You're a person with little social anxiety: what is your thought process
December 22, 2015 7:49 AM   Subscribe

. . . when meeting new people and starting up new relationships?

As a person with a bit of generalized anxiety that often translates over into social relationships, I have a hard time imagining what it's like to be someone who doesn't overanalyze situations with new (and sometimes old) friends. Example: if I meet someone new that I want to hang out with one-on-one (for example, at a meetup group or other group activity), I work up the nerve to ask them to hang out, and then it never happens, the residual anxiety that this creates is enough to stop me from being overly forward in other similar situations, at least without getting up the mental resolve/courage to contemplate things not working out, for a while. My brain sometimes starts creating silly narratives about why they didn't want to hang out with me that are probably not based in reality so much as my own insecurities. This is silly, because often I'm aware that the reason we don't end up hanging out has nothing to do with my awesomeness as a person, but instead someone's busy schedule, or maybe they weren't that into what I proposed, or maybe . . . I don't know what, but usually not anything to do with their judging me as a person (and even that case shouldn't logically cause too much worry, because if they don't like me for some reason, what's the point of hanging out?).

Also, I find that it's often hard to make the jump from meeting someone in a few group situations to actually being friends with them because as adults, everyone has limited time and maybe others already have an established friend group.

What I want to know, then, is just - say you are a person who is not fazed by being turned down for hanging out, or being disappointed that things don't happen. Or you are a person who generally has success with making new friends. What is your thought process like when meeting a new person? Do you just go about issuing invitations to hang out willy-nilly with no regard for whether the person is likely to be receptive? Or is there some strategy to it?

posted by cielgris to Human Relations (26 answers total) 29 users marked this as a favorite
I believe people without any anxiety probably don't give much thought to making new friends beyond, "Hey! This person seems nice! Let's see where this goes!"

As a person WITH anxiety, I can tell you what has helped me personally. I used to hate going out in groups of people. I love people! I have friends that I love! But if I had plans to meet friends at a bar or event, I would dread it all week long.

Before the event, I would stand in front of the mirror, think of someone I admire as being confident and who other people want to hang around with, and repeat (to my reflection): "I am comfortable in my own skin. I am comfortable in my own skin." Repeat as necessary.

I didn't always believe it, and it certainly felt dumb talking to myself in the mirror... but it helped me! I guess it's a "fake it till you make it" routine.
posted by Dressed to Kill at 8:09 AM on December 22, 2015 [2 favorites]

I'm really okay with a very slow timescale. I know I'm overbooked and underfocused, and so I am rarely flinging myself into hoping a new friendship is going to pan out, I just don't have the energy for it. When I meet somebody and have a good time, it's either in a situation where I can pretty safely assume we'll cross paths at a similar event in the next couple of months, or it's totally out of the normal loop for one or both of us.
In the first case, I don't push it - maybe we swap contact info, so that in another month when I'm finally free on a Thursday again, I say "Hey Sue, will you be at the thing this week?" and we sort of have a 'ping me when you're headed there and I'll try to be sure to make it out' agreement but may not actually overlap for another month or two. Then if we've managed to have a good time,and to continue to ant to see each other enough to coordinate which Thursdays we're going to, we agree to meet up beforehand for dinner or go out for tea after, or some conversation from Thursday blossoms into a plan for another activity, or we send enough missed pings (this week? no, I can't how about next week? no, but I'll be there the week after) that we just say 'well Thursdays aren't working but do you want to just get coffee?'.
In the second case, it's hard because one or both of us is going to have to go to a significant effort to reconnect. I assume this will take at least the several months that case A took, plus a bit more.

In short, I feel that I do meet people and grow friend groups, and that I do try to connect more with acquaintances that I like. And I feel that this does happen organically and not in a command-performance kind of way. BUT, it takes 6 months to a year. And that's my expectation. It has happened with people I've dated but it rarely happens with friendships, that you meet someone and a month later you're absolutely inseparable, but the older I get the less often that is, to the point that at age 40 I'd say "never". So, don't rush it.

And maybe you're the person who is thinking I don't like you because we didn't agree to drop everything and meet up the weekend after we met, but that's just not the way my life works, and I believe I'm not alone in that.
posted by aimedwander at 8:12 AM on December 22, 2015 [9 favorites]

I notice whether they are easy and fun to talk to and whether our interests overlap. If so, then sure, I suggest another get together. If they are interested, great. If not, I move on.
posted by bearwife at 8:12 AM on December 22, 2015

I do not have anxiety. I am friends with people who do. When meeting someone new, my reaction is literally "This person seems awesome, lets get their contact info! maybe we can hang out!" ... that's kind of it. And if it doesn't work out, I just assume life got in the way, hope things are ok for that person, and keep moving along. I just assume I'll meet someone else at some point who's also interesting!

