I have to admit that being a parent leaving in such a frenetic world, I enjoy my time on my own…a lot! The FreeMe Project is very much about finding time for oneself in order to connect with what we really want in each of our roles. But when does loneliness really mean self fulfillment? Even if I personally love being alone, I am not really alone…I mean I don’t suffer from loneliness. I am surrounded by people I love and share interest with, and I have my family living with me.
Today loneliness is a truly worldwide phenomenon, with, in France, 34% of the population leaving on their own vs. 6% in 1962.
Behind this new sociological phenomena, there are different reasons that are worth knowing:
- Emancipation of Women – The way to independence by women has had of course a
- big role to play. No need to depend on a man, contraception and sexual liberalization have made it easier for a woman to decide to live on her own.
- Self-development Focus – Love yourself before you love someone else. A more selfish society and the quest for self development have made it a second choice to share our life.
- Era of New Technologies -Technologies have filled in our relational emptiness. You can now be alone but connected to others. See the incredible –even addiction – success of social medias.
- Wealthy societies – in the past, it was almost impossible to survive on your own. Nowadays, the wealthiest countries are the ones showing the highest rates of people living on their own with Sweden at the top of the ranking (47%).
- When loneliness rhymes with isolation and no love, it can be a real drama. But it looks like nowadays it has become a choice and a new way of life that involves fulfillment as stated in my post on Childfree lifestyle.
It is clear that when in a couple, if we feel trapped by the other, there is no freedom. Being alone means automatically regaining freedom. So, when reflecting upon this phenomenon, here are some questions I would like to raise: Does it mean that, by being more fulfilled individually we are actually killing the couple? Or does it mean we are reinventing the concept? It is not anymore about looking for my second half but instead looking for my parallel?
I have grown up listening to my grandma saying: Better alone than in Bad Company…it looks like this has been taken very seriously by our society. I still personally believe we like being together, being with others and collaborating. That it can be difficult to be alone if you don’t chose it.
But we should never forget that at the end, the very end, we are always alone. We need to be able to face ourselves in order to stand on our feet and loneliness is about this, learning to know ourselves. What do you think?