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    Canada Avalon Member
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    Default I ache from loneliness

    I have been sick for thirty five years and virtually house bound for ten years. My life is a battle to stay positive, see the good in people, believe that I have value when I am shunned because I can't participate in most activities.

    Believe it or not, I'm not throwing myself a pity party. I am exposing a vulnerability and want people to join in this discussion about social isolation and the sadness and grief that come from being ignored--for whatever reason.

    There is nothing to be ashamed of. It's a modern disease and it's a killer.

    Let's talk about it.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Hi Autumn, sending positive thoughts.

    Loneliness is often nothing to do with physical proximity of others. It's quite common for people to feel 'lonely' whilst surrounded by people.
    Isolation is a feeling that comes from feeling unloved, or a feeling of being unloveable in a given situation or time period. Would you agree?

    Thanks for being brave enough to open up!
    Last edited by Lettherebelight; 29th March 2014 at 10:18.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    You are loved even if you won't see it, but you will, but you DO know there is good in others, ask for angelic help, it helped me and countless others, just ask and you will see.

    Blessings

    X

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Excellent post autumn. Thank you. I am lucky that i have very good friends and family around me. But since having my son and developing health issues i have not been nearly as social as i once was and spend a lot of time alone. Sometimes i love and cherish this time...but too much of it and it can be a challenge to stay positive.
    I often long for real community where you can walk out of your dwelling and join with others in a meaningful way. The sense of belonging is very important to our mental health...but in todays society i think it is becomming a scarcer and scarcer commodity. Long ago the communal hearth, and the town square were replaced with shopping malls....where everyone wanders around together alone.
    I think this thread is important because we are taught to feel ashamed of being lonely and not encouraged to talk about it. But only by acknowledging it can we begin to make meaningful changes.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    7,222,807,609 was the number of people on the world population clock about 5 minutes ago, about 75.000 people a day visit this site, about 7500 of those are members of Avalon, with any luck 750 of those members check in here on a regular basis, perhaps 250 of those 750 are active posters, those 250 are spread out all over the world, those spread out people may even have nothing else in common beside finding the forum, even this forum is a lonely place, maybe the loneliest place of all, some much knowledge and so few people to share it with in the real world, sorta frustrating imo.

    Sorry to hear about your situation and don't have any good news to share besides recognizing the disease/problem for what it is and its very very real.

    Crap!!

    Ed

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Hi Lettherebelight,

    Psychologists refer to loneliness as a modern disease. People are living longer, getting divorced, move frequently, change jobs, are widowed, etc..

    Thanks for positive thoughts.

    Here's the dynamic of admitting loneliness and having very few bonds. If people pick up on this, you automatically lose status. We are social animals and coming out and saying you are lonely, gives people the feeling, "Doesn't she have any pride?"

    You are then automatically consigned to beta status, in their no-minds. Then they themselves begin to ignore you. I am not bringing this up for sympathy. I am studying it. I'm not ashamed of admitting to crushing loneliness at times, and mild loneliness much of the time.

    I am very open about all aspects of my life. I do care what people think, and I would like to retain the strong alpha status I had in this unfortunate baboon colony, called Modern Life, when I was much younger and healthier. But I would prefer not to wear a mask of fake normalcy, when I and my life are anything but normal.

    Most people are lonely much of the time and don't really know what is wrong. They think they are depressed when really what they need is the company of authentic other people and attachments to others.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    There are many forms of loneliness. One can feel lonely, even if not housebound. Many people are burdened with a heavy workload, and even though they have jobs and see other people during the day, they might feel trapped as well in their situation and not getting any real closeness or connection. Besides...most lives consist of the same dreary and rather boring routine-activities ; doing the dishes, brushing your teeth, commuting, buying groceries, waiting for the bus, doing the laundry etc.

    Try to look for the possibilities within the limitations instead of the limitiations within the possibilities. What are the advantages of your situation? For instance being lonely, often means that you have a lot of time on your hands. Nobody are likely to disturb you, interfere with your choices or put demands on you. That can actually translate to freedom. Use that advantage to the fullest;e.g. you can devote yourself to study subjects of your choice, or begin practicing meditation which can be an inner adventure of self-discovery.
    If you are starved of contact, use the internet to find groups and forums of like-mindeds. Maybe getting a pet will
    fill that need to some extent.
    And always...focus on what you can do, what possibilties you do have, the positive things in your life. That will create a better
    mood in you, raise your frequency, and thus create a upward going spiral that will attract more of what you want into your life.

