Peer Relations

Problems making friends  


There could be number of reasons you are without friends. Perhaps you pulled away from people because you were going through a rough time. Not everyone is comfortable reaching out to people when they are struggling. Or maybe you felt that a friend betrayed you, and it prompted you to get some distance with all your friends.


Many people have experienced a time without friends at some point, and as much as it hurts, it's important not to get down about it. Remember, this is a temporary situation. However, making friends takes effort, and like anything else, the more you do it the easier it will be.Another reason could be that you've chosen friends that aren't right for you. Maybe they continually exclude you or are never around when you want to connect.

It's not unusual to have friends like these if you are someone who doesn't make friends easily. To begin with we need to introspect

Can you self-identify your specific problem (s)? Here are some of the possibilities why people don't have close reciprocal relationships with friends

1. Temperament - Are you shy and uncomfortable around people? This can make people around you feel uncomfortable too.

2. Insecurity - Do you feel like you can't measure up to the people you want as friends? Are you able to trust other people? These may be barriers that create distance between you and your friends.

3. Preference - introverted? Do you actually prefer being alone rather than spending time with friends? Do you think people know this when they're around you? Or, are you extraordinarily social and so preoccupied with making lots of acquaintances that you lose out on making close friendships?

4. Psychological Issues - Do you have a history of difficulty establishing intimate relationships with others? Are you uncomfortable with people knowing the real you?

5. Lack of Experience - Regardless of age, some people lack the skills needed to make and maintain friendships. Do you think you have what it takes to be a good friend?

6. Situational Obstacles - Do you live in a geographical area where it is particularly difficult to connect with people? This might include living in some rural area where there are few people or because of a history of frequent moves, being in someplace where you feel like an outsider.

7. Personality - Is there something about you that others find grating? Are you too needy? Too pushy? Too talkative? Too controlling? Are you fiercely independent wanting to call all the shots regarding what, when and where? Sometimes, there is something off-putting about a person's behaviour and the individual lacks awareness of the problem.

8. Communication Style- Do you respond to your friend's overtures as well as initiate contact? Are you available on line or by phone, depending on your friend's preferred mode of communication?

9. Time Management Problems - Do you have a hard time juggling all the responsibilities and demands placed on you? Do you consider making time for friends selfish or frivolous?

10. Unrealistic expectations - Have you led your friends to believe that you will always do the organizing? Do you have an unrealistic, romanticized notion of friendship? Do you expect all friendships to be perfect and lasting forever?

Talking to an objective third party is a good way to gain insight into something you can't figure out about yourself. It doesn't necessarily have to be a therapist; it could be your spouse, a sibling, or someone else you trust.

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