Archive for June 27th, 2008

There’s nothing worse than lacking a local social network of friends. 

Well, I suppose Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs applies, as always.  If you’re starving, food takes precedence over friendship.  However, even Maslow recognised that, once needs necessary to biological existence are met (food, water, steady body temperature, safety, etc.), a sense of belongingness is the next critical void to fill.  Maslow stated that people seek to overcome feelings of loneliness and alienation, which involves both giving and receiving love, affection, and a sense of belonging.

As I mentioned, Maslow indicated that ‘deficiency needs’ are met first.  Once those are met, the satisfaction of ‘growth needs’ must be met in order to drive one’s personal growth.  Belonging is categorized by Maslow as a deficiency need.  WIthout it, the person will be unconsciously tense and anxious.  And will be prevented from moving forward to satisfy ‘growth needs’.

And that is where I’m stuck now.  Don’t get me wrong, I have an amazing network of friends (and family), but they’re all at least an hour and a half away.  I have one friend within an hour.  Thank goodness she is the amazing woman she is (we’re very close), but I’m still hanging without a local network.

This has been eating at me for three years now–since we moved to Dayton.  It’s not that I have much ‘free’ time, anyway, but the comfort of having friends close by is missing.  It’s (by necessity) helped my husband and I grow as close and as reliant on each other as we have become.  But I’ve often worried about what would happen if, say, we got stuck away from home for the night.  There’s no one in town that we could call to go over to the house to take care of the furries. 

To belong is to affiliate with, feel appreciated by, and be valued by others.  As well as to return the same companionship, appreciation, and value to one’s friends.  And it’s a lovely thing when it happens close to home.

I keep telling my hubby we need to open a ‘couples bar’.  Seriously, I mean if you’re single you can go to a bar to meet people.  What about those–like us–who want to meet people to make new friends, not find a one night stand?

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