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To feel left behind, lonely, and shit watching everybody else go back to normal?

29 replies

ferryblue · 16/04/2021 21:30

Has anybody else found their mental health has tanked even more since things reopened on April 12th? The lockdowns have taken everything from me, and I feel like everybody else is going out to enjoy life again (I’m in my early 20s) and I’m left behind.

Lockdown killed my relationship because he lived 80 miles away and it was never going to survive it, my job went under (haven’t been able to find work since), my friends have all cut me off having clearly decided to have smaller social circles, and I’m stuck in a grotty flat on universal credit. I can’t afford to continue driving lessons. I had a horrendous miscarriage in May 2020 which I’m still very upset over. It was awful in Summer 2020 when things reopened because all over social media people were out. Lovely lunch dates and pub nights, long walks and beach visits with family and friends. And I was stuck with nothing. My family are a waste of space. I was selfishly relieved when the January lockdown happened because suddenly I wasn’t alone anymore, everybody else was suffering too. My heart aches every day for my baby and the purpose they would have given me.

Now since April 12th I’ve been feeling shitter then I ever have done and am having daily panic attacks. Every time I go on social media and see somebody’s pictures of them sat in a sunny beer garden or something I feel like I’ve been stabbed in the heart. Things have opened up for other people, not for me. I don’t feel part of society. It’s gotten to the point where I was excited when my universal credit work coach told me I’d be asked to come into the job centre for appointments from next week rather than the phone calls, because it’s actually something to fucking do and somewhere to go. There aren’t even any walks where I live. My skin has become white as a sheet and I feel sickly all of the time because of my lifestyle. I don’t know how to make friends or change things. I feel it’d be easier if I were a man, it’s socially acceptable for a man to go to the pub on his own and get talking to randoms to make friends, it’d be seen as weird and unsafe for a woman to do so.

I’m rotting away.

OP posts:

Blankspace101 · 16/04/2021 22:02

I’m sorry for your loss Flowers

I share your feelings about people going back to ‘normal’ and sharing their happy times on social media. It adds to the pressure and can make those of us that don’t have that in our life feel even worse.

I get the impression that a lot of people are going to feel lonely as we come out of lockdown. Hopefully it will be an opportunity to people to create groups or events in real life so we can connect with others.


Aprilshowersandhail · 16/04/2021 22:04

Remember social media isn't always real op.
Sorry for your loss.
Grab a book and go find a cafe table...


thesandwich · 16/04/2021 22:06

Op could you volunteer with the support of work coach? Help you ge5 out and get experience?


Talkwhilstyouwalk · 16/04/2021 22:12

My advice would be to take yourself off social media.

Also, do you have any hobbies? Might be good way to meet people by joining some sort of group. Or volunteering is a good idea, looks good on the CV too!


Bluntness100 · 16/04/2021 22:13

Well ok. You can sit and wallow or you can make plans.

Firstly are you applying for as many jobs as you can? What about volunteer roles? Even working in a local charity shop, working with homeless people, anything.

Secondly. There are walks where everyone lives. You do not live on a hover craft. You can easily go a walk. Get some fresh air and exercise daily.

Thirdly are you ready to start dating again, even just chatting to blokes, have you tried different dating apps?

Ok sorry about your loss. Potentially you could ask for counselling if you feel that would help?

On all other respects thoug you’re going to habe to start making some plans and doing stuff. It’s the only way.


sashagabadon · 16/04/2021 22:18

I disagree women can’t go to the pub or for lunch by themselves. I do this a lot, it’s fine. Try it once and you may find it is ok.
Also I’ve noticed there are now loads of shifts in the good Sam app for volunteer vaccination shifts. Sign up and you’ll get shifts pretty quickly. Volunteer for one in a centre near you and you’ll make friends or at least get out with a purpose. They are nice things to do imo.


BRB2021 · 16/04/2021 22:19

Social media is people's edited highlights, they don't post the gag reels.
You nerd counselling for your loss OP. Have you had any?
How about starting with one friend to reach out to? Is there one you can ask to meet up with for a drink?


DShrute · 16/04/2021 22:23

It's a good idea to ask your work coach. They might have training opportunities coming up, or info on volunteering. Things will buck up, you are still recovering from your horrendous year. And stay off social media for a while (except mn), it's the work of the devil Smile. Good luck


Crayfishforyou · 16/04/2021 22:23

Lockdown has been beyond shit for a lot of people, they just haven’t put it on social media.
Please speak to your GP about the panic attacks, if you can get your mind in a more positive frame of thought it will be easier to rebuild a life in which you can be happy again.
You are not alone, many people do feel as you do.


SteveyFluff · 16/04/2021 22:25

This isn’t an experience caused by Covid. It’s what unemployment is like at any time. Keep applying for jobs x


Magnificentmug12 · 16/04/2021 22:28

Men don’t find it as easy in the pub- most just sit by themselves.

