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isn't "so busy". I get it, I really do. We all have responsibilities and priorities. But, no one seems to have time to come to dinner or meet at the park, or just take the time to get to know us, the "new" (moved last July) family. Even when I walk the dog in our community or at the park, I see people walking while talking on their cell phones, even if someone is walking with them. At church, folks greet us, say hello, but don't really want to talk with us. In 6 months, we've only had 1 dinner invitation and exchange of phone numbers. Bible studies are "quick in and quick out" as folks rush in from work or carpool and rush out. I do confess I'm one of the "rushing out" ladies because dd's youth gets out before my class does.

 

Just hearing what others are doing exhausts me so I am not feeling "left out by choice" but rather by circumstance. Their activities are not ones we can take part in either due to deadlines that occured prior to our move here, or age/stage, health, gender of my dc.

 

The Christmas holidays were lonely, but I did expect that. Now, my father (out of state) has had a major health crisis and I am really feeling the lack of connection and support locally. Does anyone else feel we have become a disconnected society in this age of techno-connecting?

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It is not here.

 

I really want to connect with other homeschoolers in my area. But everyone is scheduled to the max. We cannot afford, nor do we want to complicate our lives with gobs of extra activities. But it would be nice to have people who could come over to bake cookies or meet us at the park.

 

It is depressing.

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I'm almost always the one doing the inviting. Our friends will come over to my house for dinner or whatever. Rarely is it that we go to friends' houses for a reciprocal event.

 

I don't mind. I've actually become quite good at entertaining over the last few years.

 

I'd do the inviting, but I don't know folks to invite. We have very few phone numbers and the ones we do, they are just maxed out.

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I wanted to thank you for this post. I'm one of the terminally over scheduled.

 

I read your post right before I was going to email some dear friends telling them that we are just too busy to get together.

 

I decided to find a way to MAKE time instead. After all, who needs sleep?

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isn't "so busy". I get it, I really do. We all have responsibilities and priorities. But, no one seems to have time to come to dinner or meet at the park, or just take the time to get to know us, the "new" (moved last July) family. Even when I walk the dog in our community or at the park, I see people walking while talking on their cell phones, even if someone is walking with them. At church, folks greet us, say hello, but don't really want to talk with us. In 6 months, we've only had 1 dinner invitation and exchange of phone numbers. Bible studies are "quick in and quick out" as folks rush in from work or carpool and rush out. I do confess I'm one of the "rushing out" ladies because dd's youth gets out before my class does.

 

Just hearing what others are doing exhausts me so I am not feeling "left out by choice" but rather by circumstance. Their activities are not ones we can take part in either due to deadlines that occured prior to our move here, or age/stage, health, gender of my dc.

 

The Christmas holidays were lonely, but I did expect that. Now, my father (out of state) has had a major health crisis and I am really feeling the lack of connection and support locally. Does anyone else feel we have become a disconnected society in this age of techno-connecting?

 

My part of the country and state, for that matter, is notorious for people being too busy to breathe. I came here in the 70s when I was in high school so I don't really notice it, but other folks who move here from other places mention it a lot. A Marine Corps wife friend of mine found me by being very assertive - much more so than I would ever be. I'm just not that outgoing. But being a military wife she didn't have the option of sitting back and waiting for other people to have time for her. She just jumped into our lives with both feet and I'm very, very, glad she did.:)

 

She called a homeschool group, got my number as someone who lived nearby, called me and invited herself over. She was on my doorstep in about 10 minutes (and she walked!). She is one of my dearest friends now (even though she lives in Okinawa). Perhaps you will have to take matters in your own hands and just show up on some people's doorsteps. (I know, very awkward and uncomfy - but, hey, it worked for her.)

 

Where are you, btw? Maybe you live down the street and I could invite you over for some coffee?

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isn't "so busy". I get it, I really do. We all have responsibilities and priorities. But, no one seems to have time to come to dinner or meet at the park, or just take the time to get to know us, the "new" (moved last July) family. Even when I walk the dog in our community or at the park, I see people walking while talking on their cell phones, even if someone is walking with them. At church, folks greet us, say hello, but don't really want to talk with us. In 6 months, we've only had 1 dinner invitation and exchange of phone numbers. Bible studies are "quick in and quick out" as folks rush in from work or carpool and rush out. I do confess I'm one of the "rushing out" ladies because dd's youth gets out before my class does.

