Apparently the media have long-term memory loss. Every time another study comes out showing that loneliness is indeed deadly, they jumps on it like it was not something we knew before. But I guess you would expect that with a topic like loneliness. After all, who remembers anything about loneliness?
Even with friends and family around, a profound sense of loneliness may set in. Part of the reason for the loneliness is because the person with breast cancer is experiencing situations and emotions that few others can understand, unless they have had breast cancer themselves.
However, for some young adults transitioning to college, they find themselves experiencing loneliness and they just cannot seem to shake it. They have a hard time coping with the transition to college. Why is that? The truth is, for a considerable number of these students, they having always been coping with loneliness.
Those with Narcissist Personality Disorder are self-sufficient, exploitative exhibitionists, and feel entitled, superior, and vain. Yeah, those types. Are individuals with NPD lonely? It was a curious question I wonder every time I look at The Colbert Report. So I decided to do a bit of digging to see what the answer might be.
I believe the underlying motivation is the same, find someone who will take care of all of their emotional (including sexual) needs and desires. If, in searching out a relationship, the goal is to find an emotional prostitute, ultimately, the relationship is not only going to fail, it will become very emotionally unfulfilling.
However, when it comes to happiness, extroverts do better. This is true even when they are alone, extroverts are happier alone than introverts. Other very important finding, whether introverted or extroverted, both tend to enjoy socializing more than spending time alone.
It is my hope to raise awareness about the issue of loneliness. For those who are chronically lonely to realize that they are not alone in the way they feel, to raise awareness about the awful stigma society places on those individuals who are lonely (#lonersarentlosers), and to advocate for greater services for those individuals for experience loneliness.
We live in a world where there is a lot of noise, a lot of superficial messages, a lot of meaningless conversation. Or even worse, we are bombarded by negative messages, "you're not good enough," "you're not strong enough," "you're not smart enough."
There is a magical power in all of us. Deep inside all of us is a magical power that is ours and ours alone. It is an inherent part of who we are, and to deny it, is to deny our very existence. Despite Elsa's attempts to suppress her magical powers, it came out anyways. If you try to fight it, it comes out in ways that are often dangerous to others.
For chronically lonely individuals, a lot more work is required and no one is a failure for feeling lonely. Telling a chronically lonely individual to just go out there and meet people, is like telling an obese person, to just eat healthier or telling a depressed person, to just cheer up. It is patronizing and it needs to stop.
Functional loneliness occurs for individuals who have found somewhat effective ways to cope with their loneliness. Unlike individuals that may have overwhelming feelings of loneliness, people with functional loneliness are able to successfully suppress their feelings without having to deal with it directly.
So the next time you, someone you know, or a client, comes in and says they feel sad, one should really stop and wonder why exactly they feel sad. If it is that that sadness is related to a lack of social connections or a sense of belonging, then perhaps loneliness is the real problem and not depression. They may actually not be depressed at all.