All this week we are supporting #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek.The official theme for this week is
loneliness and several of our #mentalhealthfirstaiders have written #blog posts describing their experiences of #loneliness. A huge thank you to our MHFAs for putting pen to paper and allowing us to share in your experiences.
Loneliness. Lucy Lotto Pareto FM
I had my little girl Arabella on the 17th of September 2017, this was hands down the best day of my life. Just 10 weeks after Arabella was born my world changed dramatically. I became a single parent overnight. My marriage broke down very quickly after she was born.
Never in a million years did I think I would be solo parenting a new-born baby.
I felt very alone, none of my friends or family had been through a breakup like this. They were all in very loving stable relationships, I felt like the odd one out.
I would always make sure I got up and got dressed for the day. I also made sure I got out and about to see people and go to baby classes.
If I'm being honest, Arabella kept me going and gave me a purpose to get on with our life.
My year on maternity leave soon came to an end and I had to go back to work full time to support us both financially.
I worked in a finance company for a manager that didn't have time for working mothers or women with young families. He made my life miserable, and this was a very tough period of my life. Not only did I feel lonely at home being a young, single mother but I now also felt lonely at work too.
18 months after going back to work, COVID 19 hit and I was made redundant. Although at the time, this was such an awful experience I now see this as a blessing in disguise as it led me to getting my current role with Pareto at Deliveroo where I can honestly say that I could not be happier.
My key pointers for dealing with loneliness are:
Get up and get dressed every day no matter how low you are feeling.
Having a shower.
Get outside, have some fresh air (along with some vitamin D).
Make plans and having things to look forward to.
Keep in contact with people whether it is by phone/WhatsApp/Email.
Try not to focus on the long term and more on the little wins throughout the day/week.
Always try to talk about your feelings instead of bottling them up.