 

Just hearing what others are doing exhausts me so I am not feeling "left out by choice" but rather by circumstance. Their activities are not ones we can take part in either due to deadlines that occured prior to our move here, or age/stage, health, gender of my dc.

 

The Christmas holidays were lonely, but I did expect that. Now, my father (out of state) has had a major health crisis and I am really feeling the lack of connection and support locally. Does anyone else feel we have become a disconnected society in this age of techno-connecting?

 

Where I live it is not quite that bad, and I am typically the one that is literally running from thing to thing (and when I say literally I mean I am running, my beavers were laughing at me running my huge butt to the meeting because I was running late dropping the bigs off at their scout fieldtrip because my daycare child got picked up late.

 

As for invites/phone numbers etc. We moved here almost 2 years ago, I have zero friends in this town. Even when I have made the effort to get to know people, it is a very closed off community to anyone who was not born and raised here. They do not like outsiders at all, as we learned when the cussing and such started towards us before we even had the moving truck unloaded. I have had better luck getting to know people in the next town over, but because I work all day, and have evening commitments etc I never seem to be available to really meet up with people and build it up to more of a friendship rather than just a superficial aquaintance. I have many of those. The one person in my town that I started making a real friendship with, I met at work last year, she lives down the street from me and she is just as busy as I am, she works 3 jobs and when she has an evening off wants to spend time with her kids, it makes it very hard for both of us to be able to sit down for coffee etc.

 

It sucks not having that community connection/friendships. What I started doing was joining thing, and volunteering in things. It is not the same as a solid friendship but it is giving me some community connection, and it is building supports even if they are through groups rather than individuals kwim.

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We should all consider this from both sides, inviting people and being able to accept an invitation. Previous generations had *real* connection, we have superficial texts and an email now and then. You cannot reach across the table and hold someone's hand when they are hurting, you cannot really laugh with someone via texting.

 

Perhaps we'd be a happier and healthier generation with less i-this or that and more face to face visits.

 

Holly, I hope you will find good friends soon!

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We are not busy, over scheduled people. In fact one of my favorite activities this winter has been lounging by the fire. Wanna come over? The few same age boys Doodle has made friends with since we moved here though are over scheduled. So much so that I no longer try to arrange get togethers. That just ended with Doodle being disappointed.

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If you find a place let me know and I'll move there.

 

Did you see my post earlier this month about me wanting to have a dinner party at my house for my birthday? It was so hard to find a time when most of my friends could make it. I had to set the date an entire month and a half after my birthday.

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Come here! We leave about 20 min early whenever we go out, because we have to factor in the "bump into someone and chat 20 minutes" rule that is common here. :) We moved here full time, not knowing a soul about 7 years ago. We even know some of the toll-takers on the bridge by name now. They introduce themselves after awhile and tell you where they live!

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My part of the country and state, for that matter, is notorious for people being too busy to breathe. I came here in the 70s when I was in high school so I don't really notice it, but other folks who move here from other places mention it a lot. A Marine Corps wife friend of mine found me by being very assertive - much more so than I would ever be. I'm just not that outgoing. But being a military wife she didn't have the option of sitting back and waiting for other people to have time for her. She just jumped into our lives with both feet and I'm very, very, glad she did.:)

 

She called a homeschool group, got my number as someone who lived nearby, called me and invited herself over. She was on my doorstep in about 10 minutes (and she walked!). She is one of my dearest friends now (even though she lives in Okinawa). Perhaps you will have to take matters in your own hands and just show up on some people's doorsteps. (I know, very awkward and uncomfy - but, hey, it worked for her.)

 

Where are you, btw? Maybe you live down the street and I could invite you over for some coffee?

 

Kathleen, do you live in Northern Virginia? Because we've lived here for just over two years, came from Salt Lake City, and it is a different WORLD. People here are insane. We have managed to meet some people who are available, but we are almost always the ones doing the inviting. I feel like we entertain all the time. It's exhausting but we enjoy it. Still, we have sometimes wondered why nobody reciprocates.

