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feeling lonely.
Old 09-07-2010, 11:15 AM   #1
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feeling lonely.

It is a combination of other things, but I feel like an outsider with my friends because I have the desire to retire early and live within my means.

We had good circle of friends (which i did believe) but our relationship changed. Especially when we had kids. I dont see eyes to eyes anymore with them. Thus we see less of our friends. I don't want to write a long story and get into detail. I wanted to know if you feel the same way. I figured if I read your story I would feel better.
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Old 09-07-2010, 11:28 AM   #2
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I feel like an outsider with my friends because I have the desire to retire early and live within my means.

We had good circle of friends (which i did believe) but our relationship changed. Especially when we had kids.
As a single person with friends who had children I can say it is the children and parenthood experience that gets old pretty fast.

Send a letter to your non parent friends saying you will be out of touch until your children are out of the house.

Hang around with other parents until you children are out of the house. Then have a big party with your old - non parent - friends and don't talk about anything from the intervening years nor things like 'now that the kids are out of the house; I want to live'.
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Old 09-07-2010, 11:39 AM   #3
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It is a combination of other things, but I feel like an outsider with my friends because I have the desire to retire early and live within my means.

We had good circle of friends (which i did believe) but our relationship changed. Especially when we had kids. I dont see eyes to eyes anymore with them. Thus we see less of our friends. I don't want to write a long story and get into detail. I wanted to know if you feel the same way. I figured if I read your story I would feel better.
My suggestion would be to make an effort to add some new friends to your life, maybe some with children and if they are frugal, so much the better.

It sounds like you are growing away from your past friends, a little bit. The world is a wonderful place, with so many amazing, unique people to spend time with. Time to get to know some more of them, and to enjoy some different points of view.

I don't know the age of your child or children, but I do know that parenthood can be especially lonely when your child or children are small and need so much time and attention. I got through that phase in life by making friends with other parents who had children the same age. I met one in my Lamaze class, others whose kids were in my daughter's nursery school and baby swimming class, and later her ballet class, elementary school class, and summer day camp.
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Old 09-07-2010, 12:12 PM   #4
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It is a combination of other things, but I feel like an outsider with my friends because I have the desire to retire early and live within my means.

We had good circle of friends (which i did believe) but our relationship changed. Especially when we had kids.
People who have children have such different needs and priorities from those who don't, it is to be expected that for the most part families will be friendly with other families, do things together, etc, and marrieds without children will also tend to stick to themselves.

Likewise, when a single person gets married, his or her friends tend to change. Single people have very different needs and viewpoints and attitudes from married people, just like parents have very different needs and attitudes from non-parents. Dex's statement is one example of the non-conjunction of parents with non parents.

Most areas of any size have groups that are formed to help parents find support and friendships with other young people looking at the same issues and challenges. And of course, many churches have congregations with plenty young families, and often these churches are quite interested in helping families meet their needs and find social support. Similarly once school gets going there are opportunites to find other concerned parents in PTA, etc.

So I would figure that for the most part, your friends going forward, and likely for the rest of your lives, will be other families, and of course your own extended family.

Ha
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Old 09-07-2010, 12:18 PM   #5
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Friendships change over the year as each of our own circumstances change. I think one of the biggest mistakes anyone can make is to try and cling to relationships which in reality no longer exist.

I think sometimes the best thing you can do for a friendship is to accept it is not what it was and either embrace it in it's new form or let it go totally.

Finding new friends is a challenge. However, I am firmly of the mind that I would rather have 1 or 2 good friends than a gaggle of casual friends.
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Old 09-07-2010, 12:30 PM   #6
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We don't have kids but most of our friends do. I don't see why it has to be a problem.
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Old 09-07-2010, 12:49 PM   #7
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Maybe you are too focused on lbym and early retirement and not enough on being a friend? Friendships have to be cultivated by both parties or they will just fade away.
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Old 09-07-2010, 01:11 PM   #8
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It is a combination of other things, but I feel like an outsider with my friends because I have the desire to retire early and live within my means.

We had good circle of friends (which i did believe) but our relationship changed. Especially when we had kids. I dont see eyes to eyes anymore with them. Thus we see less of our friends. I don't want to write a long story and get into detail. I wanted to know if you feel the same way. I figured if I read your story I would feel better.
Folks who you don't see eye to eye with any more are not bad people, they simply have not grown emotionally in the same direction as you have.

