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Personal stories

Let's talk loneliness

Do you have a story to share?

We know that conversations about loneliness have the power to change lives. Loneliness is completely normal – we are human beings who need social connection to survive! There is nothing to feel ashamed or embarrassed about. Whatever your experience of loneliness is, there are always things you can do or support available to help you feel more connected.

Whether you're feeling lonely now, or you've found ways to build meaningful connections into your life after feeling lonely, we'd love to hear from you. Stories like yours can get people talking, change attitudes, challenge stigma and help Marmalade Trust reach even more people. They can also inspire people to fundraise, volunteer and campaign for us.

If you have a story you'd be happy to share on our website or social media, email us at: megan@marmaladetrust.org

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Fenella

I experienced severe loneliness when I moved from Mexico City to Paris with my work. I also felt like my memory was getting worse and would almost describe it as feeling a bit drunk. This changed though when I started to do exercise classes. I found a CrossFit gym which I loved and there was such a great community at the gym. Everyone was so friendly and I made friends there. Doing exercise every morning before work also shifted my mindset about the whole city... after that I started to love the city & realised people are a lot friendlier if you smile first.'

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Ben

For a young person, the early days of uni are the most uprooted you can feel. What makes it worse is that there are a lot of people on social media saying they’re making all these new friends and are out having the time of their lives. I was trying to meet people but I’d go back to my room at the end of the day and feel like I’d made no progress and I wasn’t clicking with people. It took going back home for Christmas for things to start changing. I talked to my friends who were also at uni and there was mutual understanding that everyone was feeling the same way, that it wasn’t just me.

After that things started clicking into place. You have to find like-minded people, it might require a bit of a push and it doesn’t feel very nice at times but that’s the way you find your people. If you tell someone how you’re feeling and they react badly, you know that person isn’t for you. But if you don’t ask, you don’t know. If someone is supportive and says ‘I feel the same, let’s go for a coffee,’ that could be the start of a real friendship. Opening up makes you feel vulnerable but you build connections that way.

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Steph

When moving to Bristol - I did not know anyone - and that was a really lonely place to be. I was really lucky to find Bristol Girl and the City Girl Network - those mission is to help women, non-binary and trans femmes feel more connected to their local communities. I started to volunteer as an Event Coordinator & Admin and this really helped me feel connected to my city and also feel a sense of purpose, growing my confidence to broaden my horizons to find friends outside of the network too. What is even more exciting now is that I am the first employee of the City Girl Network - so reaching out at one of my lowest, loneliness points in my life was honestly, one of the best decisions I ever made.

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Helen

The loneliness and the isolation... it made me feel very low. Some days I didn't see a soul. It’s really hard to make new friends when you’re feeling down. It makes you want to stay in.​ I knew I needed to make a change, and when I heard about Marmalade Trust's Companions project, I was very pleased. My lovely volunteer never misses a call. We chat away very easily, about all sorts of things, including cats. She has asked me all about things I like to do or used to enjoy doing. It's been really helpful to talk about ideas and think about what might be possible. She’s encouraged me to get back to my knitting club and has also found me another activity to go to on another day of the week. I’ve met a few new people so far, I feel more positive and am finding it easier to make new friends and talk to people. The project has been important to me because I feel it has brought me together with people again. My hopes for the future? I just want to be friends with people!

 

 

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Alice

When I became a parent for the first, second and third time I experienced loneliness. It was an uncomfortable feeling that at times, one I couldn’t imagine would end.  During night feeds I felt like the only person in the world up and awake.  I felt distanced from everyone.​ One way I managed these feelings of loneliness was to connect to podcasts. Also, to rest when our baby slept and then force myself to go to baby groups where other parents were in a similar position. Calling out that I felt lonely also helped.  People around me were kind and other friends who had babies would text me during night feeds.  To this day we connect about this and those babies are nearly 12 years old now!

Do you have a story to share?

Whether you're feeling lonely now, or you've found ways to build meaningful connections into your life after feeling lonely, we'd love to hear from you. Stories like yours can get people talking, change attitudes, challenge stigma and help Marmalade Trust reach even more people. They can also inspire people to fundraise, volunteer and campaign for us.

If you have a story you'd be happy to share on our website or social media, email us at: megan@marmaladetrust.org

Join our social community

Taking part in Loneliness Awareness Week can be as simple as connecting on social media. Share your story with our hashtags: #RandomActsOfConnection  #LonelinessAwarenessWeek

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