As we age, we often find it harder to make friends. Many of the friends we still have are those we made as children, teenagers, or as adults with small children.
Once I hit 60, I noticed my group of friends had changed. Through my mid-years it had been an even mix of men and women, mostly couples and a few singles, but now the composition had shifted to 90% women, and single women at that.
The world and how we relate to it has rapidly changed, impacting how we interact with each other, stay in touch, and maintain an active social presence.
“It’s not where you go, but who you meet along the way.” Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum
My very friendly next-door neighbours moved back to the US last month. In many ways, it was not a surprise, as they were always going to be visitors in London – here because of the husband’s job. Yet it came as both a shock and a loss.
Whether you’re a newcomer or a long-time resident, there are multiple ways to experience more joy and connection in your community.
As time goes on, we may find entertaining guests less attractive, even overwhelming. We may not have the energy or the inclination to prepare a full dinner party for a large group, nor the extra cash to foot the bill. But we still want to stay in touch and spend time with our dear friends.
I like to chat. I chat first thing in the morning about any problems I faced in the night. Then I chat at lunch about events of the morning, and I chat in the evening about the rest of the day.
Many of us share common fears as we enter retirement. We fear financial challenges, failing health and feelings of disconnectedness as we grow older. The good news is that there is one strategy which can help us effectively face all three – living with roommates.
The first women on Earth are certain to have gathered together around a fire. They probably made meals together, fashioned clothing, and shared stories.