly, that was the main reason I joined the Junior League {and to give back to the community, blah, blah}.  Nothing bonds women faster than serving orange rolls in the Junior League Tea Room on a Saturday morning wearing matching aprons.  Other ideas for meeting people in Houston :: Sorority Alumni Groups {pictured below}, College Alumni Groups, Become a Houston Rodeo Volunteer, Running Clubs, Baby Boot Camp, Gyms like Define, Pure Barre, or a Crossfit gym in your area like Crossfit Caveman in Fort Bend.  We even have contributors who made their friends by doing a simple Google search for mom groups in their area.

PiPhiGroup

Look for a Church

Joining a church is a great way to meet people, and the #1 way that our HMB Contributors made their close friends {I did a very quick, non-scientific poll via Facebook – so you know it’s true}.  If you are looking for a new church home, pay attention to the members – are there a lot of people your age or with children?  If you are already a member of a church, try getting involved in a new activity.  I recently signed Jason and I up for our church’s new dinner group.  He rolls his eyes at me when I add stuff to our already packed schedules, but I feel like this will be a great way to connect with people who are like-minded and live in our area.

Use Social Media

Social networking is a great tool to get the ball rolling.  My neighborhood has a simple Facebook Group for each subdivision.  This has been an amazing tool for meeting my neighbors.  Just the other day, a new neighbor posted on the page that he and his two kids were looking to meet his neighbors so they put up a lemonade stand for a few hours and advertised on the Facebook page.  This was an easy way to put yourself out there.  We also started a girl’s happy hour group in the neighborhood just by using the Facebook page.  It’s also a great way to find a babysitter or nanny, but more on this in my next post!

Houston Moms Blog

As cheesy as it sounds, we want to be your friend too! I promise you can make real-life friends through the blogosphere.  Just ask Bre, another one of our contributors, who has made the majority of her friendships in Houston through a social blogging club.  The best way to cultivate these friendships is to leave comments on the blog and our networks like Instagram, email the contributor you best connect with, and join us for our next outing.  We have some exciting ones coming up VERY soon…

Scope Out Your Kid’s Groups

I can imagine it’s also convenient to make friends through your kiddo’s activities once they are at that stage.  Use your kid’s social calendar for your own personal gain!  Plus, if you end up hitting it off with one of the moms, it may make sitting at t-ball practice in the heat a little more tolerable.

Other Tips

  • If you don’t take away anything else from this post, just remember that the key to making new friends is YOU!  Friends will not magically come your way.  It takes time, trying different things, and lots of effort on your part.  I can’t tell you how many different organizations I’ve joined or belonged to in hopes of meeting some girlfriends.  Just like shopping for shoes, you have to try on lots of pairs before finding the right fit.
  • It is always a little scary and awkward to put yourself out there.  That’s why I think participating in something out of your comfort zone bonds you faster than anything else – giving speeches together {Ashley}, serving the community {JL girls}, living in a dorm {Lauryn}, and sharing breast-feeding stories {Kelly} all make for great friendship building exercises!  Wine works too.
  • And remember, once you make new friends, just like a marriage, it takes work to keep it up.  Make sure that you are being a good friend yourself.  Sometimes with overwhelming schedules and to-do lists it’s very tempting to put friends and social outings on the back burner, but I promise you will never regret getting out for some quality girlfriend time {and if you do, you probably should re-evaluate that friendship and go back to the list above}.  Check out what I recently did for my sweet friends – I felt bad for being MIA since having Jack, so I wanted to do something to show how much I love and appreciate them!  Like the old saying goes, you get out what you put in!

SlumberParty

Leave a comment below or email me at chelseaphmb {at} gmail {dot} com to continue this conversation!

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26 Responses to Making Friends As An Adult

  1. Ashley B. March 21, 2014 at 8:28 am #

    So glad we found each other 7 years ago! Can’t wait til our boys are old enough to really be friends!

    • Chelsea P
      Chelsea P March 21, 2014 at 9:04 pm #

      Me too! Jack and Graham are destined to be BFF’s!

  2. Tara F. March 21, 2014 at 9:18 am #

    Great post Chelsea!! This is such a real issue!! And I’m totally going to put that book on my reading list!!!

    • Chelsea P
      Chelsea P March 21, 2014 at 9:09 pm #

      Thanks Tara! That book is a quick and fun read!

  3. Laurel March 21, 2014 at 9:26 am #

    Love this post! I drifted away from a lot of my friends after I started staying home with my girl and it was so hard to find new friends.

    • Chelsea P
      Chelsea P March 21, 2014 at 9:08 pm #

      Thanks Laurel! I majorly drifted from my friends after I had Jack. All of my focus and attention shifted to him and my family. Luckily I had understanding friends and am now starting to meet other new moms who understand that too. What area of town are you in?

      • Laurel March 22, 2014 at 6:28 am #

        I’m in Pearland, I’ve been lucky to find a great mommy group here for my daughter and for myself!

  4. Bre
    Bre March 21, 2014 at 11:57 am #

    It’s so much fun to meet people in person that you love on social media. I love Blogger meetups!

