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OP-ED: Loneliness: the Feeling of Dread

Have you ever had a feeling after hanging out with friends or being around your peers in a classroom? It can be described as loneliness. It’s shown when you head back to your humble abode and there’s this wave of depression and fear creeping into your body, and suddenly you feel like a mime trapped in an inescapable box with no way of getting out, kind of like the Haunted Mansion’s plan of motion to find a way out or try to escape. 

Loneliness is different for everyone, but to me, it feels like being in this deep black hole that I can’t escape, a pang in my chest that happens when the day ends, a reflection in the mindset and psyche of my brain. 

Neurons start to recognize feelings that happen throughout the body, exhaustion, and a bit of FOMO, even though I will be going through the same cycled routine again the next day and the days following.

The sense of that feeling washes over you, like ‘The Great Wave’ masterpiece of artwork, it can hit you in so many ways. It creates this numbness in your body which could overpower or underpower all of the movement that happens throughout our systems. This sadness creeps in the minute you return to get ready for the next day of activities because of the fun that was just done prior with your friends or your family, making you laugh and smile till you’re grinning from ear to ear. 

When people say the phrase “You are not alone,” it can be a powerful message that comes across meaningfully. It tells us that we have people around us who care about our well-being and want us to know that it is ok because they will be right by our side through every step of the process, as our own personal cheerleaders, in a sense. That is why one of the love languages is words of affirmation, it is a way of telling the people you care about that you appreciate their company and the time you spend together. 

Watching movies or comfy and cozy TV shows when you want to be at ease after having that companionship is another way to fight loneliness. We find reliable friendships in most shows and movies and reminisce about the moments of being around our friends and loved ones throughout the day.  

Loneliness is effective for people who are starting to be independent and feel free, as they are starting to figure out things on their own for the first time after being dependent their entire life. They may feel a bit homesick and panicked with the results of different tasks and responsibilities piling up to be tackled. 

You feel like you are trapped in the rabbit hole in Alice in Wonderland, where it’s an endless realm of inescapability without a way out of the place, and you feel dizzy or that you’re spiraling when you are on your own for the first time, trying to remember what you need to be doing and what needs to get done. Although the tasks can be a bit daunting, you feel that you can accomplish them when you are in the right headspace to manage the amount that needs to be completed. 

The feeling of dread and loneliness is common for people dealing with anxiety or depression. It manifests as sharp pain in the body or a wave of sadness that comes as a shock and overwhelms our different emotions, causing our brains to want to connect with the people that we know so we can have conversations about different topics that make us feel at ease.


Rhiannon Phillips
Staff Writer at The Seattle Collegian

As Rhiannon had done journalism in the past for her high school. She hopes to continue that path through the Collegian.

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