Wife and I having problems with making/keeping adult friends

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-16-2012
Wife and I having problems with making/keeping adult friends
Fri, 06-08-2012 - 9:37am

My wife and I have both been dealing with a common problem for the past few years, specifically we have virtually no adult friends outside of the home or we have had some but then those relationships abruptly ended (which has kind of been a relationship pattern for both of us for some reason) when our "friends" stopped investing their time and energy in maintaining the relationship.  Both my wife and I are friendly, sociable people and don't have any problems relating to other people at work and elsewhere but seem to be unable to maintain the relationships that we work hard to cultivate.  For instance, I had a friend that I met through work several years ago and we hung out together for a few years and then all of the sudden about 3-4 years ago, he just stopped calling me back and wanting to make plans to hang out together.  I've ran into him a few times since then and he acts like everything is fine between us but he still doesn't seem to be interested in further contact.  I never really was able to get an explanation for why he stopped wanting to hang out with him.  My wife and kids were heavily involved in playing Pokemon cards with a circle of people and for awhile had one particular person she was hanging out with as well but those relationships have gradually diminished to my wife's discontent to the point that she feels that she is investing more time and energy trying to keep these relationships going.  My wife and I have a pretty fair number of Facebook "friends" but we are finding that- aside from maybe 1 or 2 people, these "friendships" seem pretty superficial and not are not very reciprocal at all.  My wife and I enjoy each other's company and consider ourselves to be best friends (with benefits, of course ;-) but both of us would like to have more relationships/friendships outside the home with other adults/families.  We're not churchgoing people (neither of us believe in organized religion), so we don't have that avenue to explore.  I know that most people seem to have some friendships that they are able to maintain for years and years (even if one or both have children), so I don't understand what's different about us.   Has anybody else ever dealt with this kind of an issue and if so, how have you handled it/been able to meet other people and maintain relationships with other people?  Any advice would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks! 

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-22-2004

Hi, I really feel for you and for all who face this situation, including me. I really don´t know what the problem is here, but to be honest the few friends I have, is because I´m the one who calls, who e mails,and who visits. I guess all people are busy and when we have changes in our lives or others have changes, people are not really willing to make an effort to be in touch. "Sigh".

The thing that have helped me recently is to be part of groups who have similar interest as the ones I have. Probably, you two like bowling, or art, or reading. Try to get in groups who have similar interests.

If you have checked you behavior and no one have been honest enough to tell you what the problem is. You might have a family member who can give you a better picture of your behavior.

If you think there is not a problem with you, analyze what might have been the reason for the others to get distant. For example the friend you mentioned. Did he move far away? Was there any interest in making some business that disappeared? Has he gotten sick or divorced? Do you both had a friend in common who can be truly honest with you?

If you don´t find a reason, try to make new friends. Remember that people come to our life for a reason, for a season or for a life time. We can´t keep them all and need to let go.

And find new friends, that can renew our spirits and points of view.


Avatar for deenow17
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-12-2004
Sorry but I don't have any great advice either but I do find that people are so busy that unless they are super social, many aren't investing in friendships. I'm guilty of this myself & have only maintained a few relationships because these people were willing to only get together 2 or 3 times a year because of their busy schedules too.

Now I'm in a new stage of my life & would like to have friends so am focusing on how to be a "friend" again to build relationships.

Good luck, Dee