How To Make Friends as an Adult
Hi, I’m Sahra and I’m a self-proclaimed master of making friends on the internet. I feel like I’ve always been social media savvy and being a naturally outgoing person who wants to be friends with everyone has been such a help with all of the moving around I’ve done.
It started when I was 13; LiveJournal was the big thing (because I’m old and this was pre-MySpace even). I joined a few LJ Groups of people who had similar interests as me. I met "Ashley" and we chatted for years, always just a text or call away from an unbiased friend to vent to or chat with. When we turned 18 and had been friends for 5 years I took a road trip and visited her in her home state, staying with her family. A few years later when I was dating Z, I moved in with her and her husband and they graciously had me as a roommate until I moved in with my one-day husband. We share everything from personal life details to matching tattoos!
During the days of MySpace I made friends all over, adding and chatting with anyone for fun. I made friends in California, Ohio, Texas, London…. During a bad breakup that resulted in insomnia I could call up my pal in California and we’d talk all night about anything and everything just to get my mind off of things. That friend eventually moved to the East Coast where we hung out a few times and are still friendly.
Moving to NYC alone at age 17 was a bold and scary move. I did weird things, like go on CraigsList and ask people if they’d want to go see a play with me or eat pizza in SoHo. It was probably not the safest thing to do, but I made some great friends out of it, and ate some really awesome pizza.
I later found my way to Tumblr, sharing my life and story (you could say I was always meant to be a blogger) and making new friends, including where I made a friend in Costa Rica. A few months later decided I needed a vacation so I went to stay with him and his family for a few weeks; BEST DECISION EVER. I was able to see a new country, have a new friend in real life, and live like a local in another culture.
6 years later I met my now-husband on OkCupid. Given their "science" of finding a perfect match, we totally believe in their formula (and have so many friends these days who met their spouse's on OKC!). After falling in love with him I moved to a brand new city to be with him, I had to conquer the biggest hurdle - making new friends as an adult in a new city.
Now, we're nearing 30 and in another new city, making our mark and doing our best to find friends we can stand for more than an hour at a time (seriously, I am kindaa picky about my friends).
What’s a girl to do when she feels like she needs a #Squad but is too timid to go up to strangers in bars?
There’s an App for that; or a few.
How to use your phone to make friends:
Meet Up: This App and website was designed to bring people together of similar interests. Type in what you like, find a group (I recommend one with plenty of members and that has an active schedule of events, not just once a year). Go to the event and make a friend! Most have happy hours so you can get a little liquid courage in before you start making small talk with strangers, but the fact that you’re there for a common interest should help!
BumbleBFF: I joined Bumble, the dating app turned friend-dating app, in 2015 and it has been an adulthood friend-making game changer. Similar to Tinder you swipe right or left after perusing some photos and a little blurb about the person, a potential friend. Having used this in DC and SF, I've been on my fair share of dates, and just like dating there's good ones and bad ones. But, unlike dating, I've found more than one keeper!
TinderSocial: Launched in response to a more social community, TinderSocial is the dating app’s response to BumbleBFF. You can use it with your group of friends to find other groups of friends at large social gatherings (think Coachella, SweetLife Festival, Governor’s Ball, etc). Your squad just doubled with a mere few taps of the finger.
General Social Media: Okay, this one is a little out there, but it works! When I first moved to DC I followed a bunch of people on Twitter and InstaGram who looked fun in the area. I’d compliment their photos and be generally friendly. Eventually, it moved to “let’s get a drink!” in real life. A girl I met on InstaGram invited me to her birthday party and we’ve been close ever since. Tanvi and I met on Twitter, when she was new to DC and I invited her and her hubby to my Cinco de Mayo party - we've been great couple friends ever since! Similarly, when I found out I was moving to SF I began following fashion bloggers and other creatives. They were all so nice and welcoming that I immediately had a group of friends to grab drinks or dinner with! I have friends that I met on Twitter, InstaGram, and Facebook groups that now are some of my closest friends; all it takes is a little bit of guts to get yourself out there.