Loneliness and Isolation

Loneliness and Isolation

Loneliness is the feeling of being alone, but a person does not actually have to be alone to feel lonely and this is often misunderstood. Many people choose to live and be alone and are very happy and not lonely. Loneliness is feeling alone and feeling unhappy.

Most people are naturally social and crave interaction, discussion, laughs, physical contact etc. and when these needs are not met we can feel lonely. A person can experience loneliness in a crowded pub, in a busy street, in a relationship, in a family or in the absence of any of these. They often feel isolated or cut-off from the world and the people about them as though they are not part of the world.

Useful Resources

Useful Resources

Samaritans – 116 123
http://www.samaritans.org/

The Silver Line – 0800 4 70 80 90
https://www.thesilverline.org.uk/

Circumstances

There are many personal circumstances that may lead to your sense of loneliness:

  • loss of someone close to you
  • relationship break-up
  • are a single parent or caring for someone else
  • retirement
  • older age when going out might be harder
  • moving to a new area without family, friends or community networks
  • belonging to a minority ethnic group without local support or community
  • experiencing discrimination and stigma
  • having experienced abuse – you may find it hard to form close relationships with other people.

N.B. This is by no means a complete list and there are many other circumstances that may cause someone to feel lonely.

What makes people lonely?

Loneliness can come from many different places and different people will be affected in different ways, there are no fixed rules. Some people feel lonely through the circumstances they are in and for others loneliness can be a longer term and enduring experience.

How can counselling help?

A person can experience loneliness in a crowded pub, in a busy street, in a relationship, in a family or in the absence of any of these. They often feel isolated or cut-off from the world and the people about them as though they are not part of the world.

Enduring deep loneliness

Some people feel lonely despite having a strong social network or a close family or being in a loving relationship. These people may struggle with liking themselves or allowing themselves to be liked and make lack self-confidence. This may come from experiences as a child where they did not feel loved, maybe through neglect or abuse, and this can persist into adulthood and into relationships.

Some people choose the isolation in which they live for fear of being hurt but also struggle with feelings of loneliness.

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Decision-making - counselling

Everything has a price. The subtle art of decision making.

Maybe you’re ready to make that big decision, or multiple decisions. Maybe you’re clinging awkwardly to the barbed wire of that fence. Maybe you understand why you’re choosing to stay where you are. What ever the case it could be time to stop facing your desire to make change alone.

Pull-Yourself-Together - Counselling

‘Pull Yourself Together’ – Kinder words than you think?

Breathing techniques are the easy bit. If the source or cause of your distress or unhelpful behaviour feels bigger than your capacity to make change, then counselling can help.

The love trap - Ben Wrigley

The Love Trap

Unconditional love is something we all crave and we have all craved since we were babies and guess what, we do actually deserve it

Feelings Dashboard - Counselling

Who needs feelings anyway?

Living life without feelings is surely not living life to the full, it’s like blurred vision, muffled sound or numb touching.

how-are-you - counselling

And … How are you?

This time of year can be really hard for so many of us and for so many reasons. Counselling can be a helpful space for you to be what you need to be.

Anxious Child - Counselling

The Anxious Child

Take a breath dear superhero. We live in a world where we have forgotten how to model calm.

Advice from yourself - counselling

Can you take advice from yourself?

In counselling there can be many exercises that help us to become aware of how we keep ourselves in places we don’t actually want to be. The process of speaking these things out loud to another person, to be shared and understood together, can dramatically change our perspective.

river or dam- counselling

Are you the River or the Dam?

Counselling can help you find and uncover and understand your dams and help you to re-identify with yourself while you decide if you wish to remove them. Is it time to talk?

Defences - counselling

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Counselling is a place you can explore the defences you have spent many years developing and honing. They were your friend once, without a doubt. Are they still helping you now?

Men Stress - counselling

Men, Stress and a Badge of Honour

In counselling you will not be judged for expressing what you are really feeling, you will not be doubted. We are interested less in the facts of what you need to achieve, than how you are affected by the expectations. It is an opportunity to talk freely and explore any options you may have.

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