Sunday, 13 November 2016
On the Tuesday afternoon that I write this whilst watching Loose Women, they have started a discussion about 'loneliness'. Love or hate the programme, they talk about real life matters and I love the positivity which is promotes regarding women. I have been thinking about this topic a lot recently, and the topic being brought up on the show really got me thinking for myself. On the show, they said that 90% of people have felt lonely in their lives at some point. Interestingly enough 89% of those people were in a relationship at that time, this surprised me massively as I always put my loneliness down to being single. When we think of 'lonely' people in a category many of us would think of the elderly, whereas in fact in their survey those over 60 were the least loneliness of any age category. It did surprise me that the most 'loneliest' age group was in fact the 18-25 years old, which is what I fall in.
I think there is definitely a stigma attached to loneliness, and it sometimes seen as having no friends. In fact for me it could be further from the truth, I think the big reason for my age group feeling this way is due to change. Huge changes and transitions happen within the years of being 18-25 and it can be hard to get to grips with. I am very lucky to have a few different friendship groups, I can count 10 friends easily who I could go to and trust and I think this is a very privileged position to be in. However, I don't see them that often anymore and this is due to life changing. We have all now left university, we have full time jobs, all work different shifts and all have their own lives to lead. Although, I have found that being the single friend of all of my friends can be hard. I have found that sometimes people have organised couple nights out and I have not been invited which I totally understand. There has been times when I have invited to an event with my friend and their boyfriends, but I hate the idea of third wheeling. Its change, and change can make loneliness feel 10x worse.
The difference between being alone and being lonely isn't really that big, and they can creep into the other category very easily without even realising. When I started my job 6 weeks I could not wait to have my days off to sit around, relax, have no part time job to go to, have no uni work to do, and generally just have more time to myself. As I have always led a busy life I am struggling with ways to fill my time on my days off. My shifts can be any day of the week, whereas all of my other friends are in 9-5 monday-friday jobs, so they can't do anything during the week which is when some of my days off fall. The shift of change has left me thinking that I think I am feeling more lonely than alone as I know I have people to talk to when I need to, but I don't really get time to see them so I have nothing to do to fill in my time. I hate my own company, I cannot occupy myself, I love nothing more than to be surrounded by people. I lived pretty much alone at uni in my last year and I hated it, it made me very sad. I 100% at that time in my life I felt alone, as I was away from close family and friends and I had no one to talk to. What I really want to get out of this post is the fact to accept that the feeling of loneliness will always come and go throughout our lives and that's okay as it really is part of life. Things happen that we don't expect to happen that end in us feeling ways which we have never felt before. I am trying to fill in my time by doing other things and setting myself projects for my days off when everyone else in work, and to really embrace my weekends when I am off and so is everyone else.