Recognising the signs of loneliness
According to mental health charity Mind, people usually describe feeling lonely for one of two reasons:
- they simply don’t see or talk to anyone very often
- even though they are surrounded by people, they don’t feel understood or cared for.
In everyday life, you can experience loneliness as a parent in many ways:
- Feeling overwhelmed or worried by things, but thinking you’re not ‘allowed’ to ask for help
- Missing adult conversation or, as a full-time carer or provider, not being able to share how you feel
- Not having time to do anything other than ‘be a parent’, or feeling you just don’t get opportunities to socialise
- Feeling ‘forgotten about’ as a single parent (especially as a single dad), or because you have health, disability or money worries you think others won’t understand
- Feeling cut off from friends or family, or anxious about meeting new people.
Thinking about what loneliness feels like for you can help you decide what kinds of actions or resources could make a difference.