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Old 01-13-2015, 06:28 PM
 
6 posts, read 6,569 times
Reputation: 11

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My family is considering a move to Portland. We live in Chicago currently and are really looking for easy access to hiking, as well as art.

We went to Portland on a scouting trip and of course found the place beautiful and thought the people were friendly. That said, we met up with two sets of friends living in Portland, but both are thinking of moving because they have found it remarkably hard to make friends there. (Both have been there for 5+ years). Has anyone else had this experience? We like these friends, of course, and are worried that if they've had such trouble making friends we might too.

I lived in Seattle about ten years ago and found it hard to make friends because people were so polite. It was hard to really get to know them. I chalked this up to my own personal deficiencies, but I am wondering if maybe it is actually a general quality of the Northwest. My friends said it feels related to people being judgmental and unable to deal with conflict or difference. I remember this from when I was in college but again, chalked it up to college radicalism.

I will admit that I was a little turned off by Portland's alternative parenting magazine being called "True Parent" as if non-alternative parents are not "real".

Politically, my wife and I are very liberal, but we appreciate frank discussions about tough issues and feel like most issues are more complicated than two sides. That said, I don't like to argue and am a "live and let live" kind of person.

So, that's the background. Have other (liberal) people found Portlanders judgmental? Is it difficult to make friends?

Thanks for any thoughts on this.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:45 PM
 
Location: Oregon
1,028 posts, read 1,308,885 times
Reputation: 757
I am pretty much anti-liberal, more Conserative (but registered Libertarian). I have a several friends that are Liberal. As long as we don't talk politics we get along great. Portland is a Liberal city so they are more judgmental of Conservatives. I don't think it's hard to make friends in Portland. Get out and play, there are lots of meet up groups depending on your interests.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:53 PM
 
2,430 posts, read 5,757,037 times
Reputation: 1221
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjoanwalker View Post

I will admit that I was a little turned off by Portland's alternative parenting magazine being called "True Parent" as if non-alternative parents are not "real".
I've been a parent in Portland for 12 years and had to go look up "True Parent" because I'd never heard of it. It didn't strike me as alternative when I looked it up, it looked like a yuppie parenting magazine devoted to lots of ad revenue. I would say it's more like one of many parenting mags here and certainly not "The" mag.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:58 PM
 
2,430 posts, read 5,757,037 times
Reputation: 1221
Portland is full of a lot of different types of parents so your question was kind of vague. It really depends which group you're focusing on and what neighborhood and income bracket you're in. You'll get a different answer for each group. Do you want a stereotype of close in Portlandia types or a cross section of the huge variety of parents? The close-in inner SE/NE parents can be a bit much, so can the west hills/Pearl parents (both have a lot of money to throw around and lots of stay at home moms). Then you have a lot of in between types and a lot of "normal" average people. So much of it depends on what you're into or do with your kids, just like anywhere. It's hard to make friends if you're the type who is a homebody and quiet, but if you're the type who goes to library story time, puts your kids in activities and sports, goes to the park a lot, takes group classes, etc. you'll meet other people/parents easily.
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Old 01-13-2015, 07:39 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
20,568 posts, read 37,034,520 times
Reputation: 20436
PNW is studied for it's 'standoffish nature / shallow relationships...'

PNW was Settled by people seeking independence and they still want it. (value it)

You can get along fine without friends. (Has worked for me for 30 yrs, tho I find it interesting...since I am from the 'plains' where neighbors help each other and have potlucks / drop-in guests frequently. Feed each other when ill...)

Your PNW neighbors might realize you are dead when you start smelling too bad. They won't bother calling the cops or check on you to find out why you have been gone for 2 months, they are respecting your SPACE. +/-

you will be fine. Just come and hunker down!

BTW: 'non-alternative' parents are not real, Neither are the sexually straight, monogamous, Christians, NRA toters... anyone with a solid character. That is how diversity works in Portland. (Oregon in general). You think, act, and vote like them, or you don't exist. It's Just the rules! You will be fine (and embraced) if you ascribe to 'group think'.


Leave this in Chicago -
"we appreciate frank discussions about tough issues"

(or move to the state, 5 minutes north) It is ok to express opinions there. (and have frank discussions)

IMHO... just from 30+ yrs of dealing with PNW and working both sides of the river.

Seattle has a MUCH different reason for 'distanced' relationships.

PNW people are not generally rude, in fact they are quite congenial and accepting. (Live and Let live) UNLESS you think differently in Oregon.
Best to just smile and acknowledge them, and go about your business. NO arguments, they are not confrontational / 'talk-it-out-people'. You will be banished for life if you bring up a counter opinion, so if you must live in Oregon, keep your 'non-Oregon' opinions to yourself (don't tell your wife or kids either, they might turn on you, or WORST... turn you in!!)

It's Just the rules! OR CPS might choose to enforce that! So keep it SHUT!

