Stuck

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Miss Kirby, Mar 28, 2008.

  1. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Mar 28, 2008

    I feel like I'm sort of stuck socially...

    I'm 23, I have the same five best friends from school (one from elementary school, two from Jr. high, two from high school). I have acquaintances I've made in college and through work and through friends, but not really any friends that I talk to or hang out with outside of work or school. I do see my friends sometimes, some more so than others, but I feel like they just have whole new lives - and so do I - but mine is mostly just work. We seem to be growing apart (whether it be kids, moved away, or just busy) and with a few of them the friendship isn't really the same anymore. I try to go out whenever I can but when I do I have trouble opening up to new people beyond the initial introductory conversation (mostly about my job - people are always amazed I deal with 25 six year olds every day). Part of it is because my friends like going out to bars/clubs and I don't drink or dance so I feel like I don't really fit in!! Seriously maybe I should just drink - maybe it will help me lighten up a bit???? :rolleyes: I just feel like I have to have this guard up all the time.

    I just feel like I'm staying the same while all my friends are moving on and becoming independent. I'm still living at home and while it's convenient and inexpensive I feel like it's not helping me grow... I want to make my own friends and start my own life and not feel like I'm stuck like this when all my friends are moving on without me!

    Blah. Sorry I needed to vent.
     
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  3. bakingdiva

    bakingdiva Companion

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    Mar 28, 2008

    Have you tried to join a singles' group at church? I know my church has one and it sounds like they do some really fun things. And no, I don't think you should start drinking just to fit in. I go out very rarely and drink even more rarely (except in AtoZ fantasy land) and I still have a good time. It is hard to make new friends when you get older. I have some work friends, but most of my friends live 10 hours away. No one else at work has a child, so I can't do all the things they can do on the spur of the moment. Good luck and keep trying! Maybe a book club? I'm not sure what types of things are offered in your area. Check out the newspaper local section and try some new hobbies. take some continuing ed classes through your local college.. our's offers jewelry making, cooking, scrapbooking, computers, etc. It would be a fun way to make friends with similar interests.
     
  4. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Mar 28, 2008

    Why not take a turn at planning an evening. One thing that my husband and I like to do is to go to a local comedy club - they do serve alcohol, but they have plenty of fun non-alcoholic mixed drinks too (and you still get an umbrella). It is a good place to mix with friends who do drink without standing out. We do lots of things that are alcohol-optional so that we can do what we feel comfortable with and not have to watch the drinking people dance (we did that in our time too, just not now). One thing that helps is to plan afternoon outings because people don't feel the need to drink as much as they do at night. Also, build on some of the casual relationships with someone in a similar place in life. I had a hard time when I was finishing college because I was married with no kids, everyone else was either single or had kids. When I met someone who was married and didn't have kids yet, we became fast friends (and still are). We do have to make more of an effort now to see each other, but you need someone who is close to your situation to commiserate with!

    Here are some ideas for things to do:
    ~ Adult-ish arcades (Dave & Buster's types of places)
    ~ Putt-putt (there is a place in Houston with putt-putt under black lights that is fun once in a while - look for something similar)
    ~ Piano bars - there is entertainment and no dancing required
    ~ Look at tourist info for your area and find new ideas that you "know" but never think about
    ~ Look for bar/restaurants that have bands, they usually have little or no dance floors and you can snack while you hear bands
     
  5. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Mar 28, 2008

    I don't drink either. there are other ways to have fun besides bars. You can always go out and have a coke/pepsi/sprite, nobody can force you to drink. If you want to be with these friends, they should understand. You don't have to drink to fit in!

    When my friends became grandmothers, they were always emailing me baby pictures, and talking about all the stuff their grandbabies were doing. I felt weird, and not getting it at all because, their grown kids were uh...unwed, still at home, unemployed and looked like they had no direction. I couldn't relate and not be judgemental. Not trying to brag..but hey, my kid is doing fine, on her own, and I am happy that I am not a grandma yet!

    sometimes, you do grow out of your friends...
     
