Loneliness at Christmas
Loneliness at Christmas is a big deal – one of the few times you’ll hear loneliness being discussed on the news.
Some people can be perfectly happy in their own company, and others can feel lonely and isolated in a crowded room – but it’s hard to tell unless you reach out to them. If you know someone who is likely to be alone over the Christmas period, reach out and ask what their plans are, and try to make plans to include them – it doesn’t have to be Christmas dinner, maybe just a coffee and a chat, or an invite to join some friends for a quiet drink. Respect their wishes if they would prefer not to, but always leave the offer open.
Expecting to be by yourself this Christmas?
For those who are expecting to be alone and lonely over Christmas, there are some options open to you to reach out.
If you have good friends and family, they would always like to hear from you, even if it can feel difficult to make the phone call – chances are they’ve been meaning to call you too!
Perhaps you have become estranged from family and friends, and a phone call out of the blue could be too difficult for everyone? Maybe you could send a Christmas card with a short letter and include your phone number.
Christmas is the ideal time for renewing a contact, as everyone takes time to think about those they have cared for in the past, and there’s no better time for forgiveness and reconciliation. Try to rebuild those bridges, but take it slow and never expect too much. The person you contact may not reply at all, and that is their right however much you may want to hear from them, but at least you’ll have tried to take the first step.
How about making some new friends online?
There are a lot of results if you search for “friendship sites” online, many of them including people from all around the world, and often full of scammers. One free site that we can recommend is Midsummer’s Eve – a UK-based site full of forums to chat with lots of other people, on all kinds of subjects. The site has been running since 1999, and still has many of the original members still chatting in the forums.
If you have a particular hobby or interest, try searching for your interest + “forums”. For example “football forums” or “knitting forums” – there’s bound to be a forum you can join and have a chat to other people with similar interests. You make even make some local friends to meet for a coffee and a chat.
Making new friends in real life
It can be very difficult to get out and meet new people in real life just for socialising, but one of the best options here is Meetup. This is an international site, but has local groups that you can join – some are based around shared interests and hobbies, and some are simply social groups that find things to do in the local area, and members can join in or not. If you’re feeling brave, you could even create your own group!
Other places to visit online
For more information about loneliness at Christmas, try these sites:
Gransnet – dealing with loneliness at Christmas – this site also has forums, as well as good advice
Campaign to End Loneliness – lots of information, advice and opportunities
Please note that we are not affiliated with any of these sites in any way, and our recommendation is purely from personal experience