Not having anxiety just means... you don't worry about it going horribly wrong. I don't come up with worst case scenarios... kind of ever. (ok maybe once in a while I'll get anxious about random things if I'm super stressed out, but that in itself is a signifier that I need to take a step back and chill out). My friends and significant other who are anxious are flabbergasted that I don't take it personally/worry about it.

Also, seconding the slow timescale. I certainly don't expect someone who I just met to be more than casual acquaintances for less than a 6m-1yr, depending on how often I see them. I will still be pretty friendly to them, but I won't go out of my way to meet up with them unless there's some mutual interest/effort.
posted by larthegreat at 8:15 AM on December 22, 2015 [9 favorites]

First, you're not alone in your experience of having trouble making new friends. Especially once you hit your 30s, most people's habits and social groups are fairly ingrained and they don't make room for new things easily. Second, I know that many people (myself included) use the 'sure let's do that' or 'let's hang out sometime' as little more than a polite conversation tool. I think of it as an indication that I like the person (or vice versus), and may in the future be willing to do something, not as an actual plan to hang out. I suspect many of these times it doesn't happen for you is because you're placing too much emphasis on that initial interaction.

To answer the actual question, I approach people often with a 'let's do that' suggestion, frequently followed by a low impact invite to the mentioned invite (via text the day of or day before the activity). I will generally try that two to three times, then if they are still in communication and seem interested I will try to plan something in the future with them. If that is a no-go, then they are just being polite and I give up. In general I think many people are flaky, new friendships require emotional labor on both ends, friends are hard to make, and it is a numbers game in the end. Also, the more you put yourself out there, the easier it gets and the less you will dwell on the many that don't work out.
posted by milnickel at 8:18 AM on December 22, 2015 [2 favorites]

As a person with a bit of anxiety I will speak to the "not fazed by being turned down/disappointed that things don't happen."

It's OK to be disappointed that things don't happen! But it's also important to recognize that "things not happening" doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with you. That's how you avoid the "fazed" part, I think. Yeah, people have other stuff going on. And some people just don't click with you, and that's OK too! Do your best to shut down* that part of your brain that is saying "She haaaaaated me!" "He thought I was SO WEIRD!"

Because 1) it's almost always untrue - mostly people are just busy with their own stuff, and 2) if it's true, SO WHAT? There are people out there who aren't going to like you, and there are people out there who are going to think you're weird, and sometimes you're going to inadvertently offend people, and you know what? It's all going to be OK anyway. You don't need everyone to like you - there will be other people who will think you are awesome. And the people you've weirded out or offended will get over it. All you can do is be your best self.

* And by "shut down" I don't mean "beat yourself up for having these feelings" or "shove them deep down inside" - try to learn to recognize that they're feelings you're having, but they're just feelings, and they're not actually useful to you.
posted by mskyle at 8:29 AM on December 22, 2015 [2 favorites]

Oooh, I think I can be very useful here - I am a person who was exactly like you (GAD that spilled over occasionally into social stuff) and then I got treatment for my anxiety (low-dose Zoloft) and also moved recently so have been thrown into a lot of unfamiliar social situations and I can definitely tell I'm navigating them differently.

Overall, the biggest effect of the medication is that I still occasionally have the same anxious thoughts, but I have the ability to push those thoughts away if I want to. So, something anxiety-provoking will occur to me and I can ask myself: 'Is it useful to think about this right now?' and if it is, I'll think about it, and if it's not, I can just decide to think about it later, or not at all. After a lifetime of feeling completely at the mercy of my overactive brain, this feels like a genuine superpower.

So, when it came to making friends, I met a few people that I really liked and wanted to be friends with, and I just decided to go for it - I told them explicitly that I wanted to be friends, invited them out to do things, and was quite persistent in continuing those invitations. A few times, awkwardness did arise, and I felt it, and I decided to just push through it. I thought, you know, this person might actually be signaling that they're not super-interested in being friends, but this also might be just random noise, so usually I would just take a break for a little while, and then send out another invite. I knew at that point I was risking coming off as overly pushy or a kind of person who couldn't 'take a hint,' but I thought the potential reward (making a friend I really liked) outweighed the risk (someone who didn't want to be friends anyway thinking that I was slightly annoying.)

