Loneliness vs isolation.

Loneliness, Depression & Relationship Forum

Help Support Loneliness, Depression & Relationship Forum:

Joshjames

New member
Joined
Aug 20, 2020
Messages
3
Reaction score
17
I wanted to open up a discussion about the differences between isolation and loneliness.
I was married for 10+ years with a family, typical suburban working life… and I remember being very lonely.. going to work each day, doing my job going home and not being able to talk about work cause it’s too technical to the wife.. and the kids doing their own thing… it was sad and I was lonely for sure…. However in many ways it’s very common.
Where now I am isolated and it’s so much worse.. it’s life destroying and mind destroying… let me explain.


Where fast forward a decade more or so and my kids are grown up (20+ years old living their own lives) I’ve been divorced for 15 years.. I had a couple long relationships in their but ultimately the last 5 years I’ve been single and NOW.. I’m isolated….

I work from home, I write code on my own as a contractor for big companies and pretty much only have to email some people reports and links to code repos and documentation….
I have no friends.
I haven’t had a partner for years.
I tried dating on and off in those years with poor success in fact after dozens of rejections sometimes rather brutal and hurtful rejections and ghosting I concluded trying to date was making me feel so much worse..

when COVID started i was living in an apartment and working from home and I realised I would go weeks without talking to a single other human in person…
It slowly got worse and worse and longer and longer between human interaction..
till by about a year ago I realised I’d been isolated so much that I think I crossed some sort of line and I was no longer a normal member of society, when I did rarely talk to someone in person it felt almost painful from the anxiety and speaking out loud had become so rare I would stumble my words and realise I was a total weirdo.
I would on average interact with someone once a month and then it would be like a postman or a sales person..

So several months back I purchased a few hundred acres about 10 hours west of the city I was living in… I finished up my last contract and used the money to purchase a big 4wd, tools, solar panels, lithium batteries, space x’s starlink internet and moved out there, there was an old run down farm house that I’ve fixed up.. did all the electrical wiring myself (background in electrical engineering) and plumbing….
Now I live many hours from the closest town, far far away from society…. There’s a part of me that is screaming out saying “what are you doing… you’ve been going down hill and now you’re going to be a total recluse… within another year or two you’ll never be able to reintegrate yourself back in to society”.

But another part of me that just saw the writing on the wall and worked out this is who I am… I’m not even 40 yet.. and feel like I’ve completely given up on life… I was hurt too much by women and now I just can’t even attempt to find someone..
sometimes I almost cry thinking about the fact I’ll never get to lay in bed with a woman again and feel all those wonderful feelings you feel when they lay on your chest and you play with their hair…
But it is what it is… every attempt I made did nothing but come back to hurt me worse.
At least this new future is known… I know what each day will bring.. I know that I’ll never be used and abused again.
And there’s so much out here on the land in the forest to do…
Rant over :)
 
Last edited:

Rohini

Rohini Moon
Joined
Sep 8, 2022
Messages
1,577
Reaction score
1,284
Location
The North
o several months back I purchased a few hundred acres about 10 hours west of the city I was living in… I finished up my last contract and used the money to purchase a big 4wd, tools, solar panels, lithium batteries, space x’s starlink internet and moved out there, there was an old run down farm house that I’ve fixed up.. did all the electrical wiring myself (background in electrical engineering) and plumbing….
Now I live many hours from the closest town, far far away from society….
That's very impressive. (y)
Also, sounds great & ideal to me. I'd be interested in hearing more about how you went about doing all the electrical wiring/plumbing. You should be proud of yourself in a lot of ways.. if you ask me. Self-sufficiency is admirable.
 

