Going home feels so meh... I can watch more Sherlock Holmes videos (Jeremy Brett!), rewatch Parks and Rec or The Office, or work on music or art, but there is no one to share with, no one to quip with, no one to engage with on my passions. I just kinda laze about without more contact and stimulus.
And I do have a better social circle now than I have since I left home at age 18...minus the daily familial, non-work interaction. I can't wait to hit the phase of life with a partner and/or family living with me.
If anyone in Providence, RI wants to hang, let me know!
The internet was just getting started then, so that experiment might work out differently now, but it's worth considering how much of our modern isolation is just a matter of choices.
If she wants to do something with me, then I say yes, as long as I don't have a prior commitment, or, you know, am not sick or physically unable. I started this rule with her from the moment we met. I think it is part of why we stayed together all these years, and why we worked out well when so many of my previous relationships didn't.
I love a lot of solitary activities, like reading, writing, single-player games, drawing and painting, learning new things, working on projects that she isn't interested in, etc. Without my self-imposed rule, I would likely decline to do a lot of other activities, especially outside my own interests.
But if she wants to do something or go somewhere or just sit and talk, then I say yes.
My kids are young enough that I don't quite have the same rule with them, and partly because they just want me to do stuff with them and be with them literally all the time, so we are still in boundary-setting phase, but I assume that I will eventually adopt the "as you wish" rule with them as well.
But only passively saying yes to everything is not enough. I need to take action and organise something to do with her. And also take initiative to organise things with other friends. Sadly, those friends don't seem to follow this "as you wish" rule.
That's not what it's about. It's about doing things. Together. Marriage isn't just about signing your names on a piece of paper; it's a (supposedly) life-long commitment to a team of two people where you are one of the team members. My wife and I do the same thing (and yes, it goes both ways), and we both agree that's the one reason we're such an awesome team.
I ended up backing out of moving in with her because I didn't feel very close to her and that we didn't do enough together. Shortly after, she dumped me by text and ghosted me.
Wanna have lunch together? Yes!
Wanna go out with us tonight? Yes!
Wanna help me move? Yes!
It really got me out of my shell and made me realize that the reason I was alone is because I was an asshole. People had been trying to include me all my life, but I had always declined :(
I am much better these days :)
I'm just saying this because in retrospect I think I've never been lonely because I was going out and meeting people at every opportunity that came up and I could never understand people who said "I'd rather stay at home today.". But because I've not got dozens of friends this was still a manageable level and I'd still often would've gone out more.
Oh cool, nothing like giving up an entire day for the possibility of a permanent back injury or accidentally damaging someone's furniture all because they're too cheap to drop a few hundred dollars on some professional movers.
That approach works great as long as you are currently getting invited to things. If it's been a year since the last time you were invited to anything, that's not going to solve your loneliness problem.
But if you have normal interactions with people on a regular basis, you'll get invitations. They might be tiny or tentative or impersonal, but if engage with questions like "Can I talk to you for a second?" or "Would you like a sample of our new Teriyaki Chicken?" or even "Do you have the time?" you'll gradually open yourself up to more possibilities.
And I do think if you're not in any club (for sports or hobbies or whatever) it gets harder and harder to make friends the older you get (spoken like a true mid-30s person ;). I don't have kids or a dog, so the workplace is next to the best venue to meet new people.
TLDR: I don't think it's in any way rare or weird to not receive invitations if you don't already have a network of friends. This is a catch-22.
I'm not saying "you must do this, it is the only way." It worked for me at a specific place and time in my life, and that isn't a universal condition. But I don't think we are helpless. Modern urban life may be alienating, but it's not inescapable. If you find that you value human connection more than likes or RSUs or Game of Thrones, you can find a way to have more of it.
Learn a new skill and meet people.
One was that people will exploit that rule, even if they don't know about it. That church group would have cheerfully turned me into one of their most dedicated and active members just by inviting me to all the things. They meant well, but I was sending mixed signals by accepting all their invitations even though I wasn't interested in their faith. Once I had been to a few events I had to start saying no.
Another was that once I had a bit of a social life going, I didn't want to let happenstance push me around so much. The choice was no longer between do this thing or stay home and mope; I started to have other options and I didn't want to just end up doing the first thing that presented itself.
All in all, it was a great way to change my habits, but not a good way to live life indefinitely.
