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Loneliness
#1
Hello everyone,

I am a 37 year old male. Married, 2 kids. Looking from the outside, most people would be happy to live my life. I am in the final year of my PhD. I have an excellent job, high income, just bought myself 53.000€ car.. I am well respected in the community as I am also internationally known as a professional at my job. I have achieved so much, and yet I have never been so miserable, sad and depressed. I feel no joy in ANY OF THIS! It has just become a statistic.

Despite my wife and two wonderful children, I feel so alone.. It's like it all came at too high a price. Most of my childhood friends weren’t nearly as ambitious, and as I stood apart, I began to lose those friends. Most of them felt envious, and I understand that. But still, I never tried to make them feel less worthy. And so, today I can't say I have friends. I have colleagues I work with. People I can have coffee with and talk about Corona etc. But, those are not the people I can myself confide to.

Most of the time I could handle it all. But, in the midst of everything, my mother killed herself this Christmas. I think I'll never forget the sight of her and the rope, as I am the one who found her. And the more I think about it all, the more I’m sure it’s one of the triggers that made me start to feel this way. There's no more joy in anything ... I'm just doing things to get them off my list. I'm not sure what to do anymore. How to find happiness again? What direction should I follow? Is time simply gonna fix everything? The loneliness is killing me.. But, I can't nor do I want force people to be my friends. And I certainly don't need friends like the ones I had before.
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#2
I am so sorry for your loss. I too was the one who found my mother, though under less tragic circumstances and longer ago. It wouldn't surprise me at all if that was one of the prompts because it sure can have an effect.
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#3
(06-26-2020, 08:02 PM)Tracer Wrote: Hello everyone,

I am a 37 year old male. Married, 2 kids. Looking from the outside, most people would be happy to live my life. I am in the final year of my PhD. I have an excellent job, high income, just bought myself 53.000€ car.. I am well respected in the community as I am also internationally known as a professional at my job. I have achieved so much, and yet I have never been so miserable, sad and depressed. I feel no joy in ANY OF THIS! It has just become a statistic.

Despite my wife and two wonderful children, I feel so alone.. It's like it all came at too high a price. Most of my childhood friends weren’t nearly as ambitious, and as I stood apart, I began to lose those friends. Most of them felt envious, and I understand that. But still, I never tried to make them feel less worthy. And so, today I can't say I have friends. I have colleagues I work with. People I can have coffee with and talk about Corona etc. But, those are not the people I can myself confide to.

Most of the time I could handle it all. But, in the midst of everything, my mother killed herself this Christmas. I think I'll never forget the sight of her and the rope, as I am the one who found her. And the more I think about it all, the more I’m sure it’s one of the triggers that made me start to feel this way. There's no more joy in anything ... I'm just doing things to get them off my list. I'm not sure what to do anymore. How to find happiness again? What direction should I follow? Is time simply gonna fix everything? The loneliness is killing me.. But, I can't nor do I want force people to be my friends. And I certainly don't need friends like the ones I had before.

I was similarly programmed. Good job for carrying out the steps! If you do this, this, this, and this, you will have a great happy life. I drank the Kool-Aid too. So, I went into the military, bought a house, college, blaaa, blaaaa, jobs, blaaa, blaa, worked hard, more school, more credentials, blaa, blaa. I did stop short of having a family though. It was mostly due to my bad looks and poor social skills. Sure I could have settled a couple times for someone only viewing me as a meal ticket. But, I decided not to do that. I sure am glad for that past decision now.

The only four people I really cared about, my grandparents, my mom, and my dad, all died within a three year period. They didn't go quickly. Instead all but one went needing tons of very personal care, which I, solely, provided, and they died painful horrible deaths. It really Fd me up and I heavily relied on alcohol to get me through those years. Sympathy was all around me but that doesn't mean a damn thing. I got zero help from my fake friends and zero help from work. Quite the opposite.

A few years later I sort of woke up and started to access my life and decided to make changes. If I continued as I had been doing I could easily become a miserable $millionaire. But, what the F would that do for me? That wouldn't make me happy. I could just buy more crap that I didn't really need or even want. Then I would stress about all the things devaluing my savings to an even higher degree. Maybe it was a very early mid-life crisis. I don't know and I don't care. 

I decided to live life as I wanted to not how society dictated I should. Soon I was able to ignore the pressure from others. I stopped working and pulled away from society. I focused solely on myself. I'm not saying anybody else should do that. But, it's what I decided to do. Life is much better for me now.

Maybe you are heading towards a mid-life crisis. As you get older friends disappear. It's natural. People get more selective and pull back form doing stuff. There are tons of people on this site. Yet, from what I can't tell very few befriend other users. But there are a lot of nut jobs here including myself. Ha! ha!

My advice would be to slowly decide what things you would like to do before you are too old to do them. Then make real plans to do them. Try to slowly pull back from doing things because you have to do them, you need to do them, or you believe you should do them. I'm sure you have set your family up well. So now it's time to focus more on yourself, your wife and kids. Spend quality time with the people that are close to you and ignore the rest. Life is lonely because most people don't really give a shit about you. Your so called "work family" is complete BS. All the possessions we have are worthless to our emotional needs. They just clutter things up. When you find people that do care about you take and give back all you can because they are all you are going to have. It's very difficult to gain new real friends the older you get.

It'll be difficult to get much sympathy on this site because many have nobody that cares about them, myself included. They see your life as a goal that they are trying to strive towards. Just finding a mate is seemingly impossible to many. I gave up on it quite a few years ago. I know that the grass usually isn't green on the other side. It's just a mirage. But others still don't realize that.
[Image: Jameslooksupagain.png]Is there something you wanted?
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#4
Tracer, I've read and considered your post for awhile today and tried to determine how to offer some encouragement, support, or wise council.  I think I can do that best with a video, which I've just watched again myself for a 4th time to see if its applicable for you. It is.

