There’s that old saying that goes, “No man is an island.” Humans do need social interaction to thrive and one man decided to prove through a simple experiment called, The Loneliness Project, that being lonely can be lethal.
The one-week challenge was taken by a man named Joe who spent a week in isolation, which means no access to social media. The aim of the study is to find out how the older community suffers from loneliness and how their solo life affects their well-being.
This man took on the challenge of living alone with no contact to the outside world for a week.
The organization said of their study:
“And that’s why we’ve made this film. To show as many people as possible the impact of loneliness and isolation – but also how easy the solution can be.
And how we can all be part of that solution. Because loneliness is everyone’s business.
Nobody should be lonely in older age. We believe that loneliness is not inevitable. People of all ages need connections that matter.”
After a week, Joe realizes how unbearable it is to live alone without anyone to talk to, not even on the phone.
The experiment was documented which you can see from the video below. Joe was locked alone for a week in a home without any phone, tablet or computer to use to connect to social media. He wasn’t allowed to leave the house and as you can see, he struggled so much to fight the loneliness.
After a devastating week of isolation, which almost drove Joe nuts, he was able to meet a neighbor named Barry, 84, who has been living alone since his wife Christine died in 2015. The old bloke shared his experience:
“Loneliness is like grief; it’s suffocating. After my beloved wife Christine suddenly died, I felt only half alive. I felt paralyzed by loneliness.
By talking more about it, we can break down the stigma that prevents many older people from being open about loneliness.
The human need for friendship and support does not go away with age; it actually increases. Whether we are 24 or 84, we all need connections that matter.”
A kind of depression is being experienced by Barry who has been living alone for almost three years now.
In the United Kingdom, it is estimated that there are 1.2 million suffering from chronic loneliness. And according to studies, these people are prone to effects similar to those caused by obesity or high blood pressure.
Watch Joe take on the challenge of living alone and see what loneliness did to him.
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