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The Gift of Loneliness

“Loneliness is the human condition. Cultivate it. The way it tunnels into you allows your soul room to grow. Never expect to outgrow loneliness. Never hope to find people who will understand you, someone to fill that space. An intelligent, sensitive person is the exception, the very great exception. If you expect to find people who will understand you, you will grow murderous with disappointment. The best you’ll ever do is to understand yourself, know what it is that you want, and not let the cattle stand in your way.” Janet Fitch, White Oleander.

I recently saw this quotation from a novel and thought I would share it, as it seems so perceptive and astute. It gives me a certain amount of comfort, as I often suffer from loneliness. Maybe, as this author says, it is just part of being human, and not something we can ever get rid of completely, no matter how many rewarding relationships we have, or how much we are loved. This quote has given me a new perspective.

I am a single middle-aged woman, no children, and have been on my own for around 11 years now (apart from a brief liaison with a man, which lasted less than a year, and that ended around 6 years ago now). I live on my own, and often feel very lonely and isolated. I see my friends whenever I can, and keep busy with activities such as yoga, Zumba and writing, but I still find there is a big gap in my life. I feel I need the intimacy of a close relationship with someone, that emotional connection, to be happy, and that without that, there will always be something missing. I am 51 now, and am rapidly giving up hope of ever finding a soulmate to share my life with, to be honest. Maybe I won’t.  Maybe I just need to really embrace the loneliness and use it to “let my soul grow”, as in the quote above.


What do you think?

12 points

Written by Maggie Bailey

Years Of MembershipStory MakerContent Author


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  1. Loneliness doesn’t just happen to those who are alone. I live with and care for two people I love very much and still often feel lonely. I miss what was. I am saddened they are ill. I am grateful I am here. It’s a jumble of emotions. Friends make a great difference. Many of my friends I have found through writing. Reach out again. We’re here.

  2. I know all about loneliness from years ago. I lost my only child and was a single parent for many years. I have found happiness now but I still go through feeling lonely, probably from the loved ones I have lost, my Dad most recently. I know there is happiness out there for you Maggie. If not a husband, a good friend. And I know you will find your niche, I have confidence. Keep talking and we will all keep supporting you. 🙂

    • Thank you hamza. It is my friend’s dog actually; maybe I should have made that clear! I have a pet cat, no dogs. Only one cat though: I need to get about 10 more, don’t I? That’s usually what single women like me do, once they reach a certain age! 😀

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