Lets start with a few facts and figures. It seems a sense of loneliness is rife amongst men. The stats below from mind journal are quite clear:
“According to a 2019 survey by YouGov in the UK, almost one in five men (18 percent) admitted to having no close friends, and one in three (32 percent) said they didn’t count anyone as a best friend. For women, these figures were lower at 12 and 24 percent.
More worryingly, in the same survey, 44 percent of men said they felt lonely “sometimes, often, or all of the time” compared to 50 percent of women. The conclusion is that while men are more likely to experience loneliness, they’re also less likely to admit it.”
It is important to check in on our friends and loved ones. Not only can you give them a boost from reaching out, you can also look after your own social wellbeing in the process.
This is a problem that has gotten worse through out the pandemic due to the preasures of national and local lockdowns.
Loneliness can creep in at times, possibly when we are feeling deprived of social contact. It’s important to check in on yourself if you are feeling lonely.
I also want to touch on the difference between being by yourself and the feeling of loneliness. Quite a few people are very comfortable being on their own, and doing things solo. This is something I personally identify with. I am often ay my happiest when I am off doing things I love, by myself. I love to solo travel, to see the world and explore at my own pace. No one we shacking my sense of adventure. That is not loneliness. That is contentment on my own.
For men, it’s often harder to share an emotion due to the toxic masculine stereotypes. It is ok to talk, but I get not everyone can share how they feel verbally with another person. Writing how you are feeling can help get those thoughts out of your mind in a private way. It can also help you to start making a plan to deal with what is going on in life.
Take it slow. This isn’t a race.
But remember, you have got this.