    Edit: P.S. The [loss of] status you mention, is actually the dark aspect of social life.
    The by-product of being a "social animal" is having to enter the world of difference, comparison, competition, gossip, judgment, evaluation, intrigue etc. And generally those with more assets; wealth, friends, beauty, skills etc. will have higher status than those with less. But that is totally irrelevant to your inner fulfillment and sense of meaning. Having status is not going to guarantee you, that you will not feel lonely. Status is a very fleeting and superficial thing anyway.It is given to you by others, and can just as easily be taken from you by others. It might be fodder for your ego, but not your inner self.
    Last edited by delfine; 29th March 2014 at 11:14.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    AutumnW: I don't believe in luck, but so far, my own journey through this lifetime has been a good deal more positive than negative. I do however have an older brother who, through his self-removal from many of "life's normal things", has now become overly independent, a little arrogant, less loving of himself and others, and definitely lonely; these things mainly due to being "royally fleeced, financially and emotionally" over a significant period of his earlier life, and that includes a failed marriage and children who by short-sighted choice disappeared from his life. While continuing to display quiet stoicism he doesn't admit to being lonely, but he most certainly is, despite previous and ongoing attempts of our family to draw him back into that which is good that we can offer him. We do have the occasional success with him, but these are typically minor and short lived.

    You have, with courage, raised an important issue and I am very interested to see how the discussion around it develops. My own thoughts are with you, AutumnW. Please take time to bathe in the warm, genuine loving energy that Avalonians here already have and will be sending to you.
    "We should not surrender our judgement to others, we must reclaim our ability to doubt and think for ourselves."

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    It's not hard to be lonely in a room full of people, especially when the people are so fake the facades are crumbling. In those cases I smile to myself and break time down to before, now, and later, I remember being lonely before and realize I will be lonely again in the future and live the feeling for the moment. Forums like this remove isolation and provide a beacon of sanity in an abstract world.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Delfine Dear, Thank you. I am very very ill and not looking for advice or tips. I really appreciate your trying to help and your advice might help others, but I wouldn't be able to follow through with many of your tips. You're super thoughtful in trying to help though.

    I am an extremely strong individual. Every one of the doctors I have had for the last 20 years have told me that they have never encountered an individual as psychologically intact and healthy, with this disease. So...I am actually doing very well. It's a tough slog, like rolling a huge boulder uphill, everyday...but I am succeeding in rolling the boulder and not becoming embittered or brittle in the process of constant stress.

    Being as constrained as I am, has become a spiritual crisis. It's a challenge to overcome, describe, explain. It helps to give me insight into others, similarly afflicted, for whatever reason, be it psychological, situational, or like me, due to illness.

    For the last few years I have felt that I am being tested to the very limits of my endurance...but I WILL prevail. Nothing and nobody is going to defeat me, spiritually. My ability to love won't be destroyed by the calculated indifference of thoughtless, selfish 'friends'. No one will accuse me of 'being dark' when I am putting up a heroic struggle against the forces of darkness that they themselves unleash.

    Lettherebelight. Yes, I completely agree with you. It's only in the last few years that I have felt acute loneliness. I lost my parents and it became evident to me that the very strong bond that I felt I had with my siblings existed in my imagination alone. It was a shattering experience. Before that I had wonderful fantastic solitude. I am not super extroverted so I am fine with being alone, as long as I feel this invisible silver cord attached to ???

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Quote Posted by delfine (here)

    Edit: P.S. The [loss of] status you mention, is actually the dark aspect of social life.
    The by-product of being a "social animal" is having to enter the world of difference, comparison, competition, gossip, judgment, evaluation, intrigue etc. And generally those with more assets; wealth, friends, beauty, skills etc. will have higher status than those with less. But that is totally irrelevant to your inner fulfillment and sense of meaning. Having status is not going to guarantee you, that you will not feel lonely. Status is a very fleeting and superficial thing anyway.It is given to you by others, and can just as easily be taken from you by others. It might be fodder for your ego, but not your inner self.
    Let's take a look at the issue of status and self image and dissect it with a scalpel rather than a meat cleaver. If you read what I wrote, carefully, you'd see that I was describing the process of communicating loneliness to other people and how it is self perpetuating, and how WRONG that is. I was describing why some 'friends' will back away when you bemoan your loss of family. They lose respect for you, when they should be embracing you, and being uplifting presences in your life.

