Why Women Are So Lonely (and 10 Ways To Start New Friendships)

Why Women Are So Lonely (and 10 Ways To Start New Friendships)

Why Women Are So Lonely (and 10 Ways To Start New Friendships)

There seems to be an epidemic of loneliness sweeping through the ranks of women. We have lives that are busy and calendars that are full, but our hearts long for more. We love Jesus, our husbands, our children, our careers, and our extracurriculars, but something is still missing. 

Often that void we feel is from a lack of connection with other women. We were created to do life in community, linked arm in arm with one another on our journey of faith. However, for many of us, that is just a longing we can’t seem to fill. 

We want those soul sisters who sit side by side, whispering and giggling in coffee shops like in all the movies. We crave those ride-or-die gal pals, the girl tribe, or the #squad that everyone else on social media seems to be boasting about. But mostly what we really desire are authentic friendships where trust, loyalty, encouragement, accountability, acceptance, and love are the bedrock.

That is what we want, however, something always seems to stand in the way. We tell ourselves that our to-do lists feel too full to invest in building those kinds of relationships. Friendships like those take a lot of time, emotional energy, and commitment, after all. Who has the time or the margin for that?

Not to mention the vulnerability it takes to open yourself up to a deep friendship. That’s scary! We remind ourselves that there are all kinds of opportunities for rejection, hurt, and betrayal. We’ve all seen our fair share of good friendships gone bad. Who wants to take that kind of risk?

There seems to be an epidemic of loneliness sweeping through the ranks of women. We have lives that are busy and calendars that are full, but our hearts long for more. We love Jesus, our husbands, our children, our careers, and our extracurriculars, but something is still missing. 

Often that void we feel is from a lack of connection with other women. We were created to do life in community, linked arm in arm with one another on our journey of faith. However, for many of us, that is just a longing we can’t seem to fill. 

We want those soul sisters who sit side by side, whispering and giggling in coffee shops like in all the movies. We crave those ride-or-die gal pals, the girl tribe, or the #squad that everyone else on social media seems to be boasting about. But mostly what we really desire are authentic friendships where trust, loyalty, encouragement, accountability, acceptance, and love are the bedrock.

That is what we want, however, something always seems to stand in the way. We tell ourselves that our to-do lists feel too full to invest in building those kinds of relationships. Friendships like those take a lot of time, emotional energy, and commitment, after all. Who has the time or the margin for that?

Not to mention the vulnerability it takes to open yourself up to a deep friendship. That’s scary! We remind ourselves that there are all kinds of opportunities for rejection, hurt, and betrayal. We’ve all seen our fair share of good friendships gone bad. Who wants to take that kind of risk?

Accept That the Risk Is Worth It

Friend, the truth of the matter is simple. We need one another. We are better together. We were designed to be in community with God first and then with other people. We’re hardwired for connection and we don’t feel content without it.

It does take time and emotional energy. It absolutely requires a little risk. But, making an effort to make friends is well worth it. 

Community is one of the most beautiful gifts that our loving Heavenly Father gives us. Having a friend who can journey through life with you, who can encourage you, be a safe space for you, who can spur you on in your faith, who can hold you accountable, and who can point you back to Jesus is an invaluable treasure.

So, how do we find those friends? It isn’t as simple as it was in grade school. We can’t just walk up to Suzy on the playground and ask if she wants to jump rope or play tag. We can’t slide over to Sally at the lunch table and see if she wants to exchange her peanut butter and jelly sandwich for our bologna and cheese. 

It may not be quite that simple anymore, but as women we often make it much more complicated than it needs to be. Each and every day we cross paths with amazing women. They stand in line behind us at the grocery store and the coffee shop. They sit in the cubicle beside us in the office or run on the treadmill next to us at the gym. They share our church pew and our bleachers at sporting events.

To make friends, the best thing we can do is follow the same advice our parents gave us as children and that we now give our children:

“If You Want to Make a Friend, Be a Friend”

Say hello and smile at the women you encounter every day. Ask about their families, jobs, and hobbies. Get to know them. Be brave and connect. Extend an invitation for coffee or even dinner to get to know one another better. If there aren’t a lot of women you cross paths with every day, be intentional about creating opportunities to meet some. 

It really isn’t as hard as we’ve made it seem. Nearly all of us are longing for more meaningful friendships and deeper connection. In a world where surface-level virtual friends and superficial acquaintances are the norm, we are a people longing for different.

Be brave and be bold, sweet sister. Be willing to be the one to make the first move. 

10 Ways to Meet & Make Friends

1. Join a Book Club

If you love to read, this is a great way to make new friends. Strike up a conversation about your favorite character or your favorite author. Ask about the books someone else might be reading. You’ve got a built-in commonality, so the conversation is easy.

2. Take a Workout Class

Nothing bonds us like doing some good old-fashioned hard work together. Leave the earbuds at home and find a YMCA or gym near you and take a class that looks like fun. Say hello to the people in your class and ask about the program. This is a great way to connect with some new friends.

3. Take an Art Class

If you’re a creative type, then taking an art class is a wonderful way to meet new people. Learning new skills with a group of people is an easy way to bond with someone.

4. Hang Out at a Coffee Shop 

Instead of hitting the drive-through at your favorite coffee shop, carve a little window of time out of your day and go in and order. Sit down and enjoy your coffee. Ask the sweet woman in line behind you what her favorite drink is or ask the lady at the table beside you if she’d recommend a breakfast item. Make small talk and you might just make a new friend.

5. Talk to the Other Moms at Practice

If you have kids on a sport’s team, you might see the other moms at practice every day, but you are usually listening to an audiobook or checking your phone. Put your phone away and ask the mom beside you how her child is doing on the team this year or how she feels about the last game.

6. Join the PTA or Booster Club

You want to be involved with your child’s education anyway, so why not join one of the organizations where you can do that while interacting with some women whom you already have things in common with?

7. Meet Your Kids’ Friends’ Parents

Reach out and connect with the parents of your children’s friends. Maybe they would like to come over for dinner or meet up for a family activity. You can get to know who your kids are spending time with while you make a new friend.

8. Go to Sunday School or Small Groups at Church

Instead of just going to the church service where interaction is limited, join a small group or Sunday school class at your church. Our church communities are full of amazing people that we often haven’t made an effort to connect with outside of the Sunday service.

9. Go to a Women’s Conference

Grow in your faith and connect with other women who have hearts to do the same. Sit by someone you don’t know and strike up a conversation. Chances are you both have similar reasons for attending. 

10. Be Aware

Each and every day you probably encounter other amazing women who would also love deeper and richer community. Look for the people already in your life and be intentional about connecting with them. Be willing to step outside of your comfort zone and offer a smile and a hello. Ask questions and start conversations. Sometimes the first step to making friends is acting like a friend.


Bobbie Schaeperkoetter is a writer, speaker, community builder, and an encourager of women at http://www.bobbieschae.com. She’s passionate about connecting women to Jesus, to one another, and to the Body of believers. You can connect with Bobbie through her website or on Instagram at http://www.instagram.com/bobbieschae or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bobbieschae

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