We asked a handful of BuzzFeed employees how they made friends as adults. Here are their responses. We'd love to hear your stories in the comments below!
Susie: I've made some great friends in the last year through the circus arts classes I take. For the first year or two I took classes, though, I just saw them in class and we didn't ever get together outside of the scheduled time. I don't think we were even Facebook friends for the first few months. Just fun people I saw a couple times a month.
Things changed and we started hanging out A LOT when we were preparing for a show and would get together on weekends to rent space and train together.
I've been in a lot of classes where this never happened — an art class, a Farsi class, I went through a phase in my 20s of taking a lot of classes — the people I met were nice, but we never developed a relationship outside of class. I think there's something really special about going through a specific experience together. Preparing for a performance (especially since most of us had not performed solo before and were especially nervous about it) is so intense — you spend months of your life stressing and obsessing about it in a way that your other friends and family don't necessarily relate to. But the people you train with end up knowing your act almost as well as you do, so their support feels extra special.
So, we trained together and afterwards we'd go for a meal or drinks together, and then we started hanging out completely apart from circus. It's so great to have made some new friends in my 30s, especially in New York where supposedly everyone is too busy to ever hang out!
Charlotte: For me it was being active in shared interest groups. I love doing life drawing/plein air painting, and it's the people i keep seeing at those outings that end up becoming friends with. it's kind of a cheat because i guess i'm just doing things i would be anyway and not really making extra time, but it's definitely worked out!
Also: video games! I made some of my closest friends chatting and shooting reapers together via Mass Effect Multiplayer. while we were active in the game it was easy to make time since it was something fun we were doing anyway, but it did get a little trickier later on. mostly it's continuing to bond over a lot of shared interests and trying to see each other when we can, and accepting that keeping up via Facebook isn't necessarily the worst.
Pedro: Clothes! Either I saw someone wearing a cartoon print tee that I love, or an obscure band shirt that I thought I only knew existed which would propel me to strike up a conversation with them.
- Mutual friend referrals! My buddy referred me to this guy he just met because he was an animator and he knew I illustrate, and now we've become friends. Caught a movie, we're planning on working on a comic together, we invite each other to different artist events we hear about! It's pretty awesome now that I think about it.
Dani: I made most of my friends at gigs (whilst queueing or by talking to whoever stood next to me) or through my favourite band via social media. When you share the love for something and there's basically always something to talk about or discuss (new songs / TV shows / gigs), it's easy to keep in contact. This way you make friends all over Europe / the world and you get to travel to places you normally maybe wouldn't go to. If you're lucky and your band plays gigs quite regularly, then there's also always a chance to meet up somewhere!
Nathan: When I moved to New York, I had to start an entirely new group of friends. To be honest, I was surprised by how lonely I often felt in a city so bustling with people. I had perhaps heard that this was the case - that a big, populous city can often feel like the most isolated place - but experiencing it myself was challenging in ways I hadn't anticipated.
The place I ended up making my closest friends was my church. But this did not happen overnight.
The first few years, I tried out a few different churches and never really got involved. It was partly my fear of commitment that held me back. It wasn't until 2010 that I realized attending a church within walking distance of my home might be the best way for me to begin to anchor myself into a community. Not to say I hadn't made any effort with the other churches - I certainly attended every Sunday, but I was not doing much beyond slipping in and out of a pew in the back row. It was not until I actually committed to a church body that I made lasting friendships there. This involved sacrificing more time and energy to the effort than I was initially comfortable with.
The proximity was a really key characteristic for me - to attend a church that was near me geographically really helped me begin to make a home in my neighborhood. Now I have close church friends who live within a ten minute walk from my apartment. And in my neighborhood, we meet every Wednesday night to talk about our weeks, pray for each other, and read the Scripture together.
Sadly, now that I've been in the city 7 years, I see how often it is that these close friends move away. But I have learned I can't be afraid of this - I am simply thankful for whatever time I do get to live life together with these good people that I meet.