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We moved to where we are now a year ago, and it's taken about that long to start to really get to know people. I don't know why it's so hard to get to meet people more than superficially. I have made a couple of friends, but because of my husband's work schedule, we haven't really made any friends that we all know. It is hard, and I agree with the others that we just have to take it upon ourselves to meet people and invite them over. I do wish others would be more welcoming. It seems backwards that the new people have to force themselves into other circles, especially if you're in a church.

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We have a mix where we live...there are a few families that we schedule things with on a pretty regular basis. However, most of these families (ourselves included) have younger kids. I don't know what it will be like as our kids get older. Most are families that we know through our church.

 

We moved to PA from Northern VA (where I grew up...) I never thought much about it, living there my entire life, but in retrospect, it's a crazy place to live. We had very few families that we socialized with, mostly because of work schedules/long commutes/too many activities/etc. It's a terrible pace for living.

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Kathleen, do you live in Northern Virginia? Because we've lived here for just over two years, came from Salt Lake City, and it is a different WORLD. People here are insane. We have managed to meet some people who are available, but we are almost always the ones doing the inviting. I feel like we entertain all the time. It's exhausting but we enjoy it. Still, we have sometimes wondered why nobody reciprocates.

 

Yes, I do. I really have nothing to compare it with. Like I said, I moved here when I was in high school so it seems normal to me. I've heard a whole of people say it's crazy here and that they hate living here and can't wait until they get orders someplace else. I think it has to do with the crazy long commutes. Most people can't afford to live close in so they live two or three counties out of D.C. and commute there by train, bus, subway or the dreaded I-95 (might be quicker to walk in the latter case, lol.)

 

I'm in Stafford County and thankfully, my husband works in Prince William County so he only has to drive 45 minutes to work. What part of NoVa are you in?

 

ETA: I went to school in Falls Church City and when I graduated from college I lived in Arlington and Falls Church. Now when we have to go up there for anything I just cringe - I don't recognize anything - the roads are all different - the pace is insane - I'm so glad I don't have to deal with that part of NoVa anyway. It's bad enough here in Stafford.

Edited by Kathleen in VA
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I'm almost always the one doing the inviting. Our friends will come over to my house for dinner or whatever. Rarely is it that we go to friends' houses for a reciprocal event.

 

This is me as well.

 

We used to live in NoVA and chose to leave when we had the chance because of the insanity. My former BFF still lives there - the friendship largely ended because she got too busy to maintain any sort of connection, which may be understandable but is still sad.

 

Now we live in a rural-ish area, where we have been for 3-1/2 years. I have two people whom I truly consider friends. Unfortunately, both are moving this summer, so I will have to start again.

 

Is it truly that people are too busy? Or is it the 25+ hours of TV/screen time that the average American indulges in each week?

 

OP, if you find that place, will you pm me? I'll move there tomorrow.....:grouphug:

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The people I see regularly are the ones whose kids are in the same scheduled activities as mine. This is where we've formed our long-term relationships. As kids get older, they try different things. In order to catch up with one friend, I had to give her 5 Monday evenings to choose from and we both had to put it on our calendars. It seems nuts, and we're not THAT busy; we were just busy on opposite nights!

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I would like to move to wherever that place is - a place where people have time for friends and actually want friends.

 

I was realizing recently that I have never felt so lonely in my entire life. We have lived here for about 15 years, and it took a few years to make some friends. People are busy, and have friends, and don't want or need more friends. So while I have friends, we rarely see each other anymore because our dc are not in the same activities together anymore. They do things with people who participate in the same activities. I guess what I thought were friends were actually only friends because of shared activities. I thought we were friends because we liked each other and enjoyed being together. We still get together when they have time, but that is not often because they are too busy. They are friendly if I call them. They are not mean people. They are just very busy. I am busy, too, but I make time for people.

 

I guess I want some friendships that are not one-sided, and I feel like all mine are that way. I do the phoning, I do the inviting. If I don't call them, we won't speak or get together.

 

Is it asking too much to want friends who invite me to do something? To have friends who call me to see how I am doing?