Joshjames

New member
Joined
Aug 20, 2020
Messages
3
Reaction score
17
That's very impressive. (y)
Also, sounds great & ideal to me. I'd be interested in hearing more about how you went about doing all the electrical wiring/plumbing. You should be proud of yourself in a lot of ways.. if you ask me. Self-sufficiency is admirable.
Yeah like day to day since moving out here I’m doing a lot better than when I was just sitting in my apartment.. working out of bed and sleeping half the day.. eating ice cream every night cause I’d given up caring anymore…
Now I get up and work the garden, check the tanks.. check the solar panels and batteries.. walk to dogs up the back of the property and check the sheep and chickens.. wander down to the creek and check my home made hydro electric generator.. between the solar panels and the hydro I’m generating about 1800 watts an hour which I split to two 40 amp charge controllers across 2x200 amp hour lithium batteries..
I can power everything for about 3 days without sunlight from the batteries so I have had to run the generator when it rained for a week but that was before I finished the hydro generator so I’ll see now… I built the whole power setup for about $7,500 all the wiring myself for the house… I’m totally off the grid there’s no cell phone service here but I have starlink so I just use wifi for everything straight to space!
As you can probably tell I have had a lot of fun setting it all up… but still… I’m completely isolated, it’s not healthy but the reality is I’ve just gotten used to it…
I don’t think about missed love or connection anymore.. so it doesn’t hurt .. it’s a distant memory however there is a rational part of my mind that says… that’s so sad.. that I’ve just accepted such a lonely isolated life.. but oh well I guess.
 

JesseC

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 28, 2016
Messages
939
Reaction score
971
Location
Eastern Pennsylvania
You have just described my fantasy. I've designed all of the utility sources right down to a septic tank that never needs servicing. I'm kind of a 'set it and forget it' mentality.

I'd need more than 1800 watts, or a switching control board to let systems timeshare. I think I have a solution. Those are things better worked out once they exist.

Alas, constant, and I'll add "useless" medical expenses has hit my finances hard, to say nothing of the difficulty in accomplishing things on my own due to those illnesses.

I'm afraid of the isolation, but I've never been a contented member of society. I'm not misanthropic as much as just not having the energy to constantly deal with people. They can be so exhausting. I would accept the isolation for the chance of having a spread like yours.

My relationship is tenuous. We have agreed to a divorce... as soon as we can both manage the financial blow without crashing. Meanwhile we live together separately.

I fix and maintain the… well, everything on the property through the day. But at night I have a new world I enter. I've found a home in my writing. In fact I've written your property. I've installed my utility designs. And I live contentedly… until some strange happenstance throws an irresistible someone at me and she manages to make herself at home in my life.

So I guess even in fantasy I don't face the isolation. But given my current circumstances I think I could. Living alone with someone isn't the same, but it might serve as practice.

Anyway… you might spend a little free time inside of your idea of a perfect life and put it to paper… or to file in your case. Who actually uses a pencil anymore. Designing a virtual life really does limit the affects of isolation.
 

constant stranger

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 8, 2013
Messages
5,758
Reaction score
278
Location
mid west USA
@Joshjames: You describe a prepper's ambitions made real....my hat's off to you, well done! I envy the off grid homestead you had fun setting up, but you said it clearly.....the isolation isn't healthy. And getting used to the isolation is moving in an unhealthy direction.....just my opinion.
I don't have any answers or advice to fix the discontent that I sense you're voicing, but I'm reminded of a comment made by survivors of one of history's really extreme scenarios.....the Third Reich's slave labor camps and that was that the first people to die were the loners.
OK, I get it, your situation is way different than theirs but what they witnessed speaks eloquently of human social needs.

I'm 30 years older than you and I'm a social isolate, or pretty close to it, and I'd encourage you to find some version of meshing with the right people for you in the right way for you before you're in the twilight of your life like I am.
 

constant stranger

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 8, 2013
Messages
5,758
Reaction score
278
Location
mid west USA
I go to church on Sundays and I'm an usher there 2 months out of the year. For 5 months each year, every Saturday morning, I have a paying hobby/micro business. Other than that I'm isolated.
I've planted 3 rows of oak trees, they're all about 10 years old now and I've nurtured them through drought, ice storms and Japanese beetle infestations. I visualize them still being here decades after I'm dead.......3 rows of large, shady trees bearing witness to my existence at one time: I used to live here, I left these behind, enjoy the shade, let your children climb up into them.
 

