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Battousai87's avatar

Any suggestions on how to overcome sporadic bouts of crushing loneliness?

Asked by Battousai87 (430points) September 11th, 2016

It isn’t something that happens all the time. It’s actually sort of always been part of my life. Until recently though I had a girlfriend and a good support system of friends to fall back on. Since then I took a new job and moved away from where my friends are and had to break up with my girlfriend. One of these bouts of loneliness hit me last night and just made me not want to do anything except lay there and stare off into space, moving or doing anything just seemed pointless. Then today it’s persisted except lying around isn’t an option because of work. I’m just going through the day feeling removed from everything….

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15 Answers

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I would be greatful not
To have children. You are free to do almost anything with out discussing it with a committee. I would just order a pizza with your favorite toppings, and chug name brand cola from the container. You can also Fluther and help someone in a similar boat. If it is really bad then you can ask your doctor ( or therapist) for help. What I do is cry in the bathtub while listening to music until I feel better.

filmfann's avatar

I am married, and have kids, yet I suffer through this a couple times a year. I can’t explain it, other than to say I just feel unconnected.
I put on music from the 1940’s. I will eat “comfort food”, usually a simple peanut butter sandwich and a glass of chocolate milk, and watch an escapist movie, like Mars Attacks or The Rocketeer.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Get busy if possible. Run your ass off or bicycle like a madman. If you sit around and mope depression can grab you. Overcome that urge to mope and wind up overwhelmed. Better to outrun depression, come home exhausted and collapse to the “sleep of the just”.

CWOTUS's avatar

I put on mood music and wallow in it when it happens, as I’m sure it happens from time to time to anyone who thinks. (And especially to those who think too much.) I won’t say that I “enjoy” the feeling, but I accept it and indulge in it – and then get back to work, move on with my calendar (which may still be empty, as I am alone more often than not, though not usually “lonely”) and fugeddaboutit.

janbb's avatar

I have learned to accept this as part of my now single life, although there were periods of that in my married life too. Sometimes I wallow, sometimes I tough it out, sometimes I call a friend or cousin and sometimes I get out of the house.

It is part of the human condition but yours sounds situational as well. It’s time to get out and make some new friends. Find an activity that you enjoy and others who do it – meetup.com is a great resource for this. Ask a colleague at work out for coffee or lunch. Look for opportunities to connect with people, even if it is a shallow interchange with a barrista. Connecting with people will help.

LornaLove's avatar

I sort of know how you feel. I also moved away, countries in fact. Around the time I moved, a lot of my closest friends and family passed away. I arrived here feeling really lost and freaked out. I’ll be honest and say it hasn’t got that much better. I do have a boyfriend which of course helps.

The point is though, that I know what I am supposed to do.

Join a library, help a charity, get out and about, join ‘Meet Up.Com’.

I hope that helps? On the days it is really bad, perhaps it is just an accumulation of the sad feelings of loss?

I suffer crippling depression that’s why I haven’t bothered and I don’t find the Brits as friendly as the people back home, so it’s tough.

rojo's avatar

As with @filmfann, it hits a couple of times a year. Over the decades I have learned to accept it and know that it will not last and eventually this too shall pass. And yet, doing something helps even if it is just getting up and going to work; as much as you wish to dwell on your funk, life has a way of taking your mind off it for a few moments when you are actively doing something.

I don’t know if it is an option for you but I find being outdoors helps. Camping, hiking, etc. all seem to bring a clarity that is lacking when I am down. Several years back I used to take my lunch and go out to the local Arboretum that was close to where I worked whenever I was suffering. I would sit on a bench with a sack lunch, eat my sandwich and soak in the surroundings. I even got to know some of the birds by sight and actually took the time to look up the ones I did not recognize. It recharged me and helped me get through the day.

LostInParadise's avatar

I also suffer from bouts of depression. If it happens on a weekend afternoon, I sometimes take a book and go to the cafe section of Barnes & Noble. I find it helpful just to be around other people.

For what it is worth, the World Health Organization says that depression is the leading cause of disability. If this keeps up, then societies will need to look for the causes of depression and take actions at a societal level to do something about it.

rojo's avatar

@LostInParadise what if they find that society and societal pressure itself is the leading cause?

LostInParadise's avatar

Then something will need to be done to reduce the pressure. What good is it to have lots of material goods if it is making people depressed? I could go on, but I don’t want to clog up this thread.

SmashTheState's avatar

Loneliness is the price you pay for owning yourself. To be acceptable to others requires being either so shallow and stupid that there is nothing objectionable about you or hiding all of the things which make you a superior human being. My personal recommendation is to turn the volume knob up to 11 and then break it right off; you may be lonely, but you’ll live life on your own terms, without compromise. For me at least it’s well worth the cost.

“Solitude is a virtue for us, since it is a sublime inclination and impulse to cleanliness which shows that contact between people, ‘society’, inevitably makes things unclean. Somewhere, sometime, every community makes people—‘base.’”Friedrich Nietzsche

rojo's avatar

@SmashTheState but don’t you think there is a difference between loneliness and being alone?

zenvelo's avatar

You want to quit being lonely? Go do something for someone else. Get out of focusing on your situation by volunteering, work in a food bank or a soup kitchen.

The easiest way to stop thinking of your problems is to help someone else. and you very well may make a friend or two in the process.

SmashTheState's avatar

@rojo Ultimately, no. Humans are social animals. In fact, there are studies which show that living alone has a direct causal link with dying sooner. I enjoy my own company and prefer it to the company of others, but I pay a price for it. I happen to think that price is worth it, but it doesn’t change the fact that being alone is injurious for a member of a highly social species.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Depends on how you take it. As an early twenty something I cut ties with some toxic friends, got a job and moved out of town. Loneliness was there but I found out who I was. You don’t easily do that in the company of others. I fought off depression just like @stanleybmanly mentioned. I went mountain biking nearly every day, took classes at the university and generally just relentlessly worked on myself. In other words…stay busy. Take advantage of this time to make a better life later. It’s really a gift in disguise if you use it. You don’t want to rationalize why you are depressed and alone ten years in the future, stay idle and it could happen. Best advice I have ever been given was from my dad. He recognized what I was going through and simply told me that if I work on myself everything will fall into place later. He was right.

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