 

Same thing with people at my church. As much as I like my church, it is one of the most unfriendly places I have ever been, and we have been there for over 10 years. We have been very active in youth ministry the entire time. People are friendly when we are at church, say hello, etc., but they really are not interested in being friends. They are interested in being friendly while at church. There is a difference. It is quite shallow friendliness. In all the years we have been there, we have only been invited to one couple's home for dinner - and that was after we invited them to our home and they were busy, so they suggested we get pizza (meaning since we invited them, we would buy pizza for everyone!) and bring it to their house instead. But at least they did invite us to their home, so I am counting it. Other than that, it is me doing the inviting.

 

I truly make an effort, and we have enjoyed the few times people have accepted our invitations. And I do mean few. It is very rare when people do accept our invitations because they are busy or not interested. But it is still one-sided. No one invites us. To be honest, after more than 10 years in this church and in the same youth ministry, I don't think anyone there knows us. Really knows us. I don't think anyone there wants to know us. They are busy. They know our names and faces, and our dc, and they know what we do, but they don't know us. Once, because of volunteering in another activity, I missed four weeks of church in a row. When I returned, not one person indicated that they noticed I had not been there. No comments at all. And since we serve in the youth ministry together, I assumed someone would notice I had not been there and was now back. I seriously think I could leave the church and people would not notice I was gone, except that what I do would not be done and someone else would have to step in. But I don't think anyone would even care or ask about us. I guess since we are considered mature Christians and we serve regularly at church, do whatever needs to be done, and are trusted, people at church think they don't need to pay any attention to us.

 

I invite people over for dinner or dessert or out for coffee or whatever because I want to get to know them. I don't do it to get something in return, but it would be nice if there would be someone who would reciprocate or reach out to me sometime. I am weary of always doing the reaching out and being rebuffed (sorry, but we are SOOOOOOO busy we don't have time...).

 

So this year I have decided that I am not going to keep initiating one-sided friendships anymore. Obviously, I care more about friends than the people I have reached out to. There must be other places to find friends because as much as I have tried, the hsing community and church have not been the right places to find friends. Surely there are other people who want friends and have room for people in their lives. I just need to find them. I just don't know where. I do know that my non-Christian neighbor is far friendlier than most Christians I have known, and she is friendlier to me than anyone else here. I do spend time with her and enjoy her friendship. I just find it sad that Christians don't have time to develop friends. Something is very wrong with that, but that is probably another topic for discussion.

 

I do think that the use of social media (Facebook, etc.) and other technology may be isolating people instead of bringing them together. People choose to be too busy, so a one-sided relationship via social media is the only thing they have time for because it can be done on their own terms, when they have a few minutes for it. They can turn it on, post, then turn it off and there are no real people to get in their way or demand their time. Oh, and they can have a few hundred 'friends' or 'followers' so they think they have friends. I want real friends.

 

Sorry this got so long. I have been evaluating this situation for a long time, watching, seeing how people are relating to others, and realizing that people, in my area, just don't have time for friends, and few seem to even want any friends. I just don't fit in because I value friends.

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I am glad you started this thread! I too, feel like we are in left field. We are on a waiting list for a new co-op, so I hope we meet new friends. Our church well we are their over a year and we never were at anyone's house yet. We visited an elderly couple when the wife had a foot problem, but other than that just go and do chit chat.

 

I hope more respond, because I see people not getting together as much.

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It is not here.

 

I really want to connect with other homeschoolers in my area. But everyone is scheduled to the max. We cannot afford, nor do we want to complicate our lives with gobs of extra activities. But it would be nice to have people who could come over to bake cookies or meet us at the park.

 

It is depressing.

 

:iagree:

It is really sad to me that a hand held device, never ending sports schedule, whatever it is that is pulling people away, has fulfilled the need for actual human contact and interaction. I wonder how long it is going to take before we have some studies showing that the already high rates of depression are even higher and that social skills are in the gutter? I feel like if this continues, this country (maybe it is like this in other countries?) is in for a world of hurts.

 

Sad, very sad.

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I don't think the handheld devices are the root cause. I grew up before cell phones, and folks were getting busier, and overscheduled back then. I think the cell phones and hand-held devices were in response to an existing need, not the cause. I see the root cause of the problem as more being suburbia and its lifestyle. Things are flung a little too far around instead of contained in one neighborhood. A family will drive an hour each way for a child to get a music lesson every week! If you are going to be away from the rest of your family and friends for just that one activity a week, yeah, a cell phone makes sense. Things expand from there.