I have a family member that pretty much went all-in on came-to-it-later-in-life religion. It really felt like their susceptibility to loneliness was successfully exploited.
I've been invited to a violent sounding orgy of the many male, one female kind (always been a dream of the girl's, but I do have someone I'm seeing). In the last few months, also been invited to an open Satanic book reading sessions. Beginner friendly, I had been told.
"Hey, I need to dispose of [toxic waste¦a body¦evidence], can you help out?" "Sorry, have to wash my hair."
It just becomes a slippery slope though, because rules like this are meant to push you towards doing things you don't really want to. Once you start making exceptions, you will find reasons to say no to everything.
Like, I made myself a rule to not buy anything on the first day I see it. All well and good, but yesterday I bought a guitar for about $1500. I had technically seen it in the store before, but this was a different one of the same model, with a much nicer finish, and felt better to play.
Seems like an innocuous exception, but internally I know that I'm going to start impulse spending again. At least now I can (better) afford random bouts of stupidity!
Bounce around until you find one that feels right: a good amount of regulars, people doodling, and bullshitting with baristas.
Show up a couple times a week, drop into the odd conversation. And be ready to say “anyone want to grab a beer” come quitting time.
This is just about the fastest (week to a month) way to find yourself a new in person social circle.
Volunteering. You're guaranteed to meet some good people because these are other people that are interested in (1) working together (2) helping people (3) donating their time. The very worst-case scenario is that you don't make friends, but have helped somebody in need. =)
Sports. Grown-up recreational sports are nothing like the (often hostile) world of sports you might remember as a kid. Generally very supportive places. Co-ed leagues tend to be more easygoing. If you're a beginner, pay for some lessons. For example... lots of tennis coaches out there. If you are healthy enough to move around you can learn to play a pretty decent game of tennis in not much time and with less $$$ than you'd spend on a new Xbox. Obvious direct and indirect benefits as well.
I have always loved travelling so that's what I do every weekend - to some town or hills or a beach or trekking somewhere. Treks are where I meet quite some people and they don't smoke, at least not there.
Hiking is great though
Plus all the smokers I know (not many left!) smoke outside like considerate, normal human beings so there's no way anybody would be forced to really encounter their smoke.
Smoking seems to be on the upswing among young people too.
It sounded to me like WhompingWindows is a grad student, so I heartily endorse they try this approach. Just be in public spaces more. It helps.
I’d say though that the people you meet while shooting the shit at a cafe are more likely to be “general friends” that are based more on shared personalities and humor than a shared interest. As such, these types of friendships feel/are less utilitarian
I always have flashback about the time I moved to another city without family bondings. Then I smiley because it's over.
Either one of you can also start feeling rejected when the other person just wants some alone time.
But that’s not implied by dependence. It just means you depend on that person for that thing sometimes. It means life would be tough if they stopped providing it. It doesn’t mean you would fall apart or become unable to function.
Certainly there are things people want to depend on their partner for and things they don’t. But none of it is universal. It’s totally individual. Someone might want to be financially self sufficient. Another person would feel totally safe bringing $0 to the relationship. Neither is a bad choice, it depends on whether that’s something you’re comfortable depending on your partner for, and whether they’re comfortable dependably providing it.
Edit: Just in case it wasn’t obvious, “interdependence” is the only one that is considered healthy.
My wife and I have our own lives that we happen to share with each other, but at least from my perspective, if she were to somehow vanish one day, my life would be immeasurably worse for it.
I really don’t want to imagine coming home to a big empty house.
It just “happens”. I moved across town (metro area - across town is literally over an hour away with traffic), my friends and I all became busy with our own lives and i woke up one morning and realize that my family had become my whole life (not in a good way). Between that and my career I had no friendship circle and I stopped just doing things by myself to recharge. It didn’t help that most of friends were female. Of course that doesn’t work out too well when you’re married.
I had to actually start purposefully keeping in touch with friends and former coworkers as I changed jobs every couple of years and when I saw an old high school classmate (from over 20 years ago) that I was “friends” with on Facebook, I made an effort to reach out to him and another classmate to meet for drinks.
Yours is an interesting reading, and I must confess it had not occurred to me before.
 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
But you appreciate the work you went through to attain those heights that much more when you have someone to see the view with, who appreciates it as much as you do.
Which IMO is the best part of "working on yourself", and "improving yourself". Doing it for yourself is absolutely great and can make for a wonderful lived experience. But having someone to share it delivers great sense of validation--as creatures who like to procreate, we're always going to desire that.
