Online Friending

Jan 26, 2014 by

          On Thursday night, for the first time, I hung out with a guy that I came into contact with through OKCupid as a friend. I wasn’t attracted to his photos (he’s a cutie; he’s just not my type), but he seemed like a social guy. In his profile, he invites people to reach out to him even if they’re only interested in friendship. Sold! I am always open to making new friends. I sent him a message. We had been chatting back and forth when he noticed my profile lists happiness as one of the six things I could not live without. This fuelled conversation about the importance of happiness, and violà: I was having coffee with a new friend. (I was actually eating a bagel. I rarely drink coffee. Isn’t it funny how we say that we’re grabbing coffee when going to a coffee house, even when not drinking coffee? – Wow, do I ever get sidetracked while writing sometimes.)

          Coffee turned into an invite to join him and his friends at a pub last night. A guy was going to be there that he thought I may be interested in dating. (Yes, of course I told him about my boyfriend search! I tell anything that breathes about my boyfriend search, and for good reason: the more people that know I’m looking for a boyfriend, the more people searching for dating prospects on my behalf.) It turned out that I wasn’t interested in the guy he had in mind for me as more than a potential friend, but that is not the point. Last night, I was hanging out with more people that I have friends in total simply because I opened myself up to one new friend online. I chatted with his girlfriend (who he met through OKCupid #onlinedatinghope) and some of his friends past 1 am. I wasn’t even near him most of the night, and he was the only person I knew (and barely) going into the pub. (My social skills fucking amaze me sometimes.) Thus, the point is that the internet is a fabulous way to make new friends! As The Happiness Experiment has repeatedly revealed, expanding your social life is as easy as being open to new people (regardless of how you meet them), saying yes to social invites (even when you’re a ticking tear bomb because your best friend just broke the news that she’s moving out of your shared apartment one month early, making your own decision to remove her from your life suddenly undeniable), and befriending your new friends’ friends. Chatting with someone online? (Sure you are! #Facebook #Twitter #dontlie) Take it offline!

Happiness Tip: Real-life friend your online friends.

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