A little while back I asked for suggestions for topics (as I often do on twitter, you do follow me, right?) and one of the replies I got was “Loneliness”. I didn’t write on it at the time because well as one of my recent posts illustrated I am not alone enough to be lonely. But…
I have been very lonely at times in my life, I think everyone has. Sometimes it even happens when you are in a crowd of people. I have even been lonely while in a relationship (another post maybe). It is very easy to lose yourself in despair in those times. You get stuck in self defeating thoughts.
“No one wants me”
“No one will ever want me”
“No one loves me”
“No one will ever love me”
These thoughts and all of their evil friends can eat you alive, they circle around in your head like the worlds worst echo chamber until they drown out any notions that life might not suck. We are unable to hear others when we are in this place, unless of course they join in with the chorus in our head, then we hear them perfectly. Those are the worst and are often people who hold powerful places in our lives; family friends, or lovers.
The really frustrating part is how others treat you when you are in this place. They offer platitudes and rah rah encouragement of the bootstrap and the like. I understand from the outside nothing looks broken, but from the inside everything looks broken. If only loneliness left marks or bruises to that the injury is real but sadly that is not the case.
I not going to leave you with words for the sad and lonely. I am instead going to leave words for the people that care about them. Don’t tell them that thing will get better, there is no room for tomorrow, just surviving today. Don’t get angry when they don’t “snap out of it” they may be closer to snapping than you think. And don’t think because they have had (what looks to you) like a good day that they might not just be faking it to get everyone to shut up.
I have found (and I have extensive first hand experience) is that you should love them unconditionally and listen to them when they tell you how they feel. They are looking for support, not solutions.
Those they will have to find on their own.
P.S. This post was prompted by a suggestion from Masterseye
2 thoughts on “But it’s better than drinking alone.”
Thank us for this. The time I’m often feeling my loneliest is often the time I’m surrounded by other people.
We don’t tell people with broken bones or cancer to snap out of it so why do we feel the need to tell people with mental health issues they need to *sigh.
This is a place I have also been and nearly tried to take myself out of this world as a result.
You are so right at the end of your post when you say
“Those they will have to find on their own.”
This is the most important line in your post.
Nobody else can do it for you, you have to do it for yourself, with help very likely, but you are the person that has to put the work in.