Making friends is hard when you’re middle-aged. It’s just facts. Most people are already coupled up with groups of long-time friends. I thought the friends I made in my early 30s would be my ride or die for life. I felt so at home with all of them. We supported each other, we went to church together, and we called on the help of each other when moving, sick, or in need. They were my people. They still are my friends but we don’t live close anymore and I guess that also means we can’t text video calls or visit. Strange how those things work. Life. Maybe if I had stayed married it would be different. I have to give most of them a break though, they are almost all married with babies, jobs, and social activities. I have none of that, which is probably why I’m the one complaining.
I moved to a place where I didn’t know anyone. My boyfriend doesn’t have a social life due to the fact he spent the years before me being a dad and doing dad things and having a home he didn’t feel like he could invite people to. Trust me I understand about the house and understand about being a dad. Plus, I should not have to depend on my spouse for friends. Right as I was making friends oddly enough with the ex-wife and meeting ladies online to find they lived close, COVID HIT. I was all alone outside of my fiancé and his boys who we saw on weekends.
I could not really feel sorry for myself in 2020 because so many people had it so much worse. For instance, those dying of covid. We all were afraid for our lives; it almost felt like we were watching a movie and we all wanted the nightmare to be over. Doesn’t that feel like how 2020 took place? One day we were living life and someone pushed the pause button and now via 2022 We have someone pushing slow motion instead of play. Play the movie, already!
Many of us feel the treatment is over, but there are also some of us that are still locked in a paused place. For instance, my asthma doctor has said that the fewer people I see the better, because it means less chance of me getting sick. Not just Covid sick but sick period. My lungs are very weak due to things we can’t figure out so I need no outside source that may affect me. That is going to take understanding friends. Friends that don’t mind wearing a mask, taking the covid test before being around me, staying a distance, etc. Ultimately friends that are very understanding knowing I want to do things but when I say no there is a good reason behind it.
So, my social life completely comes from my friends online. The occasional face time is the highlight of my week. When you say you feel alone, I will normally be the person that truly understands you. I don’t offer solutions to snap out a game plan because I myself have no idea how to make this better for myself even. What I do know is I have a helluva group of great followers and personal friends via this thing we call the internet. I’ll admit most of my friends are guys. There are a lot of reasons I choose guys. Mainly it is the safety factor. I have had a bad history with women, women older than me to be precise. I almost always get hurt when I begin to care for someone to the point I think it/someone is safe and I find out they are not. It was no surprise when recently the hate on TikTok was a big percentage of 50 plus-year-old white women. This is exactly the category I, from now on, will do my best to avoid. That is not to say I don’t have female friends over 50, because one of my very best is. It is just an area I have a lot of pain and I will forever tread carefully.
This is what I accredit having guy friends, too. A friend (who is not my friend anymore) told me once that I chose guys over girls because I like attention. Maybe I do but I think it is a lot deeper. I grew up in a small place, and in this small space it seemed like all mothers giving birth in 1978 were boy moms. Even in school boys outnumbered girls. I was a girl cousin to a lot of boy cousins. I preferred following my papaw around hammering in nails with my very own hammer then learning to sew. I would rather run down the dirt road barefoot to follow my great uncle around doing his chores with the animals than go in the cool house and help cook with my aunt. I was the only girl in my church that was my age or close to my age – the rest were boys. This then does not seem weird that I did not have a pack of girl friends but boy friends. I believe there were four of us girls in my core friends. Thus, in my life now, I mainly have guy friends online.
It may seem confusing to people if I had a bad marriage then why do I want to remain friends with my ex? I have said it for so long now and few people think it makes sense but I totally think it does, the saying in reference to my ex-husband – “he was a terrible husband but a great friend.” Maybe I was a terrible wife and a good friend? Who knows anymore?
A more understandable concept is guys seem to really want to have you in their lives. If you know you know. I can call up a guy friend crying and for the most part, they would just listen and be all like it will be ok, you did your best, or maybe you need to look at the situation again OR let me at whoever has you upset I’m going to kill them, attitude. Both are semi-comforting to me. Girls are like, writing a list in their heads before you are even through telling the issue, then before you can even say that is it, they are rattling off how to fix the problem. Telling you how you were wrong in the situation and giving you the rundown of how it should have happened. (I would like to note here, that this isn’t always true for women, I have some wonderful insightful ladies as friends.)
With guys, I have found you can be your authentic self. The thing you have to be careful about is with guys falling for you. They get really comfortable with you turning to them when you need to be cheered up or need advice and those feelings can start a fire and it can begin to burn high and hot when us girls don’t want anything to do with any fire. We just want the hug or cuddle, the “you’re going to be ok”, and assurance that if we screw up our friends will still be there.
I admire women with large groups of women friends. I have never had much luck being friends with women and I don’t know what that says about me exactly. However, there is one thing that remains throughout with guys and gals – If I love you, I love you fully. I will stop the world for you if you need it, and I will always be there for you, all you have to do is ask. Now that I think about it, this may be an issue. Girls don’t want to have to ask, and guys just don’t want to be asked. Thinking point for sure.
You may or may not agree to any of the above but this to date has been my experience. Guys just make better friends. Not that I don’t want to have a huge girl gang because that is my main goal in life to make friends that I can call up and depend on, travel with, hang out with, etc. It just gets harder and harder the older you get to find lifetime friends. This should be easier since being middle-aged puts us half-dead. You won’t have to put up with each other for long LOL. xoxo till next time when I open my crazy brain up for you…
P.S. I’d like to add a brief statement- lady friends aren’t all going to be this way that I speak about above. In fact, recently I have had really good luck with ladies becoming my friends. I fully accept the fact it may just be me that has this issue with having women as friends. I am just not the best at reaching out and it takes understanding sometimes to be my friend and a lot of grace.
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