Loneliness is often characterized by strong emotional feelings of isolation. Individuals might feel they lack companionship, unable to fit in with people around them, or lack trusted connections that they can turn to.
While the feeling of loneliness can be transient, chronic loneliness is also commonly experienced by some of the most vulnerable populations, including:
People who struggle with sexual identities
Low income households
Seniors aged 75+
Youth aged 15–24
Additionally, you don’t have to be in these groups to feel lonely. In the U.S., recent survey has found that three in five adults (61%) have expressed that they feel lonely.
Support groups are safe spaces structured to allow participants to share personal experiences, feelings, coping strategies and information about symptoms and treatments. The discussions often are facilitated by an experienced leader or a medical professional.
People who experience loneliness often appreciate creating human connections with others who understand themselves. Addressing feelings of loneliness early on can prevent chronic loneliness which is often associated with depression. Support groups can allow us to improve an understanding of our daily lives and have greater control over one’s health problems, providing tangible benefits to people experiencing mental health issues.
Benefits of participating in support groups can include:
Reducing feelings of loneliness, isolation and stigma by making real connections
Getting practical advice or information about treatment options
Reducing distress, depression, anxiety or fatigue
Talking openly and honestly about your feelings
Gaining a sense of empowerment, control or hope
Learning about health, economic or social resources
Benefits of online support groups can include:
Faster time to get help, skipping appointment wait time
More frequent or flexible participation
A cost effective way to see a licensed mental health professional
A degree of privacy or anonymity comparing to local community support groups
Opportunities for people in areas with no face-to-face support groups
You are not alone. Herd is ready to support you.