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Anxiety with loneliness
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Anon_11642 posted:
Hi - I have been having frequent sad feelings of being alone. I do have a husband - even though we are both retired he continues to go to the farm and help our son whom needs help - most farmers do as you cannot farm alone. My husband enjoys that.

I am retired also and find the days very long - my husband will come home for dinner but I find it hard to fill in my days.

I do belong to a knitting group which meets once a week and a church session once a week where we meet to discuss our lesson.

I have maybe 2 good friends but 1 is still working and has a husband who requires her attention when she is off work so I don't talk to this friend as often as I like.

I have 2 children and 4 grandchildren - a son who lives in the same town - he is very busy farming but do help babysit their son who is 3-1/2 years old when they need me. I have a daughter who has 3 children - but lives 2.5 hours from here - she is extremely busy working and taking care of her family but we do talk at least once a week on the phone. I do not see her as much as I should. I'm not too comfortable driving long distances. I get anxious when I have to drive a long distance - sometimes my anxiety affects my sleep too but do take Ambien or Lunesta - sometimes it works and sometimes it does not.

I joined a workout fitness program and work out almost every day hoping I'll meet new people but so far no - sometimes I'm the only one there and lonely in there too. I do live in a small town about 5000 people.

Anyway, I am financially ok - I thought about volunteer work but then it would be required to probably do it on a certain day - not sure. I do have good office skills but not sure if that is what I want to do.

Anyway, looking for more suggestions if any of you have any - I'm sure there are a lot of lonely people out there. I do a lot of knitting at home but I need to be around people more - guess I'm a people person but at home alone more than I would like. I have a sister who lives on the west coast who is extremely busy and doesn't have time for me - I am usually the one who calls. No other siblings.

Thank you for listening. Do appreciate hearing from you.
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Patricia Farrell, PhD responded:
It is a problem when you retire and have, as they say, lots of time on your hands, but volunteering can be the answer, if you don't have a home-based business.

Although you seem to think that volunteering wouldn't be a good idea, I think it's one you have to explore. Usually, you can make an arrangement for quite flexible hours and days with whoever needs help. Remember, you are offering something for free and who wouldn't want to make any accommodation for that? I think you should explore this quite a bit.

Is there nothing on the farm where your son needs your help? I used to go to my aunt's chicken farm when I was young and help, but I don't know what type of farming your family does. Maybe you can even help them with their office work.

Hope you do find something that not only pleases you, but makes you feel connected to others more.

Dr. Farrell
 
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sunflower1943 replied to Patricia Farrell, PhD's response:
Thank you Dr. Farrell - really do appreciate your answer and will look at volunteer work with a different attitude - you are right - doing something for free can have very flexible hours.
 
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Patricia Farrell, PhD replied to sunflower1943's response:
I think volunteering may prove quite interesting because the options may take you into things you never dreamed might be available.

Good Luck.


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