Monday, May 23, 2016

ISOLATION, LONELINESS, DEPRESSION, DEATH

The conditions listed above are the buzzwords young(er) writers, reporters and professionals in the geriatric field use all the time when talking about people over 60.  Apparently not being social can lead to death ... 

These words have a negative connotation to me.  When I Googled "isolation" the photo below popped up.



And to me that looks like a perfect spot for relaxing, meditating, and enjoying the great outdoors.  Not isolation!  Same photo showed up under loneliness.  Alone is not always loneliness.  Sometimes it's a hard thing to accomplish .... getting time to be alone!

While I am a proponent of maintaining a social life as we age, methinks "they" protesteth too much.  I, for one, enjoy a lot of me, myself and I time.  Way more than I used to.  Actually, I cherish it!  There are a few days each week where there is nothing scheduled on the calendar.  Just the way I like it!  And at least once a week I don't even leave my property!

I do believe I, personally, need friends and in person friendships.  Just as I think others may not need it so much.  Who is to say what is normal or right?  Maybe if a person never leaves the house?  Maybe if a person begins hoarding?  Maybe if the person is not doing basic personal finances or personal hygiene or eating cat food?

For me, using social media is a daily thing ... text messages, Facebook and emails.  I have two high school buddies who email every Sunday to share our little boring lives.  Others I contact once a month.  Luckily some of my Facebook friends have become personal friends!  

On occasion, if I need background noise ... I listen to NPR or have Netflix running on the TV.  Mostly I enjoy the quiet!

13 comments:

  1. In all ages a certain percentage of people feel isolated, lonely and depressed but in the elderly the rest of the population seems to just accept that as 'normal' and not something that needs intervention or treatment. I struggle with finding the right balance of alone time and being with people. Being alone is often preferable to being with people who I don't particularly have much in common with.

    Something is wrong with my blog feeds! I wish I knew how to cure it so updates will start showing up in sidebars like yours.

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    1. Maybe I just accept the balance I have! It changes.

      When I posted on your page today the whole look was different!! Not sure what to tell you ....

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    2. I think I've got it all straighten out. It took me two hours of googling and reading but in the end I was very proud of myself. Unfortunately, though, your post got lost in the weird twilight zone my blog was in for a while.

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    3. WOW! Good for you! It takes all my patience to figure out what went wrong .... ugh! I did go back and did a shorter comment! Because I couldn't remember my witty one!

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  2. I think when we're comfortable with ourselves we don't mind and actually look forward to having time to ourselves. There are times when I miss having someone present to verbally engage. Gone are the days when I longed for even a few minutes to myself. I was not prepared for the demise of so many family and friends of all ages, both locally and distantly -- in recent years my only sibling bro on The Big Island. Making new connections has been more challenging than I imagined as other blogger widows have shared, too, with equal surprise. You're quite young yet, so make the most of these years and treasure those in your life.

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    1. Not sure about the "quite young yet" as you look about the same age as me! It is a bit more work making friends when we don't have the old familiar places ... kids in school, coworkers, church people, etc. I'm not much of a group joiner and I seem to be getting better at meeting ladies at Starbucks! We start out with the one thing in common!

      And I take my time, now, before getting TOO involved as some of my acquaintances did not pan out to friendships. We all become pickier with age ... and not everyone likes everyone. Especially ME! That Taurus thing going on!

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  3. Strange in that I have felt less alone, depressed, isolated since I HAVE been all alone. If the government came along and told me that I HAD to go to the Senior Center once a week--HAD to meet with people for lunch once a week--HAD to go out into the world twice a week, I just shoot myself! I LOVE my alone time and I am very healthy, physically and mentally, or so "they" tell me.

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    1. I sure agree with that! I really love having days of nothing. Often when I do make plans, when the event comes ... I don't feel like going!

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  4. Neat post! We all need to be heard, seen, felt, respected. For some a little goes a long way. Does for me. Brief and genuine is perfect.

    I like what you say about taking your time - not getting TOO involved, as some acquaintances don't pan out to friendships. Not fond of the acquaintance stage, got to get better at it.

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    1. The acquaintance stage IS tough. Probably a lot like courtship (if I can remember that far back). I really am a lot pickier about who I spend my time with. And even when I really like the person, I feel comfortable saying "no, I don't like going to the movies". (I have to get up every 15 minutes to stretch the joints ... much easier at home with the pause button. And my popcorn has REAL butter on it!)

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  5. The acquaintance stage is hard for me. Facebook helps me a lot ... you can read a lot about someone based on their posts. Some are just Debbie Downers and always complaining/whining/blaming. Some post 84 things a day ... toooo much for me. Extreme politics or religion .. ooops. Not for me. I learn not to invite those people. If they reach out to me ... I'm busy!

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  6. I could not agree more with this post. I was much more social and outgoing when I was younger, I needed more contact with people. It energized me, but I've come to appreciate my quiet time. I need it to rejuvenate.

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    1. We must now be "introverts" Being with others takes energy instead of provides energy. Small groups I love. Especially now that I don't have a built in companion to talk with when I don't know very many people at a party. I'm heading to a big party on Friday ... and I'm already a little nervous!

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