Misconceptions regarding loneliness can make you feel even worse. Men may see loneliness as a sign of weakness or immaturity while women may see loneliness as a sign they are not desirable or worthy.
Loneliness, like all emotional experiences, can be very negative, depending on what you tell yourself it means. I’m the only one who feels this way. People who think of loneliness as a personal defect often have difficulty asserting them selves, making friends, sharing about themselves, and are less responsive to others. There is a greater tendency to approach social events with cynicism. Loneliness is a negative experience when you feel excluded, unwanted or not liked by those around you. If you feel that no one wants you around, then you will find it difficult to make friends (Counselling Center University of Illinois).
People who often feel lonely also often feel depressed, angry, afraid or misunderstood. These negative emotions precede relapse. When feeling loneliness plus other negative emotions, people become highly critical of themselves and overly sensitive to whatever anyone says to them. When people feel negatively about themselves, they easily become discouraged, lose their desire and motivation to get involved in new situations, and isolate themselves from people and activities.
Or the reverse may happen. Out of desperation to end the loneliness, they may become too quickly involved with people and activities, without thinking about the consequences. They may become involved in situations that are high risk for using again. Or, they may adopt an “anyone is better than no one” attitude later finding themselves in very unsatisfying and sometimes dangerous relationships.
People, who feel negatively about themselves, often depend on others to build their self-esteem and start activities. They falsely assume nobody likes them. They blame themselves and other people for their loneliness. Loneliness is a signal it’s time to take action and put things in perspective.