I found Elizabeth Bernstein’s Wall Street Journal article, The Science of Making Friends, interesting.
My mother was masterful at making friends. Into her 70s, Pearl still maintained friendships with some of the “girls” she went to high school with, including the one she went to visit at the Montgomery County Correctional Facility.
Pearl started friendships with gay guys in her 30s. By the time she was middle-aged, she had more friends my age (many of whom were gay) than I have in toto. Her gay friends idolized her as an Earth Mom…always accepting, non-judgemental, giving, caring, a phone call away.
When she died, I learned that many people counted my mother as their best friend.
How did she do it? It came naturally to her because she was genuine. She called on the phone. She went to the movies or out to lunch/dinner. Her door was always open (figuratively)…anytime of the night or day. [No computer, no texting]