Hi Lil Lady
I found it really hard to make friends once I left. It was so strange because I was/am a very sociable person but I found it really lonely. At the end of the first year I got really depressed and through my local GP I found my local volunteer centre, and started volunteering there. Working there was a breath of fresh air, before I joined I really thought there was something wrong with me lol, but I soon realised there wasn't at all.
It felt so good because for the first time I I could finally be myself, it felt so liberating.
I started going out with some of my colleagues from there, and through them I started making friends, and it really built up my confidence.
It took me a while but I feel like I have a nice group of different friends now. I think the key for me was to try new things, and get out of my comfort zone.
Feel free to pm if you fancy a chat