 

The car culture/no walking/too much residential zoning of suburbia has had a lot of unintended consequences over time. I think if gas prices stay high and no alternate takes hold, suburbia will change dramatically. It might just be good for everyone's psyche.

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I have been evaluating this situation for a long time, watching, seeing how people are relating to others, and realizing that people, in my area, just don't have time for friends, and few seem to even want any friends. I just don't fit in because I value friends.

 

:grouphug:

 

If there is one thing this thread has been good for, it is to make me realize that I am not the only one who feels/sees/evaluates the way that PhotoNinja (whose post so very much matches my own experiences) describes.

 

Too bad we don't all live in the same town. I don't have any answers; and I am depressed when I look to my children's future...will there by ANYONE for them to have as significant long-term friends? They only have one or two true friends now anyway...most of their "friends" are based around activities or friends, many of which I participate in only because it's the only way for them to be around other "friends".

 

For anyone who feels alone/isolated in our "wired" society, you might want to read the book "The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains" by NIcholas Carr. He is not a luddite by any means - he is a very educated (and well-wired himself) reporter and author. But what I found so fascinating is that he researched and describes: 1) how the brain actually changes in response to constant short-term, distracted activities the wired world perpetuates and 2) how technological changes over time (such as the printing press) had great and profound societal changes that followed their invention. The book goes into much more than that, but it really helped me see on a bigger level how our society is truly being changed by this latest technology and how, even though I choose not to participate in a lot of it, I'm still going to be hugely impacted by it. It was a worthwhile read.

 

PhotoNinja, I, too, am a person who values friends as people, as friends. I used to believe that once I was a friend with a person, I would remain friends with them for life, even if the friendship morphed into more-or-less-involved (circumstances do change). But, after many years of heartache, I've had to come to realize that friendship, for the vast majority of people out there, is a commodity. (Just one of the many reasons I hate the consumer mindset.) People pick friendships up and lay them aside again based upon personal need. And when the need is over, so is the friendship.

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I don't think the handheld devices are the root cause. I grew up before cell phones, and folks were getting busier, and overscheduled back then. I think the cell phones and hand-held devices were in response to an existing need, not the cause. I see the root cause of the problem as more being suburbia and its lifestyle. Things are flung a little too far around instead of contained in one neighborhood. A family will drive an hour each way for a child to get a music lesson every week! If you are going to be away from the rest of your family and friends for just that one activity a week, yeah, a cell phone makes sense. Things expand from there.

 

The car culture/no walking/too much residential zoning of suburbia has had a lot of unintended consequences over time. I think if gas prices stay high and no alternate takes hold, suburbia will change dramatically. It might just be good for everyone's psyche.

 

:iagree:I wish we lived in a self-contained neighborhood where I could walk to the library, po, grocery store, etc. Where I live I can't walk anywhere. There are no sidewalks in my community. The nearest store is a 7-11 two miles away which I would gladly walk to but the roads are much too treacherous.

 

ETA: I was watching "The Music Man" several years ago and it really struck me how the whole town was out and about, walking every where. They were able to say hello to each other on the street, they knew each other at least by name. I only know the people who live directly across from me or next door to me.

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I don't think the handheld devices are the root cause. I grew up before cell phones, and folks were getting busier, and overscheduled back then. I think the cell phones and hand-held devices were in response to an existing need, not the cause. I see the root cause of the problem as more being suburbia and its lifestyle. Things are flung a little too far around instead of contained in one neighborhood. A family will drive an hour each way for a child to get a music lesson every week! If you are going to be away from the rest of your family and friends for just that one activity a week, yeah, a cell phone makes sense. Things expand from there.

 

The car culture/no walking/too much residential zoning of suburbia has had a lot of unintended consequences over time. I think if gas prices stay high and no alternate takes hold, suburbia will change dramatically. It might just be good for everyone's psyche.

 

:iagree:

 

I live in a post-war suburb and I think that community design is a major factor as well. And it is a lot better than most newer suburbs - I can at least walk to groceries and other essential services. But there is no reason to want to - it is all just ugly parking lots, no place to sit or have a coffee and people-watch. No place where you would meet a neighbour and chat.

