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Stuck in limbo with friends


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Posted (edited)

I know people's lives change, we get older, married, kids. I guess I feel so unsure about my friends sometimes.  

I met Diane in college and she introduced me to Kelly, her best friend from high school. 

That was almost 10 years ago and we are still friends. 

I struggle with Diane. She rushed and got married, has had a rocky marriage, gone through personality changes. But I stick by her because of the years I've known her. In the past, she was a very good friend. Coming over with that Ben and Jerry's after I had a breakup and was there for me. Now though, I think she's too busy and into her married life to be there for me in that way. 

Then Kelly. When Diane introduced me to Kelly, her friend from high school, I didn't initially like Kelly. But Diane started working weird hours so Kelly and I spent a lot of time together. Kelly and I have grown close. We talk regularly through text. I trust Kelly. But sometimes I grow frustrated that Kelly puts Diane on a pedestal and I don't think Diane has been a good friend to her in recent years. Kelly is someone who dwells on the past and she's living off of the friendship they once had. I've been there for Kelly in recent years and am very loyal. Kelly is married and ready to pop with a baby. No more weekends at the winery or Mimosas at brunch. I do think this is putting a strain on our friendship. It scares me. I'm single and rely on my friends. 

Then there's Asha, who Kelly introduced me to. Asha is interesting. In the last year Asha and I talk more. We live the closest to one another. Asha is reasonable,understanding, and isn't obsessed with her marriage like Kelly and Diane. I appreciate Asha's friendship, though I haven't known her as long or as deeply as them. 

Lastly, I brought Raquel into our girl group a couple years ago. I knew her from college. She can be frustrating. She'll put you in your place rudely sometimes. But we always have fun when we have a day together. 

My point in this post is I'm feeling a little lost. I live away from my family. I used to rely on my friends to be there, to go out with, do fun activities.  But now all 4 of them are married, one has baby on the way, and I'm single, living alone. 

I'll message them to hangout, not even at a bar. I saw a fun Saturday morning yoga class that looked good. Not one of them could go. This is a regular thing. I propose something, and they have too much going on, busy with husband's, homes, families. While I'm always alone and mostly bored. We see each other now maybe once every other month. I used to see some of these ladies once a week. 

I feel so out of sorts. Kelly and I text a lot. Asha messages me too weekly. But it's hard. I feel very lonely. I call my family talking on the phone for hours many times a week, because I'm so alone.  My career has me here. I own a condo that I bought myself. I do love it. 

But I feel like my friends are drifting. Even Diane, now claims that she and her husband might move away because it's not like we see each other a ton anyway. I'm saddened by this. 

Asha lives 15 minutes from me which is great. Kelly lives 35 minutes, Diane is 50 minutes, and Raquel is 40 or so. We all don't hangout as much as we used to. To make a plan takes weeks to coordinate schedules. Raquel is planning her wedding and fixing her house, so she's always busy. I'm in her wedding and I've only seen her a few times this year. 

I had a fun brunch at my house a couple months ago and it was a disaster. I was so saddened. 

I scheduled it for 11am. Raquel showed up on time. I slaved away making all this food. Kelly bailed the day before for a work thing. Diane showed up two hours late. Asha, 3 hours late. Raquel seemed to feel so bad. She saw all the effort I put in. I spent a lot of money on food. The food sat out for an hour, then Raquel suggested we eat, so we did, then it all sat wasted. 

I was so disappointed.  They were so late doing other things. No one could clear a few hours for me. 

I'm not a perfect friend, but I just feel so disconnected from my friends. I feel like they barely support me anymore. Kelly does through text, but I don't see the others enough. 

They've all gotten married. I've bought nice gifts, was a bridesmaid, I threw one a bridal shower, I spent tons of money, I helped all I could, put myself out, I was there. 

I feel like by the time I meet someone and get married, I'm not going to get the same support back from them at all. They are moving on and l don't see the same time and effort given to me. This makes me sad. I don't know how to make new friends at 30. I do cherish that I've known these ladies for a long time. But not one of them cares that I'm alone away from my family, lonely a lot.

