No one ever tells you about how difficult it can be to make friends as an adult. Friendship is something you tend to take for granted during childhood. School-age friendships usually required minimal effort and were easy to maintain, especially when you spent 5 days a week together.
But when you’re an adult it seems different somehow. That childhood innocence of being able to sit next to someone and ask them what their favourite colour is has gone. It now seems daunting and almost awkward having to make friends now you’re grown up.
Moving to a new city, country, or even continent can make this whole process even more nerve wracking.
But don’t despair, it can be done! I’m living proof of that.
Think of Bumble as the less-creepy cousin of Tinder. The concept of swiping one way to like and swiping the other to dislike is the same. However, hopefully you won’t receive any unsolicited anatomy pictures because you’re only looking for a friendship.
There are 3 versions of Bumble: date, BFF, and bizz. We’ll just focus on Bumble BFF for today.
Similarly to Tinder, you make yourself a profile with some pictures and answer some prompts to show your general info and hobbies/interests to potential BFFs.
If you’re happy to, you can also show off your Instagram snaps or your most listened to songs from your Spotify playlist. Don’t worry, your username won’t be visible.
Can I really make friends on Bumble?
YES! There are so many success stories all over the internet about Bumble matches blossoming into beautiful friendships. Bumble’s website shares Bumble users stories, such as these two American women living in Paris who cured their homesickness through their friendship. You can even submit your own story to be featured on the Bumble website.
One of the main selling points of Bumble is the search radius for potential BFF matches changes as you travel. This means it’s an excellent way to make friends if you’re taking a gap year to backpack or travel. It’s also great if you move to a new city as there’s a prompt to say whether you’re new to the area of not.
Bumble BFF is definitely worth a shot for making new friends as an adult. It’s easy to use and free (though there are in-app purchases to access additional features). You can also easily switch between Bumle date, BFF, and bizz if you decide to look for something different.
MeetUp describes itself as “A platform for finding and building local communities. People use Meetup to meet new people, learn new things, find support, get out of their comfort zones, and pursue their passions, together“. Unlike Bumble where a you swipe to match with a BFF based on their individual profile, on MeetUp you have the opportunity to make friends through attending events and socialising with other group members. This definitely makes awkward chit-chat that little bit less awkward because you’ll know you have at least the group as a common interest.
To get started on MeetUp you should search for nearby groups and events and join them. This is great if you’re travelling or studying abroad for a semester because you can update your location as you travel.
Once you’ve found a group which you like the sound of you can request to join. Then, have a look to see what upcoming events the group have organised and go along to one (or more!) of them. Many groups are hobby focussed, so why not try something new whilst on your quest for new friends? Typewriter Enthusiasts, T-Shirt making, and Class Car Projects are all real examples of MeetUp groups.
Can I really make friends on MeetUp?
Definitely! MeetUp seems to be really popular for those who are new around town so it’s great to find friends who you can explore a new city together with. You can also set up your own group and host events if you have a specific interest or hobby that you think others would enjoy, too.
Facebook Local Community Groups
Although you might think of Facebook as a platform where your Mum and her cousins catch up in the comment section of your holiday photos and share equally cringing Minion memes, there is potential to make some new friends on there.
Can I really make friends on Facebook community groups?
In my experience Facebook community groups can be brilliant if you’ve moved to a new place where you don’t really know anyone. It can also be a great place to find out information about the local area or ask for recomendations.
So, now I know how to make friends as an adult, what next?
Download Bumble on your phone and give it a shot. Sign up for a MeetUp account and have a look what groups are in your area. Search Facebook groups to see if your local village or town has a community group. Maybe you could try and make it a new goal or yours to be more social.
You don’t know what you could be missing out on if you don’t try.