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The loneliness felt by the widowed or the divorced senior is different from that which an unmarried senior feels. If you are over fifty, unmarried, and feeling lonely then read on to find out more.
At one time not having a partner did not matter because you would have had your own circle of friends to have a good time with. But, with age, solo living takes over since many of your friends might have moved to different cities or died. This leaves you feeling socially isolated. Social isolation leads to loneliness which, in turn, can lead to declines in cognitive performance and even dementia.
Age brings with it many illnesses. This means more medications which can leave you feeling exhausted and can even affect your mobility. When this happens, you tend to become more house bound. If you are living alone in the house, it is but natural that you will start to feel lonely. After all, even if you have your circle of friends, they won’t be around all the time, the way a partner would have.
Maybe you have spent all your life looking after your parents. But, with time, either they are now no more or they have become old and suffering from ill health. You are growing in age as well. Hence looking after them now maybe taking a toll on your levels of energy. A routine work of care-giving is leaving you feeling exhausted due to which you begin to feel depressed.
Not having a partner to appreciate you – the way you look and the way you dress – may have left you feeling unimpressed and low about yourself. This can be a vicious circle wherein you stop looking after yourself and start looking haggard and unkempt. This, often, also contributes to feeling sad and lonely as well.
Seniors who live alone feel isolated. This feeling of isolation leads to various mental issues. Loneliness, in fact, is one of the major causes for depression. A study has shown that seniors who live alone have a greater chance of depression than those who live in houses where other people are present. Other effects of loneliness are:
If you are a senior living alone or if you know of someone who is then here is how he/she can be helped:
It is best to connect the senior to a centre that can help him with facilities like transport, various programmes where he can interact with others, be a point of contact for emergency situations.
Maybe you have not married all your life, but that does not mean that you cannot find yourself a partner now. So, try and be a little more open and find someone who you connect with – both at the physical and the mental level. You still have time to experience both love and passion.
Find yourself someone who you can have a fling with and enjoy some good sex with. Even if you are not ready for a long term commitment or any serious dating, you can always enjoy a short fling. Having sex, after all, calms the mind out, rejuvenates the body, and definitely reduces the loneliness.
Travelling reduces loneliness like no other activity. Not only do you then get to see new places, but you also get to meet and interact with new people and forge new friendships. So if you are unmarried and not under the burden of any marital duties, then take off from work for a while and go see the world.
If you know how to use technology to your advantage then you can keep in touch with more people – right from writing emails, to chatting online, to getting noticed on dating sites. Maybe you are still alone in your home, but a whole new world will open up to you wherein you can interact more with people. Sometimes, online friendships can be an effective supplement to real life ones.
Some classes can be therapeutic when it comes to dealing with depression and loneliness. This includes yoga, music, and art classes. So go on and join one today. Not only will you learn something new, and meet more like minded people, but you will also be fighting against the loneliness that is affecting your health.
Remember that your sense of loneliness is not related to your relationship status. It is a fallacy to think that a marriage is the solution. What you need is activities to keep you occupied, and like-minded people to be around with. Hence, now is the time when you make some changes in your way of living and you would have effectively dealt with the isolation that you have been feeling.