TheHouseWins

New member
Joined
Jan 10, 2019
Messages
2
Reaction score
4
In regards to loneliness vs isolation, I find myself comfortable with being lonely rather than take the risk of my fantasy of isolation.

I find myself very much the same in your pre-isolation period. I am currently married (11 yrs) and I have two young kids. I homeschool my kids and work part time as a professor in mathematics. I find myself doing my 'work' (it is pure enjoyment for me) along with my wife duties and at the end of the day my husband finds no interest in me beyond physical intimacy. My work is not even technical and he has no interest in me.

When I go teach at the college part-time, I interact with my students and care deeply for their studies but I never feel the need to have any more than that. I show up, teach, grade, tutor if needed, and that is all. I find myself content with not making more relationships.

I fantasize running away with the kids to live like you described but I will never do so for fear of making them(my kids) unable to work in society and follow their own dreams/needs. So I find myself learning how to be content with loneliness in the partner sense. When my kids are awake and we go on our adventures, I don't feel lonely. I also know my kids are growing and I want them to go out to the world without me. I am not going to stifle their potential because it fills my social needs.

I have no desire to try to find someone else romantically. I even wonder if I will divorce or just continue to exist in a home where the other person doesn't even care to know me beyond what creature comforts I make. I relate a lot to how you described laying in the arms of another. I feel when I lay with my husband the enjoyment of physical touch has been sucked away with him and that I rather just have a toy and a large pillow to lay against.

For me, loneliness is easier. I would need to be so much braver to go obtain isolation.
 

Sir Joseph

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 12, 2019
Messages
306
Reaction score
131
Location
Worldwide Traveler
I wanted to open up a discussion about the differences between isolation and loneliness.
I was married for 10+ years with a family, typical suburban working life… and I remember being very lonely.. going to work each day, doing my job going home and not being able to talk about work cause it’s too technical to the wife.. and the kids doing their own thing… it was sad and I was lonely for sure…. However in many ways it’s very common.
Where now I am isolated and it’s so much worse.. it’s life destroying and mind destroying… let me explain.

Joshjames, your adventurous life does sound intriguing, especially for the many here that feel like social outcasts one way or another. I have a friend doing the same thing in central Texas and have shared his homesteading progress over the past few years.
While your move from a city apartment to the country may offer you busier, more active days that make life more agreeable, I would offer a counter point that others haven't mentioned.

As a Christian, I believe that we were created for a purpose - to have relationships. God wants us to know and love him and to learn how to love others. That's the whole point of life, and if we miss that, nothing else matters in the end. You've already done better than me by having kids that hopefully give you some love and ongoing relational interaction. But you're way too young to be giving up on building new friendships and finding a girl in life.

Like the others, I compliment you for the bold move you've made to the country where life can be better in many ways, but I also encourage you to actively pursue new and better relationships. With every 100 quick greetings to strangers you meet, you should be able to add a new friend or acquaintance to your life each year. And at your young age, that adds up to a whole lot of future relationships to look forward to - a whole lot of enrichment and purpose added to your life that the land won't provide.
 

Dotblonde67

Active member
Joined
Aug 16, 2022
Messages
41
Reaction score
41
Location
Wakefield
For those who say that they are now comfortable with living either a lonely existence or living in isolation, I admire your strength so much. In my belief, I honestly feel that these two things are biggest destroyers of mental and physical health, however, there always being two sides to things, it can be argued that living in an unhappy, loveless or violent marriage/relationship is equally destructive.
I have done both, and at the age of 55, I feel my life might as well be over. It feels impossible to meet someone and there's a great fear of meeting the wrong sort of man sadly. I was truly spoilt as I grew up blessed with a loving Father who was an amazing family man and I think I expected to meet someone like him. I married at 16 to a man 7 years my senior who sadly, I found was a "cold fish" and did nothing but control and criticise. I stuck it out 19 years and had 3 beautiful children, and have since searched for my "Knight in shining armour" .....
I'm a kind, trusting person, not moody, bossy, love animals and I look good for my age, but I feel I'm destined to remain lonely and my depression has become serious recently. I've been out driving and thought about speeding up and hitting a tree, I sat in a Costa Coffee house today and it took all my resilience not to burst out crying.
And then, when family or friends ask how I'm doing.... It's always the usual "I'm fine thanks"
 
