Loneliness - feeling lonely - go on admit it!

cycling

(Melissa Miller) #1

I watched a programme on loneliness and I thought perhaps I should start a discussion where advice could be given to those who are feeling lonely and I am quite sure there are a lot of people on SFN who are lonely but may not care to admit it (especially if surrounded by family). We have all felt lonely at some time in our lives.


So here goes my tip: How to join a "living" group or class (paid or unpaid) of strangers


Enter room quietly but be polite, see what others are doing e.g. finding a seat, and do the same.


Quietly observe and do any jobs, chores, exercises etc. asked of you directly.


Leave quietly, perhaps saying goodbye to the person closest in the room and/or teacher.


Return promptly for the following get together/lesson/game.


Repeat this method of integration for as long as it takes for OTHERS to realize you are polite, friendly but most importantly RELIABLE - very few people are.


You will then be worth their while befriending and keeping in their group. People are like animals, they are curious, do not like to be intimidated by a stranger but are reliant on others being there.


Result: Either you get really good at what you do e.g. artwork and will have something to occupy your time because you have worked quietly on your own and/or more likely you will have made acquaintances and may even be able to eventually refer to one or two as friends or even find a solemate.



(Shirley Morgan) #2

Hi Avril (still working my wY through all the pages - but was so totally understanding of your situation on the previous page ?9 - I asked SFN for help just over 2 years ago - it’s neither foolish or pride destroying to do so either - I got some much needed responses and I lady in particular helped enormously in my then circumstances. Which mKes me think to ask you,



Is there anything else your husband or you can turn your hands to, workwise ? You say your husband was employed once by a French company, has he tried any of the local garden supplies shops, or one of the sheds like Castorama, where he is both bi-lingual and has his own knowledge and experience to take to them! Even just printing some leaflets out on your computer to introduce himself and letter box dropping on the nearest ZI or ZC. Same for you, re supermarkets.



As Peter and others have said it’s tough times for both French and other nationalities here.here on SFN, we still see discussions about ex-pats just arrived or arriving in the various departments, mNy will want or need to be able to ask English speaking staff in the big popular stores, where. Holding and gardening materials are bought. It’s only a thought, because I do appreciate how desperate you both must be feeling at the moment.



That means a hell of a lot of stress, which I also know from experience is NOT good for health and can drag you down at times. That’s when the loneliness creeps in also. Nowhere else to turn! So yes been there done that also.



I don’t live near your way, or own my home, I don’t remember if you have children or not, have you been to your local CAF office and spoken to anyone there about your current situation? Is there any sort of employment bureau government or not, in your nearest large town. I do think being bi lingual is a great asset these days for the younger French generations.



A few weeks ago I received a call from a French woman whose name I fortunately remembered after, she asked if her son could come and do some

English speaking with me, so I just said YES, without a moments hesitation. We agreed the following Saturday at 10.45 am. I thought he would be a 9/10 year old perhaps, no - a 23 yr old turned up. Same age as my eldest grandson.



It’s taken us 3 Saturday’s to get there - but at last I’ve found out he doesn’t want to practice or learn formal English, he wants to understand how we ‘converse’ naturally, colloquially to learn how and why we use words differently as well as the words themselves. I started to explain to him that so many words Are the same in both languages, it’s the last few letters that are different. His 1st question to query what I meant when I said ‘the same’ I o lay had to say le meme and he understood. More so when I pointed out that many French words that end in ‘ment’ end in ‘ly’ in English. actuellement - Eventuellement etc etc. he is a working young man but wants to improve himself for his future prospects. I don’t accept money from him, I told his mum I would be happy to help out. He brought me some fresh eggs the 1st week, nothing the 2nd but we went to a bricolage so I could tell him names of tools in English! last Sat he had to go to Alencon for a rdv, so I asked if I could go with him, for the ride out and to go round the shops, so he picked me up and brought be back. He made his rdv, I bought myself some clothes in the sales, eat out ’ alone’ but had a lovely half day! We were being mutually beneficial and did the English lesson in the car on the way there and back. I had also told him the names of the various car parts in English wk 2 while we stood at his car. Last week I asked him to tell me the part names in English. He had forgotten some, not others and remembered as soon as I started saying the words.



Can you advertise in your local Tabacs/bars to offer a similar service to younger people who may want to learn, but chargeable. I don’t know the ins and outs of charging people and taxes.



That’s why I don’t charge - what price can I put on not being lonely or alone - especially when it’s mutually beneficial! No lesson next week, due to his work commitments, but we have a date for the following one!


