"Too busy for new friends"

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    Jan 28, 2012 11:37 PM GMT

    Everyone is busy in general, but it doesn't stop us from trying to do more. Each friendship requires maintenance (communication every so often, willingness to get together now and then).

    But when we meet someone new, we never think, "Let's see, do I have a couple hours a week for email/phone/hanging out? Nope, don't think I can spare the time for a new friend." But can you say to the person, "You're nice, but I have no time to be your friend"?

    Have you ever been, said, or heard, "I'm too busy to make new friends"? Have you thought maybe you should start saying it?
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    Jan 28, 2012 11:39 PM GMT
    Nope. I have never heard that and I won't ever say that.
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    Jan 28, 2012 11:51 PM GMT
    I would never say something like that. With new friends, you don't usually jump right into it with hanging out, emailing, and phoning for hours a week, but ease it into it gradually and usually at the beginning it is hanging out with them in group settings with other friends, not one on one.
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    Jan 28, 2012 11:55 PM GMT
    If you're interested in someone, either as a friend or potential date/partner, you make time for them no matter how busy you are. Most of the time I find "too busy" as an excuse for lack of interest especially when they don't offer an alternative plan.
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    Jan 29, 2012 12:35 AM GMT
    Iceblink saidI would never say something like that. With new friends, you don't usually jump right into it with hanging out, emailing, and phoning for hours a week, but ease it into it gradually and usually at the beginning it is hanging out with them in group settings with other friends, not one on one.


    But you know if things work out, you will be required to put in that time. And if you're struggling and just can't squeeze those ours out, are you not heading towards a dead end?

    It's like people who decide to have another kid... they consider "do we have enough money, time, attention, room for another one? Am I prepared to give that up?". Probably the same for getting into a relationship.

    Is it a matter of being content with what you have vs always looking for more and better?
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    Jan 29, 2012 1:28 AM GMT
    SkinnyBitch said
    Iceblink saidI would never say something like that. With new friends, you don't usually jump right into it with hanging out, emailing, and phoning for hours a week, but ease it into it gradually and usually at the beginning it is hanging out with them in group settings with other friends, not one on one.


    But you know if things work out, you will be required to put in that time. And if you're struggling and just can't squeeze those ours out, are you not heading towards a dead end?

    It's like people who decide to have another kid... they consider "do we have enough money, time, attention, room for another one? Am I prepared to give that up?". Probably the same for getting into a relationship.

    Is it a matter of being content with what you have vs always looking for more and better?




    Not looking for more and better, but let's face it, as much as we love our friends, many friends come and go as we move though life. Some may be there until the end, but not all.
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    Jan 29, 2012 1:39 AM GMT
    I love to stay busy myself. Workaholic, clean freak, meeting with friends, working out, and being on call. Not to mention eating, showering, paying bills on time, maintaining facebook connections and realjock conversations. Those things take up time to - a real juggle. So, whenever I meet someone I like, I give them sometime out of my day, and I let them know so. If I like the guy I start to give him more and more of my time and attention as time goes on. I'm not fond of rushing things and leaving them to an inevitable premature doomed end. No, I like to take it slow. Let emotions, ideas and the relationship grow, and settle; grow some more, and settle... Sometimes I'll call out of work to do something spontaneous and fun on a day I know they'll have off. I'll ask for a day or days off; or have my schedule shortened for a few weeks to spend quality time together. If we're committed to each one another I'll complete rearrange my schedule and availability based on what makes us work. I say that without the fear of sounding like a obsessive needy naive child; cause I know I'm sincere in what has worked for me and whomever I'm with in the past.

    If you want to make it work; simply make it work. Add another ball to your life's juggling act. Stop working so hard at being solely a good student and/or employee, and take the time to also be a good boyfriend. If all things go wrong, at least show yourself that you've got the ability to be a loving person for someone else. That alone has the ability to change how you act in social situations, and changes who you attract to yourself, and may surprise you who you're attracted to.