    Admitting you are lonely is worse than walking around with the scarlet letter. Just about everybody is lonely, but there is this weird social requirement to conceal the fact. Can you imagine how ridiculous it is for me to cover up the fact that I have deep loneliness, when I have lost my family recently, am chronically ill and can never get out?

    Lord, it's just so stupid.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Quote Posted by panpravda (here)
    AutumnW: I don't believe in luck, but so far, my own journey through this lifetime has been a good deal more positive than negative. I do however have an older brother who, through his self-removal from many of "life's normal things", has now become overly independent, a little arrogant, less loving of himself and others, and definitely lonely; these things mainly due to being "royally fleeced, financially and emotionally" over a significant period of his earlier life, and that includes a failed marriage and children who by short-sighted choice disappeared from his life. While continuing to display quiet stoicism he doesn't admit to being lonely, but he most certainly is, despite previous and ongoing attempts of our family to draw him back into that which is good that we can offer him. We do have the occasional success with him, but these are typically minor and short lived.

    You have, with courage, raised an important issue and I am very interested to see how the discussion around it develops. My own thoughts are with you, AutumnW. Please take time to bathe in the warm, genuine loving energy that Avalonians here already have and will be sending to you.
    Pan Pravda, You are so sweet. Thanks so much. Your poor brother has had such a traumatic experience he is deeply deeply scarred. He may have been blind-sided by rejection. This can actually change the neural circuitry of the limbic system.

    The person suffering from mild post traumatic stress will remove him or herself from human contact, often automatically. It's not a 'choice'. It's a survival mechanism. The sadness, particularly if it is betrayal trauma, is almost impossible to overcome.

    You are doing a great spiritual service in trying to help your poor wounded brother. Don't give up on him. Those few breakthrough moments you have with him may be all that is holding him together.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    I understand your loneliness. I became very ill with OCD in 2012 and lost all of my independence, freedom to do as I pleased and my career. I lost all but one of my friends too, but that helped me to realise what friendship really was all about.

    I took that experience as my wake up call though as it gave me an opportunity to sit back, observe and look at the world through a very different lens that I had previously. If I hadnt have been ill, I doubt that I would be here in Avalon today. I believe we plan these experiences before we come to this earth to give ourselves opportunities that we just cant see whilst in the throws of the bad experiences we have.

    I can assure you, there is a greater purpose behind where you are in your life now, and pain that you feel now will one day be shadowed by the growth and insight you gain for the future and in spirit.

    I send you all my love, from the deepest corners of my heart xx

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    Mexico Avalon Member Mercedes's Avatar
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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Dear AutumnW: Thank you for posting this so real subject. Sending good vibes your way. My sister was a loner by choice or so she said. Lived her life her own way and did what she wanted to do most of it I think, she was ahead of her times and she passed away Sept. last year. I'm still struggling with the thoughts on her dying alone but I know she made the choice when she was still very healthy and of sound mind. In the end we have to take and pay for the consequences of our choices but it's hard for the ones that do not see life the same way. I guess guilt is the key word for me. Please don"t ever feel you are not loved Avalon is a good place to be yourself and look for the answers we all seek. In the process of seeking don't forget to LOVE yourself because you are very worthy of LOVE no matter what. Take care of your body, hope you regain health.

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    United States Avalon Member lightwalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Dear Autumn,

    I honor your path of vulnerability, disclosure and valor. Only thru my own challenges can I know what you deal with. I too shall NEVER stop my choice for LOVE, Spectacular Well-Being and Peace Beyond Measure. No words can really convey, but out of my own experiences I can connect to the GRANDNESS that is you and renew my intentions for all that is good.

