Hanging With Single Friends - Divorce Recovery 101

What Works
To Find a Better Romance, Hang out With Your Friends

Hanging Out With Single Friends


2002 Janet Jacobsen


    What Works
    To Find a Better Romance, Hang out With Your Friends

       Many singles put all their energy into finding a romance rather than into finding friends. They attend singles events until they meet a "likely prospect."

    • After dating a while, they conclude that the relationship doesn't have a future and drop one another, heading back to singles groups to find another "prospect," meanwhile complaining bitterly about having "wasted" time on the previous person.

    What if instead they met people, developed a circle of friends to "hang out" with, got to know folks without a lot of expectations?

    By getting acquainted gradually without the pressures of dating, discover who really is special and then date each other, when you're already friends and well acquainted.

    Think back to your kid days. You "hung out" with other kids after school, after ball games, at somebody's house or at the park on weekends.

    You got to know people well not because you were always doing "special" things together, but because you weren't. You were spending real time games, lunches, washing the car, walks, and mostly just talking and hanging around.

    Ah but, you may complain, you don't have that much time for friends any more. Listen: meeting friends on your lunch hour doesn't take any longer than a lunch hour alone.

    Taking your kid to the park doesn't take any longer when you've invited other folks and their kids to show up too. 

    Spending the afternoon at the street fair takes an afternoon whether you go alone of with a group.

    See? Change your way of looking at the things you're doing and always ask yourself, could I include other people too, to get to know them and make this even more fun?

    The point of hanging out is to develop and maintain friendships.

    • The bonus advantage is that you get to know people well without dating, and discover who is special enough to date.

    • But there are some rules for hanging out that you have to observe:

      1.Everybody pays their own way.  "Letting" someone pay for you takes it out of friends and into dating and spoils the hanging out, for you and sometimes for the others there too.

      2. When it comes to friends, both sexes count.  You don't always have to have equal numbers of men and women when you're hanging out, but if you're the only member of your sex present, after awhile the opposite sex is going to think this is. more about your ego than about friendship and stop showing up.

      3. Everybody is with everybody. Nobody gets to monopolize anybody; people can and should socialize with the whole group.

      4. No clock watching.  OK, so it's a 6:40     movie, everybody needs to show up before 6:40, but in general "hangin out" allows a lot of time flexibility.  Some people can come along for an hour or two, others longer, others less.  No big deal.

      5. Everybody calls everybody.  When you're talking abut friendships, the ancient dating adage that women shouldn't call me does not apply.  You call your friends; you invite friends to do things together.  Hanging out is working on friendships ? everybody calls everybody.

      To have friends as a single adult means putting yourself out a bit, taking some initiative. As Emerson said,

      "The only way to have a friend is to be one." And one of the best ways to do that is to recapture the lost art of "hanging out."


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