Losing friends post-divorce is hard. It can be easier to hide away to avoid meeting new people, and bringing new individuals into your life takes energy and yours may be at a low point.
It is tricky if most of your friends were initially were met through your ex spouse. I was married to a doctor and my social structure collapsed during divorce. Since half of most couples were my spouse’s colleagues, these people became scarce. This situation forced me to get out and find my own tribe.
This can be like being the new kid at a new school. Scary feelings can bubble up to the surface. I was educated at a small girls’ school for eight years. At age fourteen, I transferred to a large school that had boys. It was a culture shock. I did not know anyone. After a few shaky days, I dove right into making connections with the other students. It took a few weeks to get a circle of friends. I followed this model post-divorce to enlarge my social circle.
Here Are Tips on Making New Friends Post-Divorce
If you are in introvert, consider joining clubs. Select ones where you interact at your own pace. For deeper connections, I joined a Girlfriends Lunch Club. Many of the people there were going or had gone through divorce, so they provided tips and support along with laughter and fun. This camaraderie is supportive through life stages.
Go to the same places where you become a regular. Take your laptop to one with a community table. You can get work done and chat with individuals who are interesting. Remember: interacting with the same people over time builds relationships.
Several newer friends who are now close ones are customers at the bookshop where I work. We chatted regularly, then started going out for coffee. We clicked. Relationships like these often happen organically. After seeing the same people over and over, take the plunge and plan a get together. My manager on the job did this, and met the love of his life. Good things can happen.
I was also a trauma nurse at a large hospital. Our patients were hovering between life and death. My co-workers and I went out several times a week to reduce our stress. We became good friends. Perhaps there are co-workers that you could get to know a bit better.
Reconnect With Old Friends
Have you let a few relationships slip by which you could rekindle? Your college roommate? Friends pre-marriage? Technology and social media make it relatively easy to reunite with these former pals. College alumni directories are another source to help one get in touch with old friends post-divorce.
You can also look at your current situation. If one is a parent of school-age children, meeting other parents can lead to forming bonds. I volunteered for school events and met other parents that way too.
It is fine to take baby steps when looking for new relationships. Take advantage of opportunities which come your way. Accept invitations to go out. Do not take it personally if someone chooses not to get to know you better. They may be dealing with their own issues.
Be patient. It takes time for a garden to grow, just as it does with friendships.
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