It is true that loneliness affects people in several ways. The real struggle revolves around how it happens. We know that societal shifts have played a role though. For example, we did not really even discuss loneliness as a term until the 1900s due to the societies we had at the time. When people began leaving small communities to head in for jobs in factories, those small communities mostly died off in America.
Instead, we saw larger ones crop up near places where one could work. On top of this, marriage has changed where people get married later. Since the late 1800s, there’s around a 5-to-10-year difference in the average marrying age. Single people do not feel as alone as some married people do but if many friends are married, the single person can still experience it. On top of this, organized communities like Churches have become less prominent in the last 50 to 100 years.
Those who attend services less frequently report feeling lonelier, according to a study by the Chicago Tribune. Roughly 25% of Americans are unaffiliated with any religion today. Of course, it’s not so much that faith is the cause of this. Rather, the church community offers a group of people to connect with. Therefore, one would naturally feel less lonely as a result. Simply put, our brains are wired to be connected to others….so we’re not meant to be isolated.