Robin Williams once said: “I used to think that the worst thing in
While quotes from dead celebrities tend to circulate through the web without much notice being taken, this one really stuck out for me.
And it is important because being single and lonely is a coupling that, for many people, seem to go hand in hand.
You see I have always been the sort of man who felt like he needed to be in a relationship to feel complete; always convincing myself that I am only one-half of a whole who needed to find his counterpart to be happy.
And who can I blame for this? Friends and family members who are always trying to match me up with people that they know.
Hollywood culture which has put so much emphasis on fairy-tale romance as to make you think that it is a crucial part of life; that irritating couple that keeps making out in public spaces for all to see; or myself for being so terrified of ending up alone that I would settle for just about anyone who is willing to give me a little company?
The trouble with this kind of thinking is that it can lead you to expect a certain amount of happiness to come from your relationship, whether it is a good one or not; often resulting in severe disappointment,
So if you have been on the hunt for a better half, why not read this first and decide if it is actually necessary for you to dive into a commitment for the sheer sake of not being lonely.
Single and Lonely: Does Being Single Equates to Loneliness?
There is more than one type of loneliness...
To start, the very idea that tying yourself to someone for the rest of your days is a good way to shave off loneliness is utter BS.
This is because loneliness isn't an emotion that is strictly tied to having people around you.
Those of you that say “I am lonely and single” have likely just tied the two together because after all we have been taught points us to that correlation being correct, but does being single really result in loneliness?
Speak to anyone who fights depression about loneliness, and they will often tell you that some of the times when they felt most alone is when they
Often enough, that nasty feeling of isolation that starts in your gut and permeates your body and mind, comes even when your home is full with people you know and love.
It is an emotion that is often unshakable and endures no matter how many different women wake up in your bed; curable only by applying yourself to the world and taking solace in your own company, not by filling your life with empty people who are just as desperate and alone as you are.
There is another factor to loneliness which our lifestyles, so filled with people, have allowed us to forget:
We are all alone, for a lot of our lives, and that is okay. Even those in lifelong marriages, strong relationships, and communes feel it when we are not distracted. We are born into this world as a closed unit, naked and by ourselves.
Our loved ones are taken from us by disease, death, travel and separation. We find ourselves having to be self-reliant, and very often we feel like the people around us are just not getting what goes on in our heads.
That is because we are alone, all the time, forming only the most base of connections with those around us.
But that is not something to fear, it is something to embrace as though this is your world and these are your people.
That's not to say, sod off all relationships because you don't need them; they do bring texture to life and often enough offer respite from loneliness (if only for a short time), not that being alone is something you need to avoid.
But if you were thinking that relationships are there to quell your loneliness, you are looking at things from the wrong angle.
The biological reason for relationships...
The coupling of human beings, whether for a short time, or for life, is necessary for the creation and protection of offspring in this harsh and dangerous world, and there is very little else to it.
We need two people to procreate (you ought to know that by now), and even more importantly, it takes a community to safely and successfully raise a child.
Whether that community is made up of a couple or a group of people, our weak mammalian makeup benefits greatly by pairings as far as procreation goes.
But the world that we live in is changing fast. Single mothers and fathers can be found everywhere because there is less worry about predators stealing our young.
People are opting to stay single for life while more are deciding to never have kids; making it less necessary to tie themselves to a partner.
If you want to have kids and start a family, then it makes sense to get into a relationship.
If on the other hand you value your independence but don't want to be alone, perhaps it would be better to direct your energy in figuring out the nature of loneliness, rather than searching for someone to keep you company.
Don’t confuse loneliness with independance
One of the worst times for dealing with loneliness comes just after losing someone you are close to.
It could be after a death or an untimely breakup, whatever the reason, it is the absence of someone that we are used to that highlights the feeling of loneliness which has been sitting dormant in your emotions since you first started interacting with people.
However, changing your mindset from feeling lonely in their absence to feeling somewhat liberated, is more often than not the perfect way of dealing with these emotions.
You no longer have to keep your phone on you, waiting for her call; you can travel or spend eight hours a night playing video games; you can shamelessly check out other girls at the bar; have all the sex you can handle; live on a diet of cereal or simply lie around in your pants all day.
If you are feeling lonely and sorry for yourself because you can’t seem to find someone to share in your isolation, then just consider all the possible benefits of not having to answer to anyone else.
Now tell me; considering you have friends and family members, acquaintances and work colleagues, does loneliness still feel like such a bad thing when you can pack up and go to the Caribbean without having to tell anyone?
Stuck in a lifelong rut
Let’s talk about the flip-side of loneliness, the impregnable isolation felt by men and women all over this world who have been married for years to someone who makes them feel like no one is there.
A staggering number of people on this planet get married for all the wrong reasons, only to find out much later that they pretty much hate the person who they may only part with after death.
You could be living in a household with a wife and kids who pay you no mind, couldn't care less if you went missing, but are now reliant on you in their family unit even though no one within it even likes each other; now that is loneliness.
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