Single mom should find friends Kindergarten-style
Dear Amy: My husband left me five years ago. I am now a divorced single mom with two beautiful children, ages 10 and 8.
I am also an only child and am fairly introverted, which makes it difficult for me to make new friends.
I find it so hard when I see other happy families together, I want nothing more than to have someone (the right someone) to share my life with. I envision myself growing old with no one but a dog around for company.
I am a fun person! But I am not a social butterfly ... and I am certainly not into the whole dating online thing.
The only people I hang around with are my parents, and I think they are getting bored with me.
I don't want to appear desperate, but seriously, Amy, how do adults in their 40s make friends anymore? It was so much easier when you were little and could just walk up to someone and ask, "Hey, do you want to be friends?"
Dear Lonely: You mention a dog as something of a worst-case scenario, but my first suggestion is that if you don't already have one, you should consider adopting a compatible canine pal.
Yes, dogs are awesome comforters and companions, but dogs are also people magnets.
You describe yourself as an introvert who also wants to meet new friends, and one great aspect of having a dog in your life is that a dog will serve as both a conversation starter and a focal point while two or more humans are glancing their way toward a connection. When you have a dog with you, you don't have to make eye contact with another human -- until you are ready. The dog soaks up all of that otherwise awkward attention.