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Living with loneliness

Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Testing team Posts: 7,924

Scope community team

edited June 2019 in Disabled people

As part of Loneliness Awareness week, we’ve been thinking about how closely tied loneliness is with mental health and how both can have an impact on one another. With that in mind, we've put together a few things to remember or try in order to address the loneliness you might have been feeling.

Work out why you’re feeling lonely

Being alone isn’t the same as being lonely. Most people who describe themselves as feeling lonely attribute it either to not seeing or speaking to anyone very often, or feeling isolated, misunderstood or disregarded by the people around them. Working out which is the case for you may help you find some way of improving how you feel.

Be honest and open

Do you have lots of people around you, but don’t feel close to them, or feel they don’t give you what you need in terms of care or attention? Try opening up to your family or friends. If that’s not an option, perhaps find new people you can connect with and try to be more honest and open with them from the start.

Connecting

The simplest way to lessen those feelings of loneliness, can be to meet new, or a variety of different people. If you have hobbies, why not find classes or interest groups you could attend? Perhaps you could volunteer — offering your free time on behalf of a good cause can be a great way to meet people and improve your mental health.

Speak to a professional

If you live with depression, anxiety or some other mental health condition and you believe loneliness could be a part of the problem, speak to someone who’s qualified to help. Loneliness is a problem in its own right and if you’re able to speak to someone who can help, it can be addressed with an action plan.

What are your tips for battling loneliness? What one thing do you find works for you?

Senior Community Partner
Scope

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Replies

  • RoddyRoddy Member Posts: 389 Pioneering
    edited June 2019
    Loneliness gets me down. I live in a place that I know little about and the only person I meet are my carers who it must be said I don't get alone with at all. The only family that I have are my two children and they live over 200 miles away from me. I don't get 'bored' as such, but I miss a like-minded soul and companionship. I cannot leave my care-home unaided, but having just purchased a mobility scooter I can at least travel out sometimes. I'm not one for joining clubs etc., and although I enjoy my own company and many people have said that I'm a nice person to know, I just don't feel in the position to meet anybody new in my current situation. I'm not feeling sorry for myself, but it's difficult just the same... I would like to add that I've enjoyed my time on here, however???
  • dolfrogdolfrog Member Posts: 440 Pioneering
    edited June 2019
    For me an inportant contributing factor is  the so called professionals who should be trained and qualified to understand the complex nature of my communication disability. This group of failing UK professionals are Audiologists, Speech and Language Pathologists (therapists), and Psychologists.
    I have felt lonely all of my life, and the main cause is others not understanding my communication limitations, and the alternative compensating strengths I have be able to develop to work around my limitations. When I was assessed and diagnosed as having Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) back in 2003, it was so enlightening, explaining why I am who I am. Especially the Random Gap Detection Test, which measures the size of gap between sounds an individual can process, when i did the test it did not include a gap large enough for me to process. Which is why I have problems understanding those who for me talk too fast (including many radio adverts), and why I can not use phonics, as i  can not process the gaps between the sounds that the letters in a word represent. So reading research papers can be a problem as I am not able to phonetically sound out the new technical terms, but have to remember the visual shape of the words, and how they relate to a topic. 

    So for me my loneliness will not improve until the UKs ignorant and incompetent so called medical professionals get up to date and are able to explain to me that they have a full understanding of the 4 types of my disability, which all my family clinical diagnosis of having, and begin to provide the support we require at all of the UKs  NHS Trusts nation wide. Their corrupt ignorance is also the main cause of my high blood pressure issues.
  • RoddyRoddy Member Posts: 389 Pioneering
    dolfrog said:
    For me an inportant contributing factor is  the so called professionals who should be trained and qualified to understand the complex nature of my communication disability. This group of failing UK professionals are Audiologists, Speech and Language Pathologists (therapists), and Psychologists.
    I have felt lonely all of my life, and the main cause is others not understanding my communication limitations, and the alternative compensating strengths I have be able to develop to work around my limitations. When I was assessed and diagnosed as having Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) back in 2003, it was so enlightening, explaining why I am who I am. Especially the Random Gap Detection Test, whic measures the size of gap between sounds an individual can process, when i did the test it did not include a gap large enough for me to process. Which is why I have problems understanding those who for me talk too fast (including many radio adverts), and why I can use phonics, as i  can not process the gaps between the sounds that the letters in a word represent. So reading research papers can be a problem as I am not able to phonetically sound out the new technical terms, but have to remember the visual shape of the words, and how they relate to a topic. 

