It’s tricky to find places to meet new people and the time to let those friendships grow, and the idea of replenishing the pool can seem more daunting than it’s worth. Would I need to tell her why my last best friend didn’t work out?) So when I heard about a new Toronto-based service to pair up friends, created by 28-year-old Amy Wood, who also helps run a creative agency, I was ready to try it out.
Wood wanted to change that, so this past September she launched Yes New Friends, an online friend-matching service.She wasn’t entirely prepared for what happened next.In the first 48 hours after Wood’s site went live, thousands visited it and many of those visitors signed up for her customized platonic friend-finding services.After just two months, she had already paired dozens of women, from a freelance illustrator in her early 20s to a librarian in her late 30s, with new pals. Applicants answer a few casual questions — what’s your ideal friend-date activity, what do you do for fun and money, describe yourself in a single GIF — and Wood reviews the responses.The profiles give her a starting point, but matching is a case of instinct more than algorithm. ” Wood looks beyond obvious commonalities like age and profession for something a bit more offbeat.
“I try to imagine these two people hanging out,” she says. Annie and Monique, for example, both seemed to be pretty no-nonsense girls, but none of their specific interests lined up.
What they did have in common was unusual hobbies — one loved curling and the other was passionate about roller derby.
“I took a chance on that one and it worked,” says Wood.
A few years ago, I was unceremoniously dumped by my best friend.
I knew I had leaned too hard on her: I was still adjusting to a new town, with two young children and my new status as a stay-at-home mom, and I was feeling overwhelmed.
We’d had an easy friendship for three years, but as my needs grew, I slowly — and regrettably — started taking her support for granted, and she pulled away.