I feel kind of stuck. Are these friendships worth it? I care about these ladies, but sometimes I feel like a convenient friend. The one who drops everything, the one who always makes the plan, the one who tries to keep us together, the one who gives her time, care, attention, so it feels nice to have around. 

These woman wouldn't know if I was struggling, they barely ask. I kind of feel like the movie bridesmaids. I'm the main character Annie, and my friends are a group of Lillians. I don't want to be the sad, lonely, pathetic friend they feel bad for. But I feel like I am. 

Edited by Alex39
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I'm sorry you're having a hard time, OP. 

It sounds as though most of these women aren't really true friends anymore. Maybe they were at one time, but their lives have all gone in different directions and you've grown apart. It's hard when that happens, but we sometimes don't stay friends forever. 

I would be especially put off by this: 

1 hour ago, Alex39 said:

I slaved away making all this food. Kelly bailed the day before for a work thing. Diane showed up two hours late. Asha, 3 hours late.

What was the reason they were ridiculously late? 

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2 hours ago, Alex39 said:

I care about these ladies, but sometimes I feel like a convenient friend. The one who drops everything, the one who always makes the plan, the one who tries to keep us together, the one who gives her time, care, attention, so it feels nice to have around. 

These woman wouldn't know if I was struggling, they barely ask.

If you would stop trying so much would they still be there? If the answer is no, they are not real friends. I have a friend that is kilometers away. We still hear almost every day and see every now and then. He is also married and with kids but we still find time for a friendship. What I am saying is, you are "overinvesting" into something that was convenient for them at the time. But now when they have other obligations, they couldnt care less about you. Which is fair, that happens in life. They cant drop husbands and kids and go hang out with you. However, they are not a really good friends. Otherwise they would at least try to remain in your life and ask how you are doing.

Also, its never too late to make good friends. Instead of "overinvesting" into somebody who doesnt appreciate it, why not use that time and enroll into some course? Or into some activity that interests you? Yoga? Bikes? Hiking? Anything that would fulfill your time. You would probably find group of like-minded people to hang out in that way and make new and better friendships.

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5 hours ago, Alex39 said:

I saw a fun Saturday morning yoga class that looked good. Not one of them could go. This is a regular thing.

I was single till age 42.  I had many married friends who I accommodated especially when they had babies and for many it worked out.  Then there were the smug married types who were all into disposable friends -disposable if you weren't married too.  Then the friends who moved to the burbs "the City is only a 30 minute train ride -we'll be there all the time!!!" Uh huh.  I even had a friend- we met at age 12, close until 2000 or so -we were in our mid 30s.  I was her bridesmaid, she married in her early 20s and we remained close for almost 10 years after that.  But then she went MIA. I actually called her after I'd moved away and when I finally married and had a baby (she'd known my husband as we'd been engaged in the past). 

For the last 13 years we've been good friends again -but almost all texting now (yes even though her daughter is now in her 20s - our phone calls so often got interrupted because her daughter needed something as a  teenager or now so I gave up on calls).  We have seen each other and she's flaky but we have this loooongg history and  get each other. So I look the other way and I know for sure she "dumped" me for those years -and likely wouldn't have called again - because of the smug married mommy stuff. 

But -she also had a serious medical condition that was discovered shortly after she went MIA with several life altering surgeries.  She's worth it to me to understand that no she wasn't always there for me - but she's an exception.

I quoted your yoga thing for this reason.  I tried to be friends with a woman my age who is married no kids -my age though -we met randomly out one day -very cool person.  For a few years we were friends.  One day she messaged me about how our local pool was having Saturday water aerobics classes for adults- her friend was the teacher.  I tried so hard to explain to her that my husband sleeps in, that I try very hard not to use up my goodwill and have him get up early because there are times he has to for me - to take our son to activities on weekends (I do not drive, I compensate in many other ways with child care). 

She told me then "bring your son -he can play in the pool".  Again, no -he could swim but no way was I going to have him play in or near water out of my sight for even a second.  Had the timing been different my husband would have come with or taken our son somewhere etc.  She just did NOT get it.  She kept pressuring me because this was her friend and the classes were not expensive but it was a new gig and she was trying to help her friend -and also we'd get to have fun. I had to get firmer and firmer and it was so awkward.  Eventually I think that's why she stopped contacting me (and then she moved to a suburb).