Now that I think about it, that might be the core of it: when my anxiety was untreated, in any situation I was in, the consequence of 'other person has slightly negative opinion of me' seemed like the absolutely worst thing that could possibly happen, and was something to be avoided at all costs. I couldn't take any action that might result in that, so I had to move very, very slowly. Now, I'm much more of the opinion that, as long as I'm acting in accord with my values, what other people feel about me doesn't really matter. If someone doesn't want me to make overtures of friendship towards them, they can tell me; otherwise, I'm not going to feel bad about doing it. Some people might get annoyed, but some people are going to respond well, and that's totally a net positive for me.
posted by pretentious illiterate at 8:32 AM on December 22, 2015 [15 favorites]

Eh, it's weird as an adult making friends. The older you get the harder it is. So you go into it thinking that there's a 10% that it'll click.

I think it's better to get to know people as part of a group before proposing a 'hang-out.' So if you're doing a meet-up, go there and hang. Strike up conversations, offer to help with organizing, etc. Be a part of the group. Go multiple times and lay the base. Then you'll find that you gravitate towards someone and vice-versa.

It's a lot less strange to 'hang-out' with someone for coffee after choir practice, than it is to meet someone at 'random city meet-up' for 'pizza and movie' at my house.

I've met my dearest friends this way. One literally at choir practice. Another through a tv show meet up. It didn't happen all at once and it was a while before it went 1:1. Don't rush things!
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 8:35 AM on December 22, 2015 [4 favorites]

I make friends easily, even as an adult in my 30s (though it definitely happens less than it did when I was 19!). One thing is that I do sometimes worry about the things you talk about with making a new friend, but it doesn't really keep me from befriending people. One thing I noticed from your question is that there's a lot of black-or-white thinking - you extend an invitation to someone and you're taking their response or lack thereof as a statement of whether or not they're interested in being friends. But I think it's a lot greyer than that. Sometimes things just have to grow. It's less about offering friendship and being accepted or rejected, and more a growth of mutual appreciation.

I think the slow timescale is the key, especially as an adult. It's not - usually - like when we were 19, and you'd meet someone cool and suddenly they'd be your new bestie. I have a really good friend I met through a mutual friend. I think it took maybe two years of us hanging out with the mutual friend for us to start hanging out on our own and considering ourselves friends in our own right.

In thinking through how I've made friends as an adult, it has usually been people I've seen on a reasonably frequent basis (like at least once every few months) until we finally at one point had a really good one-on-one conversation and realized how much we had in common. At that point, one of us would suggest hanging out and then it would sort of grow from there. I think once you've bonded, it becomes so much easier to reach out become friends in your own right.

There have definitely though been times when I've had that bonding experience, reached out, and either realized we didn't enjoy hanging out, or had the person not really reciprocate, and, you know, that's ok. Like you say in your question, not everyone is meant to be your friend. Or maybe the timing is just bad. For example, one of my best friends is someone I know from grad school. We had a bunch of friends in common but never really connected there - our priorities were very different. But after grad school we both wound up in the same city and became very close. That's why I think it's best to try to avoid the black-and-white thinking, because people are complicated and things change and you never know.
posted by lunasol at 8:53 AM on December 22, 2015 [4 favorites]

I am a person with anxiety. I am medicated for my anxiety, and at times it can be quite severe. However, I have very little social anxiety. I finnd it extremely easy to make the jump from "this person I met is nice" to "they are my friend".

So, I rarely try to make new friends specifically. However, I am a total Pollyanna optimist when it comes to other people. I assume everyone around me has something interesting to say. I chat with just about every person I interact with. So just today:
- the woman on line in front of me at Target for into an argument with the cashier about a price. I turned around to give a "omg wtf" look to whomever was behind me. It was someone who was shopping for similar items to mine. In my brain, I pegged this person as "just like me!" We shared an eyeroll and I said "So how's YOUR day going?" in my conspiratorial voice. She responded well, we chatted for the next 5 minutes and wished each other happy Christmas as I left.
- at the grocery store a woman told me my baby's eyelashes were beautiful. Instead of "thanks", I said something like "Ugh! They're wasted on babies! How much would I pay to have them transplanted to my face? Ha ha ha" and she told me all about how jealous she used to be of her sons smooth skin, but now he's a teenager so he got his, ha ha ha.

