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Lonely 20 May 2020
"I am 70 years old. I am retired. I live in Eindhoven. But I was born in Drente at 200 km distance. I miss my family. I do have a lot of time. Not a large income. I am looking for a place to drink a cup of coffee. A place to talk with some others. Most of all I miss a place where I can use my talents. I am disappointed with the possibilities my church offers. I feel lonely and seek help to change."
"I am 35 yeas old. I am single. I have a reasonably paid job. The job does not really satisfy me. I have some friends. They are married, have children and have a very busy life. I am Catholic. It is hard to connect to other catholics. My parish has only a limited offer in activities where I can join and participate. Once in a month there is an open evening with a speaker. There is once a month a catechesis morning. But I am working. I would like to participate in visiting lonely elderly persons. I would be willing to help with maintenance activities. My various attempts to connect failed. I feel lonely."
"I am 30 years old. I am married. I have a small job which is really nice. We do not yet have children. I quarrel often with my husband. Usually about small things but it hurts us a lot. Also in my work I find it not easy to relate to the colleagues. They are often stressed and like to perform. Team building is not easy. By times I really feel stupid and a stranger. I find it hard to forgive persons who have hurt me. I like to learn in a safe environment. I asked in my church but they can not help me."
Lonely in Eindhoven?
You are not the only one. Roughly 50% of the people in this city struggles with loneliness. Our needs for friendly community and relationships in not met. Fortunately the severity and intensity varies.
Now 50% that means:
- In every second house lives a person who is regularly lonely.
- Three full PSV soccer stadiums of unsatisfied people.
- Most probably my colleague at the desk opposite me is at least by times lonely.
- One of my children may struggle with loneliness.
- Two of the priests in my parish may feel lonely.
- There is a good chance that I myself feel lonely by times.
A first step is to admit that loneliness dwells among us. And it hurts us. It robs a lot of our strength.