Making new friends as an adult can feel impossible, not least in the aftermath of a pandemic. In the fact of record levels of reported loneliness, new events are helping women across the UK find their tribe.
When Ines, 19, moved to London from Portugal, she realised just how lonely the city could be. “I love London but sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming. I find it difficult to make connections here, especially outside a university context”, she says.
Ines and I first crossed paths as part of an organised social event for the Facebook group Girls in London. The meet-up outside the Tate Modern brought together around 20 women, ranging in age from 18 to 30-years-old, united by a desire to make new friends.
Arriving as strangers, we found ourselves standing in a circle outside the imposing former power station, ready for an opportunity to chat, to forge connections, and (maybe) look at some art too.
Girls in London is the brainchild of Ida Lyckemy, who moved to the UK from Sweden in 2020. The Facebook group grew in popularity when Lyckemy posted a TikTok video advertising it. Now the group has more than 5,200 members all looking to meet new people in the capital.
“I got in contact with people who could relate to what I was feeling and I decided to start the group to create a safe space for women,” explains Lyckemy, who says the group is also open to those who identify as they/them.
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During any move to a new place, there is always a period of adaptation where you try to find a new sense of community. But this can feel more intense when you move to a city – where the rents are higher, the streets are louder, and it feels, at times, like everyone else is busy. Continue reading “The Lonely Girls Club: How groups and meet-ups are helping women make friends”