Last edited by StealthRabbit; 01-13-2015 at 07:48 PM..
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Old 01-13-2015, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
8,803 posts, read 7,238,031 times
Reputation: 4495
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottinpdx View Post
I am pretty much anti-liberal, more Conserative (but registered Libertarian). I have a several friends that are Liberal. As long as we don't talk politics we get along great. Portland is a Liberal city so they are more judgmental of Conservatives. I don't think it's hard to make friends in Portland. Get out and play, there are lots of meet up groups depending on your interests.
+1 for me too. Although my friends and I talk politics a lot, primarily because I'm the only right-leaning friend they have, but we keep it respectful.

A theme that's popped up on this forum, and correct me if I'm off-base, is that many left-leaning people looking to move here place great reliance on their political beliefs as some sort of method to connect with people. "Portland's liberal. I'm liberal. This will be great." That simply is not the case. Shared activities, common interest and some level of connection/chemistry/personality match is how friends are made anywhere.
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Old 01-13-2015, 10:27 PM
 
8 posts, read 8,348 times
Reputation: 16
There is not enough to be a common American family to get any contact with people this decade. Yeah. You should have anything else. You should be, let me name it in this way, profitable for people. Our time is excessive with contacts vie internet. People do not want to communicate each other. They do not want to expose themselves to risk. “Maybe you are bad persons who knows”, they think, “I would like to go to internet and find a nice guy without any risks!” Do not blame them. It is a human instinct to be in safety. You have to treat food people you want to be friends with. You have to help them. Do it for them and they will love you. In addition, Portland is a lovely city, there are so mach greens. You need not any friend just walk and enjoy with wonderful views and magic smell of this nice place! I am like a poet I know! Take care yourself!
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Old 01-14-2015, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Bmore, The cursed land of -> Hotlanta -> Charlotte
305 posts, read 298,869 times
Reputation: 238
They say all the PNW is the same, yet everyone who has been to both Seattle and Portland always say Portland is more 'friendly', atleast from the posts Ive seen.

Though Im not from the PNW, I dont really see how small talk can be harmful.
No one is saying we want to run up to a random person and try to write a autobiography. Just like waiting at the bus stop kinda talk, or just do a quick chat about how the Ducks are doing or something, you know, normal social stuff.
If that rubs people the wrong way, scare them or make them feel uncomfortable... thats very unsettling to be around Imo. But Im a native Ohioan living in Georgia now so...

On second hand, no city can be very liberal if no one communicates with each other, so I doubt its that bad lol
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Old 01-14-2015, 11:04 AM
 
Location: Just outside of Portland
4,339 posts, read 5,438,938 times
Reputation: 4343
Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
PNW is studied for it's 'standoffish nature / shallow relationships...'

PNW was Settled by people seeking independence and they still want it. (value it)

You can get along fine without friends. (Has worked for me for 30 yrs, tho I find it interesting...since I am from the 'plains' where neighbors help each other and have potlucks / drop-in guests frequently. Feed each other when ill...)

Your PNW neighbors might realize you are dead when you start smelling too bad. They won't bother calling the cops or check on you to find out why you have been gone for 2 months, they are respecting your SPACE. +/-

you will be fine. Just come and hunker down!

BTW: 'non-alternative' parents are not real, Neither are the sexually straight, monogamous, Christians, NRA toters... anyone with a solid character. That is how diversity works in Portland. (Oregon in general). You think, act, and vote like them, or you don't exist. It's Just the rules! You will be fine (and embraced) if you ascribe to 'group think'.


Leave this in Chicago -
"we appreciate frank discussions about tough issues"

(or move to the state, 5 minutes north) It is ok to express opinions there. (and have frank discussions)

IMHO... just from 30+ yrs of dealing with PNW and working both sides of the river.

Seattle has a MUCH different reason for 'distanced' relationships.

PNW people are not generally rude, in fact they are quite congenial and accepting. (Live and Let live) UNLESS you think differently in Oregon.
Best to just smile and acknowledge them, and go about your business. NO arguments, they are not confrontational / 'talk-it-out-people'. You will be banished for life if you bring up a counter opinion, so if you must live in Oregon, keep your 'non-Oregon' opinions to yourself (don't tell your wife or kids either, they might turn on you, or WORST... turn you in!!)

It's Just the rules! OR CPS might choose to enforce that! So keep it SHUT!
Tongue in cheek and funny, but spot on.
(Especially the part about "respecting your space"!)
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Old 01-14-2015, 01:59 PM
 
4,380 posts, read 3,390,555 times
Reputation: 4375
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjoanwalker View Post
Is it difficult to make friends?
What have your friends done to make friends? If they've just sat at home and waited for the welcoming committee to come and knock on their door and embrace them into neighborhood activities with open arms, then yes, it is hard to make friends.

I was widowed in 2008 at the age of 34. I had great friends at the time-still do-but I got to a point where I realized they still had their families and weren't responsible for me having a social life. This was the end of 2009, early 2010. I joined a few Meetup groups (as someone else suggested earlier in the thread) and had no trouble making new friends. The friends I went out with last Saturday to celebrate one of their birthdays, I've known for less than a year.

It's not hard, but you do have to make an effort.
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