Navigation: POP Community Forums Aging Parents How to deal with loneliness?

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    Mary Holcomb

    My kids are pretty self-involved and don’t seem to recognize — or maybe care — that I’m having trouble getting through my day without some help. They live three states away and haven’t visited since Christmas. For 22 years I worked in a small office as a receptionist but my doctor says my diabetes and Parkinson’s have gotten worse and I need to stop working. I don’t know how I will be able to support myself or what I will do all day without anyone to talk to. I feel bad that I will be so alone so I’m writing to see how other moms are handling this.

    Mary Holcomb

    Ever heard your loved one say this: “Losing your purpose in life is the singular thing that hurts people the most?’  What did you do to help?


    When seniors feel they’re losing their “purpose in life,” it substantially adds to ill health, depression and in the rise in the amount of drug and alcohol they consume, despite their body’s greater vulnerability to falling and abuse .

    Read more at:

    Then talk to your loved one and see what you can do to minimize the feeling of losses — of spouses, of meaningful work,and of friends. — A sympathetic ear is something almost all of us like to have.  And don’t feel you need to have all the answers; just being there and listening is often very healing.  And beyond listening well, you can offer some ideas.  Since most people in this situation are lonely and drink or use by themselves at home, it is often helpful if you can suggest (or attend) ideas for more socialization, things that have been sources of pleasure to your loved one in the past, Inviting your senior to share about interesting life experience with you and younger family members is often very comforting to them and helps “make meaning.”    Encouraging them to develop new friends WILL help them and you to feel a little less lonely and hopefully have them using a lot less.


    I’m sorry ,loneliness is the worst.  My Mom is always amazed that if she goes to church, or a parade and how many people miss her.  Senior center is a great place to meet people.  Hospitals always looking for multiple volunteers, to do a variety of jobs.  Talk to town social worker, they have people that call home bound people.  Try it you could be the caller, you might make some friends.  What are your interests, garden club? Book club?  How about joining a gym, pool therapy would be perfect for you.  I go to the gym many people meet friends there.  Just because your not working doesn’t mean you don’t have alot to offer.  Go gettum.  If you are depressed please talk to your doctor.

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