Why Do I Feel So Lonely Despite Being Surrounded by People?

  • Thread starter loseyourname
  • Start date
In summary: Homework Help forum. In summary, the person is feeling lonely and disconnected from those around him, despite having friends and activities lined up. They suggest that the feeling may be due to being single and spending holidays alone. Another person suggests finding a new challenge or experience to help cope with the feeling. The conversation then shifts to discussing feeling lonely and bored, with one person jokingly suggesting sending a picture to cheer up the other.
  • #1
loseyourname
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I don't think I've felt this way since my first night in North Carolina 6 years ago. My stomach literally feels completely empty, to the point of shrinking in on itself, despite the fact that I just ate. It is difficult to understand what brought this on. I'm not alone. There are plenty of people around here. I was just at the gym playing basketball for a few hours with some guys I know, and I've probably got a date lined up for this weekend. It's just that all of a sudden, I feel like a foreigner in a new country who doesn't speak the language yet and can't interact in any meaningful way with those who make up his immediate surroundings. Even PF seems boring right now, with repetitive and dull threads in which nothing is accomplished other than people continuing to hold the exact same points of view and not seeming to learn anything outside of the Homework Help forum. The Dodgers won big and are in first place and I don't care. My fantasy baseball team is dominantly in first place and I don't care. The semester is almost over and I have good classes and I don't care. What gives?
 
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  • #2
Being single really sucks sometimes, but it always seems to suck big long ones even MORE when you hit holidays, and you're lingering at home, all by yourself, with just a cat for company... :frown: :frown: :frown:

*SO*- did any of you other single Ladies and Gents here on the Boards do anything nice for yourselves today--and if so, what was it? :smile: :smile: :smile:
 
  • #3
Don't worry, I'll come over and you'll have a good time! :biggrin:
 
  • #4
You need something to look forward to. I have an idea that really enlightened me. Go by youself, or with a close friend, and spend a few months in a country where you don't speak the language.

I spent 3 months in Mexico and I didn't speak any Spanish. A friend of mine found a site about a catholic church in Mexico City that accepts volunteers. I worked about 6 hours a day 5 days a week and received free room and board. I worked in a carpentry shop making chairs and tables and painting things. I helped lay the foundation for a new building. Helped old people get to church. Brought all the water bottles to the refilling center. Little things like that are a big challenge when you can't communicate with anyone. That part of not being able to communicate is very important. As soon as I was isolated from people it became very important to find a way to communicate.

I also worked in an indian village in the mountains and painted the interior of a church. I was with a group of Italians and made new friends. (One of them spoke some broken English. He was a huge help for me.) All the volunteers would take trips. We went to Acapulco (way tourist) Teotihuacan, clubs in Mexico D.F. and I later went to Puerta Vallarta and spent Christmas and New Years sitting on a beach with no roads drinking beer and eating homemade pie as a guy walked around on the beach with a big fat log of marijuana in his hand.

There's all sorts of things you can do. Take a summer off and work on a fishing boat in Alaska. Get a job in a pub in England. Ride a bike across Australia and do a little diving in the barrier reef. Just go for a skydive someplace nearby. That's an amazing sensation, just like flying. Experience the world. Its a thrill. Challenge youself at every level.

edit- It won't stop you from being sad or lonely, but it does change things somehow. Makes it seem bearable.

edit- How about a road trip after your finals. Go with a bunch of friends to Vegas or Miami or wherever would inspire you. See something you've always wanted to see.
 
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  • #5
No, he just needs me to send him a picture of my melones grandes and he'll be feeling much better. :approve:






(I'm an avid gardener)
 
  • #6
Either a big case of boredom or the blues. Sometimes I feel that way when I've been out with a big group of people having a lot of fun and then come home to the empty, quiet house. For me, it's just the transition from being loud and crazy and having a great time to suddenly having nobody but myself to talk to. Though, sometimes it can just be a case of boredom brought on by fatigue...you know, where you could get up and do something to entertain yourself, but for whatever reason, you're just too tired to do it.

