Mindy Kaling is right. No one likes me.
In 2006, Duke Researchers published a study in the American Sociological Review reported that the average American has only two close friends, and that as many as 25 percent of Americans have no friend – NO friend – with whom they could regularly share with, or confide in. Is this true for you?
I haven’t done the math, or taken a survey of everyone I know, but that kinda, sorta, feels true. Yes, I have a couple of hundred Facebook friends, but most of them haven’t seen me in person in 10-20 years. Yes, I have work buddies, I have friends-of-friends. But ride-or-dies? Few and far between.
I often wonder if it’s my fault…or if it’s a ‘fault’ at all. What does it mean to ‘make an effort’ to make friends. You’re probably going to tell me there’s an app for that. But what does it take? How do we meet new people any more? How do we create follow-up opportunities to build a relationship that doesn’t seem desperate, clingy, or otherwise serial-killer-stalkery?
Are we programmed to be standoffish? Do we gather up our safety net of friends, keep them close, and then never let anyone else in? For example, is it bad that I didn’t even feel that bad that time I invited 20 people to brunch at my house and only 2 people showed up? I was perfectly happy with those two, who made it the best 8-hour brunch I ever had.
Have I fallen into a complacent rut? Is it disloyal to my current crop of close friends that I sometimes wish I had more friends?
It must be bad out there, if even a celebrity like Mindy Kaling is complaining that there’s nothing more difficult than making a female friends: “It’s much harder to find someone you want to talk to than a man you want to sleep with.”