Do you ever feel lonely ?

Emma JC

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I do not have a lot of interactions with other people and yet I don't feel lonely. I do have a spouse that I love and so that helps tremendously and I do have a large number of friends and a very large family. So I suppose I don't feel lonely because I know that I can step into any of those circles at anytime and because I am a friendly, kind and loving person I can create new circles of friends also, I just choose not to. I think books and YouTube are the other reason I don't feel lonely (and this forum, of course). When I read a book (every day) I become part of the book, when I watch YouTube channels I feel like those people are kinda like friends.

Even though I see my family rarely (twice in the past two years) and my friends even more rarely, I do communicate with them by email, by text and by phone. They know I love them and I know they love me and that seems to be enough.

Do I wish I was more involved with others? sometimes I do and yet because I am a 'giver' it takes a lot of energy from me. I can remember, years ago, when I worked for the Red Cross and was doing presentations to various groups, I did a presentation to a group of seniors (I was likely in my twenties at the time) and when I was packing up to leave I almost couldn't make my arms and legs work, I was so tired. They literally sucked the energy from me that day. I have better control over that now.

But enough about me and back to you and your bubble, the bubble has a wall on both sides and you have to reach through the bubble in order for others to reach back, if that is what you wish for. I had a friend who, over time, gradually had all his friends pull away from him and he couldn't understand why. He was miserable and growly and was "never wrong about anything" and is abusive towards his spouse and his children and so on and so on..... to me the problem was obvious and yet I hung in as his friend until he attacked me, for not agreeing with him about something trivial, in front of his spouse and mine. That was the end.... toxic relationships are not my thing.

There is a simple Proverb (18:24) that says "A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: "

So you have to ask yourself, do you show yourself friendly?

Emma JC
 

FredVegrox

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I have my difficulty connecting with others, so I relate to this, even without veganism, but that is an issue that divides further. But I communicate online, so I am not really so completely alone, and keep busy and have myself occupied enough so I am not lonely.

"There is a simple Proverb (18:24) that says "A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: "
So you have to ask yourself, do you show yourself friendly?"

It is not necessarily just that issue. One who is married won't understand issues of those who are not.

In my case I am different enough, that with being introverted I will not just easily make friends, and with differences people see, I am left as a pariah, even however friendly I manage to be. Just those giving me a chance will see how friendly I can be. But only if they are open to veganism does that keep working.
 
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HappyRoxy

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I get lonely from time to time. I moved from a big capital city in one state, to a small regional town in another state. I made this move to be with my partner.

It's been a difficult 18 months in a social respect. Being a small country town, pastimes including large amounts of alcohol consumption and gossiping about other townsfolk. I'm not into either.

Of course, not wanting to join in those activities earned me a label of "standoffish."

I joined a yoga studio last December and have gotten to know some of the other like-minded individuals there. I've started going to a new church in hopes of connecting with others my own age.

I've also joined a couple of meetup groups outside of this town, to give me the opportunity to get away and spend time with others.
 

Mom2vegan

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I was raised in a large family with a lot of drama. I've always been quiet and a bit on the shy side and for some reason when I was a kid people thought I was "weird." I hated going to school because I got picked on. I used to fantasize about living in the woods all by myself and never having to talk to another human being. I moved over 800 miles away from my family and did live in the woods on a hobby farm. I had my husband and my son, and I did work full time but in a job where I wasn't around the same people every day. It took me 23 years before I started feeling lonely but then the loneliness hit like a ton of bricks.

I moved back home to be near my family and I've been soaking them up like a sponge. I've felt like I couldn't get enough of being around people, for the past 3 years. I think the sponge is finally getting full and now I'm happy to have some alone time again.

I kind of get the "bubble" thing - it's hard to really get a feeling of connection. Sometimes it doesn't feel like other people are the same as me or that they understand me, especially people who are not family. You mentioned siblings. Do you have extended family nearby?
 

Emma JC

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"There is a simple Proverb (18:24) that says "A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: "
So you have to ask yourself, do you show yourself friendly?"

It is not necessarily just that issue. One who is married won't understand issues of those who are not.

I have not always been married and so I do understand.

Also, some married people are more lonely that singles.

Emma JC
 

Vanille

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I know what it's like to have truly no one... Luckily I found my current job (last year) and made some friends there... Yeah I still live with my relatives but it's not a healthy environment (lots emotional abuse, threatening) but at least I have a roof above my head. I'm just waiting for a decent appartment to become available.

