Understanding Loneliness

What makes us happiest in life? Some people may point to fabulous fame and fortune. Yet hands down, surveys show that friends and family are the real prize. Even though our need to connect is innate, some of us always go home alone. You could have people around you throughout the day or even be in a lifelong marriage, and still experience a deep, pervasive loneliness. Unsurprisingly, isolation can have a serious detrimental effect on one's mental and physical health.

Recent posts on Loneliness

Why Is It So Hard to Separate from My Twin?

By Barbara Klein Ph.D., Ed.D. on October 22, 2017 in Twin Dilemmas
Helpful tips for dealing with separating from your twin.

What Happens When We Are Too Self-Protective?

By Grant H. Brenner M.D. on October 22, 2017 in ExperiMentations
Reflections on emotional vulnerability and risk-taking.
Kristen Fuller

Practicing Empathy in the Dating World: A Long Lost Skill

On the romance merry-go-round, many people will keep others in their lives until they find the next best thing while others may choose to "ghost" last night's date.

Harvey Weinstein Proves Sex Addiction Doesn't Exist

By Marty Klein Ph.D. on October 11, 2017 in Sexual Intelligence
Labelling Harvey Weinstein a "sex addict" allows us to confidently say "I'm not like that," rather than encouraging us to look at our own pain.

Why Do We Need Friends? Six Benefits of Healthy Friendships

True friends:"Lots of people will want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will ride with you in the bus when the limo breaks down"—Oprah Winfrey

4 Road Signs You're in The Land Where Love Dies

By Kevin D. Arnold Ph.D., ABPP on October 01, 2017 in The Older Dad
Has your love been crushed by the weight of loneliness? Here are 4 things that can help revive your love.

Making Friends: There’s An App For That

By Miriam Kirmayer on September 30, 2017 in Casual to Close
With the success and ubiquity of online dating, it’s not too surprising that friendships are now making their way into the virtual world.
Luke Porter/Unsplash

When You're Lonely Inside Your Relationship

The simplest way to ease loneliness...that you can do alone.

What Drives Our Loneliness?

By Lisa Firestone Ph.D. on September 28, 2017 in Compassion Matters
Our fight against loneliness is more of an internal struggle than we may imagine. It is primarily a matter of standing up against our inner critic and challenging our core defenses

The Paradox of Confiding in (Near) Strangers

By Lydia Denworth on September 28, 2017 in Brain Waves
Think you only discuss important matters with your closest confidants? A new book suggests your inner circle is bigger than you imagine.

Dating with Mental Illness: What Is It Like?

By Rob Whitley, Ph.D. on September 28, 2017 in Talking About Men
Researchers interviewed a range of people with mental illnesses to learn more about their dating and romantic experience. Findings were surprising, poignant and insightful.

Why Your Dog Is Good for Your Health

Can your dog help you deal with stress? Some surprising research

Combatting the Loneliness of Transition

Five strategies to feel less lonely even in the midst of transition.

Add Years to Your Life: Make Family and Friends a Priority

By Susan Biali M.D. on September 26, 2017 in Prescriptions for Life
Does the pace of your life and all its demands feel like it's killing you? Spend more time with beloved friends and family, it just may (literally) save your life.

The Truth Behind Breaking Up: It All Comes Down to 16 Steps

Break ups . . . a matter of a familiar script?
flickr/Labeled for reuse/Jay Huang Spring Sunrise

How to Bring Someone to Their Senses

By Tim Carey Ph.D. on September 21, 2017 in In Control
There is not a stick strong enough nor a carrot juicy enough to deposit a “sense” in someone else’s mind if it does not fit with their views and their life.

Feeling Lonely? You May Be Damaging Your Health

Loneliness has been linked to inflammation and even higher mortality rates. Find out if you have an unhealthy level of loneliness and what you should do about it.

What’s Your Friendship Style?

By Lydia Denworth on September 18, 2017 in Brain Waves
No one way of making friends works for everyone, but some form of connection is essential.

Deconstructing the Pumpkin Spice Latte Craze

September is here and that means one thing…Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte is Back! Have you ever wondered why this seems to be such a big deal to the general populace?

How to Make Friends When You Don’t Have Play Dates

By Miriam Kirmayer on September 12, 2017 in Casual to Close
Making friends as an adult can be anxiety-producing and confusing. Unlike childhood, there isn’t a structure in place to facilitate friendship-making nor are there clear-cut rules.

A Strategy for Dating

By Fredric Neuman M.D. on September 10, 2017 in Fighting Fear
Contrary to popular opinion, it is possible, with a proper strategy, to enjoy dating.

Does Your Child Have Enough Friends?

By Michael Ungar Ph.D. on September 10, 2017 in Nurturing Resilience
Some children are shy and happy to be alone. Many others struggle to make friends and are at risk for depression. Parents can teach children what they need to be more social.

College, 2017 to 2018

The arrival of the smartphone has changed every aspect of teenage life, from social interactions to mental health. It's time for colleges to change their approach as well.

Depression and Loneliness Linked to Higher Mortality Rates

By Barton Goldsmith Ph.D. on September 07, 2017 in Emotional Fitness
Over 40 million people in the United States have been diagnosed with depression, and I am sure the real number is higher, the number of people coping with loneliness is unknown.

Loneliness and Temperament

By Karyn Hall Ph.D. on September 02, 2017 in Pieces of Mind
When you are lonely, you may be told join a group or a dating service. For those who suffer with maladaptive over-control, that advice is unlikely to be effective.

Why Are So Many More Teens Depressed?

By Jean M Twenge Ph.D. on August 25, 2017 in Our Changing Culture
Why are so many teens depressed and lonely? The technology meant to connect us may have instead depressed us.

Loneliness Poses Greater Public Health Threat Than Obesity

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on August 23, 2017 in The Squeaky Wheel
The loneliness epidemic is growing and becoming more costly by the day. But there is something you can do about it.

What Are the Roots of Distress Among Refugees?

Research is changing the way we address the mental health needs of refugees.

The Longest Ride Home

By Deborah J. Cohan, Ph.D. on August 13, 2017 in Social Lights
12 ways parents can cope with college move in

To Say "I" Means To Be Alone

By Elena Bezzubova on August 12, 2017 in The Search for Self
Loneliness seems a transient step to self identity that could include depersonalization-like feelings of detachment and autism/introversion-like feelings of isolation.