Some Questions For Loners

First, let me define my audience. A loner is someone who spends a lot of time alone by choice and prefers it that way. This is different from people who are suffering from loneliness, are outcasts, lack social skills, or are the quiet ones in a group.
If someone wants to talk to you and you just don't feel like talking, how do you get this message across without being perceived as rude, surly, or antisocial?
"Entertainment" typically means getting together with others and talking or doing some activity together. If you are alone most of the time, how do you keep from getting bored?
Who do you confide in? Everyone needs someone to share his or her thoughts and feelings with. If you come home to be alone, there is no one to talk to ( unless you call people ). It must be difficult to have no one to confide in.
What happens to your self esteem if you don't get the validation, encouragement, and support that comes from other people?
Do you REALLY enjoy being alone or is it just a refuge from toxic people in your life? If you have never been abused, mistreated, or had some experience that has made you fearful/bitter/mistrustful toward people, is it still reasonable to want to spend a lot of time alone?
Does nonstop questioning and "chatting" drive you absolutely insane?
Do you ever feel guilty about your lack of social need? If so, how do you handle that?
I'm just curious.
atpeacewithme atpeacewithme
1 Response Jan 7, 2013

Tough question, in large part because I'm not sure exactly into which category I fall. I'm not an outcast or socially awkward for the most part. I AM quiet, and I do find it stressful to be around people. I keep my own counsel. I am mostly a loner by choice, but only because I really have a hard time finding people with whom I want to spend time. If I found someone I really liked, I might run the risk of being overly clingy.

Most of my socializing happens as a result of my hobbies or work and is inadvertent. I never have people over. Ever. In 5 years living on my own, I've never had a friend over to my place. I wish sometimes I had someone I wanted to share things with, but I also really like having the freedom that comes with no expectations from others. Do I feel guilty about being a loner? Absolutely not. No. Never. Why on earth would I? Do I sometimes wish, for the sake of my happiness and well-being, that I were a little less alone? Yes. But I have no idea how to make that happen. I'm so set in my ways avoiding people that it's extremely difficult to welcome new people into my life.

Compounding and further complicating this is the fact that I've dealt with depression from my early teens onward, to varying degrees. It's impossible to know where depression leaves off and loneliness kicks in, which one is causing which, and just generally how interdependent they are.

So, there you go. One loner's perspective.

Oh, and I wouldn't say being chatted at drives me insane. If someone wants my input on whatever inane topic, then that's annoying, but I can put up with a good deal of chattiness because it takes the pressure off me. My mom was chatty. I got good at listening (and knowing when I can get away with paying almost no attention to what someone is saying while still acting engaged).