According to the website Web Of Loneliness; 'According to the Existentialist, a human being's existence is a lonely existence. At the end of the day, we are all alone. Can anyone ever truly understand what it is to be you, to experience all the things you have experienced, to understand your joys and happiness, your pains and sorrows? Surely we can talk to other people about how we feel, we can draw pictures, we can play music, but all this attempt to communicate ultimately leaves something behind. We cannot always get our feelings, ideas or experiences across exactly. There is a painful reality that ultimately we are alone, by ourselves, and ultimately lonely.'
A somewhat clinical and psychological answer to the question.
I understand loneliness. Actually there are times that I feel like an expert on the subject. To me loneliness is the absence of quality interaction with other people. A life that is missing some of the essential building blocks needed to fill ones life with quality human interaction. Like love, daily contact with people that are meaningful to you or the opportunity to converse with someone about things that are meaningful to you. I suffer in part or wholly in all those areas.
My children are all grown and gone. I am divorced and live alone. My family is long distance. My car is broken down and to expensive to fix so I am stranded at home. I wake up each morning with no one to reach for, to say good morning to or share a cup of coffee. Basically the only time my phone rings is when someone feels compelled to sell me something.
I am starting to see some outward signs of this loneliness. Like increased conversations with myself. Which, as a writer, are not always a bad thing but self babbling is quite concerning. This babbling has even manifested itself in my singing loudly without concern for those that might hear me. If you heard my voice you would be scared.
There is a shroud of sadness that covers me 24/7 even though I am capable of concealing it and claiming that I am happy. Why is it that people can not admit their loneliness and sadness to others who might actually be able to help alleviate the situation? Embarrassment? Ego? A false sense of independence? In my case probably a bit of all three.
We all need to stay connected to our social institutions; marriage, work or groups that allow us to stay in touch with others. When our social institutions are deprived us we start to lose touch with things that keep us moving forward on a straight line.
Somehow I keep chugging on but at times I admit to being lost. The one thing I have always had was a vast sense of hope. Hope that tomorrow will be a better day. Hope that one day I will return to the social institutions that I crave.
In the mean time I spend my days looking, wanting and hoping like so many others.