See if a good night's sleep cures it. If not, make yourself go out and do something with some other people, and see if that works. Only if the feeling keeps lingering is there any reason to worry something might be wrong. It could be something simple like you're coming down with a cold and feeling lethargic, or some mild depression, though that doesn't usually just hit so hard and fast, more like something that creeps up on you slowly.

Or maybe it's just time for a change of pace. Maybe you just need to try something different that you haven't done before.

Hope you snap out of it soon, whatever it is. :smile:
 
  • #7
Evo said:
No, he just needs me to send him a picture of my melones grandes and he'll be feeling much better. :approve:






(I'm an avid gardener)
Now that you mention it I'm feeling kind of blue myself. Can you send that picture to me too?
 
  • #8
Evo said:
No, he just needs me to send him a picture of my melones grandes and he'll be feeling much better.

I know I would. :biggrin:
 
  • #9
loseyourname said:
Even PF seems boring right now, with repetitive and dull threads in which nothing is accomplished other than people continuing to hold the exact same points of view and not seeming to learn anything outside of the Homework Help forum.

Don't believe it. I have been influenced by PF, and I see others that have been as well. Ideas are powerful things, especially in this format.

As for depression, maybe a thrill would help. Make a change...do something new such as... I don't know...go skydiving. At one point Tsu and I were both really down, so we went and did a tandem cable drop - much like bungee jumping. We didn't stop smiling for days.
 
  • #10
Wallow in it. Don't try to feel happy, that's the worst thing you can do.
 
  • #11
Jason said:
Being single really sucks sometimes, but it always seems to suck big long ones even MORE when you hit holidays, and you're lingering at home, all by yourself, with just a cat for company... :frown: :frown: :frown:

*SO*- did any of you other single Ladies and Gents here on the Boards do anything nice for yourselves today--and if so, what was it? :smile: :smile: :smile:

I bought myself a case of beer. Then I drank it. Now I'm feeling good.
;)
 
  • #12
Ivan Seeking said:
Don't believe it. I have been influenced by PF, and I see others that have been as well. Ideas are powerful things, especially in this format.

I agree. When it seems boring, it just means it's time to visit one of the subforums I infrequently enter, or reply to one of those posts I've been ignoring because it requires some research to discuss intelligently (in other words, I go do the lit searches and learn something new). This board was moving a little slow tonight, so I went to one of my other less frequented haunts on the internet and spent some time searching for US Supreme Court cases to support my arguments. I learned a lot of new things reading through those, and reminded myself of a number of things I had forgotten. Good fun! (Yeah, I have a warped sense of fun.)

As for depression, maybe a thrill would help. Make a change...do something new such as... I don't know...go skydiving. At one point Tsu and I were both really down, so we went and did a tandem cable drop - much like bungee jumping. We didn't stop smiling for days.

If it's just a mild case of boredom/blues, then things like that really work well to snap you back out of it. You don't even have to do something that extreme. Maybe it's time to just throw an impromptu party, or go to a local museum you never get around to visiting, or just try a new restaurant. Hmm...as I'm thinking of it, maybe if it's nice tomorrow, I'll go visit the zoo. I haven't been there in a while and this is the time of year when everything is in bloom (it's a combo zoo and botanical gardens). I never get there while things are in bloom...not sure if our recent cold weather and rain has ruined the flowers or not, but if it has, there are still sure to be baby animals around to watch...that'll cheer up anyone!
 
  • #13
Spend some time--two or three hours--lying down with your eyes closed, being aware of how you feel.
 
  • #14
Moonbear said:
Hope you snap out of it soon, whatever it is. :smile:

You might be interested to know that I've won about 17 consecutive games of checkers at www.moonbear.com. Did you know that existed?

Anyway, I think BicycleTree is right. You may as well experience everything you go through to the fullest and not fight against it provided it is not a direct threat to your existence. There is nothing wrong with sadness. It comes and goes and is an integral part of humanity. We should all know it as intimately as we should happiness and love and all of the other overhyped emotions that everyone is always seeking to the detriment of alternatives.
 