So my default position is one where there is always, always, always an opportunity to connect with another person for no other reason than to enjoy a connection.
When these connections happen with a person I'm going to encounter multiple times, the interactions behave like a friendship.

So, while I am constantly worried that the sky is falling and that I am a gross monster who nobody can ever truly love and also I'll never have a fulfilling career and my house will probably set fire... For me, since I'm not actively trying to make friends but rather I'm constantly making connections, friendships just sort of happen.

When a new friend does something that makes me feel bad, I ruminate and I hate myself and blame myself. But when someone doesn't seem super into me, I'm not bothered because I am basically constantly connecting with someone else.

I don't know if that gives you any insight? I hope so!
posted by waterisfinite at 8:54 AM on December 22, 2015 [8 favorites]

One thing that helps is to avoid being invested in the outcome. Which is easier said than done, I know, but if you can throw an invitation out there and convince yourself that it's no big deal for YOU if it doesn't happen, then you're a lot less likely to waste the headspace on WHY it didn't happen.
posted by metasarah at 8:56 AM on December 22, 2015 [2 favorites]

Sometimes I have terrible anxiety, and sometimes I don't. The contrast in experience can be startling.

When I'm anxious, being at a meetup or party is like this: "oh, they'll never want to talk to me, I'll just stand here in the corner and pretend to be interested in my phone, maybe someone will come start a conversion, why is it so hard to make friends here??"

When I'm not anxious, it's like this: "la la la, interesting person, we are having an amazing conversation, oh yes we should *totally* hang out, here's my email! oh, someone else just joined our conversion and they're interesting too! they must think I'm interesting and cool!"

It's not at all a difference in thought process (although I think CBT self-talk can be really helpful in this sort of situation). It's more like the absence or presence of a weight. With the weight, I feel poisonous; without, I feel magnetic. The rest follows from there.
posted by the_blizz at 8:56 AM on December 22, 2015 [1 favorite]

I have the opposite experience. The older I get, the easier it is to make friends. I went from a 16 year old being asked if I knew how to talk, as I was that scared, to a 50 year old who could have 5 plans with people a night.

I have had anxiety all my life. I have ran out on social engagements and hid in the car. It sucks. The only thing I can think of that is different now, is that I just don't care as much, and that keeps the spiraling thoughts at bay. I don't even have a thought process around meeting people. Not thinking is a blessing. The only thing I really think of is being kind.

I agree with group friendships/hangouts and then going from there. It's so much easier. For instance, if I am at an art opening with a bunch of artists chatting, someone says they are thirsty, and I can say, "me too, let's walk over to x and get a drink real quick." That is so much more low stakes than a planned engagement. For both sides.

Also helping people. If you see them struggling with moving a table, for example, go right over an pick up the other side. It gets you engaged, but, again, without the focus of friendship.

If you do this over and over, you will get more comfortable on your own skin and the growth to social ease will slowly happen.
posted by Vaike at 8:57 AM on December 22, 2015 [3 favorites]

Oh! And one of the most helpful things I ever realized was that almost all social interactions go better when you worry less about yourself and more about making other people feel comfortable/liked/interesting. Because, yeah, even that extroverted person with lots of friends gets socially anxious sometimes, and it's really nice to have someone basically say "I see you, and I think you're a cool person" (maybe not in those words, but by emailing them or asking them to do something). This also helped with my own insecurites, because insecurity is essentially self-absorbed. Once you start thinking about other people and making them feel good, there's a lot less room for your own anxiety.

Not to minimize social anxiety, which I know is its own diagnosable condition.
posted by lunasol at 8:57 AM on December 22, 2015 [6 favorites]

I agree with everyone above especially Ruthless Bunny to go group-before-1:1.

I never, ever do the direct "Would you like to exchange information and make plans to hang out sometime?" as I personally find that to be strange and hyper-formal. I also avoid one-on-one datey things like getting a coffee, beer or dinner.

Framing hanging out in a way that you are trying to get a group together to do something takes a ton of pressure off of them. If you already have a few friends, awesome, because now you can be like "hey a few of us are seeing Hateful Eight/going to a comedy show/going to happy hour on Friday, you should totally come!" If they can't make it, whatever, because you already had plans.