(Shirley Morgan) #3

What’s that Peter - an animal lover - a bingo player - or sniffy! All you had to say was I dinnie give a hoots mon!


(Shirley Morgan) #4

Ah one problem I see - be it a cat or dog, where health is an issue for anyone, who looks after and feeds the animal if hospital suddenly beckons? The stray cat I feed and groom outside, as and when she turns up, I do know will be capable of looking after herself when needed!


(Shirley Morgan) #5

So can I - a 2hr journey on the TGV from Le Mans via a taxi and train to/from nearest town to me… So 3 hrs total each way!



it would mean a night stopover somewhere to get trains/taxi back the following day - so obviously anyone living in or near Le Mans would be great for me. I’m not a good walker though through healtgh mobility issues.



I’m currently working my way through all the pages on this discussion, i saw the title when first made - Typed what I said originally today that Peter answered first - then thought No because it looked a little -poor Me’ish - also though well there won’t be many replies - but it shows how much many of have in common, especially if a longstanding relationship has come to an end, family all grown up and or simply single doing our own things. Like many here, I spent a lot of time in Scotland, had a father who moved around a lot with his work, so I also learnt how to look out for myself. I love a laugh and a joke, a serious discussion even - just some similiar cultural companionship I think is what most of us would like!



Yes I speak the language better than 3 years ago. Have integrated sort of into the rural village community - know lots of the locals by sight, but also find, even with being on the local village committee, no Im not included in local conversations, they don’t understand everything I say, like I don’t understand all they say and of course accents always come into the equation!



I’ve been to loto (bingo) on a few occasions when living in the Herault and once up here in the Sarthe - however they are not really social occasions, it’s heads down ready to put the little colored disc on your card - the French buy ten cards at a time quite often - the highlight is waiting for that one last number :slight_smile: I’m not being derisory, but yes loto is a French traditional winter evening out, usually on a Saturday or Sunday. Ive seen whole families go!



In the uk often, even amongst ex-pats I’ve met here over the years, there is a certain anti -bingo snobbishness about them! I was in the local epicerie /bar/cafe yesterday from about 5.30pm, did a. It of shopping, had a hot chocolate, watched some French TV in the bar area then just after 6pm in rolled the locals - because the Loto in the nearest town had finished! I knew some of them, and a Frenchman who lives in a different village came in, he speaks good English and we sat and chatted about lots of things with the locals and also together. 3 glasses of rose and 3 hrs later I left. The 3 rose’s wasn’t a good idea - but i had really enjoyed myself. Today, not spoken to anyone, cafe/shop closed at 2pm for rest of today and Thursday’s. It’s.



It not having an option to do something and/or nowhere to go that can make life lonely. Well i’ll just get on and finish reading other replies here now! You may hear from me again! It’s been 3/4 days with Internet access up the creek again - not down to orange either.


(Shirley Morgan) #6

Ps - I always worry about her if I don’t see her for a couple of days, especially with our busy road!


(Shirley Morgan) #7

Yes Peter, when she’s around long enough :slight_smile: comes here looking for food and a good brush! I even let her have a sleep on a chair indoors the other day - it was pouring with rain so I fed her just inside the back door 1st :slight_smile:


(Peter Bird) #8

Do you find the cat helps Shirley ? (serious question)


(Shirley Morgan) #9

I don’t mind admitting to feeling lonely - but only occasionally - the odd weekend but Xmas is the worst, especially in France.
yes I live alone and can find much to occupy me within the house, mainly on the Internet and in forums like this.

The worst about being alone indoors is that there is no one else to talk to, discuss things with, or help you make the correct decision about something. Also losing my independence through not having a car now and not in a good enough neurological condition (did you see the episode onTV last week about the Brain - many facts said which I can relate to. So really it’s individual circumstances I think that determine our sometimes feelings of loneliness as opposed to ‘being alone’.

It’s not always the “elderly” who are lonely either! When I was in my late 30/'early 40’s I used to think anyone who was retired was old! Now I’m getting nearer to 70 - I don’t feel old - I may look it but it’s what’s up top with mental attitude that counts.


(Simon Armstrong) #10

Hilary honestly a 16GB phone will be just fine for your needs.


