Being Alone is not an easy place to be for many. In-fact the divorce rate jumps from an average of 11% to 57% among shift workers because the shift workers spouses are so lonely.
As the spouse of a shift worker, I often find myself “alone”. Though I have a fabulous marriage and adore Richard with every fiber of my being and I know he adores me…I am often alone and at times find myself lonely (There is a difference in being alone and being lonely). In our earlier years it was less obvious because we had children and they filled my void. As I have gotten older and our children have left the nest…I have filled my lonely days with Work, Projects, Facebook, Blogging, and of course…Retail Therapy.
However, as I have gotten older, I have also come to realize there is something far worse than being lonely…
In my current role as Director of Nursing in a Skilled Nursing Facility I have become keenly aware that being forgotten is far worse than being lonely. Loneliness can be remedied through touch, conversation, laughter, and activities. There is however only one remedy for Forgotten and it is being Remembered by those the love!!!
Forgotten Can be a Subtle Transition or Blatant and Purposeful
Forgotten can gradually evolve when your children learn a new level of independence…When they learn to toilet alone, dress themselves, cut up their own meat, cook their own meals, drive themselves, leave home, get married, have children and develop adult friendships and hobbies. While this is a natural and essential process of maturing…One feels Forgotten!
Forgotten can occur when a friend moves away or you able to witness them develop and nurture new friendships via social media and all the while calls and contacts are farther and fewer between…One Feels Forgotten!
Forgotten can also occur when families grow apart or together without you…One Feels Forgotten!
Here are Some ways I have found to cope with being Lonely or Forgotten…
- Be realistic: Everyone gets left out
- Look honestly at the situation: Seek like-minded people
- Make a choice to be better not bitter: Don’t wallow in self-pity
- Smile: Makes people wonder what you’re up to
- Try not to read too much into being left out: Look for the simplest explanation first
- Find something to do: This will distract you
- Talk to your spouse or a trusted friend about your feelings: It helps to have someone to keep you grounded
- Listen openly to their responses: Feedback provides an opportunity for growth
- Be proactive: Take the initiative to reach out to those who want to be a part of your life
- Heed the message: Remove yourself from those who drag you down and make you feel alone and forgotten
A Season of Loneliness and Isolation is When the Caterpillar Gets its Wings