I am ashamed of my isolation.
It is like a stamp of failure.
I can understand, when I’m in a logical frame of mind, that the circumstances have not been conducive to a bustling buzzing social life, and that maybe I need to give myself a break –
But it’s hard not to take it personally –
And it hurts that the problem might well be me.
So I encourage myself to go out (because that’s how I’ll meet people); and try new things (because that will help me to connect); but it’s hard to shrug off the sense of rejection -
And I try and reassure myself that I am not fundamentally flawed (which is how it’s starting to feel); and that I have things to offer (which I’m beginning to doubt); but the embarrassment always seems to slip in -
Because loneliness comes with a stigma, even if I pretend it feels okay.
And rejection twists in the gut, like a physical pain.
We flock towards popularity, I think, like it’s part of the assessment.
And I assume, therefore, that I’ve failed to meet the grade; and lurk, bow-shouldered, under a heavy kind of shame. And I’ll admit, though it might make me shallow, that I tend to imagine that people with friends have a lot more to offer –
Then someone who struggles with loneliness, like me.