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Old 12-19-2015, 11:12 AM
 
11 posts, read 10,121 times
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I spent my entire life in the northeast until a year ago, having lived in RI, NH, and CT. I found that RI was the freindliest of the 3 states I had previously lived in, CT was the least friendly. I agree with the opinions about the challenges of establishing new social connections in New England. From what I have seen that is because communities are so well established, with many generations of families often staying within the same area.

I moved to the Denver area with my family a year ago; it has been very easy for my family and myself to make friends and really feel like part of a community. We have loved it here, educated but still laid back. It has been much easier to meet new people here because so many people are from other areas, and they are looking to meet new people. If you are considering relocation, I think it is helpful to move to an area with a lot of transplants. Good Luck.
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Old 12-19-2015, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Quincy, Mass. (near Boston)
2,051 posts, read 3,467,992 times
Reputation: 1618
Quote:
Originally Posted by iDothisoften View Post
Look at this. I think this in general shows the New England mindset. There are a few exceptions, people in Springfield, MA and Hartford, CT are much more laid back than the Boston area. I hate to say, but "how do I make friends here?" You don't.

All of the friends I have are people I met in college or have known for many years and none of them live in the city. It's very tight knit, and while the people here will ram "inclusiveness" down your throat if they get a chance, they have no desire to get to know you or include you in anything. I think the getting bitched at or "everyone is mean" is an exaggeration for sure. But if there's some magic friend making formula, I'd say most people don't know it, it's not just you.

OP, look at how people responded to you, most people just attacked you and said maybe you're the nasty one. Absolutely not. I've lived in other states (was born in Canada too) and there's a distinct nastiness here. An overall prevailing attitude of "I'm better than you" and people walking around like they have a potato chip in between their butt cheeks that they're trying not to break. Some of the old-timer Bostonians are very nice people, but the younger generation is very self absorbed- so much that people wouldn't notice a three-headed alien walking down the street.

I remember an instance where a guy dropped his wallet in CVS on Milk Street. I said "excuse me sir"- ignored me.

""Sir?!" - nothing. I know he heard me. So I then lightly tapped him on the shoulder and he recoiled as if in absolute disgust that anyone would dare touch him, then picks up his wallet. You can't change them, kill them with kindness and move when you can.
I drove a gay male (minority?) in my taxi five years ago at bar break in the South End. He was with two females.

He had moved here from Chicago a few months prior. He, about 45 years old, raved how he loves Boston already because people here are "so smaaaart!"

But then added how it's so tough to meet people here, and that in Chicago he was " so popular!"

Maybe a bit of an exaggerion but somewhat true with some transplants?

Otherwise, I think most people here, like elsewhere, are kind. They hold the door, say thank you or excuse me, let you in in traffic, etc. Usually. But doesn't mean they want to be friends.
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Old 12-19-2015, 06:55 PM
 
260 posts, read 164,975 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bostonguy1960 View Post
I drove a gay male (minority?) in my taxi five years ago at bar break in the South End. He was with two females.

He had moved here from Chicago a few months prior. He, about 45 years old, raved how he loves Boston already because people here are "so smaaaart!"

But then added how it's so tough to meet people here, and that in Chicago he was " so popular!"

Maybe a bit of an exaggerion but somewhat true with some transplants?

Otherwise, I think most people here, like elsewhere, are kind. They hold the door, say thank you or excuse me, let you in in traffic, etc. Usually. But doesn't mean they want to be friends.
i disagree with the last part. I find that people don't usually hold doors and when you hold doors for them they almost never say thank you. As I said though, I think age is a factor. Some of the old-timers and longtime Bostonians (the blue collar crowd, mailmen, construction workers, etc) are great guys. Unfortunately, yuppies are now the majority here. It makes me sad that the city was built on the backs of working class people who don't have a place here anymore.

I will say I've always found people in Everett to be very nice. Chelsea as well but still reserved.

I've never lived there but I also meet a lot of very friendly people from Stoneham
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Old 12-20-2015, 10:45 AM
 
Location: Boston, MA
7,900 posts, read 6,835,782 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iDothisoften View Post
i disagree with the last part. I find that people don't usually hold doors and when you hold doors for them they almost never say thank you. As I said though, I think age is a factor. Some of the old-timers and longtime Bostonians (the blue collar crowd, mailmen, construction workers, etc) are great guys. Unfortunately, yuppies are now the majority here. It makes me sad that the city was built on the backs of working class people who don't have a place here anymore.

I will say I've always found people in Everett to be very nice. Chelsea as well but still reserved.

I've never lived there but I also meet a lot of very friendly people from Stoneham
I spend almost all my time in the city. People always hold the door. Transplants can be good people and very often are. Native borns can be good people and very often ate. Both groups can be awesome, funny, polite, and kind. And also self centered and rude. It has absolutely nothing to do with where their mother happened to be living at the time of their birth.