It sounds like you've had a blessed life in many ways, but like others, you still struggle with a purpose for life and pursuit of meaningful relationships. I think its commendable that you're astute enough to even ponder such things rather than settling for temporary pleasures or mere daily satisfaction.  You deserve more and are right to seek it.

This half hour sermon is interesting, entertaining, and worth your time.  It's pretty normal, main stream, healthful stuff so don't put your defenses up too quickly.  Give it a watch and see if it stirs your heart.  If it does, I have another to offer.

https://youtu.be/KdLmOq048NM  
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#5
(06-29-2020, 01:39 AM)Finished Wrote: Maybe you are heading towards a mid-life crisis. As you get older friends disappear. It's natural. People get more selective and pull back form doing stuff.

That also crossed my mind. As we get older, and especially when raising kids, priorities change. Social life is replaced with the "survival instinct" to find a better job, to provide for family and home.. and that takes sacrifices. Mid-life crisis? I hope not  Big Grin

(06-29-2020, 01:39 AM)Finished Wrote: My advice would be to slowly decide what things you would like to do before you are too old to do them. Then make real plans to do them. Try to slowly pull back from doing things because you have to do them, you need to do them, or you believe you should do them. I'm sure you have set your family up well. So now it's time to focus more on yourself, your wife and kids. Spend quality time with the people that are close to you and ignore the rest. Life is lonely because most people don't really give a shit about you. Your so called "work family" is complete BS. All the possessions we have are worthless to our emotional needs. They just clutter things up. When you find people that do care about you take and give back all you can because they are all you are going to have. It's very difficult to gain new real friends the older you get.

I totally agree. I work hard and that's why usually money is not the problem. But like you wrote, all the possessions we have are worthless to our emotional needs. Still, I feel I must do it for the sake of being responsible for the family, even if it means putting myself and my needs aside. Its like being trapped in a situation were I don't feel like I have much choice. And friends, yes, there is nothing much I can do about it. I don't like the situation, but I must accept it as is.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

(06-29-2020, 06:45 AM)Sir Joseph Wrote: Tracer, I've read and considered your post for awhile today and tried to determine how to offer some encouragement, support, or wise council.  I think I can do that best with a video, which I've just watched again myself for a 4th time to see if its applicable for you. It is.

It sounds like you've had a blessed life in many ways, but like others, you still struggle with a purpose for life and pursuit of meaningful relationships. I think its commendable that you're astute enough to even ponder such things rather than settling for temporary pleasures or mere daily satisfaction.  You deserve more and are right to seek it.

This half hour sermon is interesting, entertaining, and worth your time.  It's pretty normal, main stream, healthful stuff so don't put your defenses up too quickly.  Give it a watch and see if it stirs your heart.  If it does, I have another to offer.

https://youtu.be/KdLmOq048NM  

Thank you for the video. I found myself in pretty many things there. As a child raised in poor conditions (parents lost a home due to war) I did everything possible to avoid this for my own kids. My motivation was not to have money to be happy (although, I expected it), but because of the responsibility I felt for my family. Maybe that is why I'm not happy with anything, as nothing of it was done for me to feel happy. I did it because I felt I must, because I'm expected to do it. And that's pressure, not pleasure or happiness. I think I need to start thinking on my own self a little bit for a change, to find things and interests that would fill this emptiness I currently have and stop living in this constant "tornado preparations mode". Thanks.
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#6
Tracer, appreciate the positive response.  I don't know if you're up for another sermon or not so I'll not preach to you anymore after this.  But here's my second and last video which you may choose to watch or ignore.  It's a bit more serious than the last, but an excellent presentation from an exceptional author, speaker, and Christian Apologist. I think it's an applicable follow-up for you in seeking direction and satisfaction with your life.

https://youtu.be/Z5sJvoC_ip0
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#7
Appreciate it! Will sure look at it.
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#8
Tracer hope you don't mind me chipping in with an idea.Have you ever considered the activities you enjoyed when you were younger before marriage and kids played a big part in your life.I am a bit older than yourself and discovering again my passion for off road biking,swimming,buying and selling at car boots,gardening walking in the countryside breiving fresh air all interests I enjoyed before marriage are making me feel life is so enjoyable again.

I cant quite describe fully the feeling of elation I'm getting from following these passions again but involving my son and extended family has just made life a lot of fun again.

Hope you find enjoyment again in what ever you do.
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#9
(07-05-2020, 07:56 PM)Just Games Wrote: Tracer hope you don't mind me chipping in with an idea.Have you ever considered the activities you enjoyed when you were younger before marriage and kids played a big part in your life.I am a bit older than yourself and discovering again my passion for off road biking,swimming,buying and selling at car boots,gardening walking in the countryside breiving fresh air all interests I enjoyed before marriage are making me feel life is so enjoyable again.

I cant quite describe fully the feeling of elation I'm getting from following these passions again but involving my son and extended family has just made life a lot of fun again.

Hope you find enjoyment again in what ever you do.

Yes. I'm already on that track. I have been practicing martial arts for 11 years and after 17 years of absence, last year I came back into that world. I feel more active now and it helps improve my mood. But what I find most satisfactory are the long walks. Almost every day, with music in my ears, I take 7.5 km (4.6 miles) walk that takes me about 80 mins. It's incredible how positively this affects me. It's my own personal time, away from wife and the kids (away from everyone, in fact). It helps me to clear my mind, to think about things and it reduces my stress. This is what I am missing at home most of the time, as there is no chance to have 80 min for myself due to wife, kids and other obligations. And that's a big find for me.. A ME time that I previously never tried to have.

Thanks.
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