Taking on a "the more the merrier, come hang with us" mentality instead of putting out super heavy "DO YOU WANT TO BE MY FRIEND" vibes is vital in these situations, which can be hard to get over if you prefer 1:1 situations but, come one, adding two or three more people won't kill you. Small gatherings like this can sometimes be the "training wheels" that propel you to true one-on-one friendship magic.
posted by windbox at 8:58 AM on December 22, 2015 [3 favorites]

Is this helpful for you? Are you sort of beating yourself up a lot about being worried about social stuff, when other people aren't?

We are wired to worry about social things--human beings are important to one another.

That said, the number one thing you can do to lower your anxiety is make sure that you are generally not lonely. That means that you should try to build lots of friendly, low-stakes, positive contact into your routines. That means having a few people every day who you say "hi" to and smile at. It really helps make all the other social things you do easier.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 9:04 AM on December 22, 2015 [5 favorites]

I'm adding to my answer. I DO have thought process. It is mostly 'how can I help?'. That is what helped take away my anxiety. It allowed me to be busy and focus elsewhere. It allowed me to make slight small talk without awkward silences. It allowed other people to appreciate me and in turn, they are the ones who invite me out one on one. When I was first coming out of my shell, it was a lifesaver to be able to go into the kitchen and do the dishes while talking to one single person.
posted by Vaike at 9:06 AM on December 22, 2015 [3 favorites]

People think the solution to being lonely is having friends, but actually, it's much harder to get friends when you're lonely (and they're not really the solution). The solution is to be a regular at a coffee shop, maybe go to the same gas station where you see the same guy all the time, be friendly with a neighbor who you see a lot...not friends, just people to wave to. You'll feel much more secure and it'll be a lot easier to make friends.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 9:06 AM on December 22, 2015 [7 favorites]

Also, I kinda agree about group stuff, but kinda not.

There are a lot of people who are comfortable being group friends, but who shy away from being one-on-one friends until they've seen you a lot in a group. However, organizing groups can be difficult if you're sensitive and anxious, because there's often someone who isn't having as great a time, or who seems a bit quiet, or someone's late...there's a lot going on.

Ideally, you find someone who likes hosting or who likes organizing these kinds of group events, and you suck up to them so you get invited a lot.

But I think hosting group activities is a lot of work, a lot of stress if you're a worrier. Maybe find pre-organized things and tell lots of people you're going and you'd love it if they came? In NYC these would be meetups or something like that.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 9:13 AM on December 22, 2015

My general thought process is that a large piece of their decision making process has nothing to do with me. People have busy lives. Maybe Thai food isn't their thing. Maybe there was some communication disconnect. Maybe they are having a personal crisis, it is a private matter and they don't want to talk about it. I accept that a high percentage of missed connections are just a case of my path and theirs are not readily syncing up.

They have lives of their own. What other people choose to do or not do mostly has nothing whatsoever to do with you per se. If that time, place or activity does not work for them, it probably isn't "personal rejection."

If I just want to do Thing, I look for people who are interested in that Thing and I don't sweat it if it isn't their thing. I move on to offering the invitation to other people.

If I want to get to know Specific Person better because I am personally fond of them, I make an effort to try to *find* common ground. I don't assume that the first idea I toss out will work for them.

Of course, it is possible they are claiming scheduling problems because they don't actually like me. If they always have some scheduling problem, time to consider that either they just aren't into you (so to speak) or their life just isn't conducive to hanging out. For example, parents who work full time and have small kids just may not be able to pursue the kinds of activities that childless folks like to do. Their lives and yours just may not be compatible. They didn't get a job or have a baby just to avoid you. If it just never works, stop putting effort into it. But it probably isn't personal rejection in most cases.
posted by Michele in California at 10:12 AM on December 22, 2015 [3 favorites]

When you come down to it, most relationships start simply from seeing each other frequently. After a while, you begin to feel familiar to one another, and this feeling of closeness will naturally begin to develop.

The trick is to remember that people rarely "jump" from being strangers to meeting a couple of times at a group to one-on-one intimate friendliness. It's more like this:

1) initial meeting;
2) time passes;
3) see each other x number of times where you have superficial, or interesting but not very personal, conversation;
4) times passes;
5) have more and more mutual acquaintances due to appearing at same events, etc, which leads to opportunities to socialize more intimately, from impersonal meetup groups to large holiday house parties to large dinner parties to small dinner parties, so on;
6) time passes;
7) ...
8) friendship.

And this trajectory could derail at any point, or end, or never progress beyond step 1-3.

Of course, sometimes you meet that one person with whom you mesh so well that you both rush toward insta-like. But these things are like love at first sight, much touted yet occurring ever so rarely..

