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(8 Posts)
gmelon Mon 01-Jul-19 14:57:41

Age UK and Silverline have advertising campaigns running currently.
Do you think that older people are more isolated, more lonely than other age groups?
Should there be more willingness for those affected to get together?
Is it too obvious a suggestion that the lonely people try and meet up?
I'm not suggesting that every older person has something in common apart from age.

kittylester Mon 01-Jul-19 15:18:26

I do think that older people can be lonelier now. It's well documented that families dont live in close proximity any more.

Add to that the fact that people are living longer but with more health issues whi h could have the knock on effect of making people house bound.

Cherrytree59 Mon 01-Jul-19 15:37:08

Loneliness affects all walks of life.
One can be lonely in a relationship.
Mental health or disability can be very lonely.
The life of an introverted or bullied child can be exceptionally lonely.

The unfortunate thing about the aging process is that at some point a spouse/partner, close friends and relatives of a similar age (siblings, cousins) etc will die.

Younger people will have the business of young families and/or work to focus on.
And a future hopfully of many years to come.

Squiffy Mon 01-Jul-19 16:22:06

I wonder if loneliness in older people is exacerbated by being unable to access transport? There are many elderly people in my area and the bus service into town has been reduced to such an extent that it's almost impossible to even venture into town. The last bus out of town is at 1.15pm!! We're not in the back of beyond, we're on the outskirts of the town. One of the reasons that we chose to live here was because of the bus service! Not everyone can afford taxis or can manage to walk to the next bus stop.

M0nica Mon 01-Jul-19 17:06:09

I do not think loneliness is any greater among older people than younger. However, I do think, more people of all ages are more lonely than in the past.

Many people are lonely because they have never had and have failed to learn the skills required to reach others and make connections.

When lonely people come onto GN with threads about being lonely and how to meet people, it is noticeable how they either turn down every suggestion made about joining groups, or say they have done that but that they were all cliquey and nobody spoke to them.

Making friends, or at least chatting acquaintances depends on body language, facial expression, and openess that not everybody is born with and some never acquire.

I have often puzzled over the conundrum that it is those who are most lonely, who are most difficult to reach because they do not respond to invitations to come to events, set up to encourage them to join in.

sodapop Mon 01-Jul-19 17:13:27

Yes I'm sure that's right Squiffy, there are several factors which can increase loneliness and that is a big one. Families move around a lot more and as Cherrytree said peers become incapacitated or die. So many factors.
I don't think I would necessarily find a lot in common with a group of others in their 70s. It's more about having mutual interests or hobbies etc.

luluaugust Mon 01-Jul-19 17:18:20

I agree Monica I expect the oldest people have always been lonely, not everybody had a paid companion but many had unmarried daughters at home and other family near by. Church going was more common which meant you were in touch with a community when you became housebound you were visited. Everybody works now and I know my daughters won't be able to run round after me, even if they wanted to, in the way I was able to go to my mum. They all have to work for their pension at a much later age. Certainly transport is a huge problem even here in the deep south, where we are there are few buses north to south and no direct trains to some large towns. Quite a problem when trying to stay in contact.

SueDonim Mon 01-Jul-19 19:04:15

I don't know if loneliness is more common amongst older people but I think it is harder for them to be able to do anything about it.

My mother isn't completely isolated but at 91 many of her friends have died. My sister recently died too, so that's another loss to add to the list. sad As noted earlier, buses have been cut to the bone and the bus stop has been moved further away, making it inaccessible for my mum. In her town, the local buses are the same ones they use for schools so the buses stop at around lunchtime if you could even reach one.