But - it's not about being a parent.  It's about any job you have -parenting, taking care of elderly parents, your actual job -where some people just don't get why the obstacles are too much or why you choose not to rock the boat and ask for a favor or hire a babysitter or tell your boss "can we extend the deadline as I have an event I want to go to".

Maybe sometimes with parents since it's not a paid job outsiders are like "just hire a sitter" "Just bring your child and others will watch him" "just ask your husband".  I don't know.  It happened to me with my crazy work schedule too "don't you take a dinner break" (yes, for about 30 minutes and we work through dinner to make a deadline). 

Just understand to you it seems easy peasy -there are two parents, the yoga class is awesome, it's on a weekend morning or at lunch time - but you don't get all the invisible hoops parents jump through just to get to a 1 hour class outside their home if they have kids at home who need supervision -or the child is at school but little do you know but the schools been calling regularly to come pick up the child with some sort of discipline issue or ailment -and your friend does not want to share this with you. 

Again it's not just parenting - but just try to walk a mile in their shoes.

I had the two friend thing where one introduced me to the other -very similar dynamic -are you sensing some jealousy from D -the original friend? Because I sensed some weirdness about that.  Also is there ever any gossip about the other when you're with one of them? (I did NOT do that and shut down any attempts by one to do about the other unless it was genuine concern for the other's health.

Friendships are hard - they dont need to end or change because of marital status, I'm just sharing my experiences in the hopes that they help you.  It's complicated!!

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Also I stopped at a certain point agreeing to participate in all the extra wedding festivities and I don't think I declined to be a bridesmaid but I declined certain extra events.  I find in the last 20 years it's been an explosion of extra events and obligatory gifts (I remember being horrified in around 2006 when I first saw a friend register for "gift cards" and 30 years ago it was poor etiquette even to have a registry).  I don't go to baby or bridal showers unless it's very close family (I went to one in 2002 because I was a bridesmaid and it was my dear friend and cousin).  Stop going all out in this way with your wallet. 

Be much choosier about how you spend your time and money -go to the wedding.  An engagement party if it's over a year before.  Skip showers, decline bridesmaid invites because when I was in my 20s our dresses were paid for by the bride or her family.  You resent all you've done and I get it -so have better boundaries.  

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I think when people's lives change, people re-prioritize what's important.

However, that doesn't change that they were all kind of a-holes about your brunch, except Raquel. I'm sorry but you need to make new friends or you need to preoccupy yourself with other hobbies.

Like others have said, you over invest in to your friendships, and these people aren't really your friends. They've become acquaintances at best, except maybe Kelly.

Have you thought about joining meet-up groups with shared interests? are you attending or interested in local single events? are you religious (there might be some groups you would like to look into)? 

 

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9 minutes ago, LootieTootie said:

I think when people's lives change, people re-prioritize what's important.

I think that's true of people -women especially -who don't value their close friendships and prioritize marital or parenting status over close friendships.  Or who refer to people as friends but in reality they're just placeholders or activity partners.  But the other person believes it's a close friendship.  It's fine not to value or prioritize close friendships -or have some notion (silly to me) that one needs most or only "mom friends" once one has a child-  just like it's fine not to need friends or only want one close one and/or just acquaintances - but people who value close friendships (I do) do not let marital status or parenting status change that if at all possible.  I've seen what people do -what I have done -to maintain and grow those precious and close connections.

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15 hours ago, Alex39 said:

Even Diane, now claims that she and her husband might move away because it's not like we see each other a ton anyway.

Are you saying that she's threatening to move away because she doesn't see you a ton?

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19 minutes ago, Jibralta said:

Are you saying that she's threatening to move away because she doesn't see you a ton?

No, they want to move for no reason

 I told her I'd miss her and begged her not to move,because they aren't doing it for career or any reason. Her husband has issues and likes to be alone so convinced her to move away from everyone they know. 

Her response was that we can see each other once or twice a year if they move,because we don't see each other that much anyway. 

I want her to stay because I want to try and stay close friends. 