Joined
Mar 21, 2020
Messages
15,713
Reaction score
7,337
Location
In my mind
For those who say that they are now comfortable with living either a lonely existence or living in isolation, I admire your strength so much. In my belief, I honestly feel that these two things are biggest destroyers of mental and physical health, however, there always being two sides to things, it can be argued that living in an unhappy, loveless or violent marriage/relationship is equally destructive.
I have done both, and at the age of 55, I feel my life might as well be over. It feels impossible to meet someone and there's a great fear of meeting the wrong sort of man sadly. I was truly spoilt as I grew up blessed with a loving Father who was an amazing family man and I think I expected to meet someone like him. I married at 16 to a man 7 years my senior who sadly, I found was a "cold fish" and did nothing but control and criticise. I stuck it out 19 years and had 3 beautiful children, and have since searched for my "Knight in shining armour" .....
I'm a kind, trusting person, not moody, bossy, love animals and I look good for my age, but I feel I'm destined to remain lonely and my depression has become serious recently. I've been out driving and thought about speeding up and hitting a tree, I sat in a Costa Coffee house today and it took all my resilience not to burst out crying.
And then, when family or friends ask how I'm doing.... It's always the usual "I'm fine thanks"
I'm sorry you are in so much pain. I don't know what the answer for you is. But, please try not to dwell on what you don't have unless it's for a plan to get what you want. I'm one of those people that is pretty good all alone. But, I guess it's because I really don't believe a great loving relationship is possible for me. So, I've completely taken it out of the realm of possibilities instead of dreaming, thinking, and hoping for it to happen some day. Once I accepted that then I started realizing all the benefits to being all alone and swung even further to mostly isolation.
 

Rvanson

Just another lonely man.
Joined
Apr 9, 2022
Messages
47
Reaction score
44
Location
Northern California
For those who say that they are now comfortable with living either a lonely existence or living in isolation, I admire your strength so much. In my belief, I honestly feel that these two things are biggest destroyers of mental and physical health, however, there always being two sides to things, it can be argued that living in an unhappy, loveless or violent marriage/relationship is equally destructive.
I have done both, and at the age of 55, I feel my life might as well be over. It feels impossible to meet someone and there's a great fear of meeting the wrong sort of man sadly. I was truly spoilt as I grew up blessed with a loving Father who was an amazing family man and I think I expected to meet someone like him. I married at 16 to a man 7 years my senior who sadly, I found was a "cold fish" and did nothing but control and criticise. I stuck it out 19 years and had 3 beautiful children, and have since searched for my "Knight in shining armour" .....
I'm a kind, trusting person, not moody, bossy, love animals and I look good for my age, but I feel I'm destined to remain lonely and my depression has become serious recently. I've been out driving and thought about speeding up and hitting a tree, I sat in a Costa Coffee house today and it took all my resilience not to burst out crying.
And then, when family or friends ask how I'm doing.... It's always the usual "I'm fine thanks"
 

Rvanson

Just another lonely man.
Joined
Apr 9, 2022
Messages
47
Reaction score
44
Location
Northern California
Dotblonde67,

I have not posted here in some time now. I can relate you. I am sorry that you are hurting. Some people go out of their way to ignore us or leave us to our machinations. I post this so you and the rest of us, wish we could help you, but after living lonely life's, all we can do is to support you. I am sorry I haven't been to this forum in 6 months, but I intend to change that. I have found some happiness in helping out other people. I visit an automotive forum to help peple out with repairing their vehicles, as I was going into becoming an auto-tech in junior college, but had to drive for my now deceased father, so I worked on his trucks and light vehicles. I am particularly knowledgable in automotive air-conitioning as it was an up and coming system that many cars and pickups didnt have when I was a young man. I am and always have believed in God, no matter what happened to me. I use logic and hide my emotions to stay alive on this planet. Overall my life hasn't been as it was and is for other human beings, no matter my difficulties in my life. Even though I doubt that I will live into very old age, I keep on keeping on.
I wish and hope that you can adapt to this way of living.
May god bless you, even you you may not believe in God.

