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Thread: The epidemic of loneliness

  1. #1
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    Default The epidemic of loneliness

    In this evolving covid world, we are more lonely and detached than ever. Three years into managing the virus; we have seriously damaged the culture and community for many all over the world and turning to cold technology to fill the void. I note that we may be losing many of our friends and family we no longer connect with. It has politically affected our choices, how we treat each other, loss of connection in work and encouraged us to mistrusts those institutions that help shape our communities. Without connection and trust of others, there is fewer good people become those folks we need; making a more lonely and less emotionally connected human communities we actually need to find the best solutions.

    I write this thinking of Jaime and the others like him. I wonder if he had been more connected on a personal level in his community would he have lived better or longer. I think he might have. In continuation of this thought, there are many other points of loneliness we see acted out in daily life and national news. No matter what, we all need to do better to be better and more connected.


    https://www.publichealth.columbia.ed...ent-loneliness

    Loneliness, the subjective feeling of inadequate meaningful connection to others, is prevalent throughout the U.S. In 2019, pre-COVID, 61 percent of Americans over the age of 18 years were lonely, a dramatic increase since the 1970s when rates were as low as 11 percent. While most loneliness research focuses on older adults, loneliness is not restricted to one stage of life. In comparison to the roughly 50 percent of adults over the age of 80 years who experience loneliness, the proportion of adolescents and young adults who experience loneliness reaches 71 percent. Contributing factors to the epidemic of loneliness may include changes in family structure and location, longer lives with high rates of loss of significant others in old age, a built environment fostering independence and isolation, weakening of local institutions that strengthened social capital, and the ways the Internet is used by young adults.

    While feeling lonely at times is a normal and perhaps necessary part of being human, chronic loneliness adversely affects health and wellbeing. Research on the effects of loneliness at the cellular level indicates that chronic loneliness elicits an immune response that promotes inflammation, and chronic inflammation can facilitate the onset of chronic diseases, including cardiovascular diseases, cancer, cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s disease, and frailty. There is also evidence that chronic loneliness leads to adverse mental health outcomes, such as increased rates of anxiety and depression. More broadly, loneliness appears to be a driver of “deaths of despair”—deaths due to alcohol, drugs, and suicide.
    Last edited by Ted Hoppe; 12-01-2022 at 02:27 PM.
    Without friends none of this is possible.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    We are a social species but with an instinctive 'wariness' of the other and with institutions like politics and media that for their own purposes seem intent on dividing us.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    I've seen a lot written on this over the past few weeks. One piece postulated that the trend was well in place prior to the pandemic, which merely accelerated the trend. The main thrust was that technology has enabled an entire generation to indulge in selfish isolation, and that we must reverse this trend or be lost. Toward the end I was convinced that it was written by a boomer whose commercial real estate properties were going vacant.

    I'm no sociologist, but it occurs to me that this whole notion of us as "social animals" could be founded in academic convenience... its easier to study groups, so groups get studied. See how SOCIAL we were!!! How much of that grouping occurred because of some compelling emotional bond, and how much because the group was able to thrive better (first in strictly survivalist terms, later in simple economic terms) than the individuals?

    Consider why we've adopted this evil isolation-enabling technology so thoroughly into our lives... BECAUSE WE LIKE IT.
    Why has the pandemic accelerated the trend (when some suggested that it would go the other way and make us cherish the socialization it denied us all the more)? Perhaps because it showed many of us that life went on without all of that often-forced socialization just fine.

    Are we trending toward isolation because people have become more selfish and less considerate?
    Are people becoming more selfish and less considerate because the isolation enables this behavior?
    I'm really not interested in the answer to those questions, nor am I interested in forcing solutions on society.
    When was the last time an established societal trend was actually reversed by a course-correcting initiative, anyway?

    People, by and large, suck. I'll continue to be quite selective of those with whom I share time and space. Loneliness is a risk I accept.
    "Visionary" is he who in every egg sees a carbonara.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    Introverts are shining right about now. Finally, some quiet.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    We have each other….

  6. #6
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    We have each other….
    and our fonts

  7. #7
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    Some people just seem to have a greater need for a personal connection. I have very little but I do feel connected to a greater Universe. Perhaps we all need the same total connectedness but find it in different ways, or suffer without it. Between my wife, the Universe, my plywood boat, and a variety of fonts, I lack nothing.
    There is no rational, logical, or physical description of how free will could exist. It therefore makes no sense to praise or condemn anyone on the grounds they are a free willed self that made one choice but could have chosen something else. There is no evidence that such a situation is possible in our Universe. Demonstrate otherwise and I will be thrilled.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Hoppe View Post
    I note that we may be losing many of our friends and family we no longer connect with.
    I have no problems with seeing my wife, kids, and grandkids as often as I want. From time to time phone calls serve as a connection. That is sufficient for me.

    My wife has increased her volunteer time. I don't know if that is cased by loneliness or not. My kids and grandkids seem to be running their lives without change.

    I am sure there are people who feel that they need to "connect" more than they are willing to.
    Life is complex.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    So many factors:

    narrowing of number of people who share interests
    change in ability to participate in activites - mobility, hearing and sight limitations, health limitations
    excessive proximity to uncongenial people due to increase in number of people on earth
    reduced core family size or interfamilial differences of opinion
    rise of TV as babysitter for adults
    wholesale evacuation from urban areas due to increase in basic wealth (also less good willed factors)
    automobile as guarantee of privacy
    departure of children from family home
    conclusion of superficial common interest areas once children have grown up
    failure of religion to practice what it preaches
    enlargement of human life span resulting in loss of physical capabilities due to old age
    need for both or all adults to work in order to survive in poorly managed world economy
    loss of social skills due to rise of TV as babysitter
    A society predicated on the assumption that everyone in it should want to get rich is not well situated to become either ethical or imaginative.

    Photographer of sailing and sailboats
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    I think, by and large, those of us who had personal connections to Jamie got as close to him as he was willing to let us. He could always hold intimacy at bay with alcohol, and most of those who connected with him were also adept at that.
    Last edited by elf; 12-01-2022 at 04:34 PM. Reason: typos
    A society predicated on the assumption that everyone in it should want to get rich is not well situated to become either ethical or imaginative.

    Photographer of sailing and sailboats
    And other things, too.
    http://www.landsedgephoto.com

  11. #11
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    Guess it depends where you live. Here there is a lot on the news lately about people and communities coming together to support each other and their towns after covid, fires, mouse plagues and a whole bunch of serious floods. Pretty much everything that happens around here is aimed at bringing people together. The people I know here who are lonely seem to be the ones with mental health issues or the natural born arseholes that you just don't like. JayInOz

  12. #12
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    Iíve had personal connections to 3 different women who, kickiní and screaminí, were talked into retirement homes. In all 3 cases they just blossomed being part of a community.
    ITS CHAOS, BE KIND

  13. #13
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    Quote Originally Posted by elf View Post
    I think, by and large, those of us who had personal connections to Jamie got as close to him as he was willing to let us. He could always hold intimacy at bay with alcohol, and most of those who connected with him were also adept at that.

    some of what you sag about jamie is true
    but he didnt need alcohol to hold people at a distance
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: The epidemic of loneliness

    I do not think it is fair to talk about the lifestyle choices of any of our deceased members. They are not here, they, like the rest of us, made choices good and bad in the past.

    Peace
    Yachting, the only sport where you get to be a mechanic, electrician, plumber and carpenter

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