Expert gives advice on making friends - WNEM TV 5

Expert gives advice on making friends

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

Friendships are easy between children on a playground or classmates in college, but as people age it can be difficult to find lasting friendships.

Nancy Bigler said as a women she knows firsthand making friends isn't always the easiest thing to do. That's why walking through the park with her friend Bonnie means a lot to her.

"Bonnie's my friend. She's my neighbor. We have been friends for 10 or 12 years. Get to know your neighbors. It's sad that so many people don't know their neighbors. Get to know them. They can be your friends," Bigler said.

For some that kind of friendship isn't so easy to come by. Psychotherapist James Dearlove said many people, especially women have trouble connecting and maintaining friendships.

He said between work, kids and marriage, friends can sometimes be left on the back burner for too long.

"Women's relationships have become harder in that people move so often and you have friends and then they move and you can feel, even though you are understanding, you hurt and it can make you afraid to make new friends," Dearlove said.

He said if you feel lonely there are things you can do to make new friends. He said stick to what you know.

"Common interests. If you're into yoga, well that gives you a start. If you have a religious background then feeding into that. Maybe find women's groups and that kind of thing will be beneficial because at least then you know that you have a commonalty," Dearlove said.

Dearlove said patience is important as well because friendships are built on trust and trust doesn't always happen over night.

As for Bigler, she said rejection can sometimes cause hesitation in creating new friendships, but said she is glad she didn't let that stop her from knowing Bonnie.

"Friendship is important. You gotta have a friend," Bigler said.

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