Make some new friends. No recriminations, no regrets, simply move on and find other like-minded people.
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Old 09-07-2010, 01:38 PM   #9
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On a smaller scale, after almost 6 months I certainly feel less kinship and rapport with some of my work colleagues/friends who have not retired. I feel like a curiosity -- interesting and even intriguing, though not something they can really figure out.

But my "real" friends - about a third retired - all seem genuinely happy for me. It's pretty clear which direction I'll be leaning though there are still 1 or 2 work friends I'd like to stay close wtih.
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Old 09-07-2010, 04:18 PM   #10
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We don't have kids but most of our friends do. I don't see why it has to be a problem.
I don't think it has to be a problem, rather more that interests and needs change. I have some friends in their mid-thirties. Their interests are very similar to mine- going out, having fun, etc. Parents would go broke with baby-sitters if they continued that way, and anyway, their kids benefit from peer relationships that are not entirely out of the family orbit.

Not everyone in my parents' circle had kids, but most did. And the ones with kids generally hosted gatherings in their homes, so that there would be kid friendly toys and games and stuff for the other kids to play.

Also kids are expensive- most parents have less money to go out, to go on cruises, and do other things that couples without children have plenty of money to do and time to do.

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Old 09-07-2010, 04:33 PM   #11
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It is a combination of other things, but I feel like an outsider with my friends because I have the desire to retire early and live within my means.
We had good circle of friends (which i did believe) but our relationship changed. Especially when we had kids. I dont see eyes to eyes anymore with them. Thus we see less of our friends. I don't want to write a long story and get into detail. I wanted to know if you feel the same way. I figured if I read your story I would feel better.
Happens all the time.

If you and your alleged "friends" can't take pleasure in each other's goals then they're not very good friends in the first place. If relationships change the friendship, then again they're not very good friends in the first place.

ER doesn't come between you and your friends. It can, however, come between you and your coworkers/acquaintances.

Sounds like you need a new set of friends.
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Old 09-07-2010, 05:08 PM   #12
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changing diapers & the smell
not getting enough sleep
dangers around the house for a child
trying to loose pregnancy weight
we're tired
things I never though about until I had a child
child sicknesses & detailed description
child's future schooling
we're tired
child's pictures
child's behavior
we're tired
what the child will be when he/she grows us
watching a child smear food and throw up at a home dinner
we're having another child
....
child's school
the teenage years
drugs at school
we're tired
child & porn on the internet
dating
we can't wait until he leaves for college
we're tired
driving
the cost of college
we're tired
....
College - selecting, visiting, etc
we're tired
We're so glad child leaving the house
Child moving back home after school

+++++++
Please show your childless friends some compassion.
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Old 09-07-2010, 05:44 PM   #13
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See what I mean, folks?

IMO this has nothing whatsoever to do with whether someone was or was not a true friend. It has to do with similar interests and viewpoints. One's non-parent friends may become parents, and if so they will again have a life more similar to your own.

This should be very easy for ERs to understand, as people frequently post here about how much they like it that they can talk here about what is most important to them-i.e. quitting gainful employment. Would this be because the other people in their lives are bad people? I don’t think so, more that similar fish school together.

Growing up in a 50s neighborhood there were mostly some older people, a couple of female housemates, and a billion parents and kids. Social life was very easy for everyone concerned.


Once I had my brother and his wife (non-parents) out to visit when our kids were small. They were polite, but they couldn't wait to get out of Dodge, and they never came back or invited us as a family to stay with them, even though I kept up a close relationship with him.


Same with ERs and their former workmates and still-working friends. Do you as an ER want to live on a working person's schedule? That isn't what I get from reading this forum- people often crow about how nice it is to not have to do things on the weekend. Well, most of your working friends will not be able to play golf on Tuesdays, or stay out late on Thursday nights.


I go out with a woman who is very much still working full speed ahead. Can she modify her schedule to accommodate mine? Not very easily, so I accommodate hers. Is she hostile that I have a much easier schedule than she does? Not that I can tell. But our time together is limited, and likely will continue to be. Naturally her networking and life story sharing will be mostly done with other working people.