Sorry for your loss, that sounds hard on you, but the grass isn’t always greener and I imagine being a parent to a young child in a flat on universal credit is no pic nic in the park! Especially during lockdowns, plus you have the responsibility of another person on your shoulders.

Stop going on SM, it’s fake anyway, anyone in a pub now is freezing their arse off and secretly thinking it’s not worth it whilst it’s so cold.

Join a gym. Just do it. Even if you go and just walk on the treadmill for 30 minutes, there will be people and music around you and even though everyone is working out separately it kind of feels like a togetherness somehow.

I have everything, great kids, nice partner, a home, a job (we are not financially well off but we can pay the bills) however during and after lockdowns I realised my life was no different, there was absolutely no change for me either way and made me realise I’m not living life! It made me sad but now I’ve put things in place and I’m working on it, only a week in but already I feel better and like a new me is coming through, I feel like I actually do something other than just working and being a mum.


Oilseed · 16/04/2021 22:50

Just wanted to give you a big unmumsnetty hug op. I really feel for you, it sounds as though you’re having a hard time of things.

Keep applying for jobs, as many as you can each day. What about pub shifts doing bar work? Lots of pubs are hiring atm, if nothing else it would get you out and seeing people of an evening. Or as someone else said, volunteering would be good as it would look good on your CV too and then you’ll be more likely to get a job.

You need to get out for some fresh air every day, make sure you do an hour’s walk everyday, who cares if it’s pounding the local, crappy streets, do it because it’ll make you feel better, if only for a couple of hours.

Do you have any friends or any family that you could meet with at the weekend for a bit?

I wouldn’t bother with men/ dating until you’re in a a better headspace. Instead try joining Bumble BFF to make a new friend or 2.

Book a GP appointment for next week re the panic attacks and anxiety, get on some medication for a bit to help you cope and see if they’ll put you forward for counselling.

Be brave and strong OP, I’m almost certain you’ll be in a better place this time next year, hang on in there. Oh and as PP have said, I’d come off social media for a couple of months, it’s bloody toxic and only really serves to make people feel shit.


Isaidnope · 16/04/2021 22:51

Firstly remove yourself from social media. You can either deactivate if you think that’s easier or just delete the apps and don’t let yourself get tempted. Comparison is the thief of joy and everyone showcases their best side on SM, it isn’t real life.

Apply not only for jobs but also for courses. It doesn’t even have to be something you’re interested in, just apply for random things in your area. Anything to keep your mind active and away from negative thought processes is a good thing.

Contact your GP and ask for counselling. I’m very sorry for your loss. I have had three miscarriages so completely understand how you feel, I cannot recommend counselling enough.

Try your best to get out for a walk every day. Exercise and fresh air really does help. Now cafes and coffee shops are semi- open it may be worthwhile getting a book and going to sit outside one for a while with a drink. You won’t look weird doing this alone, I used to do it constantly and found lots of people did. You absolutely can go for a drink alone as a woman too, I’ve also done this before and have been to the cinema alone lots- it’s perfectly acceptable. You can do the beach visits alone too, nothing stopping you.

Maybe start by making a list of things you would like to achieve. It doesn’t have to be anything long term or huge, it could just be as simple as going for a walk tomorrow for example or applying for a local course. You will get through this rough patch, I promise.


LouKelly · 16/04/2021 23:09

Im in a similar situation ,im disabled and my life isnt much more exciting wether we are in or are not in lockdown im very socially restricted all the time ,first you need to adress your grief ,see your g.p. or look for support on line from people who have been or are in your shoes ,you must get this sorted first or you wont be able to move on ,second dont rely on internet to cheer you up cos it wont ,you need real contact with real people ,volunteer work is a good idea ,how about eventually helping others who have had a miscarriage ? Dont be so hostile to others ,we all know social media is full of people telling bear faced lies about their lives and how happy they are ,turn it off and get out of the house ! You HAVE to make some moves here ,only you can get yourself going again but theres help out there ! Make the effort with your g.p. your neighbours your family a charity ,you need to meet some nice friendly people and you need to be nice and friendly to others ,dont give up ,there are some nice people out there you just have to know where to look ,not on the web ! Face to face ! Good luck !


jgjgjgjgjg · 16/04/2021 23:18

It sounds like you need some support with your mental health. Can you tell your GP? Or in some areas you can self refer through IAPT. Or search for a private low-cost or free counselling service in your area? Or try some of the charites, like MIND? Since the loss of your baby appears to be a major contributing factor, you might even be able to approach the peri-natal mental health team directly,


cyclingmad · 16/04/2021 23:21

The only person stopping you is you! Who cares what a bunch strangers may think if your at the pub on your own or eating at a restaurant on your own. Actually noone is thinking anything as mostly we are self absorbed people.

Just go do stuff and forget about what other people who you don't know think about you.


HairyPits · 16/04/2021 23:25

Some good advice here, but not very possible to join a gym on universal credit. This often won’t cover monthly household bills.

