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A Closer Look at “101 Ways to Facilitate Making Friends”

March 7, 2012

101 Ways to Facilitate Making Friends has been popular with individuals who want to have a handy resource to look up friendship tips. One self advocate told us that he uses it like an encyclopedia of networking ideas. “When I’m feeling lonely, I flip through my book and I try something new. Or, if I am going out to my photo club, for example, I flip to #38 in the book and re-read the section called Take Photos and Show them Around.”

It has been a great resource, as well, for facilitators/educators who want to lead small groups in building their networks. Each ‘way’ has ideas to talk about, questions to discuss, things to practice within your group, or with your supporters, and concrete things to try when you’re out in the community.

On its own or as a companion to 101 Ways to Make Friends, this collection of strategies is for parents, leaders, and teachers of all kinds.

In his introduction, David Pitonyak says, “What I love most about 101 Ways… is that it is not just a book about making friends. It is a book about being a friend.”

From ‘way’ #52  Be the Kind of Friend You’d Like to Meet — “Create a vision of yourself as the kind of a person that you would like to spend time with. If you would choose yourself as a partner, you will be much more likely to be attractive to other people. And if you are someone who has the traits that other folks are looking for — your chance for friendship increases.”

Many people with disabilities are lonely, and this book was written to help them find ways to build their personal support networks. But other groups have found this book to be helpful, too. Seniors groups have used it. Kids have used it. People who are new to their community or new to the country have found it extremely helpful. In fact, anyone who has trouble making friends will find ideas in this book that will make their lives better.

I will close with another quote from David Pitonyak’s introduction to 101 Ways to Facilitate Making Friends. “Ours is a social brain. When we are connected to meaningful and enduring relationships, we are significantly more likely to live longer and healthier lives… In short, we are hot wired to belong.”

You can find this book at

Jim Reynolds

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Lori Collier permalink
    April 1, 2012 3:27 pm


  2. Matthew permalink
    April 12, 2012 8:10 am

    I have a hard time understanding the legal system around friends and people with disabilities. A few years ago, I had a Girlfriend who has the same disability as me…Epilepsy. We had been friends for many years, but as we got older, our friendship became a relationship and her Father didn’t like that, and told me to stop seeing her. Since I was 44 and she was 41, we stood our ground as Adults and kept seeing each other. Then I found out her Dad is in the Police force and I got arrested upon admission of guilt that we were still dating. They claim that people with a Brain disorder are really children in adult bodies, and children (according to the law) do not have the ability to give consent. Since I didn’t have consent from her Father, dating her was a violation. My Lawyer requested that each of us be given a NeuroPsych Assessment to test our mental capacity and to see if we knew what we were getting ourselves into. The results showed we were fully capable of living our own lives, so the charges were dropped and her Dad was ordered to provide me with Counselling. Being in the Police force, he signed me up with a Psychologist who runs the Sex Offender Program, attending the program! Since the Judge had ordered I be given counselling, I couldn’t stop attending until another Court date was set to inform the Judge. By the time I was let out of that program, I tried contacting my girlfriend, but found out her Dad got her dating a young Police Officer instead. What did I learn from this??? People with Disabilities can be Friends, but That’s All!!!

    • April 23, 2012 3:43 am

      so sorry that you went through this, Matthew. we often hear about different kinds of road blocks put in the way of people with disabilities and relationships… it’s really a mistake to think things only happened in the distant past. many people with disabilities don’t even have the opportunity to meet others, which seems like the first problem to address.


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