Loneliness is a common issue in the LGBT community. Although degrees of loneliness are not dependent on a person’s sexual orientation, lesbians may be especially susceptible to this problem if they live in rural areas with few friends and a dwindling LGBT community. Next time you experience a bout of loneliness, the following suggestions can help you manage your feelings in healthy ways.
Express Yourself Creatively
Creative self-expression is a healthy way to get through both chronic and occasional loneliness. Even if you don’t consider yourself to be an “artsy” type of person, go ahead and try out some different activities until you find one that speaks to you. Playing music, journaling and drawing are a few common ways to creatively manage feelings of loneliness. Believe it or not, just about any activity you enjoy can become an outlet for creative self-expression, such as cooking, gardening, playing virtual reality games or even rebuilding an engine.
Get Out of the House
Withdrawing from others and staying home alone are two of the worst things you can do while experiencing the pain of loneliness. If your self-esteem is suffering because of a recent break-up or rejection, becoming a hermit will only exacerbate negative feelings and trick your mind into believing that you’re a “loser.” Instead, get out of the house when these negative feelings start to surface. Call a friend, catch a movie or walk the perimeter of the mall – it doesn’t matter what you choose to do just as long as it gets you out of the house.
Focus On the Needs of Others
There’s a reason why you hear about lonely people volunteering at soup kitchens and homeless shelters during the holidays. Focusing your attention on the feelings and needs of other people makes you feel good. No matter how desperately lonely you may feel, helping others will serve as a good reminder of all the things in your life for which you should be grateful.
In addition to these suggestions for managing loneliness, try to keep in mind that you’re never truly alone if you have family or friends whom you love. Even if there is distance between you, make it a point to feel grateful that there are people in the world who truly care about you. A little gratitude can go a long way.
De Lima, C. (2011). The Art of Being Happily Single. Retrieved from http://tinybuddha.com/blog/the-art-of-being-happily-single/
The Bilerico Project (2009, April 22). Stuck in Loneliness. Retrieved from http://www.bilerico.com/2009/04/stuck_in_loneliness.php