I moved to a new area just before the first lockdown. I knew no one and my work is solitary and sporadic. I was determined to make friends.

I joined free, local walking groups and set up my own, free friendship group on Facebook. I now have a number of people I can call friends and many acquaintances I see regularly.

Wallowing never helps.


LoveFall · 16/04/2021 23:31

Once a friend gave me a picture for my wall. The inscription is "Happiness is found along the way, not at the end of the road."

I am sure she gave it to me because I was complaining about stress etc.

The saying really woke me up. It's true.

I agree with finding some volunteer work, joining a gym, sitting with a book at a coffee shop, going out walking with your camera, or just generally getting out. All of these things are good ways to meet new friends.

I am sorry for your loss.


Haberdasheryhen · 16/04/2021 23:51

Sorry everything is hard for you ATM op. I'm really sorry about your miscarriage too. Flowers

It's worse atm but I agree this sense of isolation can occur can occur at several stages in life.

I was an expat when I was first married and my DH was travelling, and I felt totally isolated in a new country, with no friends or family about, no Zooming technology to bridge the gap, and being unable to speak the language. I posted on very basic sm (as it was at the time) on an expats group, asking if anyone in the same situation as me wanted to join up for walking sessions in the park. I got five replies, four people actually turned up and two of those people are still very close friends 25 years later. We've supported one another through thick and thin. So my advice to you in the nicest possible way is to try and be proactive about your situation. Either form a picnic support group or volunteer for an organisation you feel passionate about. Either way, do your best to reach out to others. You write very eloquently and I"m sure you are not the only one in your situation currently. Good luck.


Happymum12345 · 17/04/2021 00:05

You sound very low at the moment. I am so sorry for you miscarriage, that must have been devastating. It’s no wonder you are feeling like you are.
Give yourself time. It’s early days since we’ve come out of lockdown. If you can, try to establish a routine of sorts, whatever works for you and gives you a purpose in the day. Little steps like breakfast by 9am, check on line for jobs by 10, go for a walk/jog before lunch. As easy as it is to say it, try to limit social media & as others have said, not everything you see is how it is in real life.
You will get there, one day at a time.


JovialNickname · 17/04/2021 00:22

Sorry you're feeling so bad OP Flowers

You really can go and have a pub lunch by yourself you know, I have done it and I was nervous too, but it was fine! The "good?!" thing about going to places now is that lots of people are nervous or have forgotten how to socialise, it's not just you. In the pub garden I went to everyone was saying we don't know how to do this, and the waiters were explaining the app and how everything works to every table that came in. Everyone feels a bit thrown by the outside eating and drinking thing. And I understand what you mean about feeling weird going alone, but because you can only sit outside at the moment it doesn't feel like going to a pub on your own, it's more akin to sitting on a bench for a picnic! I hope you do try and go? remember even if it turns out you don't enjoy it you will be pleased you went. And you might meet new people to chat to, plus you'll get some lovely food you haven't had to cook yourself.


Wontgoquietly · 17/04/2021 00:57

I spent years as a single parent on a low income and I took my daughter out for tea as often as I could afford to my.local back in those days. We used to call it a mummy daughter date and wed both get dressed up and thoroughly enjoy it. (She was 4 at the time) going regularly ment I got to know people there and they got to know me and eventually I found new friends and even reconnected with old ones.

I know how it feels to be isolated and feel like the world is passing you by.

Unfortunately I'm in active treatment for blood cancer and my isolation will last another 6 months at least. However on days i feel up to it i will schedule garden visits with friends as i need that. Everyone does.

I know its hard but the only thing stopping you is you.

Good luck and I do hope you find the courage to get out more.



CherryJane · 17/04/2021 01:07

I'm in Wales so we're still not able to go out to pubs etc but my marriage ended in lockdown. I've literally shut myself away as I now live alone. I walk alone daily but that's it.
Now normality is daily starting up I'm terrified of my new life. I'm terrified of not having a social life, friends and having people to yet out and about with.


TirisfalPumpkin · 17/04/2021 06:47

The ‘get off social media’ advice is often given and probably has some pluses (you don’t see everyone’s edited highlights that make you feel shit), but it can be a lot of people’s only connection to others. I would go days with no social interaction if not for the interwebs.

Maybe use it for good. Stop scrolling but catch up with some old friends through messenger. It feels very thoughtless when everyone has grouped up without you but it’s rarely intentional.

Your work coach will be happy someone is excited to see them! They get enough abuse. They are trained to point you towards support as well as CV improvement and jobs - ask them about mental health, courses, groups in your area. They will write glowing notes about how engaged you are with the process and will want to help you.

Flowers to you OP. You’re not rotting away. You’re responding like a human being to a rather inhuman situation. Sometimes it’s ok just to survive and not do anything spectacular.


ILoveRossGeller · 17/04/2021 07:13

Where are you based? X

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