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1 hour ago, Alex39 said:

No, they want to move for no reason

 I told her I'd miss her and begged her not to move,because they aren't doing it for career or any reason. Her husband has issues and likes to be alone so convinced her to move away from everyone they know. 

Her response was that we can see each other once or twice a year if they move,because we don't see each other that much anyway. 

I want her to stay because I want to try and stay close friends. 

So obviously I am not familiar with all the context but -wow.  How is it you felt comfortable interjecting yourself into a couples' decision about relocating? You really think your friend is so controlled by her husband that she will be "convinced" to relocate if she doesn't wish to either? If she tells her husband what you said you can be rest assured that one way or another he will make sure you don't get to see her much if at all.

 

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30 minutes ago, Batya33 said:

So obviously I am not familiar with all the context but -wow.  How is it you felt comfortable interjecting yourself into a couples' decision about relocating? You really think your friend is so controlled by her husband that she will be "convinced" to relocate if she doesn't wish to either? If she tells her husband what you said you can be rest assured that one way or another he will make sure you don't get to see her much if at all.

 

I didn't express any of that to her. I only told her that we'd miss her so much and tried to convince her to stay by saying all the nice things we could do when we all have kids and such. And I simply asked her why they felt drawn to that area, since it was very remote. 

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, Alex39 said:

I didn't express any of that to her. I only told her that we'd miss her so much and tried to convince her to stay by saying all the nice things we could do when we all have kids and such. And I simply asked her why they felt drawn to that area, since it was very remote. 

Oh good whew! When I was dating my husband it was clear we'd be relocating for his job if we married and likely hundreds of miles from family.  My aunt and uncle expressed concerns over my situation given my parents' ages and my sibling being limited in what she could do to help.  I knew my family wanted me to be happy and happily married.  I wasn't upset with them for interjecting because of why and they are family but I knew for sure my priority was my husband and future family.  There were some who made snide comments about how my new city was inferior to my current one (true!) and I didn't appreciate it.  Want to be a good friend? Be supportive of her marriage.  (And I know many who love remote areas -I mean I don't but so what -it's not where I personally would move).  

Also before I started dating my husband I assumed I'd never leave my city.  Never occurred to me.  And you don't know either -imagine you "convince" her to stay and then you relocate in a year or so?

Edited by Batya33
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Well I think your friends that showed up two or three hours late to your event were very rude. I understand being like 15-30 minutes late but three hours??! Of course you would be annoyed. 

Having said that, this is the thing with getting older, people do get married and have kids and things change. I've been in the same position as you with one of my best friends. We met at work when she was 21 and I was 19 years old. We straight away hit it off and became best friends. We were both single and went out together all the time to all sorts of events and bars and clubs. When I was 23/24, she met her now husband and they became very serious. In 2012 they got married and I was a bridesmaid.

Even after her marriage she did begin to drift off, though she still kept in regular contact. We just didn't see each other that much. Then she had two kids, they are now 7 and 5 years old. Since she had the kids she still regularly kept in touch through Facebook and texting but she really didn't have much free time to actually catch up. I was really understanding about it though.

I don't think that just because someone is married with kids that they don't care about you but they actually are really busy and going out is really hard. When her kids were really small, my friend was a stay at home Mum and her husband worked full-time. As you can imagine, taking care of small children like a toddler and baby is a 24/7 job. Then when her children were older, she actually went to work four days a week while the kids are in childcare or with their grandparents. She's really busy so her inability to see me is not because she doesn't want to, but because she can't.

I remember one time we actually went to a child friendly cafe that had an outdoor playground with all these toys and cubby houses. Despite it being a fun place for kids, after only about 30 minutes the children began to throw a tantrum and my friend had to leave. You also need to remember that if they have the kids with them then the kids either need to come along or they can't actually go anywhere. 

I came to an acceptance with my best friend that her life was really different now and that she was still my best friend but just in a different capacity.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Batya33 said:

Oh good whew! When I was dating my husband it was clear we'd be relocating for his job if we married and likely hundreds of miles from family.  My aunt and uncle expressed concerns over my situation given my parents' ages and my sibling being limited in what she could do to help.  I knew my family wanted me to be happy and happily married.  I wasn't upset with them for interjecting because of why and they are family but I knew for sure my priority was my husband and future family.  There were some who made snide comments about how my new city was inferior to my current one (true!) and I didn't appreciate it.  Want to be a good friend? Be supportive of her marriage.  (And I know many who love remote areas -I mean I don't but so what -it's not where I personally would move).  

