Take a look at aging around the world in 'A New Age,' a special report by AARP and Magnum Photos.

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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 11 of 66

@m907706g - I truly empathize with you, as an elderly aunt who lived with me was very hard-of-hearing, and she didn't cope well at all. She refused to get a new hearing aide that might have helped, and then was suspicious that when she couldn't hear, it was because people were whispering about her!

 

If there's any way for you to improve your hearing, it's worth the investment! If not, I almost think it would help to have a nice pin that says "I can't hear you!". Better for people to know why you're not interacting, than to assume you're aloof or anti-social!


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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 12 of 66

Jypsy,

Love your name.  I don't know if this is too late to chime in but on the subject of loneliness.  I was in a gathering and I could only describe myself as socially awkward at best.  There seemed to be 12 to 14 people and everyone was speaking at once, loudly and rapidly.  The entire evening was almost unendurable and I was so glad when it was finally time to leave.

 

This morning I began searching sites on social ineptness.  Nothing I found was particularly helpful and absolutely nothing was mentioned about what to do if you can't hear.  I can manage to do well with 2 or 3 people but a roomful leaves me entirely copeless.  Is that a word.  Don't think so.

 

These circumstances have occurred several times within the past year or two within the identical acquaintances.  I feel welcomed but so unable to contribute conversation relevant to whatever is being said.  Party atmospheres are spontaneous and if you can't follow along, you are at a real handicap.

 

The situation is clearly embarrassing at best, not only for myself but for other members of the group as well when they pick up on my inability to respond.  The best I can do is beat a hasty retreat, relieved it won't have to be repeated soon.

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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 13 of 66

I had a kind of unique situation in a volunteer capacity I was in.  I would read to a vision impaired senior once a week.  The arrangement was I would help him with various things like mail, filing, etc. etc.  To make a long story short. he became an avid supporter of the current administration and I decided I just had enough.

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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 14 of 66

I was attracted to the report about loneliness since I have been feeling lonely lately. In 1990 I had a brain-stem stroke that destroyed my balance and left me with very deep and nasily speech. Since 1990 I have not been able to particIpate in a conversation about anything or argue a point. By the time I get a full point out the conversation has moved three topics on. Initially I dedicated my time to writing two books and did not feel lonely. Now that I'm not writing a book (because my first two were not well recieved) I feel lonely. I'm acutely aware of the fact I have no one in my life.

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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 15 of 66

@Prosecco6247 - I get the NextAvenue mailings too, and thought the timing of that one was perfect, for this discussion!


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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 16 of 66

Appropos of the discussion here, I thought I would add this link to an article in "NextAvenue" which popped into my email inbox this morning.  I'm sure many of us have had some of these same thoughts and musings from time to time and it just goes to show how pervasive feelings of "being alone" or of being lonely can be.

 

The article quotes some sources and makes some suggestions but is not a "blueprint" as much as a letter of encouragement to others out there who may have some of the same feelings.  Sometimes a little encouragement is all we need!

 

http://www.nextavenue.org/lonely-not-alone/?hide_newsletter=true&utm_source=Next+Avenue+Email+Newsle...

 

For those of you not familiar with "NextAvenue," it's an email newletter sent out by the PBS system.  Per their website:

 

"Next Avenue is public media’s first and only national journalism service for America’s booming older population. Our daily content delivers vital ideas, context and perspectives on issues that matter most as we age."

 

"Our mission is to meet the needs and unleash the potential of older Americans through the power of media."

 

Twin Cities PBS Logo

"Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness." ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 17 of 66

@vernakI agree with Astrea about this being very well put.

 

I never minded being alone but sometimes we do feel lonely and need to reach out and keep in touch with family and/or friends. I do think some socializing is good for us, but I also I understand that we don't always mind being alone. I had a boss that used to say "at times the only intelligent answer is one you give to yourself". I often found he was right.

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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 18 of 66

@vernak - Very well put!


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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 19 of 66

Solitude is enjoyable. Loneliness is not. This researcher seems to equate being alone with loneliness. They are far from the same. I have been single and living alone for 42 years. Sometimes I was lonely, but not all that much of the time. Mostly I enjoyed my solitude, and still do. Different people have different social needs. There is the matter of what you expect, and what you want, versus what you get. That is what can lead to pain.

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Re: Loneliness or alone-ness

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Message 20 of 66

@l136780y - I'm sorry for the recent loss of your surrogate dad! Since you mention being a veteran, are there any American Legion posts near you, where you can start developing a network of friends? Don't assume that you need to be 100% the same as your friends, to feel comfortable together! It's common (and a good idea) to have friends with whom you enjoy one or two things, so you can spend some time with each of them.

 

Your experience is a good lesson & reminder to all of us singles, that it can be very dangerous (albeit easy) to become so dependent on a single relative or friend, for our entire social life. Not only do we need variety, but the flexibility to still have other friends, if something happens to one of them.


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