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Mom Prefers Being Home Alone Over Hanging Out With Friends

DEAR ABBY: My son is driving me crazy. He's worried because I don't have friends I hang out with. He said it's not normal for a woman to not want to have friends. I say it is. He said if Dear Abby says I'm OK, he will let it rest.

I work with people between 50 and 70 hours a week. I have more than a thousand townhome and condo residents to deal with, and I receive nonstop complaints day in and day out. On top of that, I must supervise vendors and contractors, answer to several boards, and have up to eight evening meetings a month.

When I finally get home, I don't want to set up a shopping or dinner date with anybody. I want to sit in peace and quiet. I don't want to be around people at all. I'm perfectly happy not having friends. Can you see my point? -- LADY WITH NO PROBLEM

DEAR LADY: I do see your point, but I can also see your son's. By turning this into an either/or situation, you may be talking past each other instead of with each other.

While you crave peace and quiet at the end of the day, he worries that you are isolating yourself. Friendships aren't supposed to drain people; they are supposed to be nurturing. People with rewarding companions they can laugh and commiserate with are happier, less stressed and live longer, so perhaps you should rethink your position.

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