  • #15
loseyourname said:
You might be interested to know that I've won about 17 consecutive games of checkers at www.moonbear.com. Did you know that existed?

LOL! Nope, had no idea! :smile:

Anyway, I think BicycleTree is right. You may as well experience everything you go through to the fullest and not fight against it provided it is not a direct threat to your existence. There is nothing wrong with sadness. It comes and goes and is an integral part of humanity. We should all know it as intimately as we should happiness and love and all of the other overhyped emotions that everyone is always seeking to the detriment of alternatives.

To some extent, that's true. Guys don't often admit it, but most women know that sometimes a good cry is the best thing for you. It's only a problem if it doesn't go away; it's not good to be sad too long. But, dammit, it's contagious tonight! I just got an email from my uncle that my youngest cousin and his wife just had a baby boy, and while I should be happy, it just left me suddenly feeling very lonely. Sometimes I really hate living so far from family. I miss out on so many of the wonderful things, like snuggling new babies. :frown:
 
  • #16
Evo said:
No, he just needs me to send him a picture of my melones grandes and he'll be feeling much better. :approve:

Do you really know what are the consequences of what you have just said in Spanish?.

Any spaniard will understand as melones grandes your teats. If you knew it yet I celeb your high skill of spanish, and I would want to see that picture too... :smile:
 
  • #17
I usually ran out of steam at the end of a semester, especially if I had been working hard, getting little sleep. It sounds like a mild case of depression.

There are several things one can do:

1) Get some sun - lack of sun can lead to mild depression (e.g. seasonal affective disorder).

2) Avoid or mimimize alcohol.

3) Eat nutritious foods - particularly those with Vitamin B-complex.

4) Take to your friends, e.g. as you are posting in this thread.

5) Do some activity - not necessarily thrilling like skydiving or bungee jumping - but something that gets the heart pumping.

6) Try meditation - that's one of my methods, which works for me.


Well, I am out of other ideas for now. I have to go collect the garbage, spread out some new grass seed, and go shopping for trees. Ah, the idyllic life of a domesticated man. :biggrin:

One after thought - try the Satriani concert on-line - and Crank it up. :biggrin:
 
  • #18
loseyourname said:
I feel like a foreigner in a new country who doesn't speak the language yet and can't interact in any meaningful way with those who make up his immediate surroundings. Even PF seems boring right now, with repetitive and dull threads in which nothing is accomplished other than people continuing to hold the exact same points of view and not seeming to learn anything outside of the Homework Help forum. ...I don't care. ...and I don't care. What gives?

Whew - this was such a good description of loneliness; well written, loseyourname. It's horrid when even PF doesn't help, isn't it? I rely on hanging out, reading people's conversations here quite a lot to avoid that empty feeling, and usually it works. But sometimes it doesn't... But, loseyourname, you're not afraid to be alone. That's a good thing. As you say in a later post, one must experience all states of being. I believe that too. You haven't been reading any philosophy lately, have you? I find that I can only read philosophy (and poetry - oh yes, and politics!) in quite small doses, otherwise it gets me down. To stabilise myself when I'm very 'down', I do maths. There's nothing like the immersion in the type of thinking that maths demands to sort out the 'emotional' side of life.
 
  • #19
loseyourname said:
My fantasy baseball team is dominantly in first place
So is mine. Who do you have?
 
  • #20
i find getting outdoors and taking hikes help me snap out of whatever blue phase i am experiencing. not hiking much these days however, not even 5 months along yet and my center of gravity is rapidly shifting! someone very close to me experiences the blues very often, often enough where medication is necessary. i don't recommend alcohol honestly when you are down, being sober and clear thinking is the best way to endure times like these.
 
  • #21
Evo said:
No, he just needs me to send him a picture of my melones grandes and he'll be feeling much better. :approve:

(I'm an avid gardener)
Please, Miss... I'd like to see them too. I'm sure that if I had something like that to tend, I would also be an avid gardener.