Meeting new people ain't easy either. I live in a rural area and can't drive (not because I haven't tried, I gave up after 6 failed tests, some psychological tests and isane amount of money) at school I got bullied a lot, the few friends I had ditched me when I came out as lesbian... The only girlfriend I had was online and she lied about her sexuality... So yeah no one has ever loved me lol

Humans have hurt and disappointed me my whole life. I'm staying a lonewolf and celibate till I run into someone actually special (must say, there is a candidate but I doubt she likes me in THAT way) there's a reason I value animals so much. I'm lucky to at least click with my coworkers as I see them the most.

My new lifestyle might make it even harder to make friends but at the same time... IF I somehow manage to, they'll be just my kind of people. I rather have no friends than fake or toxic ones. I might just meet people through my veganism as well, maybe...
 

HappyRoxy

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I know what it's like to have truly no one... Luckily I found my current job (last year) and made some friends there... Yeah I still live with my relatives but it's not a healthy environment (lots emotional abuse, threatening) but at least I have a roof above my head. I'm just waiting for a decent appartment to become available.

Meeting new people ain't easy either. I live in a rural area and can't drive (not because I haven't tried, I gave up after 6 failed tests, some psychological tests and isane amount of money) at school I got bullied a lot, the few friends I had ditched me when I came out as lesbian... The only girlfriend I had was online and she lied about her sexuality... So yeah no one has ever loved me lol

Humans have hurt and disappointed me my whole life. I'm staying a lonewolf and celibate till I run into someone actually special (must say, there is a candidate but I doubt she likes me in THAT way) there's a reason I value animals so much. I'm lucky to at least click with my coworkers as I see them the most.

My new lifestyle might make it even harder to make friends but at the same time... IF I somehow manage to, they'll be just my kind of people. I rather have no friends than fake or toxic ones. I might just meet people through my veganism as well, maybe...
Hi Vanille,

I'm glad you've been able to make some friends through your work, and I hope that you are able to find some friends through veganism.

It's tough living in an emotionally abusive situation and I hope you're able to get out of there soon.

I live in a rural/regional area too, so I know how tough and isolating it can feel. You can feel free to send me a private message anytime, if you feel like a chat.
 

Vanille

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Hi Vanille,

I'm glad you've been able to make some friends through your work, and I hope that you are able to find some friends through veganism.

It's tough living in an emotionally abusive situation and I hope you're able to get out of there soon.

I live in a rural/regional area too, so I know how tough and isolating it can feel. You can feel free to send me a private message anytime, if you feel like a chat.
Thank you so much! <3
 
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Indian Summer

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I used to fantasize about living in the woods all by myself and never having to talk to another human being.
This! I used to be fascinated with the thought of being a lighthouse keeper or a researcher on a remote Arctic island or living in a shed in the woods ... angry at the world, probably working ferociously on my manifesto ...! :p

I feel like I belong to a lot of different minorities (vegan, first-generation immigrant, politically radical) and I'm also an introvert and an only child, so it's not easy.
 

QualityGains

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Although I'm an extrovert I prefer interaction quality over interaction quantity. I also only feel truly fulfilled if my days are productive. So as nerdy as this may sound, the amount of social interactions is not a metric that I include in the rating of a successful day.

Although a base amount of interactions definitely help you to be more productive and more happy in the long run.
 

Nekodaiden

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Introvert here. I see friends on occasion but spend a lot of time alone. I have always been this way, although in former years I had more social interactions (for instance, I attended church for the first 20 something years of my life), but honestly always felt a slight disconnect with it. I feel like
in many social groups there are often unspoken expectations of various forms of group think connected to the theme of the social circle, and I intensely dislike adhering to them especially if I do not feel they are intellectually honest. Other people either do not have this issue, live in various states of cognitive dissonance or are chameleons for social reasons and as I also dislike superficiality, often don't value their company.

This trait became more pronounced after my partner died. I started to question many things and came to some conclusions that really don't fit the norm for the society I live in. In fact I became even more aware of differences joining FB. My relatives celebrate western holidays (I don't), they eat animal products (I don't), parrot the garbage they see on corporate television and websites (I don't) and are showy about their religion but all too happy to be materialistic and war supporting at the same time.