Also before I started dating my husband I assumed I'd never leave my city.  Never occurred to me.  And you don't know either -imagine you "convince" her to stay and then you relocate in a year or so?

There's a lot more to the story about her husband. My friend Diane was really desperate for someone to marry her. 

She met this guy online. After a month or two he's jobless and he dumps her citing mental health issues. 

Instead of going her own way. She is a beautiful,  smart, amazing woman. She decides to cling to him like glue as he works out his "issues."

She continues sleeping with him casually for 6 months. We all told her she deserved more, but she was obsessed. "He told me he wants only me"

Then why aren't you in a relationship? 

"He told me he doesn't want to lose me"

Then why aren't you official, he's letting you be single?

She made excuse after excuse for him. 

He played the game well. He would text her, oh "I wish you were here", while he was at friends birthday or parties. He could have invited her, but he didn't. He'd say, "well I don't want to have to explain what we are"

Because they were hookup buddies. 

Diane deserved more. 

He finally got a job and started getting his life together. After 6 months she claimed that are in an official relationship again. 

But he doesn't like being in photos, so there isn't any of them. He doesn't like posting things like that on social media. It screams fishy to me. This is all what Diane says. 

Then she says how financially unstable he is. To me, that's a huge turn off. He has mental health issues, hides your relationship,  and is bad financially.  Sounds bad. But she makes every excuse that she loves him sooooo

He hides her from his family, stating they are mean to him. Come to find out, he defaulted on a ton of loans that they co-signed with him and they had to pay up or lose everything they had. No wonder they are mad at him. He continues visiting his parents, but never brings her. 

He smokes Marijuana morning, noon, and night to cope with his mental health issues. Not attractive and Diane was never into that. She accepted it. There place smells like weed all the time. 

6 more months go by and she gets a message on social media. Someone posted a picture of her and him at an event on Facebook, this girl saw it, and messaged Diane. She said how she was his ex- girlfriend and when she saw the picture she felt she needed to tell Diane, that her boyfriend sees her-his ex regularly and they have even hooked up. 

Diane was so upset. I would have dumped him right then and there. But no. Diane talks to him. Diane originally believed the girl's story. The girl had nothing to lose. At first he confessed that it was true. 

Then after so long he convinced Diane that his ex just wanted him back and was trying to break them up with lies. Diane til this day believes all that. She's on the path to marriage so she ignores every red flag. 

They move in together, Diane pushes for it. She puts him on all her bank accounts. This is after less than a year of dating. 

Diane insists they get engaged by the end of the year, so they start ring shopping. She pretty much orchestrated the entire thing. There was no surprise or romance. She picks out a ring. His credit is tanked so he can't get a credit card to pay for it, so Diane pays for her own ring. They get engaged. 

She starts planning this huge elaborate wedding. He says he's only on board because it's what she wants and her family is paying for it. 

Diane starts acting strange. She's very anxious, always on her phone, shows up and leaves hastily and abruptly always needing to run home to him. She starts showing up super late to things and acting unreliable. All the girls noticed. We were genuinely worried for her. 

6 months later, they run off and elope. He wanted to because he left his job and needed health insurance from Diane. He stays unemployed for over a year- by choice. She finally meets his family. They aren't too friendly to Diane, because they think she hasn't wanted to meet them or come around. They barely know her and they get married. So much drama, caused by him not bringing her around for them to get to know. 

He job hops a ton. Lies to get jobs- Diane told me he lies on his resume that he worked places longer than he actually did. 

Diane acts more bizarre. She starts doing Marijuana with him. They buy as much as $600 worth of Marijuana products at a time. It's excessive. 

She calls Kelly one day crying that he's verbally abusive to her, he doesn't help her keep their house in order inside or out. He suggested one of them permanently stay at home to care for the home. They own a tiny home with tiny land. I could manage it by myself. It's ridiculous.  He doesn't want to work. 

