Loneliness is a huge problem in our society and it can kill. If you are feeling lonely, are socially isolated or live alone you are more likely to suffer from mental health issues, as well as physical health issues. The risk of suicide increases too. However, despite the widespread use of the internet and social media, we are more disconnected from others than ever before. I regularly see this in my therapy room.
Sometimes it’s because someone finds making friends difficult, or they have moved to a new area and are feeling isolated. They haven’t yet created a network for themself. I also work with people who have lost their partner, and are dealing with grief and loneliness at the same time. In some cases, they are of the age where all their friends and family have now passed on and they feel alone and unwanted in the world.
Likewise, people that once had sociable jobs are now working from home, only seeing their colleagues over Zoom. It doesn’t provide the same level of social interraction.
However, it’s important to realise that even people who are married, in relationships and have a large group of friends can feel alone. In fact, it can be excruciating to be with a partner and feel that sense of isolation and loneliness because the relationship no longer works.
Connection and intimacy is a vital need for all of us. When that isn’t there, our mental health can be impacted. We may also find that the loneliness makes us short tempered or angry, or leave us feeling socially inadequate. This can make things worse, leading to a downward spiral.
Please don’t feel embarrassed if you are feeling lonely. Everyone feels this at some point in their lives, and some people need more stimulation and connection than others. Our work together might well include some of the following:
There will be practical tasks in between sessions, but don’t worry, we will always go at your pace, and choose homework that suits you and your goals.