  6. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Mar 28, 2008

    I'm actually trying to get my friend to go to a piano bar with me tomorrow night. :)
     
  7. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    I'm not really worried about "fitting in" just socializing more. I always have been shy around people I don't know and when I go out I seem to have a guard up for some reason. And I do enjoy my free sodas. Haha.
     
  8. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Hey! keep us posted!

    My kid will call me, and tell me she is heading out now! Needs help finding some address. 10:30 p.m. Chicago time! Meets up with her girls, they tail each other, and call each other to make sure they find club or party. One may crash at the other's house, or they may all sleep over at same house. Or she will be her her bf and go to show, dinner, and next weekend she may stay in. Not the same as high school or college...she has slowed down a bit!

    the bookstores...barnes & noble and borders and starbucks are new hang out places! have coffee, tea or a muffin, and read!

    what a concept! Learn something new, stay up on current events....Make some new friends with somone who may have something in common, somebody who grades papers while eating!! :D
     
  9. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Mar 29, 2008

    Miss Kirby, you're doing better in the friendship dept than I am! Just like life evolves, so do friendships. Some friends are very long-term, others are shorter, either way, they can end for a variety of reasons. That's a part of life.

    Throughout my life, I've never had more than 1, maybe 2 friends at a time that I actually talked or hung out w/ socially. I had 2 good friends, but one passed away & the other moved to another state & we just grew apart. I'm a very strong person who has learned to stand alone from an early age. I'm an only child, so I'm used to being alone.

    No one should change their character, actions (ex. drinking), or anything else just to fit in & be a part of a group. In fact, many times, it's good to stand alone. Friends should enhance life, but they shouldn't be a necessity.

    Regarding smoking or drinking. I know it appears as if everyone does it, but I don't do either, never have, never will. It's society's facade to mk it appear as if everyone who smokes/drinks is having fun. I don't buy any of it & could care less about it.

    But, if you're the type who just loves to be around people, join different activities, etc. like the gym, fun classes at your nearby community center, volunteer for some organization, join church activities, etc.
     
  10. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    Mar 29, 2008

    Maybe it's time to look at moving out, perhaps finding a room mate. I have had room mates that I became very close to, and it's a bit like a built in social network. Part of growing up is moving out of your parents house and establishing a life for yourself. You may even find another teacher who needs a room mate. It also is much cheaper than living on your own.

    I only once had a room mate that I was friends with BEFORE we moved in together and that was a disaster. I have had very good luck answering ads and joining up with someone's already established household! Also, you may find some people to live with who also don't drink.
     
  11. cMcD

    cMcD Groupie

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    I'm kind of the same boat. I'm 23. I moved back to my hometown after college because it was the first position I was offered. My bf came with. I don't have any good friends left from high school, and that's more than fine by me. I went to a major university, was in a sorority, etc. I had a lot of acquaintances but I've always struggled to get more in depth with friendships because I've been screwed over so many times by crappy friends.

    I lived with the same 2 girls for 2 years in college. When I was student teaching and living with them I was very depressed. They didn't understand what I was going through and the pressure I was feeling. I remember coming home one night and my roommate said, "We're going out to dinner. See you later!" I wasn't invited I guess. When we moved out of our house this past summer one friend screwed us over, so that strained my relationship with her. She thought I should clean the entire house because I didn't work this summer. Ha! I haven't talked to her in months. I try to call my other friend who is going to grad school once a week to catch up. My other close friend is also a teacher, but lives an hour and a half away and she's hard to get a hold. It just seems that we're all in different places in our lives.

    I have no friends here. It's hard to make friends because all the teachers I work with are married and have kids, with the exception of one teacher and she has a busy social life. So my bf and I are each other's friends. It's put a strain on our relationship because we get too much of each other. He does joke with me about "my forum friends" on here. Haha.

