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How do you feel about solitude versus loneliness?

foliodoe

I'm living my whole life at once.
I thrive on my own. I love being alone. That's when I feel the most at ease and the most like I can be myself. It gets lonely, though! It's such a fine line for me between too much social time and not enough.

How do you cope with being lonely? How much time do you spend totally alone?

Throughout the beginning of the pandemic I was living totally alone for almost a year. I was not leaving the house, not speaking to or seeing anyone that whole time except for a few visits once in a while. Being alone is one of the scariest things in the world to me, but it's also so compelling. Anyway, those are my thoughts on the subject. What are yours? thanks :)
 

MildredHubble

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I can spend huge amounts of time on my own. But beyond a point it's not too healthy. If I don't encounter other people for a long amount of time then I can loose my connection to reality a bit, or maybe a lot.

This is likely due to bipolar disorder in part. If my thinking goes a little wonky and it starts to spill out a bit, having people around in my case helps keep my frame of reference in check. So screwy ideas can't gain too much traction.

I have some people around me, my girlfriend my dad and of course my cat (he's a people too). Usually that's enough to keep me ticking over. I don't mind interacting with other people but I don't go out of my way to do it.

There is quite a difference between being alone and lonely. I have come to feel that NT people (particularly those in mental health services) think being alone and lonely are the same thing.

It was quite amusing as during the COVID lockdowns it felt rather wonderful to not see many people around. I had all the human contact I needed and it felt like a weight off my shoulders not to have to feel obliged to be social.

The funny thing is, during this time mental health services called me up to check I wasn't falling apart due to the lockdowns. I informed them that no I wasn't, but I knew I needed to pretend for them that it was a shame I couldn't socialise. So I said it would be nice to see people but I understood why the lockdowns were necessary.

Then upon reading my medical notes they had recorded "Mildred has not been doing well during the lockdowns and finds the isolation distressing and this has had a detrimental effect on their mental health." What total claptrap!

I wish some people could understand that preferring solitude is not a freeking defect!
 

Ronald Zeeman

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I could barely walk during most of covid, wife went shopping alone left me alone. no issue. Weird watching people wearing masks outside, virus disperses very quickly, people avoided each other on sidewalk. No, I was not lonely. people watching was interesting in how they reacted to lack of information I knew this virus was air borne having a background in engineering and microbiology made my life interesting, not boring or lonely knowledge is power.
 

me9282

New Member
I can spend huge amounts of time on my own. But beyond a point it's not too healthy. If I don't encounter other people for a long amount of time then I can loose my connection to reality a bit, or maybe a lot.

This is likely due to bipolar disorder in part. If my thinking goes a little wonky and it starts to spill out a bit, having people around in my case helps keep my frame of reference in check. So screwy ideas can't gain too much traction.

I have some people around me, my girlfriend my dad and of course my cat (he's a people too). Usually that's enough to keep me ticking over. I don't mind interacting with other people but I don't go out of my way to do it.

There is quite a difference between being alone and lonely. I have come to feel that NT people (particularly those in mental health services) think being alone and lonely are the same thing.

It was quite amusing as during the COVID lockdowns it felt rather wonderful to not see many people around. I had all the human contact I needed and it felt like a weight off my shoulders not to have to feel obliged to be social.

The funny thing is, during this time mental health services called me up to check I wasn't falling apart due to the lockdowns. I informed them that no I wasn't, but I knew I needed to pretend for them that it was a shame I couldn't socialise. So I said it would be nice to see people but I understood why the lockdowns were necessary.

Then upon reading my medical notes they had recorded "Mildred has not been doing well during the lockdowns and finds the isolation distressing and this has had a detrimental effect on their mental health." What total claptrap!

I wish some people could understand that preferring solitude is not a freeking defect!
To be honest I enjoyed quarantine a lot. I did get restless and bored from time to time but I mostly didn’t care. I knew that I needed human interaction because thats just what humans require to stay sane. I honestly would go out and at least see people walking around and stuff to be exposed to human activity and be around people but i don’t necessarily care about it it’s just something I do for my own mental health.
 

Ronald Zeeman

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I Had real issues walking, due to a prescription, of gabapentin, supposably for pain that did not exist it was actually for my leg jerking in the hospital due to my previous transverse myelitis. Had to figure this out for myself, not impressed with doctors who think they are the brightest person in the room.
 

