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How do I meet female friends who're like me?
February 3, 2009 2:50 PM   Subscribe

Where's a good place to meet women like me, in my area, online or in real life?

As I get older, I find that I have fewer female friends who are similar to myself in age and interests. Most of my peers are busy with children or high-stress careers, while I keep occupied with a job that's pretty much just a job, a dog, and an interest in the fine arts. I'd like to meet women more like myself, but so far have hit a lot of dead ends. I even placed a "w4w platonic" ad on Craigslist, but had few responses, and none of those really worked out. I hung out on the artists' site WetCanvas for a while, but the women I encountered there were either too religious or too busy with family.

Ideally, I'd like to meet liberal women in their 40s and up, involved in the arts, whose lives don't revolve around their offspring (certainly no disparagement intended to the childed, but I'm not into kids and am not comfortable with friends who can't leave the house without theirs). I'd like them to be dog-friendly, if possible, for occasional dog park visits and that sort of thing. Married or not isn't important, as long as they'd have time to hang out without the husbands now and then.

Since I'm interested in "real-life" friends and not just internet buddies, I thought there might be some local groups or events that I hadn't thought about trying (I'm in the Seattle area). I'm taking an evening class, but most of the other women are a lot younger than I am. I'm not opposed to having friends younger than myself, but I feel like I would benefit from the kind of relationship you have with someone who is almost as much a mentor as a friend, if that makes sense.

I don't want this to come across as judgmental or too particular, so if it does, maybe I need a wake-up call to open my mind to more different kinds of people. And I do have friends who are none of the things I've listed above: younger, with kids, conservative, etc. But I would like it if I had some leads on where I could go or what I could do to narrow down my choices and meet women more like me. It seems like there should be some kind of eHarmony or Match.com for friends!
posted by TochterAusElysium to Human Relations (15 answers total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
 
Have you been to a MetaFilter meetup? I've met some of my best friends at those. Go to a MetaFilter meetup!
posted by MrMoonPie at 2:55 PM on February 3, 2009


Hmm, maybe some sort of liberal church? I went to a Universalist Unitarian service once, just to see what it was like, and there were a lot of interesting and decidedly liberal people there. I'm sure there's one in the Seattle area.
posted by losvedir at 2:56 PM on February 3, 2009


Honestly, the best place to find people that are into the same kind of stuff as you is to join groups that are into the same stuff as you!

If you're into arts, join arts groups - look for whatever really interests YOU - from an art class to art societies, to artists giving seminars to Bumbershoot - and out of the thousands of members in those groups, there will be some that resonate with you - whatever your age, whatever their ages. Simply chat more with the people that are the age that you are seeking. If you find a bunch of 20 somethings, move on to an older group.

I'd mention groups on Craigslist, the classifieds attract a murky group with much more base interests.

I'd look on Google for arts groups, arts societies, arts classes, stuff offered by your local library, or Recreational Center, or art gallery - no need to prowl Craigslist classifieds.

Easy as that - even in Seattle! (LOL, I'm from Vancouver area)
posted by portmoodyguy at 2:58 PM on February 3, 2009


Book clubs.
posted by desjardins at 3:19 PM on February 3, 2009


Take your dog to obedience or agility classes, and get involved in competition. Easily three-quarters of the people you meet there will fall exactly into your demographic. They may be a little nuttier about their dogs than you're prepared for, but it sounds like that might be okay.
posted by acorncup at 3:29 PM on February 3, 2009


Check the local art museums for parties and activities. My local modern museum of art has an event called First Fridays where there is a free party the first Friday of every month to check out new exhibits and socialize with others. Other places, like libraries, bookstores, and universities, have free events all the time where you can meet people with the same interests as you.

If you aren't finding the types of people you want at the places you usually hang out, just try someplace new. There has to be loads of cafes, art stores, and dog parks in Seattle.

Otherwise, just be friendly and open when you go out, whether it's to a cafe or to the dog park, and feel free to say hi or compliment someone. Oh, and my secret trick is to wear something really interesting, like handmade jewelry or an artist's t-shirt, that signals some of the things I'm into and gives others something easy to ask me about. You could even get your pooch a pretty new leash that's so fun someone is bound to ask you where you got it!
posted by CoralAmber at 4:16 PM on February 3, 2009 [1 favorite]


Not it's intended purpose, but I've been making friends through Freecycle lately.
It's 'self-selecting' - you are likely to post or request items that involve your interests, and when you meet someone at a pickup/drop-off there's a happy little giving and receiving vibe. It's easy to have a short, friendly conversation about the item, and if you hit it off you could send an email along the lines of:

Hi [insert name here],
Lovely to meet you yesterday and thanks for the [ art stuff/ dog stuff]. Would you
like to meet for coffee one day when [this meteor shower finishes/ you get back from Texas]? Do you ever go to the [local dog park/ fine art gallery ]?
Thanks again,
Tochter
posted by Catch at 4:19 PM on February 3, 2009 [1 favorite]


Definitely meetup.com. There are tons of Women's Social groups on there, focused on various interests, age groups, etc.

Find one where the women are in your age group and that does activities you're interested in.

The advantage of joining one of these groups is that all the women in them are specifically looking for friends -- that makes it easier and less awkward to make friends (not unawkward, just less so) because everyone wants to.
posted by jacquilynne at 4:22 PM on February 3, 2009


Seattle Art Walk may give you a few leads.
posted by batmonkey at 4:27 PM on February 3, 2009


acorncup is spot on with the agility/obedience classes. Also, there are lots of Seattle meetup.com groups centered around dog activities like walks around Greenlake, and artsy activities like gallery walks. But I really think the classes are your best bet.
posted by HotToddy at 4:43 PM on February 3, 2009


My small, friendly, Seattle-area, Unitarian church is full of artistic middle-aged people. Is that an option for you?
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:02 PM on February 3, 2009


Me personally - the last thing I care about when evaluating people as friends is their political viewpoint, and I am really into politics. If they are liberal, then we can have some cool back and forth. If they are conservative, then we can commiserate. Spice of life and all...

If you are originally from Seattle, how about reaching out to some old friends or classmates via facebook? You can usually tell what their interests are from their profile. And it gives you an opening - maybe there are people you haven't seen since 8th grade who share your interests, who would love to meet for lunch or a beer.

Good luck!
posted by txvtchick at 5:06 PM on February 3, 2009


Seconding meetup.com... there are political groups, activist groups, craft groups, social clubs, walking clubs, photography... you name it. Also, you could join a women's centre in your area.
posted by cranberrymonger at 8:37 PM on February 3, 2009


Meetup.com!!!
posted by smallstatic at 9:16 AM on February 4, 2009


Bookcrossing.com also - I am in the UK but the BCers in my group are definitely over 30, female, mostly pretty liberal, into arts and oddly enough books... I have made a lot of good friends through it myself. You don't have to give the books away if you don't want to although that's fun too!
posted by LyzzyBee at 8:41 AM on February 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


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