How do I cope with loneliness in a relationship?
Some background, some drama
Being in love and with someone, when things are running smoothly, is such a fulfilling, secure and wonderful feeling. But of course, relationships can’t always be a beautiful montage of happiness and satisfaction, as with the highs, also come the lows and more challenging times. And during these less exciting periods you can find yourself feeling very alone. So what are some of the reasons for feeling this way? Is it because the relationship isn’t right for you, or could it just be that you’ve lost your way a little?
Do’s and Don’ts
People become lonely in relationships for many different reasons but most often, it has to do with feeling disconnected from their partner. Once a person becomes disconnected, the loneliness begins to seep into their lives and cause them to feel upset and unloved. The “How Do I" series tries to list down a few Do’s and don’ts to guide and help you to cope with loneliness in a relationship.
- Ask yourself if you really want this relationship. Sometimes we become lonely when we long for someone or something else. It’s also important not to hurt our partner.
- Talk to your partner about how you feel. Loneliness also occurs when communication is not open and honest. Maybe your partner doesn’t realize you’re feeling unsatisfied.
- Recognise if disagreements are the cause of distance and loneliness. If you talk about this, it will help bridge the distance you feel.
- You may be going through a difficult phase in your life, which may create some disconnect and loneliness. Be patient and continue to be supportive of each other.
- Keep busy and do something other than spending time alone doing nothing. It’s also rewarding when you accomplish something new!
- Find out what the root problem is, which is causing the loneliness. The solution to loneliness is uprooting the main cause of the emotion and hopefully leaving loneliness in the past.
- Don’t isolate and hibernate yourself and follow a secluded routine if you’re feeling alone in your relationship. This will escalate loneliness even more.
- Don’t be hard on yourself. We all go through rough patches. Remember to be kind to yourself and offer words of encouragement instead of self-diminishing.
- Don’t hesitate to talk to someone you trust. It could be your partner, family, friends or even a counsellor.
- Don’t feel ashamed or guilty if you feel lonely in your relationship. Address it, try to understand why you’re feeling it and fix it using these ways. After all, suppressing it will never make loneliness go away!
The emotional isolation that encompasses us when we are lonely leads our relationship muscles to atrophy, as we rarely use them in meaningful ways. To improve the quality of our relationship, we have to strengthen these muscles. Doing so does require practice and patience, but improving our rusty skills can make a significant difference in the quality of our relationship bond and deepen our connections with other significant people in our lives as well.