MildredHubble

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
To be honest I enjoyed quarantine a lot. I did get restless and bored from time to time but I mostly didn’t care. I knew that I needed human interaction because thats just what humans require to stay sane. I honestly would go out and at least see people walking around and stuff to be exposed to human activity and be around people but i don’t necessarily care about it it’s just something I do for my own mental health.
It was rather wonderful, nice quiet roads, general peacefulness. I have to get super rich and get a private island I think! Lol!

But yeah, staying connected with fellow humans is necessary to stay sane. But also it can get a bit too peopley sometimes, then sanity can be an issue once more.

There is definitely a happy middle ground and mine appears to be more towards the solitary end of the range.

I guess what bothers me is the benevolent ableism that goes on. At least I think that's the best way to describe it. It's like "Oh we simply must encourage Mildred to spend as much time as possible around other people, that will make them feel better." It's like saying "Oh person 'A' is lactose intolerant, I know what would make them feel better, a nice tall glass of milk."
 

MildredHubble

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I Had real issues walking, due to a prescription, of gabapentin, supposably for pain that did not exist it was actually for my leg jerking in the hospital due to my previous transverse myelitis. Had to figure this out for myself, not impressed with doctors who think they are the brightest person in the room.
Often when it comes to medical issues, I've started to prefer the "self service" option too! Doctors can be a conceited bunch of know it alls, who hate anyone that dares question their devine wisdom, no matter how much misery they can cause their patients!
 

Ronald Zeeman

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
They like to assume use Aspies are not that bright, I am not impressed by bright people Having come from a family like mine does tend to sharpen you up. I'M not pissed it was telephone tag between doctors' transverse myelitis for most family doctors is a once in your practice diagnosis, conflate this with the effects of a stroke. mix with a bit of arrogance. Things turning around now. Worst part is I just changed family doctors, previous was approaching his just before date.
 

Slime_Punk

Contaminating the hive mind
V.I.P Member
I've been a reclusive hermit for my entire life, and I still haven't gotten tired of it

I should also mention that I haven't really spent any of my adult life single, so I guess I like my solitude but I hate utter loneliness.
 

Luca

charm & chaos
V.I.P Member
I'm very selective about which people I like and which ones I can't stand, so I don't put in a lot of effort to socialize outside of my immediate circles. I find most people mean, unempathetic, angry, untrustworthy, one-dimensional, shallow, closed-minded, unpassionate, and boring.

I do get lonely though... my closest friends have lives too, so I rarely see any of them, but when I do see anyone, sometimes the interactions last 15 hours or more... I'm an extrovert, but I'm not a machine...
So it's kind of a catch-22. I rarely socialize irl, but the times that I do, sometimes I can't easily get rid of my friends from my home after a weekend or so (since I live by myself, with no spouse and no parents, my house gets used as the "party place" a lot... I have recently put my foot down about that so I now have visitors even less frequently.) That amount of constant socialization and having to entertain people gets kind of draining, especially since I have a career, and a lot of them don't. So I can't just set aside 2 or 3 days at a time to party and neglect responsibilities and routine.
A lot of my friends are also younger than me, and still in the drinking/partying/pulling all-nighters stage of their lives. I grew out of that before I was 21. I'm at the point now where I've kind of settled, and I have some health issues that have aged my body past its physical age and I absolutely cannot stay up all night or get drunk. Most days I have to be up at 5am.

I would love to find a person that is enough of a match for me that I could stand to be around them 24/7 (and vice versa.) Doesn't have to be a romantic partner. I do experience crippling loneliness because I am actually extroverted, and the overwhelming majority of my time is spent with close to zero human interaction, other than online/text messaging.
 

Progster

Grown sideways to the sun
V.I.P Member
Ye, there's a big difference between being alone and being lonely. I get bored at times, but I don't get lonely. I'm happy on my own. I don't have close friends, but I have family and some interaction with people each day through my work.
 

Outdated

I'm from the other end of the spectrum.
V.I.P Member
I simply don't get lonely. I can socialize quite well but I feel no need to. What kept me socializing through most of my life was my sex drive, but now that's starting to dwindle a bit with age I'm so very glad that I remained single.
 

foliodoe

I'm living my whole life at once.
I simply don't get lonely. I can socialize quite well but I feel no need to. What kept me socializing through most of my life was my sex drive, but now that's starting to dwindle a bit with age I'm so very glad that I remained single.
This has been my experience as well lol That biting sorrow that used to come from loneliness was really just a physical/hormonal thing. Because I was always nearly-asexual anyway, but now that my body isn't experiencing those urges I no longer feel like such a maniac. Life is not as confusing as it used to be in that regard.
 

foliodoe

I'm living my whole life at once.
I'm very selective about which people I like and which ones I can't stand, so I don't put in a lot of effort to socialize outside of my immediate circles. I find most people mean, unempathetic, angry, untrustworthy, one-dimensional, shallow, closed-minded, unpassionate, and boring.