 

I am thinking that the answer is to get involved somehow in making these places better communities. Try to get sidewalks, change zoning to avoid these huge tracts of houses, that kind of thing. Put a bench in the front yard for pedestrians so you get a chance to chat with people.

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I'm comforted to know I am not the only one who feels a lack of person-to-person interaction. When we visited with my father recently, the relatives and nursing staff could not get over the fact that my dc were reading "actual books" rather than playing video games and texting. Yes, they own and play hand held video games, they have a kindle, and they do have cell phones. But, theses devices are viewed as tools, not primary sources of interaction and entertainment.

 

Everyone is so "hyper-scheduled". There doesn't seem to be much margin anymore.

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I don't think the handheld devices are the root cause. I think the cell phones and hand-held devices were in response to an existing need, not the cause. I see the root cause of the problem as more being suburbia and its lifestyle.

 

Hmmmm, I see them as being in response to a need, but they have taken over - I mean, how often do you really NEED to use your cell phone or check your e-mail? (For a really interesting discussion of "who(or what)-controls-whom", read "The Shallows" that I mention in my post above.)

 

There is no time to just be present any more - everyone is constantly distracted by texting, e-mailing, cell-phone-ringing, etc. It's endless.

 

However, I do agree that the effects of suburbia are to basically separate people from one another, so I see where you are coming from on that subject.

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Hmmmm, I see them as being in response to a need, but they have taken over - I mean, how often do you really NEED to use your cell phone or check your e-mail? (For a really interesting discussion of "who(or what)-controls-whom", read "The Shallows" that I mention in my post above.)

 

There is no time to just be present any more - everyone is constantly distracted by texting, e-mailing, cell-phone-ringing, etc. It's endless.

 

However, I do agree that the effects of suburbia are to basically separate people from one another, so I see where you are coming from on that subject.

 

Yes, I do agree. Our suburbian houses are like little castles with drawbridges. The garage goes up and that is that. No one has porches for sitting on and visiting. Very few people take evening strolls for the purpose of greeting neighbors anymore. Perhaps I'm observing all these things more because I've recently moved. Perhaps it is midlife reflections. I don't want to give up technology - I use it too much :) But, I want to promote more "face time" and good ole' friendships: playing cards, sharing a meal, that type thing.

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Hmmmm, I see them as being in response to a need, but they have taken over - I mean, how often do you really NEED to use your cell phone or check your e-mail? (For a really interesting discussion of "who(or what)-controls-whom", read "The Shallows" that I mention in my post above.)

 

There is no time to just be present any more - everyone is constantly distracted by texting, e-mailing, cell-phone-ringing, etc. It's endless.

 

 

Well, a lot of what you and other have described is simply self-control not being exerted in a me-centric society (bad manners). It's still not flaw of the device. It's the flaw of the human. :) My dh did the cell phone answering while out one too many times about 7-8 years ago. I got up, walked out of the restaurant, and walked home (about a 20-25 min walk, but easy to do on a grid!). Funny, we've never had another problem with that. :D He was one of those shallow folks with an out-of-balance sense of his own importance and access to info. But the other side of that is say, the suburban Mom, who feels like she must drive all these hours for activities. She is losing productive time. The devices for those like her are simply a way to try to compensate for the Suburban Seduction Syndrome (TM pending :tongue_smilie:) which robs people of real time.

 

I think it takes times for folks to gain control over themselves with each major shift, and in an undisciplined society, well, oh my, it might take awhile! Thanks for the book recommendation.:) I have queued up in my audiobook collection one called, Alone Together, by MIT professor Sherry Turkle.

 

P.S. HollyDay, I'm the one who has to leave 20 min early to get anywhere because of random, friendly conversations that will spring up. We live on a grid, have sidewalks, and I can think of only a handful of homes on the entire island that don't have front porches. The porches (and proximity to the pedestrians) may be a key factor!

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I too miss social interaction. I use to live in one of the most dangerous cities in the US, but I knew my neighbors. We got together for Sunday dinners, we sat on our porches and talked to people passing by, we shopped together, and we knew each other. We got to know our family doctor. We got together at each others homes for dinner, to play cards, and even vacationed together. I knew the ladies at the grocery store. Groups of ladies from church regularly got together to go to lunch. We entertained and others invited us over for supper. I felt free to drop by someone's home just to visit.