-Robert
 

kookieOreo1

Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2022
Messages
16
Reaction score
14
Location
no where
The worst part is, you are not single and yet you feel lonely... finding out lies after lie... I'm literally at my breaking point. 💔
 

Dotblonde67

Active member
Joined
Aug 16, 2022
Messages
41
Reaction score
41
Location
Wakefield
Dotblonde67,

I have not posted here in some time now. I can relate you. I am sorry that you are hurting. Some people go out of their way to ignore us or leave us to our machinations. I post this so you and the rest of us, wish we could help you, but after living lonely life's, all we can do is to support you. I am sorry I haven't been to this forum in 6 months, but I intend to change that. I have found some happiness in helping out other people. I visit an automotive forum to help peple out with repairing their vehicles, as I was going into becoming an auto-tech in junior college, but had to drive for my now deceased father, so I worked on his trucks and light vehicles. I am particularly knowledgable in automotive air-conitioning as it was an up and coming system that many cars and pickups didnt have when I was a young man. I am and always have believed in God, no matter what happened to me. I use logic and hide my emotions to stay alive on this planet. Overall my life hasn't been as it was and is for other human beings, no matter my difficulties in my life. Even though I doubt that I will live into very old age, I keep on keeping on.
I wish and hope that you can adapt to this way of living.
May god bless you, even you you may not believe in God.

-Robert
Thank you Robert, and I definitely do believe in God. Hoping that many blessings come your way 🙏 💜
 

Dotblonde67

Active member
Joined
Aug 16, 2022
Messages
41
Reaction score
41
Location
Wakefield
The worst part is, you are not single and yet you feel lonely... finding out lies after lie... I'm literally at my breaking point. 💔
So sorry you are feeling like this and by the sounds of things, being treated very badly.
Really hope you can get things sorted ❤
 

Unsigned

The Lone Monger
Joined
Nov 29, 2022
Messages
254
Reaction score
214
Location
New York
For those who say that they are now comfortable with living either a lonely existence or living in isolation, I admire your strength so much. In my belief, I honestly feel that these two things are biggest destroyers of mental and physical health, however, there always being two sides to things, it can be argued that living in an unhappy, loveless or violent marriage/relationship is equally destructive.
I have done both, and at the age of 55, I feel my life might as well be over. It feels impossible to meet someone and there's a great fear of meeting the wrong sort of man sadly. I was truly spoilt as I grew up blessed with a loving Father who was an amazing family man and I think I expected to meet someone like him. I married at 16 to a man 7 years my senior who sadly, I found was a "cold fish" and did nothing but control and criticise. I stuck it out 19 years and had 3 beautiful children, and have since searched for my "Knight in shining armour" .....
I'm a kind, trusting person, not moody, bossy, love animals and I look good for my age, but I feel I'm destined to remain lonely and my depression has become serious recently. I've been out driving and thought about speeding up and hitting a tree, I sat in a Costa Coffee house today and it took all my resilience not to burst out crying.
And then, when family or friends ask how I'm doing.... It's always the usual "I'm fine thanks"
Look on the bright side - at least you have the kids.
Since you refer to them as beautiful, I imagine they are good people and care about you.
So you'll have children & grandchildren to love you and take care of you into old age.

I'm completely alone.
It's tough at times, sometimes really bad.
But mostly I am OK with it and deal with it just fine.
I've been alone my whole life.
Family was useless to me. I had problems from the get go but they never gave a **** and never tried to help.
Parents are dead and sister is 100% dead to me (screwed me out of my mother's will and took everything for her and her kids).
But, like I said, I am a lifelong loner and I am used to it.
Wish I had a girl to be with, but I have very high expectations on that front. Unrealistic at this point in my life -- but that won't change.
I have Escorts Services to fill the void (been doing that for decades) and booze to self medicate as needed.
Overall I'm alright. Like the cockroaches at Yucca Flats after the A-Bomb test. I survive. I remain.
 

Latest posts

Top