Do I feel lonely? Yeah, sometimes. Do I feel lonely enough to adhere to "when in Rome"? No. I have a feline friend. It helps.
 

Indian Summer

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My relatives celebrate western holidays (I don't),
I got a bit curious when I read this. Are you saying you don't do Christmas/Yule at all? Or Easter? Summer solstice? You don't even get a pumpkin for Halloween or at least watch a scary film? So if not Western, do you celebrate ... Eastern holidays?

To me, these are just holidays to mark the passing of seasons, which is something humans have done for aeons. They are festivals for spring, summer, autumn, winter. I feel like these celebrations satisfy a sort of primal need. People need parties! Also, partly I celebrate because I'm a dad and children enjoy it, partly so we can maintain family relations, partly because it brings back fond memories of good times had. Myself, my wife, our daughter as well as my parents are atheists, so to us there is little Christian about these holidays, although we did go to a Christmas pageant a few years ago - partly because of the donkey that came from the local donkey sanctuary - my daughter is very interested in and fond of animals. And my daughter is rehearsing a Jesus-y Christmas recorder song. There is no escaping that we live in a culturally Christian country!

BTW, very sorry to hear you lost you partner.
 

Nekodaiden

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I got a bit curious when I read this. Are you saying you don't do Christmas/Yule at all? Or Easter? Summer solstice? You don't even get a pumpkin for Halloween or at least watch a scary film? So if not Western, do you celebrate ... Eastern holidays?

To me, these are just holidays to mark the passing of seasons, which is something humans have done for aeons. They are festivals for spring, summer, autumn, winter. I feel like these celebrations satisfy a sort of primal need. People need parties! Also, partly I celebrate because I'm a dad and children enjoy it, partly so we can maintain family relations, partly because it brings back fond memories of good times had. Myself, my wife, our daughter as well as my parents are atheists, so to us there is little Christian about these holidays, although we did go to a Christmas pageant a few years ago - partly because of the donkey that came from the local donkey sanctuary - my daughter is very interested in and fond of animals. And my daughter is rehearsing a Jesus-y Christmas recorder song. There is no escaping that we live in a culturally Christian country!

BTW, very sorry to hear you lost you partner.

Australia is culturally Christian in some of it's observances such as Easter and Christmas. However, the seasons are reversed from our northern neighbors. As I type this, we are just starting our summer, and December - February are warm/hot months, the inverse of much of the rest of the world. The western celebrations are wholly imported by the western immigrants that originally came here in numbers, and are not tied to the seasons. Although Christmas and Easter are celebrated, other holidays, like Halloween are not, except in very limited numbers (often by newer immigrants from western nations).

Outside of tradition and religious observance, there is no practical reason to celebrate them except as an excuse to see friends and family. I see friends often at Christmas time, as traditional celebrant and nothing more.

The only holiday I presently attempt to keep is that which is based on the observance of the full moon that arises closest to (but after) the setting of the sun, and at 7 day intervals until the next full moon that fits this criteria. It is not easy to do so as this time is not recognized by the majority, but when I do it is for religious reasons. I see this as an acknowledgement of the Creator and of a Calendar that is not created by man/inherited from Rome, but is/was common to many ancient peoples.

My partner died many years ago but thank you for your condolences.
 

Forest Nymph

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I had been experiencing unstable and sad feelings and I realized it's because I have been lonely, especially now that it's the holidays. I'm actually spending my New Year's Eve sober (planning on doing dry January too) but partly because I wanted to reach out to my vegan roommate who is also here without saying something inappropriate or making him feel weird like I'm just hanging out with him because I'm drunk. Yeah. So. It was a really, really good idea. Not romantically but just to say I'm lonely will you hug me, and he did and we talked about lots of things, including getting a cat for the house.

So by staying sober and dealing with my feelings of loneliness instead of running from them, and being vulnerable and honest (in an appropriate non-sexual way) I actually now feel a lot less lonely.

People try to cover loneliness with alcohol or drugs but also over-work or spending hours on video games, people hide in crowds at the mall or at parties...and saying you're lonely and feeling it is the first step. Now reach out to someone who you feel safe with or drawn to. There's different kinds of loneliness only you know what type you're experiencing. I have no lack of vegan allies or friendly acquaintances to hang out with, but I've been lonely for closeness and intimacy. Like who really knows me these days?