(Hilary Jane Dunk) #11

All this info is very usefull for someone like me who I admit, have allowed myself to get left behind in the tecchie information race....I am only on my 2nd mobile phone, only gave in to the idea of getting one after passing my driving test in my mid thirties, as I didn't fancy being stuck on a motorway without an emergency phone. I bought this phone much in the same way that I would buy a car, read up abit about the spec, consider the cost and choose a nice colour with metallic finish. This is a nice flip open oyster style and is compact. I think you could listen to music on it (i never have), same goes for the internet facility.Used to text people at home but these now refuse to be sent and have backed up in the phone.......................... I am now of the firm opinion that I should invest in a new or nearly new Smartphone, unlocked, as I may relocate and I don't want to be locked into a contract, if I move and then get bad reception. Prepay cards is the way for me because that will make me carefull.

I miss LBC too, and the calming voice and sensible input of Clive Bull...used to go to sleep with this playing....Fond memories of the late 'Babs of Bermondsey', Shlomo, resident nightime cook, rustling up his 'Loction pudding' (Jewish delicacy, I probably haven't spelt it correctly) and the occasional contribution from anonymous celebrities (like Peter Cook) and of course Clive's memorable jingles.....

I am thinking that just for internet searching and emails, I wouldn't need more than 16mgbs, but perhaps if I podcast, then I should go fr 32 ?


(Jonathan Barclay) #12

All your services seem really useful and, as so often with small businesses, the challenge is finding the people who actually need them now. Websites are, of course, essential but do not always get the new clients. My daughter ran a wine business in the UK for a few years and I was her partner/banker (as Dads should be!). She had a good website but while existing clients used it for ordering, and it was a way in for people she met, it did not, on its own bring in many customers. The vast majority came from personal contact or word of mouth. The consequence of this was that we could not grow it enough to do more than break even. I can see that you have the same issue and I do hope by all the things you are trying you get in enough clients, and can find ways of converting one off activities to continuous business. Presumably it will depend on a fairly vibrant property market especially with new anglophone buyers.


(Simon Armstrong) #13

Sorry Melissa I don't get your point about a radio being much larger - not sure what you're saying there? To be that would be a down side.....

Look I'm trying to help those who may be lonely and feel comforted by radio - be it talk, music, sport - whatever.

The point of radio via smartphone apps is that the smartphones are totally portable - you can take them with you absolutely anywhere. You can listen via wired headphones, bluetooth (non-wired) headphones or wireless bluetooth speakers. Some of the wireless speakers (like mine!) are tiny and totally portable - they fit in your pocket for example - WiFi Speaker

Internet radios are great so long as you're using them within the confines of your home WiFi network (or anyone else's for that matter). Smartphones, as you know, can be used on a WiFi network OR a mobile data network - so effectively anywhere you have mobile phone coverage if there is no WiFi.

I use podcasting a lot (Podcast Addict app) - this means that when I start my day, my selection of UK radio podcasts (normally from LBC - talk radio!!) are waiting for me as they have already been downloaded to my phone. Most podcast apps also offer live radio as well - so again - you have the choice - live or catchup.

Talk radio can be lifesaver for those who are lonely, ill or simply insomniacs - many choosing to listen via earphones or headsets.

If you're happy with a static internet radio in your home then that's fine - I'm simply trying to highlight the additional benefits of using smartphones like The Wileyfox Swift which is a new generation 4G Dual Sim phone - so great for those of us needing a French and UK mobile line on the same device.


(suzy davis) #14

Simon,I have an HTC phone. I read your previous post, so I have to get a speaker? and what if I want to move to another floor in the house? A radio seems much simpler.I'm not very technical minded....


(Melissa Miller) #15

thThe point of a radio is it is considerably larger


(Simon Armstrong) #16

Suzy get yourself a decent, low cost smartphone like the Wileyfox Swift - British made and just brilliant for the money! Available on Amazon.co.UK and Amazon.fr for about £130.


(suzy davis) #17

Melissa, thanks for mentioning these radios, I didn't know about them. I've been limited to R4 on longwave which is ok till they put on non stop boring cricket. I listen to R2 in the day as I'm next to my computer which is in the sous sol,it'd be great to listen in other parts of the house.


(Melissa Miller) #18

Understandable!


(Hilary Jane Dunk) #19

Yes,

Error code 999 brain not 'in gear'........

Sorry, went to bed rather later than usual (caught up with the excellent Dickensian) due the excitement of getting a useable internet service back after 3 weeks of hell !


(Melissa Miller) #20

We spent 26 years without a tv and instead 20 years with a desktop computer and other modern moble technology but we have always had a radio sitting in the kitchen - analogue, digital and now wifi. Background comfort.