Diane carries him, does everything, pays everything. She says how bad his mental health is. That he tries to quit the Marijuana smoking. Her catch phrase "well he's down to just morning and night now" like it's this big accomplishment.

Kelly's wedding rolls around. Diane and he RSVP to go. That's a $100 plate of food per person. Kelly rents Diane and he a room for the wedding night, since she's maid of honor. 

Morning of the wedding, Diane breaks down crying to me that her husband isn't coming. She says his mental health is so bad and he needs a "day to himself". She tells me he needs days to himself to play video games and be left alone. Mind you, this man is 31 years old. 

She tells me how he struggles. I tell her how she doesn't have to accept a partner that doesn't show up. She says how he rarely shows up to family functions with her family. He sounds like a jerk. 

I felt bad for Diane, so I stayed with her all throughout the wedding. She then is watching him on their house cameras as throughout the reception. Then is calling him after gushing to him how she's bringing him cake and she loves him. It was ridiculous.  He left her at a wedding by herself. Kelly was mad because she rented the room and it was only for Diane then. They paid his meal and he didn't show. 

Then he won't come get her the day after at the hotel, so she makes the bride and groom drive her home. 

Her husband loves guns. A mentally ill person with legal guns. I swear he may kill Diane and I worry about it. Now he has convinced her that they should move somewhere more rural away from her family and our girl group. It's not for work, it's purely for him to be alone, I'm sure of it. 

She babies him, laying out his clothes, caring for their pets herself, doing everything. He barely comes to anything. I think I've met him only 3 times in 3 years. His most recent financial blunder is that the IRS is after him for all back taxes he didn't pay years ago. Diane is now on the hook for them too, since they are married. 

That is my story on Diane. 

 

 

Edited by Alex39
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24 minutes ago, Tinydance said:

Well I think your friends that showed up two or three hours late to your event were very rude. I understand being like 15-30 minutes late but three hours??! Of course you would be annoyed. 

Having said that, this is the thing with getting older, people do get married and have kids and things change. I've been in the same position as you with one of my best friends. We met at work when she was 21 and I was 19 years old. We straight away hit it off and became best friends. We were both single and went out together all the time to all sorts of events and bars and clubs. When I was 23/24, she met her now husband and they became very serious. In 2012 they got married and I was a bridesmaid.

Even after her marriage she did begin to drift off, though she still kept in regular contact. We just didn't see each other that much. Then she had two kids, they are now 7 and 5 years old. Since she had the kids she still regularly kept in touch through Facebook and texting but she really didn't have much free time to actually catch up. I was really understanding about it though.

I don't think that just because someone is married with kids that they don't care about you but they actually are really busy and going out is really hard. When her kids were really small, my friend was a stay at home Mum and her husband worked full-time. As you can imagine, taking care of small children like a toddler and baby is a 24/7 job. Then when her children were older, she actually went to work four days a week while the kids are in childcare or with their grandparents. She's really busy so her inability to see me is not because she doesn't want to, but because she can't.

I remember one time we actually went to a child friendly cafe that had an outdoor playground with all these toys and cubby houses. Despite it being a fun place for kids, after only about 30 minutes the children began to throw a tantrum and my friend had to leave. You also need to remember that if they have the kids with them then the kids either need to come along or they can't actually go anywhere. 

I came to an acceptance with my best friend that her life was really different now and that she was still my best friend but just in a different capacity.

None of my friends have kids. One is currently expecting. But no kids yet. 

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I'll be blunt.

No matter how busy someone is, genuine friends will make time to see you at some point. Even it's just for a quick coffee. That's been my experience anyway.

Bear in mind though that hanging out with friends who have children implies having to change Friday night drinks to an afternoon picnic in a toddler-friendly park.

Also, sometimes some friends disappear but only temporarily. Time will tell. In the meantime, as others have suggested, it's time to expand your current social circle.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, greendots said:

I'll be blunt.

No matter how busy someone is, genuine friends will make time to see you at some point. Even it's just for a quick coffee. That's been my experience anyway.

