Lonely Or In Solitude: Teenage phase is the most complicated phase of child growth. At one side it has ups and downs and on the other said it also has great impact on your teen future personality.
You will see diversity in teen behaviours in adolescent phase. Some teen looks like full of life and hanging around with a lot of friends. You will see them enjoying get to gathers and parties. On the other hand, there are some teens with almost no friends.
What you as a parent need to be careful about at this time is that not every teen who is alone or has very little friends or less social life been actually lonely.
My second son is a classic example of this type of teen. He can be very happy alone and happier when it is for longer duration and undisturbed time that he gets. Yes, there are times he does get bored and when he does, he picks up a book that he loves or comes and chats around with us or play with his sister rather than going out and partying hard.
On the other side just because you see your teen always with friends and always the life of every party does not mean that your teen has no loneliness or is not lonely.
A classic example of this case would be my elder son who has hundreds of followers in all social media accounts and is the life of every party that he attends. He gets a steady stream of invites for parties or trips etc. Yet many a times I have noticed that he suffers from not having meaningful connections and relationships. He falls back on my second son for companionship because that is one true relationship that he has and counted upon.
Difference between loneliness and solitude
The way I understand this is. Solitude is a choice. Something one prefers to do to probably take a time out, rejuvenate etc. It is healthy and not a negative feeling. It is in our control and we make it happen.
While loneliness is not a choice. It does occur in everyone’s life at some point or the other. However, the intensity varies based on what the person feels about the situation.
Solitude which is a period of being alone can be uplifting or enriching and can also aid personal growth. But loneliness is a negative feeling that hampers and deters a person’s mental wellbeing.
Loneliness does not mean being alone with no company. Sometimes you can feel or be lonely in a crowd. Or right in the middle of a party and still be lonely because you don’t feel meaningfully connected with anyone around you.
At the same time, you can be completely alone and happy with yourself. Doing what you like and love. And feel at ease and relaxed with your alone time with yourself. It can even be a pleasurable experience.
9 myths about loneliness that aren’t true
- Wanting to be alone means something is not ok with the person. As if the person has a defect in personality. “My second son was called a “psych” when he expressed his desire to skip a party so he can have an alone time.
- If one says they are lonely then it means they can’t adjust with anyone. Must be a horrible person.
- Loneliness sometimes is perceived as a sign of personal weakness.
- Introverted people are more lonely than extroverts.
- The more friends one has the happier the person is.
- Only when you go out and have fun with others you can combat loneliness.
- People are lonely because they lack good social skills.
- If someone is alone it means they are lonely. Or if someone is with company, they are not lonely.
- Loneliness only affects old people. Or unmarried people.
Everyone feels lonely at some point or the other. And not everyone who is alone suffers from loneliness. There are times when people crave for a ‘time out’ and have time for themselves.
It is important for us as parents to understand these myths about loneliness and truly look at our children and figure out if they are really lonely or they are just people who like solitude.
One of the biggest parameters to find the difference is to see how happy your teen is. If being alone all by themselves is enjoyable to your teen, then we have nothing to worry. It is their nature to seek alone time to rejuvenate.
At the same time when your teen is alone but is having a hard time being alone then we have a problem in hand. They might be suffering from loneliness and would require our help and support to overcome it.
Have you faced this challenge where you did not know if your teen is Lonely Or In Solitude? Leave Your Comments Below..