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Men may be having harder time maintaining friendships amid pandemic

Posted at 3:20 PM, Dec 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-08 16:04:07-05

Men may have a harder time maintaining friendships during the pandemic.

Experts say it’s because social distancing guidelines have forced men out of their normal ways of communicating.

“Men tend to construct their friendships on a shoulder-to-shoulder basis and women tend to use a face-to-face basis, so guys will get together and do things, like sports, going to the sports bar, activities,” said University of Maryland Professor Geoffrey Greif, author of the book “Buddy System: Understanding Male Friendships.”

Greif says it's rare for men to reach out to each other just to talk. Men tend to be more cautious about how much they share.

They'll also only ask to do something together so many times before the invitation is returned.

“We're just not socialized to feel comfortable. We don't want to seem like we are stalking another guy for a friendship. Men don't want to appear too emotionally needy,” said Greif.

There are some activities that we can still do while social distancing.

Greif says you can also try getting together over Zoom to watch sports or play a game.

Recognize it's not going to be as good as in person, but keep in mind that eventually the pandemic will end.