Bear in mind though that hanging out with friends who have children implies having to change Friday night drinks to an afternoon picnic in a toddler-friendly park.

Also, sometimes some friends disappear but only temporarily. Time will tell. In the meantime, as others have suggested, it's time to expand your current social circle.

 

 

I agree but I think with people who are married or have kids, if they can’t catch up it's not necessarily because they're deliberately being flakey. They literally might not be able to catch up. If friends just never reply to texts and just ignore you, that's different. But if they still keep in touch but just on an infrequent basis that could be because they just don't have the free time to do more. 

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7 minutes ago, Tinydance said:

I agree but I think with people who are married or have kids, if they can’t catch up it's not necessarily because they're deliberately being flakey. They literally might not be able to catch up.

Yup, they may not be able to catch up with you every week or during a season - but they will at some point. Someone who never meets up with you is not a friend. That's been my experience anyway.

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, greendots said:

Yup, they may not be able to catch up with you every week or during a season - but they will at some point. Someone who never meets up with you is not a friend. That's been my experience anyway.

Yes -although covid really messed that up! I have a very different schedule now than when I was single/no child.  I used to socialize in the evenings regularly if I wasn't working -and went to bed around 11:30-midnight and later on weekends.  Now I turn off my phone by 9 most nights and stop texting by 9 or before.  No screens either (except TV).  I have no interest in going out at night as I now get up by 5. 

Now I can't talk early mornings or around mealtimes because I'm busy preparing meals and it's too noisy in our apartment to also have a conversation. 

I have friends who are single or who are working full time and not at home (their spouse with the kids) who will call me during their commute at the dinner hour and I cannot connect then -I've told one that I have a block of time between 1pm-4pm-ish daily that should work and he has yet to call during that time and called again at 6pm the other day.

I'm not mad- but my point is often the husband/kids thing complicates the schedule or at least changes it dramatically from what it was when the person was single, working full time, free to socialize at night without having to jump through sitter hoops/coordinating with spouses.  

As far as your diatribe about Diane -you're far too invested in your assumptions about her marriage, her dating him, her engagement.  Understand that so much of these are assumptions from you as a layperson, an outsider and that marriages are fluid and change over time -better, worse, etc. 

You're coming across as way too codependent and looking for problems in Diane's marriage.  Just like notions you might have about others who seem to have "perfect" marriages. I know some assumed I married my husband because I was pregnant and/or because I "settled" given my age, or that I wouldn't have married him if I couldn't conceive.  I never said these things because they were not true. Or implied them because I was in love, I was thrilled to be with him and thrilled to be starting a family, so I know I didn't imply them either.

By contrast when we were in our early 30s and engaged for the first time the assumptions were that we were the perfect couple planning a lovely wedding reception.  Meanwhile I was drowning in doubts and anxiety and panic.  And terrified until the end to confide -even in myself.  Luckily I woke up and cancelled the wedding.  People were shocked. 

See? You don't know, and tell yourself that as many times as it takes.  Yes, if a friend is being abused in a marriage and you know that it's your ethical duty to do what it takes to intervene, to get him or her to safety. Otherwise mind your own business. 

Edited by Batya33
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I’m sorry you feel you’re drifting apart. I’ve found it better having different groups to hang out with. I wouldn’t expect my camping or kayaking crew to want to go to high tea with my high tea or foodie group and so on. 

We grow and evolve and that’s ok. It’s also ok to know different people from all walks. They don’t have to change who they are and neither do you. 

Make new friends and don’t be afraid to go out of your way and try new things. Want to check something new out? Just go. 

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You may want to consider these as 'stage of life' friends. These kinds of friendships do tend to diverge over time, but they also tend to cycle back in at other stages of life--kind of like rekindling old friendships after a class reunion, or such.

One part of maturity is to make different kinds and degrees of friendships to meet different needs. It's rare to find adult friends who can be our 'everything' the way besties could pull that off when we were young.

We can respect the limits of people without personalizing that. We can focus on small overlaps in interests. Some acquaintances may evolve into more intimate friendships, but otherwise, we can enjoy people at small intersections without holding them up to grand expectations.

Head high, and challenge yourself to explore your community and your interests to learn who is out there to meet.

 

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