Ivan Seeking said:
we went and did a tandem cable drop - much like bungee jumping. We didn't stop smiling for days.
I wouldn't stop puking for days after something like that. :eek:

Moonbear said:
I miss out on so many of the wonderful things, like snuggling new babies. :frown:
Like getting puked on by new babies. Just put me on a cable drop and I'll take care of that for you.

Clausius2 said:
Do you really know what are the consequences of what you have just said in Spanish?
She knows, alright. :biggrin:
You haven't been spending enough time in the 'Thread Killers' thread.

Kerrie said:
i don't recommend alcohol honestly when you are down, being sober and clear thinking is the best way to endure times like these.
I miss times like these. I used to go through it all the time, and my best writing came out of it. Even better with a few beers. It hasn't happened since I went on the ADD meds about 3 years ago, and I haven't been able to write a damned word since.
 
  • #22
Moonbear said:
Either a big case of boredom or the blues. Sometimes I feel that way when I've been out with a big group of people having a lot of fun and then come home to the empty, quiet house. For me, it's just the transition from being loud and crazy and having a great time to suddenly having nobody but myself to talk to. Though, sometimes it can just be a case of boredom brought on by fatigue...you know, where you could get up and do something to entertain yourself, but for whatever reason, you're just too tired to do it.

See if a good night's sleep cures it. If not, make yourself go out and do something with some other people, and see if that works. Only if the feeling keeps lingering is there any reason to worry something might be wrong. It could be something simple like you're coming down with a cold and feeling lethargic, or some mild depression, though that doesn't usually just hit so hard and fast, more like something that creeps up on you slowly.

Or maybe it's just time for a change of pace. Maybe you just need to try something different that you haven't done before.

Hope you snap out of it soon, whatever it is. :smile:

That happens to me once I come home from school dances. I didn't dance with a girl, chugged down 4 cokes and shoved 5 slices of pizza down my gullet, indigestion is ROARING as bad as the music at the stupid thing is, my guts feel pressurized to 3000 psi, can't breathe, no one to talk to, then I come home to just my little 13 inch television with nothing to watch, and feel terrible. I can't drive, it's late, the list goes on.

Usually I feel better after I sleep. It will eventually pass. Remember, lonelyness(sp?) is the devil. Do not give into Satan.
 
  • #23
I also do get lonely at some times. However, when those times come, i always think myself walking through the green hills of ireland..
 
  • #24
LeBrad said:
So is mine. Who do you have?

C - Ramon Hernandez, Jorge Posada
1B - Travis Hafner
2B - Jeff Kent
SS - Miguel Tejada, Rafael Furcal
3B - Adrian Beltre
OF - Carlos Lee, Carl Crawford, J.D. Drew, Luis Matos
Util - Mike Lamb

SP - Roy Halladay, Javier Vasquez, Brett Myers, Freddy Garcia, John Patterson, Eric Bedard, Ben Sheets
RP - Frankie Rodriguez, Billy Wagner
 
  • #25
I'm not sure why you feel lonely. You have friends. You have dates. You have an active life. Where is this loneliness coming from? Why are you not fulfilled?

I've always found that helping others makes me feel better about myself. It gives me a sense of purpose and hope that I find very rewarding. Maybe working at a soup kitchen or any kind of community service would help? Even just a few weekends.
 
  • #26
nobody suggested 'get laid'

what is this.. physics forums or some theist society :biggrin:
 
  • #27
Put some Roger Miller on the turntable, and you'll be fine.

[Showing my age.]
 
  • #28
Huckleberry said:
I'm not sure why you feel lonely. You have friends. You have dates. You have an active life. Where is this loneliness coming from? Why are you not fulfilled?

I have recovered some. It was just an incredibly intense feeling of sadness and loneliness that one night. Rather despairing. I still don't feel all that fulfilled or connected to anything, but it's all right. I'm a fairly self-contained person.

I've always found that helping others makes me feel better about myself. It gives me a sense of purpose and hope that I find very rewarding. Maybe working at a soup kitchen or any kind of community service would help? Even just a few weekends.