    Sorry for my vent. I know how you feel though. I feel like it's hard to make friends at my age right now.
     
  12. jw13

    jw13 Groupie

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    Mar 29, 2008

    So fast forward 10 yrs. Miss Kirby & cMcD. I am 33 and still hang out with just a couple of people. In high school I was painfully shy. Since college, I have been trying to develop my social skills. I do not drink, but love to go out and socialize(when I can...I have two little ones at home:)).

    This is what I have learned. You don't need alot of friends to have a full social schedule & network. Always smile at people and say "hi". It makes you more approachable and you will notice people approaching you more often. You don't need to drink to have fun. But, don't come across like you aren't having fun because you aren't drinking. Sometimes non-drinkers wear it like a badge..."No beer, I don't drink..." as opposed to "no thank you." And like other posters said, join a group of some sort. I try to sign my son up for different classes at the park district, because I know that is where I will meet other moms. But, I know my library has a 20's & 30's group that does trips and get togethers. That may be something to look into in your local area.

    I think for people who tend to be introverted it is hard. I still struggle with putting myself out there. But, it has paid off almost everytime.
     
  13. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    cMcD, my bf & I are each other's friend too. He doesn't really hv friends either just like me. The bad thing about when couples are each other's only friend is that when break-up day comes, that's it. Hopefully, couples like that (including my bf & I) end up getting married!

    BTW, regarding getting a roommate, I wouldn't advise it. I've heard more bad stories than good stories. For some reason, people can be the best of roommates one day & it ends up being a big mess the next. But I'm not saying roommates never work out.
     
  14. MissFrizzle

    MissFrizzle Virtuoso

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    Mar 29, 2008

    My hubby and I have friends, but like you all have mentioned. Life gets busy. We both work weekends and so we only really socialize at weddings or big parties that we take off to go to.

    I am the last one of my girlfriends to have kids. None yet, but hopefully soon. So, going out is usually a pre planned event. We usually do dinner for a few hours to catch up.


    I don't like talking on the phone, so I keep in touch through email. The thing is I don't feel lonely. I know I have friends even if i don't see them all the time.

    I think the thing is to focus on what you do have. I am not a party girl, but I do like to go out once in a while with my girlfriend and dance. Just to have fun and have a drink. Nothing big.

    It is harder as you get older to make friends. Just be yourself. You don't have to fit in with anyone. The people that matter won't mind.
     
  15. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Mar 29, 2008

    I know I definitely could not afford to live on my own. And living with a roommate would leave me with not much left over, but I could do it. I do feel like I need to move out to help me grow up. Out of my five friends, only two of them have moved out, so it's nice to not be the only one still living at home. One of my friends and I have been talking about moving out for a few years but she is the biggest flake ever! Another one would like to move out with me - but she is so dramatic I could never live with her - plus she has a three year old and I don't want to be a live in babysitter. The other one graduated in an area in which jobs are hard to find - so she is waiting to find a job and it is very likely that she will have to move around for it.

    I posted a while back about teaching abroad in London. I thought maybe that might throw me out on my own and give me some new experiences!
     
  16. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Mar 29, 2008

    This is sort of a whole other story but not only is it difficult to make new friends, I've never really had any guy friends (or have I been in a relationship). I become even more "antisocial" around them and I have a guard up probably because of family issues and the guy drama I hear about all the time from my friends. Maybe it's low self esteem too - I don't know?

    You guys are like free counseling. :) haha
     
  17. buck8teacher

    buck8teacher Devotee

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    Mar 29, 2008

    Miss Kirby,
    I feel your pain! Moving back home has been a hard adjust for me from college. I have a cluster of close friends that I keep in contact with, but we work such different schedules, it's almost impossible to get together. Some weekends, I'm very busy and some weekends, I'm stuck home alone on Saturday nights. I still live at home, because it's cheap and I'm starting graduate school.

    I am also not a drinker or partier, so that does get in the way of some social things for me. I haven't really dated since moving back home, so that increases some of the "stuck" feelings when I'm staying at home in my parents house.

