Painfully lonely ☹️(67 Posts)
I’ve never posted on here before...I’ve never told anyone how I feel before either, so here goes.
I have a wonderful life, a gorgeous house, an amazing partner and 6 wonderful kids (2 are step children) I keep busy during the day, cooking, cleaning, washing, ironing etc...I’m slightly obsessive with cleaning so it keeps me busy. I’m fortunate to not have to work so I spend a lot of time cooking nice meals and baking cakes etc for the family to enjoy. I’m happy whist I’m busy but the minute I stop it’s like a dark cloud appears over the top of me and I feel miserable. I spend most days from 9-3 on my own, rarely talk to anyone or see anyone till I pick the youngest 2 up from school. I can’t drive atm because of medication I’m taking and I feel stuck. I look at people that I went to school with on social media and they’re out all the time with friends and meeting up with X here and having coffee with Y there... I just feel painfully lonely, invisible and useless. I feel like the only reason I’d be missed would be cause the house wouldn’t be clean and the clothes wouldn’t be washed. I feel pointless. I had my eldest daughter when I was 17 so a lot of my friends kind of wrote me off...as I could no longer go out whenever I wanted 2. Sometimes I feel so pathetic I tell my mum/daughter/partner that a friend has been round for coffee...just so I don’t seem so pathetic.
Sorry if this seems a bit pointless and long winded. Guess I just needed to get it off my chest.
Oh that’s just a horrible way to feel 😢 I’m sorry xx not sure what to suggest except the usual suspects of volunteering or pt college xx
You're very socially isolated, are you physically isolated too? Are there regular buses or town centre within a reasonable walking distance?
Is there any prospect of any human interaction? volunteering at school, or getting a PT job?
What would you like to do? Is there anything you've always wanted to learn or try out?
I'm thinking along the lines of art classes, sewing, running, boxing...anything. Whatever that one thing is, start doing it.
Also, how old is your youngest? Do you not arrange playdates for them and have coffee with the other mums?
Firstly, this isn't a pointless post and this is a great forum for getting advice and a hand hold when you need it the most.
I'm so sorry you're feeling this way. Don't ever forget that to your family you are one of the most important people in the world. It's difficult when you've raised children to an age where they're no longer at home, it does leave a big gap - especially if you're not filling it with work.
Is there anywhere nearby that you can volunteer?
Any crafts that you're good at, creating gifts for friends/family or even selling things on Etsy?
Any libraries nearby? There are often games/ bookclubs in places like this where you can join and meet like minded people
Have you had a look at groups in your local area on Facebook?
I hate to say it - school gate mums - have you any frinedships here - can you ask someone to your house for coffee? or a walk into town for a mooch about ?
I would get a job op. If you can?
I am not sure how easy it is for you to make friends where you are, but I found lots of friends at the children's school. Can you suggest coffee mornings or inviting a few over for lunch? I am sure they would love your gorgeous cakes.
Joining a gym is a good way to socialise. The classes especially sometimes have lunch or drinks afterwards.
Can you join a book club? Or sewing clubs?
You are spending too much time at home, and have to watch out not to become depressed.
As PP say think about classes.
Depending on the age of the children could you meet up with other parents, maybe after the school run (walk). If you feel able to talk to some of them you may find they welcome company as well.
I know it can be lonely even in a crowd.
I’ve applied for a few PT jobs but as I haven’t worked for 10 years now I think I’m often written off before I’m given a chance. We live in quite a rural area and there is only one bus in to the town a day and one bus back. Makes going anywhere quite tricky. My partner is wonderful, he’d give me the world and I appreciate everything but sometimes I just wish I had some other people to share it with. I do go to the gym in the village we live in and I’ll say hi to people but nobody ever seems to want to chat. The same at DC’s school. I just feel invisible....😕
What are you interested in?
Art? Join a class when the children are in school. Or join a Friends of a Gallery group if you live near a town or city with a decent gallery. They organise lots of visits to see the exhibitions / lectures etc
Crafts? Knitting / crochet - there are often local enthusiast groups where you could meet others interested in the same things
Oh crossed post with your update.
What about inviting some of the mums of the dc's school friends over for coffee & one of your homemade cakes?
We lived in a rural place when my dc v small and I knew no one but did lots of coffee invites to the house and I also baked a lot. It def filled a morning nicely and also meant you would bump into those people out and about in the village so nice to say a little hello and feel a LOT less isolated
I work from home so there were days when our dog had died that I barely spoke to a soul. Now we have a new dog, I see people from the village every day and about five of them I now consider good friends.
There’s a website called Borrow my doggy www.borrowmydoggy.com where people look for dog walking help, so you could walk a dog without having the responsibility of owning one. It’s really easy to fall into conversation with other dog walkers, and even if it doesn’t lead to doing anything else with people, it’s some interaction and gets you out.
Hope you find something soon.