So mostly we all just keep on trucking, go to group events, become part of some community, throw out testers and feelers as appropriate, and do our best to diversify our friendship portfolios ;)

It's best if you can come to enjoy the process itself.

Best of luck.
posted by enlivener at 12:59 PM on December 22, 2015 [1 favorite]

I am a person in my 30's who makes friends easily. I have been told by people that it's because I'm a good listener face-to-face. I like building people up. Not buttering them up, just being honest about the positives and trying to see things from that person's perspective. I like meeting people by doing projects and taking classes together because it allows the friendship to develop over a series of weeks rather than one night at a meet up.
posted by Pearl928 at 3:01 PM on December 22, 2015 [2 favorites]

I work up the nerve to ask them to hang out, and then it never happens, I'm intrigued by this. I'd like to see the process of approaching the interesting person, what you say or do, and then what happens next.

I used to date a guy who said he'd give a girl three tries before he gave up. So, he'd ask her out once and she'd be busy. Fine, he'd ask her out for another night and she'd be busy. Okay, he'd ask her out a third time and she'd be busy. Done. Next. That was his system and it worked for him.

Are you being too exact or not exact enough with the "hanging out?" If you ask someone to accompany you to a U2 Concert at Carnegie Hall on the 12th of December at 2:00 in the afternoon, s/he is probably going to be busy.

If you're not exact enough, and just say "Hey, we should hang out sometime!" and leave it at that, you place the burden on the person who is slightly less interested than you.

The trick is somewhere in the middle. "I'd like to get together for coffee sometime in the next week. I work near x and there's a great starbucks on the corner of Y. However, if there's a place that works better for you, let me know!" This way, you've set up parameters (within the next week and at Starbucks). The other person may say s/he'll get back to you. Fine!

Within 2 or three days, say, "Why don't we do something Saturday afternoon? Maybe meet for coffee at Starbucks and go for a walk down by the Pier? I'm also free that morning if that's better." Etc.

Keep at it.

Of course, if you never get any response, and this happens, let it go.

It's really a numbers game; you gotta kiss a lot of toads. You gotta just practice practice practice.
posted by Piedmont_Americana at 4:12 AM on December 23, 2015 [1 favorite]

I almost always feel anxious when meeting new people, but no one who knows me would guess it. I think that we all feel vulnerable at times. So if I'm worrying about what you think of me, it's can also be true that you are worrying what I think of you. Sometimes I'll just come right out and say "boy, these things sure make me nervous!" Even if the person I'm talking to doesn't respond positively, it helps me just get it out of my brain.
posted by Gusaroo at 2:30 PM on December 23, 2015

Here are two examples of un-selfconscious interactions:

According to Florence King in Southern Ladies and Gentlemen--when you meet an old-school southern person, they will ask a relentless series of questions in the most charming way-- what town were you born in, what college/university did you go to, what church do you go to, where is your spouse from; and each of these questions can branch out depending on the answer-- what year did you graduate, what was your major, did you join a fraternity/sorority.

the purpose is to identify a common acquaintance (for the brass) or a common relation (for the gold) -- when the questions narrow down to a time and place, the ultimate question is "did you know so-and-so?"


The self aggrandizing individual, always looking out for opportunity or building a network of influence, has an inner question: "what can you do for me?" Every person is a gateway into a community or a provider of a service. if you are a mechanic, you can perform discounted repairs or free advice, if you are a member of a country club, you can sponsor for membership.
posted by ohshenandoah at 12:18 PM on December 27, 2015

I agree that there's a "oh, we should hang out sometime"/"Oh yes absolutely" dance that comes up at group things that doesn't actually mean "I will call you"/"ok I will expect my phone to ring". It's more a way of agreeing "you're someone I don't mind talking to"/"thanks, you too I guess". If you want something to happen, wait until you've done this we-should-hang-out ritual at least once or twice; then the next time, add "no, seriously! I mentioned that [coffeeshop, movie, event, location] and I think you'd really like it. Do you want to?" and they will blink and say "really? this weekend?" because they sort of forgot that you might want to make actual plans instead of just agreeing that you were the kind of person they could imagine one day making plans with. And then with luck they will be kind of delighted that you really meant it, and they will smile, and you will make plans. Or they'll say something vague and noncommittal and you'll know that they're not actually going to call you, even though they like you just fine, it's just not the right time/mood for them to be making one-on-one friends.
posted by aimedwander at 1:21 PM on January 5, 2016

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