Poll Finds Most Americans Over 55 Have Only Four Friends But Crave More

Throughout our lifetime, we are going to have many acquaintances. Some of them will be in and out of our lives so quickly we may wonder if they were there in the first place and others will stick around for a while.

By the time we reach 55, we would expect that we had so many friends that it would be difficult to count them. It seems as if that isn’t the case, however, according to a survey of 2000 Americans.

Photo: Unsplash/Philippe Leone

Life Time used OnePoll to conduct a survey of a random group of individuals over the age of 55. According to the New York Post, the results revealed that one out of five felt lonely for more than half of the week.

48% of the respondents said that their social circle has been shrinking as they are getting older. They said that they stopped being friends with at least three people over the past two years.

There are many who are optimistic about the future, however, with 83% saying that it’s never too late to start a new relationship.

Photo: Unsplash/LOGAN WEAVER

70% said they would be interested in having new friends and enjoy being around people who think similarly to them. They would like to have a friendship with somebody who enjoys doing similar things and has similar life experiences.

There are also priorities, with 40% wanting to travel, 39% wanting to improve their health, and 52% saying that they want to spend more time with their friends.

So, what is it that makes a good friend? According to the New York Post, 64% of those who responded said they would like to have somebody active by their side. They claim that they would be more active if they had somebody to be active with. 46% said that they were being active when they made a new friend, so there might be something behind it.

Photo: Unsplash/Beth Macdonald

Do you enjoy trying new things? 60% of those surveyed said that they would try something new if they had a friend to do it with. At the top of the list, 48% said they would enjoy walking or hiking. Another 32% said swimming, and 31% said taking some type of exercise class.

According to Yahoo!,the senior vice president of healthy aging at Time Life, Renée Main, stated that starting a new activity may seem intimidating but it’s good for you both physically and mentally.

She said: “[It’s] actually it’s a great way to make new friends. While improving your health and overall well-being – especially when you’re supported by a coach who’s been trained to assist older adults.”

I guess you’re never too old to get started with some new friends.

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