I do get lonely though... my closest friends have lives too, so I rarely see any of them, but when I do see anyone, sometimes the interactions last 15 hours or more... I'm an extrovert, but I'm not a machine...
So it's kind of a catch-22. I rarely socialize irl, but the times that I do, sometimes I can't easily get rid of my friends from my home after a weekend or so (since I live by myself, with no spouse and no parents, my house gets used as the "party place" a lot... I have recently put my foot down about that so I now have visitors even less frequently.) That amount of constant socialization and having to entertain people gets kind of draining, especially since I have a career, and a lot of them don't. So I can't just set aside 2 or 3 days at a time to party and neglect responsibilities and routine.
A lot of my friends are also younger than me, and still in the drinking/partying/pulling all-nighters stage of their lives. I grew out of that before I was 21. I'm at the point now where I've kind of settled, and I have some health issues that have aged my body past its physical age and I absolutely cannot stay up all night or get drunk. Most days I have to be up at 5am.

I would love to find a person that is enough of a match for me that I could stand to be around them 24/7 (and vice versa.) Doesn't have to be a romantic partner. I do experience crippling loneliness because I am actually extroverted, and the overwhelming majority of my time is spent with close to zero human interaction, other than online/text messaging.
A lot of this resonated with me! I'm lucky that I've managed to find a few people I could be around 24/7 - I'm also lucky that I figured out those people are NOT anyone I should be dating and that they're way better as friends than they ever could be as romantic partners. But even recognizing that makes me feel like I'm missing out on a part of life. It's totally normal for people to build their entire lives around romantic relationships and that's simply not part of my life at all.
'
It makes me feel like there's something wrong with me, even though I know that's not accurate. It makes me feel like a freak, like I don't deserve to have a normal life. sigh...
 

Outdated

I'm from the other end of the spectrum.
V.I.P Member
I was the opposite of asexual, my sex drive was a lot stronger and more insistent than most people's. I became very good at socialising. And it hasn't really toned down all that much now either, it's just a lot more difficult now I'm no longer as sexually attractive.
 

Au Naturel

Au Naturel
I thrive on my own. I love being alone. That's when I feel the most at ease and the most like I can be myself. It gets lonely, though! It's such a fine line for me between too much social time and not enough.

How do you cope with being lonely? How much time do you spend totally alone?

Throughout the beginning of the pandemic I was living totally alone for almost a year. I was not leaving the house, not speaking to or seeing anyone that whole time except for a few visits once in a while. Being alone is one of the scariest things in the world to me, but it's also so compelling. Anyway, those are my thoughts on the subject. What are yours? thanks :)
Being alone is how I lived much of my life. Even though I'm married, I still spend a lot of time alone around the house or I'm off somewhere doing something solo, like hiking or camping. I do a lot of solo driving.

“Sometimes, you find yourself in the middle of nowhere, and sometimes, in the middle of nowhere you find yourself.”- unknown
 

SusanLR

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I don't feel lonely even though I have always been a loner.
There were people around me when I worked and I could socialize with them without being real friends.
Take breaks together at work or chat, then it was time to go home, and they had no part in my private life.

As long as I had my parents and pets, I was very content.
I home schooled high school and was self- employed with my own greenhouse and ceramic studio. Again, I was around people who came to my classes, I just never got close to anyone enough to call them a friend.

Romantic relationships meant very little to me either.
I would call myself asexual even though I did occasionally go to dinner, movies, or a night out with guys I knew from work.
There were three that liked closeness without sex just as I did and that added to
my socializing outside the family circle.
Just never was comfortable with the idea of living with them or marriage and I didn't want kids anyway.

Now that I have no family, I live with a man in a strange relationship.
Platonic, no romance. He is very controlling and demanding in other ways.
I pay him rent, help him in his personal life, drive him places, and do work around the house for him. All in exchange for a place to live.
In return, he acts like he owns me and is verbally/emotionally abusive while
controlling what I do or where I go.
You would think he was my husband just to see us out together if you didn't know us.
As they say on Facebook: It's Complicated.

And the quarantine didn't bother me at all.
I liked the quiet of few people being out when I was. :p
 

AprilR

Well-Known Member
I like solitude as long as i have a few people i can depend on when times get hard. Sadly i don't have anyone aside from my parents now so i feel depressed often
 

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