    • Chelsea P
      Chelsea P March 21, 2014 at 9:14 pm #

      That is so much fun Bre. I love meeting my favorite bloggers in real life. Makes me want to attend a blogger meetup or conference soon!

  5. Colleen March 21, 2014 at 8:20 pm #

    Great post! We just relocated to Houston 6 weeks ago and I don’t know a soul. I’d love to make some girlfriends in the area. And my son was born May 2013 too! 😉

    • Chelsea P
      Chelsea P March 21, 2014 at 9:21 pm #

      Thanks Colleen!! Where did you move from? Welcome to Houston!!! So happy that you found Houston Moms Blog. That is so, so cool that you have a son born last May too…can you believe it’s almost been a year! Have you started thinking about the one year birthday party? Can’t wait to chat more!

  6. Kelly T March 24, 2014 at 12:47 pm #

    Great post! I’m pretty sure we went to college at UNT together which makes it a very small world! I’m friends with Lauryn Gordon.

  7. Kristal April 9, 2014 at 10:32 am #

    Church has been been a great place to connect with people. I agree that going to a gym or martial arts class regularly can also be a nice place to meet like minded people.

  8. Rebekah September 5, 2014 at 12:16 pm #

    This is so true. I laugh often when I see my kids just make friends so quickly, it’s a lot harder as an adult!

  9. Roxanne November 13, 2014 at 8:41 am #

    My husband and I have found that life after the military has been difficult when it comes to making friends. As a military wife, I had something in common with our neighbors (we generally lived on base) regardless of age, ethnicity, whether we had children (we are currently waiting to adopt), education, etc. Making friends has been extremely difficult for me this last year but it’s good to know that I’m not the only one out there.

  10. Crystal January 20, 2015 at 5:58 pm #

    Chelsea,
    We should be friends! We have so much in common: work full time in Hou, live in Sugar Land, on Rodeo Committee, done fair share of time at JLH Tea Room, active in church, host book club, check Facebook daily, write a travel blog…and still, it is hard to make friends! I have plenty of casual friends but no one close to BFF caliber!

    • Chelsea P
      Chelsea P January 20, 2015 at 10:17 pm #

      Yes! It sounds like we should!!! Sending you an email now…

  11. Andrea November 1, 2015 at 6:01 pm #

    I’ve made a ton of friends through the Houston Sports & Social Club. It’s mostly young professionals, but is open to anyone 21+ up. There are tons of singles and couples who play in the league and there are a variety of recreational sports to try from kickball and bowling to flag football and soccer. Check it out at http://www.HoustonSSC.com

  12. Ginger December 16, 2015 at 12:16 am #

    I was just looking up the info for the Houston Junior League a few days ago, but due to the residency requirement I wouldn’t be able to be in the new member class for two more years 🙁 I was so disappointed! I’ve always wanted to do JL but this is the first time I’ve lived near enough to one, I’m bummed to have to wait!

  13. Tinaka April 11, 2016 at 9:00 pm #

    OMG…I love this!!! It is so hard to find friends when your older and have moved as much as we have! ( just retired Army) We are finally putting our roots down in the Houston area and I’m scared to death!! For the first time ever I actually do not know once single person in the area! It’s even harder to make friends when you have an Autistic child, some people just don’t get it or want to get it.

    • Chelsea P
      Chelsea P April 12, 2016 at 11:04 pm #

      Good look and welcome to Houston! Hopefully you will find an awesome group of ladies in your area and welcome you with open arms. We’d love to have you at a Houston Moms Blog event too! That’s a great way to meet people and connect with someone in your area. What area are you moving to? Chances are we have at least one contributor from there.

    • Victoria Krumm April 25, 2016 at 9:36 am #

      hello Tinaka! My name is Victoria. What part of Houston are you in? My son is on the spectrum too. I’m looking for groups or someway to meet people. Maybe we can help each other =)

  14. Victoria Krumm April 25, 2016 at 9:29 am #

    It is really nice to know that there are others out there that are in the same boat as me 🙂 We moved our family to Houston a few weeks ago – Tomball to be exact. I am working from home and I’m a bit nervous about how to meet people but will definitely need to put myself out there. I too have a son on the autism spectrum which definitely makes things a bit harder but I have faith we will find new friends! This was very inspiring!!

  15. Crystal Dang May 24, 2016 at 8:59 pm #

    Hi Chelsea we live fairly near each other. Wouldn’t mind hanging out and learning more about you or if you have suggesting of places in our area to meet new people, mainly other moms. Thanks, Crystal

  16. Chari Westcott July 30, 2016 at 7:14 pm #

    I searched “How to meet adult friends” and this blog came up. So glad to read I’m not the only one struggling with this kind of thing. I’d love to join a meet up group if that is still an option like was discussed in the blog!! I live in Pearland with my hubby and two year old daughter and work fulltime as a mental health therapist. Please let me know if I could reach out somehow!! Thanks.

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    […] we had less in less in common, those friendships faded away. But … you will make new friends. Making friends is always so much more difficult later in life, but it does happen. My friendships now are much […]

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