    So for me my loneliness will not improve until the UKs ignorant and incompetent so called medical professionals get up to date and are able to explain to me that they have a full understanding of the 4 types of my disability, which all my family clinical diagnosis of having, and begin to provide the support we require at all of the UKs  NHS Trusts nation wide. Their corrupt ignorance is also the main cause of my high blood pressure issues.
    May I say, that you certainly do have the ability to make Yourself understood. It shows in the way that you've managed to explain your condition. And, I agree that there are far too many so-called medical professionals, who are far from being anything like one. I know this, as I am surrounded by so-called 'Carers' who do not care less and should be lined-up and shot.  
  • dolfrogdolfrog Member Posts: 440 Pioneering
    edited June 2019
    Hi @Roddy,
    I was diagnosed back in 2003 to help the Medical Research Council (MRC) gain government funding to run a 5 year Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) research program, they needed someone to set up and run a support organisation for those diagnosed as having APD, and being diagnosed as having APD would be only only qualification to run such and an organisation. I set up APDUK in 2002/3 and the MRC got their money in 2004. 
    The researchers began to send me copies of their research papers, (which took me weeks to read) to explain the types of problems those who are diagnosed with APD may experience which would help me explain the issues when we ran a telephone helpline. During this time our  sons and my wife were also diagnosed as having APD. The research program finished in 2009, and since then there has been little or no progress made by the UK medical professionals who should be part of a multi-discipline support team for those of us who have APD (audiologists, speech and language, and psychologists) which means there is little or no awareness of the my disability, or more importantly the disability that my wife and son have. Which makes me feel very lonely and deserted by those who should be providing the support my family require. I feel a failure. 

    I currently run an online APD group on Facebook which has just over 13,000 members and those from the UK telling their stories of incompetent UK medical professionals failing to assess their children and provide the required support just makes me feel more of a failure, and more alone. It seems to me to be the wrong way around, I seem to know more about my disability than the professionals who should be assessing, diagnosing, and providing support for those of us  who have APD. 
     
  • RoddyRoddy Member Posts: 389 Pioneering
    Hi @dolfrog
    I'm truly sorry to learn this from you. It must be frustrating at the very least, however I congratulate you for trying to bring knowledge about APD to more peoples attention and for being there for so many others who share your disability... I 'guess' that even though you have devoted much time and effort, not much has been achieved, but for everything that you do you keep the awareness going which I'm sure will eventually turn peoples heads in the right direction... 13,000 people in UK alone is certainly more than enough to make this matter a recognised disability that demands more attention by 'medical professionals' and the likes of. 13,000 people are also a sufficient number to raise this disability issue with your local MP and even the appropriate Ombudsmen. You may also have a very good chance of receiving Legal Help although I'm not certain about this... I am reminded here of the many thousands of parents that forced a medical inquiry about the MMR vaccination and its association with Autism. I was one of those parents, and even though the government refused to accept any responsibility, the matter was widespread throughout the world and it is still debated today. 'Public Awareness' and 'Public Interest' brought  the matter to the forefront of everybody's minds, which brings me to suggest that this is what you and your members should endeavour to do with some kind of formal petition to the government... I am sure that there are many like me on here who had never even heard of APD until You mentioned, and as such, I feel that you need to broadcast this to the masses and not just the few. A formal petition could be your answer. ???   
  • dolfrogdolfrog Member Posts: 440 Pioneering
    Hi @Roddy
    Maybe some years ago I would done this when i was not so alone, and feeling a failure,
    I am now just a lonely grumpy old git, who knows too much about his disability, and the so called medical professionals are just unwilling to learn. What we call Professional Auditory Processing Disorder (PAPD) those who chose not / do not want to listen

    Thank you for understanding.  
  • RoddyRoddy Member Posts: 389 Pioneering
    dolfrog said:
    Hi @Roddy
    Maybe some years ago I would done this when i was not so alone, and feeling a failure,
    I am now just a lonely grumpy old git, who knows too much about his disability, and the so called medical professionals are just unwilling to learn. What we call Professional Auditory Processing Disorder (PAPD) those who chose not / do not want to listen

    Thank you for understanding.  
    Maybe perhaps, one of your Facebook acquaintances could rise to the challenge for the good benefit of all, but I know what you mean though. 
  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Member Posts: 1,998 Disability Gamechanger
    There is a group in my local area called Staying Well. They help lonely people over 55 get to meetings with entertainment. We have a great tie. See if there are these type of groups in your area. x
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