Manners Matter: My Neighbors Are Too Neighborly

Dear Mary Pat,

My new neighbors seem to believe in being very neighborly, too neighborly if you ask me. They pop over at all hours of the day for no reason other than to visit. While I don’t mind lending an egg, the occasional social call or helping in an emergency, I’m not so sure I’m looking for a new best friend. Any advice on how to not be a curmudgeon about their attempts to welcome me to the neighborhood?


New Girl on the Block


Dear New Girl on the Block,

Moving is a huge adjustment. Each town or neighborhood is different and has its own set of social rules.

When I first moved here from a big city, it took me over a year to fully adjust. I had visions of what living in a small town would be like and it ended up being nothing like I thought it would. Everything was a whirlwind with my new job. When I took a minute to look around and try to meet some locals, I didn’t think they were really friendly to be honest. Come November, I figured out that they were just extremely busy. It took awhile, but eventually I found a group of amazing friends that I would be lost without.

You’re trying to navigate a new place with a new way of doing things. Give yourself some time and don’t make any snap judgments. Maybe you don’t need a best friend, but it is such an advantage to know those around you. Visiting is a good thing. If they are starting to infringe on your time a little bit, maybe let them know that you’re busy between X and Y but that you’d love to grab a coffee with them later. One day you might become great friends or you might just stick to being good neighbors. Either way, it’s nice to be surrounded by friendly people who want to get to know you.

Good luck,

Mary Pat

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