Sorry, but this is a bit of a rant. But here it is.
I like being alone.
I don’t honestly understand what the big deal is about this fact. I have a house to myself (and I have kids). When the kids are gone at school or doing their thing, I don’t rush into social activities or out into the public.
Instead, I tend to stay at home.
I draw the drapes, put on comfy clothes, eat whatever is in the fridge, and just do whatever I feel like.
I don’t have any interest spending those rare moments of free time in dating, or on dating apps. I’ve got enough to do without additional hobbies, clubs, or activities to entertain me.
And I don’t feel like I need those types of activities to feel good about myself or even to occupy my time (or to stay busy).
What is the big deal about this? Why are people so worried that I am depressed, or that there is something wrong with me?
Is it so hard to believe that I might just not want to be out in the world?
At my house, here is what I have:
- Unlimited coffee, food, and other drinks
- Sole control over the remote control
- Freedom from religious and/or political nonsense (everything has an opinion and thinks theirs is one you need to hear)
- Freedom to wear my pajamas and forgo a bra
- Peace and quiet
- Room to let my mind roam (books, online courses, endless documentaries)
- Direct lines of communication with anyone around the world
When I am out in the world, here’s what I am dealing with:
- Expensive food, goods
- People who are really not kind to me and others
- People who spend too much time being critical
- Anguish about the state of the political world
I’m just kind of over it. I’m over the negativity, the competition, the constant pressure. I’ve done all that, and I’m ready for some peace in my old age. (lol)
Were you always this way?
I wasn’t always this way. I used to be a really social person. But lately, especially as a mother with three kids, I’m less interested in being social in my free time. I think part of this is that I do expend a lot of my energy in a given day on social aspects–talking, cooking, helping, hugging, interacting. With my kids, with their classmates, with other parents, and teachers.
Thus when I am at home with free time, I don’t automatically push to do MORE social stuff. Because the truth is that I do a ton of social stuff already.
Just not the kind I used to do.
I also think that it feels good to be alone, especially since being alone is somewhat of a novelty for a parent. There is very little time in a regular day when you have small children when you can be alone. At nighttime, most likely you’ve got a child in your bed (who you are worried is going to pee). At every meal of the day, there is a child to cook for, clean up after, and talk to. There is a constant stream of calls and emails related to the kids that need to be handled.
There is very little time in a given day to just DO what I want, when I want. SO when the time comes that I am free….why should I spend it doing MORE out there in the world for other people?
Yes, I know this sounds close minded, and I feel a little bad typing out that I don’t feel like doing much with or for OTHER people.
But as a parent, we have to take time for ourselves. If we don’t, we might wake up one day without a memory of the last time we did just take a break. We might not recognize ourselves any more. I don’t know about you, but this sounds a heck of a lot like a midlife crisis in the making.
Most people don’t value the ability to be alone
Most people can’t be alone, or on their own. Our kids are growing up in a world now where they are constantly connected to other people through a device, and monitored constantly by an adult. They aren’t taught to prize independence, and deprived of opportunities to explore it.
As a result, I think we have a generation of soon to be adults who cannot think for themselves, and who do not feel free to make decisions of their own. Our society as a whole is becoming very dependent upon the presence of other people.
When you are alone, YOU are the one who has to make the decision. YOU are the one who decides what to do and how to do it. YOU are the one who makes something fun (or not). You have so much control over your experience, that you wouldn’t otherwise have when other people are involved in it.
When you are alone, the external noise stops as well. This is when you are figure out who you truly are, and whether or not you are someone you want to be. Most people don’t take the time to examine their lives, or their progress through it. They just hop from one thing to the next.
Plus they NEED that external validation that comes from being out in the world (that dress looks good on you, have you lost weight, congratulations on that promotion, etc, etc). Their self-image crumbles without it.
I wish every person could have the time and freedom to do things on their own. Travel to other cities, or even to other countries. With no one to cater to but yourself. Can you imagine what you might notice, or learn, if you weren’t distracted by the cares of someone else?
I like being alone. And I think there are a lot of people out there in the world who would like it too, if they just gave themselves the time to experience it.
Emily Anderson is a mother of three children, all under the age of 10. Located in the Pacific Northwest of the US, Emily is a mom and part-time blogger, jumping in front of the computer when the kids are sleeping. She started this blog in April of 2019 and is proud that the blog is now paying for itself. If you want to know about her journey as a blogger, check out out her personal digital journal or her post about failing her way to blogging success.