About the Author

Kristen Strong, author of Back Roads to Belonging and Girl Meets Change, writes as a friend offering meaningful encouragement for each season of life so you can see it with hope instead of worry. She and her US Air Force veteran husband, David, have three children and live in Colorado...

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things we love
& you will too!
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Reader Interactions


  1. How timely this is. I moved a couple of months before the pandemic to a new state to be closer to my daughter and at 67 I am trying to make new friends. I have a few where I live (a small 55+ community), but they are most 75 to 80+. They are wonderful but I need to find a few closer to my age and energy! The church I joined is very, very small and still has not rebounded so that hasn’t worked. But I am hopeful. I appreciate your tips especially being approachable. I have a tendency to voice my opinions freely which an aunt of mine told me was part of the joy of getting older. Maybe when I am 80. Thank goodness for texting, phone calls and long letters to maintain the connection with old friends.

    • Madeline dear, I can tell you have a warm, open, and approachable heart, so I believe it’s only a matter of time before you make those new friends. Praying for that right now. Thanks so much for sharing here!

  2. I have definitely found friendship in this stage of life far more difficult. I miss the deep friendships formed in my formative years, that seemed to be so easy. Thank you for the reminder to be persistent. It’s not always easy, but usually worth it.

    • Yes–in many ways it seemed easier to get to a deeper level of friendship in my younger years, too. Be that as it may, may you and I keep on keepin’ on as we pursue the friendships today that God has in mind for us!

  3. My sweet friend & I were JUST speaking about this yesterday. So timely. Thanks for the encouragement to stay the course in our current & new friendships. They are a gift. This gave me a lot of hope today. Thank you!

    • Well, I’m glad it’s not just me who’s thought this! And you’re so right–I’m so glad I’ve stayed the course because the friends in my life today make all the hard work worth it.

      Thanks so much for sharing here, Krista.

  4. As I launch my last chick from the nest next month, it occurs to me that many of these tips can apply to young women heading to college too and will share with my daughter.

    I’ve had to find new friends many times over the years as well and beginning again is never easy. It reminds me to look for those needing a new friend as well.

    Thank you for all this, Kristen!
    From a fellow transplanted Okie (but a Sooner. Can we still be friends? )

    • Everything you say here is golden! (Except the Sooner part. 😉 ) I think most of these tips also apply to the young women, too–such a great point you make! I do wonder, when younger gals employ them, if it (generally) leads to success a little more quickly than it does for us older gals? You’ll have to check in and let me know how her freshman year of college goes!

      Grateful for you, Andrea! And sending love,
      from you (Cowboy) friend Kristen

  5. I enjoyed reading your article. From time to time I think about it that it isn’t as easy to make friends as it was when you’re younger. I also think that time has changed, the culture, that more people seem more private, more guarded than years of yesterday due to what’s happening in our communities. I don’t think it will ever be like before, but regardless we must continue to relentless to be that friend and make new friends.

    • A lot of what you say here rings true for me too, Leigh. And yes, may we both, as you say, relentlessly be that friend to others! So well said. xo

  6. Thank you for sharing. This is a hard place for me. Trusting the Lord who knows who & when I need

  7. When we moved nearly 1000 miles from our previous home I did wonder about navigating the path toward new friendships at age 66. As you mentioned, most people who’ve lived in their communities awhile have a clutch of friends already established. But after some time and patience, God did provide a small circle of good friends for me and a wider circle of more casual friends. As a retiree, I’m especially surprised by the relationships that are forming with younger women. They seem to appreciate my voice of experience; I appreciate their energy and hunger to grow in Christian maturity. To anyone starting over in new surroundings I’d recommend patience and perseverance. Even Jesus had friends for support, like Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. I am certain he desires the same for each of us.

    • “Here, here!” to all you’ve shared, Nancy. If Jesus had friends, it’s His desire for us to have friends, too. No one is the exception to that rule.

      I also love how you’re seeking friendships outside your age and stage of life. What a gift you must be to those in your circles.

  8. Kristen,

    It can be hard to make friends at any age. It has taken me 17 years to develop some really awesome fun friendships at church. They are mostly older women, but we have a few things in common. In making friendships I usually take the first step. Just walk over to a newbie at church say hello or talk to co workers & show them I’m interested in them. One more tip that may help is to get involved in church or volunteer groups. I did that with Relay for Life (cancer). Now I have even more friends. Pray & getting out of your comfort zone are the first steps to making lasting friendships.

    Blessings 🙂

  9. Wow this was so beautifully written! I’m not even in my 40s yet ,but can relate so much to this! Thank you Kristin for the amazing pep talk we all needed after this desert of a pandemic! I can’t wait to begrudgingly tell my self over the next month reach out to more people, and when I fight it to say…. but Kristin said so!! My favorite line I need on a mug, T-shirt or letter board is “ Remember, keeping an opinion to yourself doesn’t invalidate it.”


    • KATIE!! Love seeing your glorious face here. Thanks for the kind words, sweetheart. And if you need me to call you up and remind you of any of this, consider it done. Love you!

  10. I appreciate you words of wisdom on making friends.
    I am in a very small church and I purchased some boxes of DaySpring cards when they are on sale. We have a weekly news letter via email and I send a card with notes to folks who need encouragement, praying for you, older folks with birthdays, sympathy, new births, get well, or just a friendly hi. I gotten many positive notes, even parents saying thanks when I sent a card to their adult child who was sick., even some saving and rereading cards.. And when I had my stroke and coma, my husband had open heart surgery, many I sent cards to have supplied us with food, cards and visits. I have broaden my cards to shut ins and average 20-40 cards a month. One is a woman I used to babysit her four children in high school summers. She is in an assisted living place with an attached nursing home where my grandmother was the first resident in the nursing home about 50 years ago. We live in IL and she lives in MN.
    I am reaching out to widows because I know at 78 and my husband is 79 I might want their advice when I become a widow.
    I love how God has give me a ministry even though I don’t get out much and can’t drive.
    I am reading biographies of Christian leaders. I use ThriftBooks for used books. Some are brand new, all have been in pretty good condition. I pass them on after reading them.
    God is so good to me.

    • What a beautiful ministry He has given you! And you found it from within your own home. Thank you for sharing