    Like I said, some weeks are easier, and some are harder...so hugs to you!

    Not that I've offered any advice to you, but you are right, this site is a great support network!
     
  18. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    It's so refreshing to see other adults still living at home who don't smoke & drink! So many people out there are the opposite that I start to wonder at times. :)
     
  19. teacheratheart

    teacheratheart Companion

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    Where in AZ are you? Im in AZ too!! My biggest problem is all my friends have started having babies and getting married. And I am happily single, going to church, and just living my life. Now they have to worry about babysitters canceling and husbands getting mad that they stayed out so late. And I worry about, oh my gosh did I feed my dog before I left my house?? :lol: Not quite the same thing.

    You can PM me if you want to though. That would be cool.
     
  20. Bridget

    Bridget Rookie

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    Mar 29, 2008

    Have you ever heard of the new thing called a "quarter life crisis"?...I'm 23 as well. I felt sorry for myself for months until I talked with a very good friend (who are now all over the country) It's not just you. I have talked with people about these feelings and we have said how leaving college and starting out on your own is one of the hardest transitions. It's a complete life style change. I remember being in college and craving alone-time. Now I'm sick and tired of alone time and want my friends back! I ended up moving out of my parents house in September. While it was hard, it was very good for me! I was getting too comfortable and not pushing myself to establish a new life for myself. Now I have a roommate. We're not very good friends, but we are good roomates. Months of being alone constantly pushed me to get out and make a life for myself. I do Praise the Lord for two other teachers in my school. We are all new and have become such a good friends this year. Just remember that it is a "season" of your life and will not last forever!
     
  21. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    ok; fast forward to just over 45 yrs old...:Dthough I am married, I don't drink or smoke, hubby and I are basically homebodies...yes, I know it's a little different...at least we have each other...but I just wanted to share that don't change your values/morals just to "hang out" with some friends (regarding smoking & drinking)...stay true to you...maybe go to "college & career" groups (got that name from a Church I used to visit) and get a teeny wee involved. I wish you the best. I had a young friend at age 30 thought her life was "nothing" because she wasn't running around and partying like she thought everyone else was. You can have a great time if you're content with YOU. :love:
     
  22. cMcD

    cMcD Groupie

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    I don't need a huge surplus of friends. I like having 4-5 close friends. I have 2 close friends right now. I'm moving this summer to a larger city so I plan to make more friends there. I have some friends and family (brother, cousins (both around my age)). My bf has friends there too. It's very hard to make friends here because it's small town, and most people are married with babies.

    Roommates are rough. Like I said, my old best friend and roommate barely talk anymore because of how she left our living situation. It's hard living with friends...
     
  23. greenbean6

    greenbean6 Companion

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    Mar 30, 2008

    I've got to agree about this whole "quarter-life crisis" thing. I'm 23 and I'm feeling it as well. Last week in class a group of us, (all 22 or 23) had a big discussion about this...we are all feeling the same. I'm even feeling OLD even though I know I'm not. I'm almost dreading the big 2-4 coming up in June, which is so silly! I have no idea what I'm going to do when I turn 30!

    I feel the same way about friends, everyone is going different directions and it is really hard to make time for each other. I've just decided to join a Tuesday night women's softball team. I'm hoping to meet some people there. I absolutely love softball and have missed it since I haven't played on a team since high school. Eek! I just thought about something... the women might be a lot older than me... they're all strangers, I answered an add in the newspaper. I guess I'll just have to hope for the best!
     
  24. greenbean6

    greenbean6 Companion

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    Oh and I really don't recommend rooming with friends. My best friend since Kindergarten and I moved in together, it didn't even last two weeks, then we didn't talk for a whole year! Eventually and thankfully we made up. After she moved out another friend moved in, that lasted a few months then she moved out, but our friendship has never been the same. Although, I have to point out that our problems stemmed from boys. I have lived on my own since, which I definitely prefer.