    Hope this helps; if not you, than somebody ; )
  • zackmorrisfan...

    Posts: 300

    Jan 29, 2012 1:45 AM GMT
    hey-buddy-whats-shakin-270x300.jpg

    I'm never too busy for new friends! You just make it work. icon_biggrin.gif
  • tautomer

    Posts: 1010

    Jan 29, 2012 1:48 AM GMT
    I've actually said that to a few people before. A few were recent as well. It came from people on sites like a4a saying they were interested and if I turned them down they say "oh well can we meet and be friends". I have met them in person, but I end up telling them later that I am really just too busy to make new friendships.

    It is the truth. I am on campus for around 12-13 hours a day. I literally just don't have time.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Jan 29, 2012 1:50 AM GMT
    I'd never say it. Making good quality friends is reasonably important to me.
    A friendship is an investment, especially when its real.
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    Jan 29, 2012 2:02 AM GMT
    I don't believe you have to say the words per se. Non verbal communication would be enough.

    Sometimes I have an instant click with a person and sometimes an instant clash. My body language lets my feelings manifest. I trust my instincts.

    I'd only be that blunt and say: 'I don't want to be friends.' if the person is asking for it. I don't want to hurt anybody's feelings unnecessarily. Furthermore I don't believe all possible 'friendships' are worth the investment.
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    Jan 29, 2012 2:17 AM GMT
    I appreciate your different responses on this.

    I didn't make the topic on behalf of myself, I had a prototype for an opinion brewing for quite a while that Busy People Shouldn't Be Open To Meeting New People. Like if your card is full, there should be an expression like "I'm off the market", so that people didn't get their hopes up and didn't get offended at the rejection.

    Years ago, I was friends with super busy people and it wasn't fair on me. It felt like I was spending all of my time waiting for them to let me have some of their time. Power imbalance + not fun. And I'd think "well if you're so busy and have to squeeze me in, why did you be my friend in the first place?". I feel like there's a certain responsibility of being able to pay dues to a friendship, and if you can't handle that, you shouldn't be taking on new friends. But not 100% certain of that idea.

    Something recently has brought this theory up in my mind again and I posted here to see what normal people have to say about it, including some busy and some non-busy.
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    Jan 29, 2012 2:27 AM GMT
    I can only speak for myself, but I am a very busy person. I'm currently doing my clinical rotations (I'm in med school). That takes up a lot of my day. When my shift at the hospital ends, I go eat first, then hit straight to the gym. After my work-out I do some prepping for the next day. By then I'm really beat and all I want to do is relax and sleep. My friends know this and don't hold it against me, as I don't hold it against them when they can't meet. True friendship is selfless like that. Whenever I do have time, we can hang out and it's like we saw each others just yesterday. They don't complain, or give me a hard time for not having met them more often. I simply have little spare time. School is a priority. They know this and are appreciated greatly.
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    Jan 29, 2012 2:31 AM GMT
    I'm a finance person. Meh. I work (to some extent) 6.5 days a week, some days for 15+ hours.

    I don't have time for friends (but I try)
    I don't have time for family (but I try)
    I don't have time for a boyfriend (I don't try).

    ...And it's all because I'm actually really good at what I do. Not passionate about it, but really good. When I say "I'm really into my career right now" I mean it. Once I get into wanting a relationship (I kind of do now, but not more than my career), you can bet (1) I'll get someone good and (2) I'll prioritize it.

    Sometimes I do wonder if I'm making the right decisions, but yeah. I don't consciously tell people I can't be friends with you...because if I really want to see someone, I'll make time, even if it erodes into precious sleep time. But in general, for a 20 something who has his own place in NYC, my social life is limited.
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    Jan 29, 2012 2:35 AM GMT
    I think sometimes we use the "busy" excuse as an excuse to be closed to new relationships. - by we I do mean me.

