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A blended family in a new state

I never used to have trouble making friends, but this new move has me struggling. 

Give it time, says our elder. Find an after school club, express yourself, and your old identity will return.

 

Dear EWC

Hello there, I hope that this letter finds you well. I’m seeking advice from you because I’ve been feeling lonely lately. I know this is a normal feeling, but I am beginning to become overwhelmed by it. I’m 15 and a sophomore in high school. I’ve always been very extroverted and well liked, never had trouble making friends. About two months ago my family of three and I packed up and moved to another state, blending with another family, making us six. This has been more difficult than I anticipated. My stepsister is 16 and I’m having issues making connections with her. School has also become a stress in my life. I have always been quite studious and eager to learn, but now I hardly want to go at all. Again, I’m struggling to build relationships there. I haven’t felt like myself since moving, and I feel like no matter where I go, I’m not wanted there. Thank you so much for taking the time to read my email. 

 

Good-Listener replies

I’m so sorry you’re feeling out of sorts in your new environment. Some of many to be expected, but it doesn’t help when you’re in the thick of it. The good news is that you seem to have a pretty good sense of self (not many young ladies your age do), and the other thing is that it’s been a relatively short period of time – and there’s no reason to think you won’t get a group of friends to hang with again soon.

Here are my best suggestions. It’s almost as though you need to forge your own identity again and let other people know who you are for yourself. Living with a step sister so close in age can cause miscommunication even in the best of situations. She may not know what to do now that your families are blended. And, you can only do what you can do.

See if you can get involved in any activities after school, either through the school (clubs and such) or on your own. Maybe there’s a place for you to volunteer or take a fun class. In other words, the best thing may be for you to kind of form your new identity in this new place. If you pursue your interests (if you have time, and depending on what’s available and open where you live), it may be a healthy distraction and a way for you to form friendships with others either like-minded or with similar interests. It may take the pressure off of you and get you involved so that you present yourself in a way that shows your more extroverted personality. 

It may not happen overnight, but I’d try to hold on, know it can and will get better, and that the person you were is still there – it must just come out of hiding a little. That’s what attracted people to you then, and will again. Good luck.

Article #: 465630

Category: Friendship

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