Is It Loneliness or Is It Depression?

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It may seem strange to pose this question: is it loneliness or is it depression? After all, many people feel loneliness at the loss or weakening of close relationships because of depression, and most of us who’ve lived with the condition over a lifetime experience those broken connections as some of its worst effects.

On the other hand, lots of lonely people are not depressed – sad, most likely, but not necessarily experiencing the classic symptoms. The two are different but often occur together. Getting straight about the difference isn’t a matter of hair-splitting for me. It’s been an important part of learning how to take my life back from depression.

The recent book, Loneliness: Human Nature and the Need for Social Connection reminds me of the way I got started in recovery and also offers new and helpful insights about the differences between loneliness and depression. Read the rest»