    Thanks
    lightwalker

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    United States Avalon Member Dennis Leahy's Avatar
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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    This makes me think of one of the physical aspects of isolation, and that is in not getting hugs. Communication/interaction is great, but there is something magical and mystical about the energy exchange in hugs. It's not the degree of intimate energy exchange of sex/lovemaking, but it is closer to that realm of energy exchange than even being surrounded by friends and family.

    This isn't an "answer" to loneliness and isolation - just something that popped into my head as a peripheral advantage/attribute of human physical contact.

    Dennis


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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    I think this is an important topic. I had a friend back in the late 90ís whose husband shot himself in the head in front of her and died from his self inflicted wound. He was very well known in the community and they both had a lot of friends. You would have thought there would have been a tremendous outpouring for her after this happened. I know the room was packed at his memorial. Instead there were just a few (2-3) people who were there to help be supportive to her during this difficult time, and not even people she knew very well. It seems that most could not handle their own emotions from this tragedy and I discovered that many felt uncomfortable and just didnít know what to say, so stayed away. I was working a lot as a single parent so I didnít have much time but I remember when I did go to see her she just couldnít understand why almost no one seemed like they even wanted to talk to her. That made her experience of loss even that much more acute.

    I noticed a similar thing when my ex from years ago became ill with prostate cancer. Many people felt drawn to help by reaching out to him in various ways all the way up until the last year when he had really started to deteriorate, looked like a skeleton, and was totally housebound. It seems, once again, that many just could not handle their own emotions regarding death and dying. I remember my daughter telling me how one really good friend of his that had become quite close to my daughter had just dropped off the radar, wouldnít answer or return calls etc. We figured that because she had lost someone else close to her the year before that she too just could not handle another loss.

    These 2 experiences have taught me a lot about the human condition and some of the unspoken social parameters we all have to live with and I also know there are cultural differences in how people treat one another. I have also seen those who seem to move closer to the situation that most would rather run from. I know that just something as simple as touch can be very important. The lady we live with has severe dementia and cannot hold a conversation. And even though she canít tell me I know it is important that I just sit with her at times holding her hand and my arm around her to let her feel/know that she is not alone. Of course, the minute I get up she has forgotten I was ever there but I still think it makes a difference. Even babies will waste away without touch and interaction.

    As they say, people who need people are the luckiest people in the world. No one should have to be an island of their own. I too have a very communal spirit and sometimes miss that in my life. But, I am fortunate to have just a couple of very good friends. We kind of look after each other in a very nice unspoken way that I am very grateful for. We may not see each other very much at times but I think we even pick up on each otherís thoughts. We often just seem to know when one of us is in need because we can feel it.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    Autumn , When I was in my 30's had the world by the tails, money, successful business, great friends ect., ect. 2 years later was flat broke, went to 3 funerals on the same day of some of my closest including my grandmother, lost my house, divorce, dog, brother sued me and on and on , then got sued another 2 years after I shut down my business and won however the judge got paid off and they overturned the verdict so I was in the hole another 26k . Bloodsuckers came from all around to see what they could get what was left of me. I then at that point realized what was most important by being alone. You just posting here is just another step to where you are going . The entire time I was in turmoil I just kept telling myself, it's going to get better one day and you know what it did, just believe! You continue to chime in here with your ideas and thoughts as you indeed are not alone here , you are among many caring people just like you.

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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    One more thing , I have many friends in Canada, up around the New Liskard/Temishkeming area. My one very good friend up there tried to jump a train at 17, he lost both of his legs, He deals with some depression but he's still going everyday and he's almost 60 now, rides his motorcycle , snowmobile and yes still laughs quite a lot. God bless you Canadians , many many good times with you guys. We all have our moments , sometimes just reaching out is what we need to get that bump to break thru the ice.

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    Avalon Member kirolak's Avatar
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    Default Re: I ache from loneliness

    AutumnW, I hope you are feeling less isolated after all the concerned responses. . . I can't begin to imagine how hard it must be for you not to have the freedom of going out for a walk, quite apart from the lack human interaction. Do you have an animal companion? A dog, a cat or a rat to keep you company, to listen to you (& never disagree!) Have you ever thought of writing a book about the experience of solitude?
    PS: I would have gone daft if I hadn't had a companion rat when I was a child!

    Wishing you peace. . . .

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