 

Where we live now, we know none of our neighbors except to say hello. Two families from church have invited us over dinner--in three and half years. We have invited lots of people over to our home, but I do get tired of being the one to reach out. And even when people come over, they have a time table. They can stay for exactly 1 hour before they must move on to their next scheduled appointment. It's sad and it's one of the reasons I'm not too crazy about where we live.

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I keep telling my dh that we should be buying land now for a summer camp later on where everyone would have to "check" all their digital equipment at the door when they arrive and would have to RELAX for the whole time they stay with us.

 

A lake, hiking, campfires, etc. Old fashioned games, books everywhere.

 

I think we could make a mint.

 

Although dealing with all those digitally-withdrawing people might be the death of us.

 

We, too, feel like we do all the inviting, which is hard because we're not super-outgoing folks. But we are working very hard at getting our finances to a place where we can have much more time for "being" and less time "working."

 

I hope you find some good friends soon!

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I have been on both sides of the coin, been the person who has done the inviting and been the invited. In fact, one of my very best friends diligently pursued my friendship because our husbands and our kids got along so well. At the time I was still recovering from some deep relationship hurts from a previous church and was not looking or indeed wanting friendships but she was persistent and I am so very glad! She is a daily blessing to me. Another good friend took me under her wing when I was very pregnant with my first and we had just moved away from all of our friends and family and was the first person to visit us in the hospital.

 

On the other hand, we invite people to our home for homeschool get togethers. Valentines Day parties, Christmas parties, Greek food night, Mideval Nights, Superbowl Parties even kid's Birthday parties etc. I usually invite a mix of ages and stages and some invite others. (last year for my twins b-day there were 15+ people I didn't originally invite) Some people I don't know well and they come and become great friends but others stay distant. All I can do is invite and make my home open. Sometimes I go all out and make everything from scratch and sometimes I order pizza and call it good. I think the invite is what matters and not many of those people reciprocate but that's okay. My kids and my dh enjoy it and we love the friends that have come from those invites.

 

What I am saying, is that I think we need to do both, be open and available to the invite and not be afraid to do the inviting.

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Come here! We leave about 20 min early whenever we go out, because we have to factor in the "bump into someone and chat 20 minutes" rule that is common here. :) We moved here full time, not knowing a soul about 7 years ago. We even know some of the toll-takers on the bridge by name now. They introduce themselves after awhile and tell you where they live!

 

Really? I always thought of ppl in New Jersey and the surrounding area to be more closed off. Am I completely wrong?

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This thread has really struck a chord with me. I live in the same town where I was raised, but most of my friends have moved away over the years. Over the last 10 years or so, I feel my friendships have dwindled to a few lunch-date friends. I like to invite people over, but have had almost no reciprocal invites. We started going to a new church about 4 years ago and made some friendships fairly quickly, but unfortunately, those two families have also moved away. There's a definite clique there with kids right around our kids' ages. They are friendly at church, but there's a definite feeling of "you're not one of us" and several of them have even cancelled last minute for more than one get together I've planned. I couldn't help but think is it me (I'm older than most parents with kids our age)? my husband? our kids? is it because we don't live in the "right" neighborhood? But I think that it's not that easy. Even if I don't know the solution to the problem, it's reassuring to know it probably isn't us, it's a symptom of a changing society.

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I think it takes times for folks to gain control over themselves with each major shift, and in an undisciplined society, well, oh my, it might take awhile! Thanks for the book recommendation.:) I have queued up in my audiobook collection one called, Alone Together, by MIT professor Sherry Turkle.

 

 

But that's what is so interesting about The Shallows...the author goes through all the research and brain physiology/development/changes and shows how using the internet on such a regular basis (who am I to talk...been on here three times already today!) makes it that much harder to gain control over the devices...your brain really does CHANGE and seeks fast, short, constant synaptic "fixes". I am doing a poor job of condensing 200+ pages of deep research/writing, but, based upon what I've read, with time, it will be less likely for folks to gain control over themselves, not more....IMHO, of course.

 

Thanks for the book suggestion...off to check it out!:D

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