    If you do decide to room with a friend, separate bathrooms can work wonders! I never would have been able to last 3 months with my second roommate if I had to share with her, she was disgustingly messy and that's putting it nicely.
     
  25. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    It doesn't get better as you get older. Generally speaking, you have more friends in your early to mid twenties then you will ever have later in life. It gets harder and harder to make and keep friends as you age. A lot of people think that getting married will help -- but that only helps if your spouse is outgoing and makes friends easily. That is rarely the case.

    Over the years, I've tried so many things to make friends --

    --gotten a roommate (then I was alone, but full of someone else's dirty dishes in the sink)
    --taking classes at the rec center
    --taking classes at the local uni
    --taking classes at local stores and museums
    --joining a club
    --signing up for coach travel trips
    --joining a church
    --seeing a therapist to learn ways to meet and make friends
    --volunteering with every imaginable non-profit group over the years
    --trying to find something like kiwannis, rotary, etc to join (except that in our city, they ALL meet at 8:15am or 12:15pm, which are impossible times for a teacher). None of them here meet after work. Not one!
    --taking up bowling
    --exploring interesting lifestyles (won't even go into that)
    --joining a computer club
    --meeting people online
    --taking lessons
    --becoming active in professional groups
    --going to "home" parties (pampered chef, tupperwear, multiples, etc.)
    --going to the "in" places where people "my age" hang out.
    --lots of other ones

    You know what? I'm still alone. I have a few colleagues that I might call "work friends." We don't socialize outside of work, but we say hello and ask how things are going.

    Outside of that, I can honestly say I don't have a single friend. I've tried and tried, and vague colleague is the closest I've ever managed to come.

    I don't know what to tell you -- except that right now, you have more friends than many of us.
     
  26. Rabbitt

    Rabbitt Connoisseur

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    I met my best friend at Curves for women!
     
  27. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    My closest friend is from college. She introduced me to my other friends.... with this group I have about 6 friends but feel very lucky to have them. I moved away and lost all contact with people and basically lost touch with most of my old friends. It was such a godsend to know she had so many new friends. Before I moved away, we were basically each other's only friends. When I left town, it forced her to make new friends. Now I am friends with her new friends.

    Sometimes knowing someone super social can help. Meet HER friends and glom onto whatever they are doing.
     
  28. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Mar 30, 2008

    ha ha... I am anti-social because I have lots of allergies, and can't stand to eat around other people...so I eat alone, and hardly go to staff parties. what can I do? sit there and get sick just to make conversation and not get written up for avoiding others!?

    I hear a lot of weird stuff too. How can you comment without being judgemental? You can't play shrink, and give them a suggestion. If they take it and it backfires, they will blame you for everything. If they like it and it works, they will end up like gum on your shoe! I learned to say, "Hmmm, I don't know!" (even though I do!)
     
  29. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    Mar 30, 2008

    I'm turning 27 tomorrow (yay!) but I have been in the whole quarter-life crisis thing myself. After college, I moved back home because honestly things weren't horrible between my parents and I. I moved home at 22 and bought a condo on my 25th birthday. I was the last one of my college friends to move out, but I knew it was more about being ready for me than a competition to see who could leave quickest.

    I have definitely grown apart from my friends from high school and even some from college, but I still try to keep in touch with them when I can. I, too, was not a partier in college, so I often felt out of the loop. And I don't go to bars that much now. I will drink every once in a while, but not consistently and not heavily. So I know its hard. I am lucky that my closest friends truly care about me. I think that should matter most...its not about the number you have, its about the way they make you feel.

