Coping With Loneliness
Coping with loneliness is hard, especially when you have mental illness. This story is about how I cope and it is written to help others cope too.
Some days, I wake up and the clock just ticks on. Time goes by so slow and drags on, or so fast leaving me just how productive I really was during that day. My husband works and my daughter is out most of the time, so I am essentially home alone alot of the time.
I have Emotionally Unstable Personality disorder, which can also make me want to shut the door to the outside world, especially when I am misunderstood as having Emotionally Unstable Borderline Personality Disorder, which yes, is the same thing, except I don't have the 'Borderline' Symptoms.'
Because I am 'Emotionally Sensitive,' I find people do not know how to approach me because the clusters such as 'violent tendency' are mixed in with some of the clusters I have, except I am not violent, and neither is everyone with my condition. I can be argumentative though, which I do tend to go over the top with, but then, so do many people without my disorder.
I don't see a lot of people, mostly because my family lives quite a way from me and most of my friends work long hours. However, I do try to be sociable when I am out and about, and I find my love of writing, music, and family helps with this. I think this is because these are topics that I love doing as well as talking about, and they are popular topics of interest amongst others.
Given being told this, try to bring up a hobby or interest when you do go out, go to places where you know people will be interested and have the courage to talk, even if you're anxious, you'll be amazed at the results!
Isolation is common for people with mental illness. Sometimes we feel like we have no one, or the whole world is our enemy (this is me at my most dramatic moment!), when in fact, there are people out there, but our low 'down in the dumps' mood makes us believe otherwise, so how do we react? Well, we lock the door and throw away the key.
If you're doing this, STOP!
Keep that key in your hand, unlock the door, step outside, even if you are alone! The world is full of colour, trees, fields, birds, people, rivers, streams, parks, the list goes on... Take a camera and take pictures, then frame or collage your favourite ones, it really does lift your spirits.
When you are at home and there is nothing to do (usually because the weather is bad!), look around your house. Could you clean? Do DIY? Decorate? Write or even create something? There is usually something interesting to do around the home, and this is helpful because it takes your mind off things.
Develop your thing, and focus on just that one thing for as long as you can stand. My thing is writing, games, and studying, so on days when it feels too quiet, I do those things. Besides studying forces me out, if just for five minutes, because I have to physically post my essays, so this way, I'm getting that healthy air my mind and body needs to recover.
Now, a lot of us are "phone dependent," or "internet dependent," so I ignore my phone and switch off the computer for a certain amount of time during the day, so that my brain doesn't become wired to those things.
There was a time when I used to be glued to these things 24/7, but then I remembered what a pen was for! I get more therapy out of putting a pen to paper, than I do typing or being constantly addicted to gossip on social media! Scribbling, doodling, writing silly statements are all great when you are alone with depression, in fact, some of the things you scribble may make you laugh, especially if you don't notice them.
Take up a hobby! This is something I tell people over and over again. Make sure it is something you can deeply absorb yourself in. When your mind is engaged and focusing, it worries less, and also takes away stress. Just make sure that hobby is something you love, because the idea is to not over stimulate the brain, but to relax and enjoy the moment.
One more thing, even though you don't see many people or don't feel like going out, don't become a 'closet,' because being stuck indoors with noone all the time is not good for you. Try to get out as often as you can, even just for five minutes in the garden or a coffee. You will find you meet new people who are interesting to you, and the more you do it, the easier it does get.