I'm not a very giving person, huckleberry. I'm also incredibly narcissistic and rather arrogant. I'll help people if I have the means and they ask, but I'm not going out of my way to volunteer for any of this. I've got plenty of soup if anyone wants to come over, though. I have been homeless before and swore I would pay forward the kindness of people that helped me. I've taken people in before, but no shelters or soup kitchens.
 
  • #29
Alright. Well, I'm relieved to hear that you're feeling a little better. Hopefully that continues.

Being homeless sucks. Taking someone into your home is much more personal than any soup kitchen or shelter. Getting down into the grit of things seems to be the lesson of the artist. Nobody comes out unscathed.

I wish you well,
Huck
 
  • #30
loseyourname said:
I'm also incredibly narcissistic and rather arrogant.
Puts me in mind of Eric Bogosian as the self-absorbed artist: "I want you all to love me...even though I hate all of you."
 
  • #31
Loseyourname

You state of mind is not all that surprising considering you've got Ian Curtis in your avitar!

I had Joy Division on my turntable non-stop when I was in college and I was in a perpetual mental funk. I can't say the music was the cause of the state of mind, or if my state of mind was what made the music so good. Anyway, my advice has always been: exercise. Some good long-distance endurance exercise. It works faster than Zoloft or imiprimine.
 
  • #32
Huckleberry said:
I've always found that helping others makes me feel better about myself. It gives me a sense of purpose and hope that I find very rewarding. Maybe working at a soup kitchen or any kind of community service would help? Even just a few weekends.
I agree with Huckleberry 100%. It's great therapy if you can motivate yourself to get down to the shelter and volunteer.

If helping people isn't your thing, I highly recommend helping out at an animal shelter. Go walk the dogs, pet the cats. It's unbelievably difficult to be in a bad or lonely mood when some unfortunate critter is licking your face out of sincere gratitude. :smile:
 
  • #33
I don't suppose now is the time to mention the Lakers didn't make it in the play-offs. I wonder how the Suns are doing... Oh just kiddin' :smile:

I know you don't like personal observations (though you did start this thread), but you are so young, intelligent, and cute (if I might say). You have all the world and many years of life in front of you. From your posts, and the poetry thread, etc., you strike me as having an artistic side, and to be a deep, spiritual person. My father is like that, and moodiness goes along with that. So maybe it's just the small price to pay for all your talents, huh? :biggrin:
 
  • #34
loseyourname said:
I'm not a very giving person, huckleberry. I'm also incredibly narcissistic and rather arrogant.

This statement struck me as odd. I've never heard someone who was truly narcissistic and arrogant come right out and say so. Or, perhaps that's part of the problem. You may have just hit one of those points in life where you sit down and think about where you are, where you came from and where you want to go. Perhaps these qualities stand out to you now because it bothers you when you feel that way? You may not be arrogant all the time, but when you do act arrogantly, perhaps it bothers you after-the-fact, so it stands out to you? I ask because I just don't think someone who was always arrogant would have the humility to recognize that aspect of their personality and admit to it. We all go through stages like that, where what worked for us while we were young and feeling invincible just doesn't work for how we want to lead our adult lives. Sometimes there's also a degree of peer pressure involved -- a sense that everyone who knows you is going to look at you like you've just grown three heads if you suddenly change the way you do things.

I could be wrong, I hardly know you well enough from this one forum to get inside your head, so take that observation any way you want. If it sounds like it could be you, then take the bull by the horns and make that change you're seeking. If I'm way off base, well, maybe it'll come in handy as advice for someone else some day.
 
  • #35
Sounds like good advice to just about anyone, MB. I can relate.

But one question, how long can be considered 'a stage'? Years with just a few weak moments is alright, right? Just checking.

Despite, when we have our downs we may have a chance to look at out lives more realistically than when we are 'up and running, consumed without daily activities. It's a chanse to take a look in the mirror, grunt and continue on whatever new revealed road. (I don't make much of a poet... :redface: )
 

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