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Hoping to Help Others Struggling with Loneliness (suggestions)
I've been alone for 13 years now. I have been so lonely that it physically aches all over. I have never been alone like this before. I am a single mom. I took my daughter to many places and kid’s events and festivals over the years as she was growing up. I was always busy and always had plans for the day, so loneliness never had time. Raising a kid on your own is never easy and keeps you busy. But, she is now 21 and spreading her wings.  I have so much time now that if I don't have plans for the weekend or a home project, I get very depressed. I need to be on the go for most of the time. I have no friends, at least none that like to do things. Most just want to sit around and do nothing. It drives me crazy. I work all week and look at the same 4 walls every day. I don't want to look at them on the weekends as well. Anyhow, I found myself having more time when my daughter was around 11. That is when my loneliness and depression started. I had a rescue dog for many years, but he got old and sick and had to be put down from old age. My daughter was around 7 at the time so I decided to not get another dog at this point in my life. But at 11, she was going to friends’ homes and I found myself with a lot of time on my hands, so I decided to go rescue another dog.   If it weren't for my dog, I don't know how I would get through each day. Having pets in your life makes a world of difference folks! And it has been scientifically proven to reduce stress and loneliness. Some of you may not be able to have a pet for whatever reason so I also find volunteering in a wildlife center or your local Humane Society helping animals is very gratifying and fulfilling as well. Helping animals can fill a huge void in your life, I swear by it! Nothing like that feeling when you help an animal. 
About a 1 1/2 ago, I started to board a horse. I used to ride many years ago but got back into it recently. I'm glad I did. Most folks are much younger than me, so I haven't made any friend’s, but it gives me something to do by myself (or I join a trail ride) and nothing like the spirit of a horse to give you a boost of energy. 
One of my resolutions this year is to join some clubs or groups of my interest through Like ghost hunting? There is a group for that. Like canoeing, hiking or camping? There is a group for that. Book groups, movie groups, mom groups, single groups in various ages, dog groups, coffee groups, skiing, yoga, chat groups, health groups….the list goes on and on. Basically, whatever your interest or hobbies are, there is a group on for you. Have no one to travel with? There is a group for that too. Go to the site, open an account, set-up your profile, enter in your interests and the kilometers from your home that you would like the group to be near and it will give you suggested groups to join based on your choices. And it is free to join. Some groups may ask for a small yearly membership fee but that just covers the cost of them running their page on the site. It is usually never more that $20 but most groups do not have any fees but the things they plan might cost a few bucks. There is a great adventure group that go out weekly on day trips like going to wine tasting tours, hiking, camping, going to a bird sanctuary, moose watching etc.  You get weekly emails for dates to go to places, do things with others and so on. Now I sound like a commercial, but I thank god for that website. I hope that helps. Take it from someone who has been around the loneliness for many years. I got good at it.
There is another website called The Time of Your Life Tours. They also have great trips that you can join by yourself and meet others. A neighbour’s husband passed away last year. I started to talk to her and she really needed to connect with others. I suggested this website. She booked her first day trip and absolutely loved it. I will be going to some of their trips this year myself.
I still need to help myself, but I find when I help others, I do help myself as well. I hope anything I suggested will help someone.  Cheers

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