Ha
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Old 09-07-2010, 06:13 PM   #14
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It is a combination of other things, but I feel like an outsider with my friends because I have the desire to retire early and live within my means.

We had good circle of friends (which i did believe) but our relationship changed. Especially when we had kids. I dont see eyes to eyes anymore with them. Thus we see less of our friends. I don't want to write a long story and get into detail. I wanted to know if you feel the same way. I figured if I read your story I would feel better.
It seems like this thread has turned into a kids vs. no kids debate. I read your post as your relationship with your friends has changed since having kids, not changed because you decided to have kids and they didn't.

Either way, I have noticed a substantial change in my friendships since having kids. We see much less of certain friends who have kids that are almost identical ages as our kids while we see more of other friends who don't have kids.

I think that as with any major change in one's lifestyle things (including friendships) get shaken up. The friendships that I value most are the ones that survive these changes. I think it is a normal part of the human experience.

I still enjoy the occasional company (or even just an email exchange around bithdays) of friends that I see much less often now that I have kids and it is okay because we understand that at this stage in our lives our lifestyles don't mesh for one reason or another. These friendships can continue indefinitely in their current state or they may become closer again when circumstances change.

I talk to my somewhat sprendthrift friends about retiring early and saving money. At the very least they endure me (I suspect some don't believe me) but at the same time I listen to them about their interests that I don't particularly care about or see eye to eye with them. I think my friendships would be pretty boring if all my friends thought the same way I do.

I even have hardcore anti-kid friends who are like Dex. I just have lunch with those friends while at w*rk or during nights out when the kids aren't along. It helps to be capable of carrying on a conversation for a few hours without talking about the kids unless someone asks.

That's my experience/2 cents.
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Old 09-07-2010, 06:23 PM   #15
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No kids here either but most of my friends do. None of my friends sees this as problematic though.
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Old 09-07-2010, 06:47 PM   #16
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I even have hardcore anti-kid friends who are like Dex. I just have lunch with those friends while at w*rk or during nights out when the kids aren't along. It helps to be capable of carrying on a conversation for a few hours without talking about the kids unless someone asks.

That's my experience/2 cents.
Please re-read my post. Below is the key point. What it means for the parent is to try to understand that single people might not be as interested in the parenthood path as the parent is.

It has nothing to do with the child or lack there of.

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Please show your childless friends some compassion.
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Old 09-09-2010, 04:34 PM   #17
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Thank you for the responses.

I am actually happy with my life. I have a wonder wife and two good kids.

I was sad that my friends for a long time are changing and I now know we are not as compatible. We were the first to have kids and still did alot of things together. They even commented that we hit the jackpot as our kids were very goods ie slept well, ate well, and BARELY cried. Things started to change when they started to have their own kids and their kids were not as good. As result of that and them moving away a little farther , and us busy with our own lifes, we have drifted apart and now I just feel that we are not as good of a friend as before. We live in the same City but in opposite ends and have not seen them about almost a year.

Labour Day weekend one of them had a BBQ and we were not invited. So we know that we are the outsider. Even though we did not see them for a while I had no desire to see them. So it might be a mutual thing. I am just sad to lose a good friendship.

Anyways...have been busy with other people. Found other like minded people and maybe will bond a good friendship.

Again thanks for reading and responding. It was nice to get in out of let loose.
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Old 09-09-2010, 04:38 PM   #18
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Again thanks for reading and responding. It was nice to get in out of let loose.
You're welcome - if you can't "let loose" here then where else?
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Old 09-09-2010, 04:42 PM   #19
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Please re-read my post. Below is the key point. What it means for the parent is to try to understand that single people might not be as interested in the parenthood path as the parent is.

It has nothing to do with the child or lack there of.
Please re-read my post and your quote of my post - I am agreeing with you! My description of you being anti-kid was tongue-in-cheek. My post indicated and you even quoted that it helps to be able to talk to people about things that have nothing to do with kids. This is showing respect for people that aren't interested in parenting - i.e., not talking about parenting when you spend time together.
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Old 09-09-2010, 06:06 PM   #20
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No kids here either but most of my friends do. None of my friends sees this as problematic though.
Just the delivery man, eh?
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