    For me, I have faced so much rejection in my life, that it is my biggest fear, so instead of facing it - I busy myself with so many other things that I don't have time for new relationships.

    I have been in my new job and location for a year and a half. - Outside of work and the gym, I do not go out or hang out with anyone. I do not have any relationships outside of the forced situations of work and working out.

    I feel somewhat content in that until the weekend hits and I am sitting alone, bored and depressed because I don't have anyone to do anything with.

    I do agree that sometimes we can be too busy, but I don't think we should be closed to starting a friendship under the banner of being too busy. For me, I am trying to be more open with people. However, if sometimes wants to be my friend and I simply don't have time - I am comfortable saying - yes, I would like to get to know you better, but I am on a very limited schedule right now because of work/school, etc. so I may not be as available as you would like...

    If they are truly interested in being my friend, they will understand. At least that's my hope.
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    Jan 29, 2012 3:12 AM GMT
    This thread reminded me of a friend who was very helpful in the early months of my arrival in Canada. She and I were classmates. She used to pick me up every day for school while I buy her coffee. We shared everything. When school was over, we met only once or twice. I didn't call her even when I wanted to, because I thought she might be too busy and I didn't want to disturb her. Now it has been over an year that we met. We live 5 minutes drive from each other.
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    Jan 29, 2012 5:44 AM GMT
    ricky1987 saidThis thread reminded me of a friend who was very helpful in the early months of my arrival in Canada. She and I were classmates. She used to pick me up every day for school while I buy her coffee. We shared everything. When school was over, we met only once or twice. I didn't call her even when I wanted to, because I thought she might be too busy and I didn't want to disturb her. Now it has been over an year that we met. We live 5 minutes drive from each other.


    Shit like that happens. We only become interested in making friends with someone that is in our particular social setting, in this case, school. Friendships like those don't really tend to last unless unconventional happens between the two of you.

    But anyways, I'm always down to make more friends. I love meeting new people in fact. I also have a tendency to accept crazy RJ ims and reply to horny men that try to message me
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    Jan 29, 2012 11:34 AM GMT
    Guilty As Charged, I've said it to guys when they hit on me and I politely say I'm not interested and then they're like- Well, maybe we can be friends when it's obvious that they expect me to change my mind so I feed them that line, LOL. Please, guys, if someone says no, it's no!!!icon_lol.gif
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    Jan 29, 2012 11:53 AM GMT
    I think maybe I should start saying it. Sometimes it's difficult to see the friends I already have, so maybe I won't have time for potential new friends.


    I think it's usually said in the context of potential dates or hook-ups. Someone realizes it's not going to work out, AND has no interest in seeing the other person as a platonic friend. He doesn't want to sound like an a-hole and say "I don't see you fitting in with my life and my friends." Instead you get this, so the guy can still think of himself as a good guy and let the other guy down gently.
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    Jan 29, 2012 2:13 PM GMT
    I don't mind making new friends at all, just as long as they (or anybody) know that I have my own life to live. And if my friends need me (and vice-versa), I'll do what I can to make time, unless I have something more pressing going on in my life...

    ...on the other hand, my life is too tumultuous right now to be looking for hook-ups or bf potentials.
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    Jan 29, 2012 3:08 PM GMT
    For me shifting back, I have to make a new set of friends..Which is kinda of difficult because so far nobody has the time right now to fit me into their social setting.

    So far I've managed to occupy my time but it does get lonely without a group of friends to hang with.
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    Jan 29, 2012 4:10 PM GMT


    Hmmmmm...friends are like stars; you don't always see them but they're still there.

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    Jan 29, 2012 4:53 PM GMT
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    Jan 29, 2012 4:55 PM GMT
    A most amazing article related to this sort of thing in today's NYT:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/29/fashion/its-not-me-its-you-how-to-end-a-friendship.html

    We make time for what's important to us....
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    Jan 29, 2012 5:09 PM GMT
    People who are "too busy for friends" usually have plenty of time to be insufferable douchebags.