But the most helpful aspect of the post comes from everyone who has left comments.So please keep telling your stories, sharing your ideas, and reaching out for support. I was excited about the change, but worried about how I would adjust, since I didn’t know anyone here (apart from my daughter, son-in-law, and baby granddaughter.) The last time I moved, from Boston to Florida, I didn’t make much of an effort to form new connections.I realized that I had fallen for a self-fulfilling prophecy: That you can’t make friends over 50 because everybody in that age group already has enough friends. There are lots of people out there who need or want friends: Their lives may have been jolted by geographic moves, divorce, or loss of a spouse or partner.
Instead, I maxed out my cell phone plan calling up my old Boston friends. I was lonely, but I didn’t want to admit it, and figured that my town just wasn’t a good place to meet people my age.
Then I was introduced to a friend of a friend who had moved to my town in Florida only three months earlier.
I know someone who has been going out to dinner with a friend once a week for the last 20 years.
They have absolutely nothing in common except for their weekly dinner ritual.
A trip back to New England—where old friends seemed very interested in spending time with me—reminded me of what I was missing.
So pay attention to the signs of social disconnection: Are telemarketers the only people who call you in the evenings?She is a widow in her mid 60s with some health problems. And she rapidly made a bunch of new friends who keep her very busy.I felt a little embarrassed that she had pulled off something in a few months that I hadn’t managed in well over a year.So challenge yourself to dust off that old recipe book, and host a dinner party for a few people you hardly know.It will give you a night off from eating Lean Cuisine, and there is nothing like home-cooked food to help people feel welcome and connected.UPDATE: Though I wrote this post almost 7 years go, wonderful people keep commenting and reaching out for ideas about how to form new friendships in midlife and beyond. And as you can see from a follow up post, I’ve learned from my readers that there is really no foolproof way to find friends at any stage of life.