More and more people are talking about loneliness. In fact, research estimates that over 9 million in the UK are lonely at any given time. It’s something which affects us all during our lifetimes. For some people, it can be short-lived. For others, it is more enduring and becomes a permanent feature of their life. The gift of technology is a solution which can help alleviate people’s feelings of loneliness. It is a vital helping hand at a time when people feel at their lowest.
It’s easy to imagine that loneliness is a problem that affects only the very young and the very old. Often our image of a lonely person is a housebound elderly widow sitting alone in her empty house, or the little boy standing on a busy school playground with no friends to play with. However, the statistics tell a very different story. Up to 30% of the population of the UK reports feeling chronically lonely; one in ten people feel that they lack a close friend to confide in, and one in five feel unloved. That means that you almost certainly live, work or socialise with someone who feels lonely.
A subjective, unwelcome feeling of lack or loss of companionship. It happens when we have a mismatch between the quantity and quality of social relationships that we have, and those that we want.
Describes the number and type of social connections we have, but does not cover how we think about these relationships.
Describes the absence or loss of meaningful relationships meet a deeply felt need to be recognised and belong.
Describes a perceived lack of quantity as well as quality of relationships.