The issue is social circles. I live on a street dominated by native bostonians, mostly young families or retirees. Very nice people, just not my demographic for friends (single, mid to late 20s peofessionals). Hard to meet people in this group that don't already have connections. Many are from new England or went to college here. I am neither of those things. So yes, I get the frustration, but it really doesn't have anything to do with locals vs transplants.
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Old 12-21-2015, 06:01 AM
 
Location: Ex-Bostonian in Woodstock, GA
684 posts, read 533,359 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orangecrush1973 View Post
I agree with the opinions about the challenges of establishing new social connections in New England. From what I have seen that is because communities are so well established, with many generations of families often staying within the same area.

Exactly this. I refer to them as "townies". It's the families that have lived in any given town in New England for generations, whom usually (some) hold town jobs (whether it be professional, like town clerk/manager, or blue collar, like the town's DPW or waste management)

These people already have a huge established social network before they're even born lol, and any new residents are simply considered "outsiders".
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Old 12-21-2015, 08:34 AM
 
Location: MetroWest Boston
316 posts, read 270,856 times
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I don't know - I guess this varies from experience to experience. We moved from out of state into a new neighborhood in the Metrowest, and were welcomed into a very outgoing and friendly group of families right away, hanging out on Friday nights, etc. We have kids, and they do to, and that has something to do with it. It's still hard to make that kind of friend though who you can just call up and go out to grab a beer with.
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Old 12-21-2015, 09:56 AM
 
1,390 posts, read 1,960,124 times
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My wife and I are from MA and went to school in Boston. We can fill our entire month by going to see only family, yet still get the guilt that they "never see us anymore" this is not to mention close friends that seeing quarterly is an accomplishment.

Sometimes I wish we were townies, at least everyone would be in one place.

Long story short, we really don't have time to meet new people unless they have a playmate for our daughter which has been tough to find because most parents are 5-10 year older than us.
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:31 PM
 
2,232 posts, read 4,382,294 times
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I grew up in Central Massachusetts and only in Massachusetts will someone tell you they moved far away, only to tell you it was Boston. I was expecting somewhere like DC, Charlotte, Atlanta, Tampa, etc. They made it seem like they could never get back to their hometown. Congrats you moved an entire 35 miles, you must be home sick and your family must be in tears not being able to see you.
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Old 12-23-2015, 10:12 AM
 
Location: Springfield and brookline MA
1,225 posts, read 2,418,657 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeavingMA View Post
I grew up in Central Massachusetts and only in Massachusetts will someone tell you they moved far away, only to tell you it was Boston. I was expecting somewhere like DC, Charlotte, Atlanta, Tampa, etc. They made it seem like they could never get back to their hometown. Congrats you moved an entire 35 miles, you must be home sick and your family must be in tears not being able to see you.

I get this in reverse , grew up in Brookline and most of my family still live there or in Boston. I now live in West Springfield and my family act as if it's a 2 day drive to get here. My mother thinks we are crazy living so far out west.

But as far as making friends out here I would say it was tough. Just like every where else in Massachusetts we were the outsiders for a long time. It wasn't till we had kids that we really started to get ingrained into the town. Like someone else said most people have a large social network before they are even born.
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Old 01-07-2016, 06:36 PM
 
97 posts, read 73,976 times
Reputation: 184
Default I had to laugh at this thread...

I lived for 20 years in Boston, moved there when I was fresh out of college, and hands down the unfriendly culture was my biggest complaint when I finally left. That and the terrible weather.

A sad reality of life in Boston is that, after the age of 30, people's social networks are pretty much closed. As you noticed, no one is interested in opening their friend network to include you. This can make life very lonely.

People's social networks there are comprised of family, friends they grew up with or went to college with, coworkers, drinking buddies from their twenties who became friends, other parents if they are new parents, and that's about it.

Not only are people uninterested in meeting new friends, you are regarded as a bit off or crazy if you (GASP!) dare to actually make an overture of friendship to someone you've met and would like to see again. Asking a new person if they would like to hang out sometime will get you a polite "sure!" but rest assured you will probably never see them again. This is just how it's done there.

People can be polite with strangers, and even chat with them, but it's surface level only. You are expected to mind your boundaries and never mistake the other person as a potential friend.

The last six years I lived in the same small apartment building in Cambridge, and a young couple lived two floors down from me. I saw them in the building a number of times over the years, knew their names, but if I happened to run into them on the street, they would pretend they didn't see me. I don't think they ever once said hello or acknowledged my existence, even though I'd been their neighbor for years. I always thought this interaction was a wonderful illustration of Boston, and why I was so glad to leave.

I will say that this unfriendly culture is very particular to Boston and certain parts of the Northeast. Everywhere else I traveled during my two decades there, from the Pacific Northwest to San Diego to Texas to the Caribbean, seemed wonderfully friendly in comparison. I never did figure out what it is that makes Bostonians so unfriendly.
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