    I wish I had more advice. But take it from someone who's been there, you'll make it through this:)
     
  30. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Mar 30, 2008

    Get out there!! You do't have to go to clubs, drink or smoke to meet new people. Some ideas:

    Take an adult ed class-something fun
    Join a rec sports team
    Barnes and Noble (mine has a Starbucks in it and people hang out all day!!)
    Fitness center
    Get a dog and walk in the park
     
  31. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    I hear ya, RainStorm...I have many "work friends" too, and we're social at work. To be honest, I really don't want to "hang around" them for many many reasons; and they probably feel the same way about me...no, we're not rude or anything like that...but I think we all realize; hey, we are busy people outside of work. Even though I'm not social with many outside of work, I'm pretty content. I have one very dear friend at work and she is my classroom aide; and even then, things are so hectic in her life that I noticed that we aren't calling each other much nowadays at that's ok. :)
     
  32. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Wow, Rainstorm! You've really gotten involved w/ an array of things to try to meet people.

    I can honestly say that I don't have any friends either...just my boyfriend. He doesn't have friends really either. The last friend I had was almost a year ago, I was a juror on a case that lasted 2 mos where I finally got to meet some new people. I became fast friends w/ this one other juror. We went out places a few times, but then she stopped calling. I have no idea what happened there. I called her a couple times, but then left her alone, I'm not the type who hounds or begs anyone to be my friend. If they don't want my friendship, forget them.

    You just have to have that mentality that it's nice to have friends, but they're not a necessity. I can definitely stand alone as I'm sure many of you can too.
     
  33. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    happy birthday leighball!!! from one condo owner to another, great move! I wish I had some decent guy friends...nothing serious, just the kind who could come over and move some furniture or tell me how to get something fixed without paying an arm and a leg! I think we all need good guy friends like that...at least I am lucky enough to have a few good relatives!

    can you ever break up with a guy, and still just be friends? :confused:

    never happened in my lifetime...so far..
     
  34. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Mar 31, 2008

    do you think we have become a society of stand alone women??? just like the age of technology has created multi-tasking, digital teens, and I want it now adults...have we lost the reasons for keeping close friends...

    if you want to learn how to cook something, check the 'net
    if you can't find a phone number, check the 'net
    if you want to check your fuse box, 'check the 'net

    if you are mad and just want to vent, come to AtoZ and find us in the PO'd club!! :woot:

    sometimes, when we do call on old and new friends, they are so busy..they give us short answers, or say they will call back..and never do! :unsure:
     
  35. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Mar 31, 2008

    MPK, I believe that technology plays a pretty big part in people doing more things individually. Internet discussion boards give everyone a chance to converse w/ people who share common interests. But, I think the biggest thing is ONLINE SCHOOLING. So many people have met their friends through school/college, but now that there are ways to get an education online, a person can go through all their college yrs from an undergrad degree to a Ph.D. by taking online classes. So those people will definitely have a significantly lower chance of meeting & making friends through school.
     
  36. glenn

    glenn Rookie

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    Apr 1, 2008

    Miss Kirby tried sending you a private message with a couple of suggestions for things around the Phoenix area. Received a message back that you cannot receive any more messages until you delete some of the message you have stored.
    At any rate I noticed on your profile you said you practice yoga and like to hike. If you hike Piestewa Peak at a popular time you are sure to come in contact with a bunch of people. A simple smile and hi how are you doing is all that is required to get a conversation going with some people. A yoga class at someplace like Yoga Pure I am sure would work the same way.
     
  37. January_Violet

    January_Violet Comrade

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    Apr 2, 2008

    If no one has suggested it, research Meetup (dot) com. There may be some interesting groups in your area.
     
  38. Hoot Owl

    Hoot Owl Aficionado

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    Apr 2, 2008

    Miss Kirby,

    Just come to my house for dinner tonight!!

    I have a novice teacher and she's single and the dating scene here is nil here. I try real hard to have her over at least once a month for dinner if not more often.

    I just love her to death.

    I think sometimes people become so involved w/their lives they loose sensitivity to others, that's what I 'm working on in my life right now. It's like if you are aware of others you find happiness in your own life and put all of your problems in perspective.

    It's like paying rent for living.

    Don't ever compromise yourself or your values to fit in.
     

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