Thank you all for being so kind. I feel very selfish for feeling like this when I’m so much more fortunate than some x
it may sometimes help remembering that there are other people worse off, and it helps then try to remember. However it doesn’t invalidate you own loneliness- it isn’t a competition and you are entitled to express your feelings.
I kind of feel the same way. I rarely meet up with friends, though I do have people I can text and chat to. If I do socialise, it's at parent/ toddler groups. I've got no confidence in my own ability as it's been so long since I was in work. However, I know I'm doing the right thing for my family and they are my priority.
I think a lot of sahp feel exactly the same way.
There's things you can do to improve the situation, such as making friends with other parents, but I understand that that is sometimes easier said than done.
I think you have to be brave and reach out. Probably easier if the gym has classes, keep chipping away with "hello, how are you"...... then a compliment? Where do you get your hair cut/coloured/shaved etc, it always looks so lovely. It's how I started in my little gym.
Other things, such as borrow my doggy, reading assistant at the school, engage people out walking - "I love your jacket, is it waterproof?" Join the CAB as an advisor? Voluntary work? Our village were always desperate for help with churchyard clear ups, fete committee, coffee mornings once a month. Look around you - there is someone desperate for you & your company/help etc.
If you never change anything, nothing will ever change. Just try a couple of new things, there will be change.
I also wanted to add do not believe everything you see on Facebook.... it’s pretty easy to ‘construct’ an image of lots of friends, constant outings, fun nights out etc. Doesn’t mean those people are really happy or it’s a true reflection.
Good advice given above. Think about the 3 people you get on best with and maybe try and instigate some meet ups with them? There are lots of people who feel the way you do, please don’t feel alone.
Sorry you fee like this. I think it's entirely normal to feel like that if you if you aren't getting any adult company in the day. And you need to do something about it.
Maybe start small - initiate chats a bit more, at the school gates, for example. Identify a mum who doesn't look like she's rushing off to work and suggest a quick cuppa. Or as someone else said, ask the mum of one of your children's friends to come for a coffee after school while the kids have a play date. Don't make the mistake of thinking that just because no one has suggested this to you, they are deliberately excluding you or aren't interested in being friendly. People are often just overwhelmed by their own lives or, like you seem to be, a bit shy. You may have a few false starts, but be brave and try it.
Also, do you allow yourself to enjoy any of your time on your own, or are you constantly cleaning and cooking for the family? You need to give yourself permission to relax and have some time for yourself - a nice long walk, a look round the shops, a bubble bath and a junky magazine. I suspect that if you had children that young, you may never have developed a sense of enjoying your own adulthood as an independent person, before you had the responsibility of caring for someone else.
Finally, do you think some counselling might help? Just because you feel your life should be perfect on paper doesn't mean you aren't allowed to be depressed or anxious.
I feel the same now my youngest is 5. Husband works very long hours and no family support nearby. Recently learned to drive and whilst it has helped, I am questioning myself, what I am doing, who am I seeing. Spent the best part of a decade raising kids and in the process feel like I lost myself. I have little to no self confidence and no real impetus to get out and build a network.
What has helped a bit is CBT. Seeing myself differently and reacting to things differently.
Scheduling catch ups with other mums and using the kids to facilitate this...does so and so want to come for a play after school etc. Once it's booked in it's something to work around...
Just signed up for a volunteer programme and am a bit scared but sick of feeling the way I do. You need to carve out the time for yourself.
I am sorry you are feeling this way. Does your children's school need any volunteers hearing readers? I know my granddaughter's school is always asking for volunteers. Or why not try your local library if you have one, they often have events running. Do you have any adult education classes nearby, for sewing, etc?
Oh OP hugs 🤗
The thing that stands out about your post is that you are living for other people. Working to meet their needs day in and day out. You're not making sure you are also living for you. This is vital for you and will help you maintain joy in your life. How about starting small and making sure each day you do one or two things for you that help you feel joy? Xx
Get a dog!
Get a dog - it will fill those lonely hours I guarantee it!
Lots of good ideas, thanks everyone. I think I’m the midst of the last 18 years of looking after everyone else, I’ve forgotten to look after me. I’ve become obsessive about the house being clean, beds being made...even that all the cushions on the sofas have the zip facing down. I guess I’ve had little else to occupy my mind now they’re all at school all day. I’m going to apply for some more PT jobs and also see if I can volunteer in our local hospice. Thanks again for the advice and sorry for feeling sorry for myself x
Could you help out in some way at your DC's school? I'm retired and on my own so I got involved with my grandson's primary school. Started off volunteering to help the PTA with events and now run our Library one day a week. Makes me feel like I'm part of the big world out there.
Really good idea on your volunteering. I moved from London to the countryside and I was so worried I wouldn’t make any friends. I became a guide leader and there’s always lots to do and people to talk with. It’s a nice little community of people from all stages of life!
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