Based on my own experience of being with someone for 10+ years, I can attest it takes a lot of patience, compromise, trust and hard work (from both parties).
But it can be incredibly fulfilling.
That's a GREAT metaphor!
But to use the old cliché- it’s better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all.
PSA, there's nothing wrong with being skinny, and some people prefer a skinny partner.
My read on that comment:
"I can't be arsed to go to the gym regularly for my own benefit, but I'm happy to do so to please her and I'm all the healthier for it. win-win!"
I mirrored the framing of your comment. If it feels ugly to you for me to reply in that manner, maybe think about that. Because that's the crux of my point.
There are good ways to promote body positivity. Making comments that look like a personal attack on someone else for simply being happy about their current choices isn't really one of them.
Being fat is normal now in American society, and anyone who isn't is seen as a deviant.
Are there other things in life where people go to the same place for, at a glance, opposite reasons?
Not just with weight, but with nearly everything in life: try to find a balance. Between time for yourself and spending time with others, between socialism and capitalism, almost every -ism, belief or drive taken to extremes becomes harmful, but can be a useful contribution to a balance between different concerns.
In any case, I used to hate working out, and always had terrible posture. I've been doing crossfit for half a year now and improvements are visible to a lot of people around me. I don't want to bulk up, but better posture is good for anyone.
The other thing is to get involved with social physical activity, clubs, or volunteering. I played hockey and went to a group fitness gym. I made long term friends there. I am into ham radio and the club where I live is pretty good. I used to volunteer at a kids camp and that was great for making friends with the staff members and doing social things outside of camp.
To me, find where your interests align with social/community activity. Currently, I am trying to get the ham radio club to be more out in the community. We are doing radio communications for a running race this weekend. It is exciting.
I think I just got used to it. I was lucky that I inherented a small flat, although in bad condition and location. I score some freelance gigs time to time to keep myself alive. I have tried online communities or friends so to speak but I don't really get it how it's done. I didn't have a problem in real life.
I read HN always every night before I fall asleep. In 2008 or so my show HN made it to first page. I was very happy that say. Genuine happiness. I might have lacked being a human now.
Take up an “extreme” sport. Skiing, SCUBA diving, mountaineering, surfing, windsurfing, paragliding. Become a de facto member of your chosen activity’s local scene.
Or just find a girl, ???, propagate your bloodline into the future.
Like, whatever, man. It’s over when they’re packing the dirt in your grave.
Volunteering to help with for some in-person activity can provide that essential social connection.
Also, consider talking to a professional. They evaluate situations like the one you describe all the time.
Also, if I may be so presumptuous as to offer a suggestion: try contacting someone from earlier in your life. Many times, people are lost in their own world, their worries and problems and life just happens as it always does. However, they are very likely to be happy to suddenly hear from an old friend. I have been on both sides of this and it was ultimately a good experience. In one case, I also happened to have contacted someone at an opportune moment and saved them from self harm.
Again, a very happy birthday to you and I hope that, this year, you find joy in life.
Can't say the same for any link you might follow though.
I like and enjoy my coworkers but our respective interests are too dissimilar. The interactions at work never go deeper than the current objective or niceties. This is completely fine (for now) but in the future I would love to be on a true team.
Going home is indeed meh. As much as it feels nice to unwind, I'd much rather unwind with my gang.
I used to be on a sports team and lived morning, day, and night with my boys. Even though life was chaotic, it was incredible to have a gang. One thing I know for certain is that I could do more to gain that back. Short-term I plan on (1) joining an adult sports league and (2) hit up the super interesting people I've met since moving.
But long-term I believe lifestyle redesign is the only solution to our highly atomized world. I look to the past for ideas.
Unlike sports or gyms there's a lot more hanging around and chatting, plus you can end up with new destinations. Meanwhile the exercise gives you endorphins.
In my similar sized city there's enough cyclists that there are many different "scenes" depending on what you are looking for, but many overlap so that you'll almost always have a familiar face at one.
Riding a bike for transportation also lets you feel a little more human getting around your city. You may run into people you know.
A couple years ago I bought a used bass and amp (again, craigslist) for cheap, dusted off my old skills, then found some other people on meetup.com who want to play music socially for fun and improvement, but don't have the ambition to actually be in a performing group. It is nice to socialize for couple hours every couple of weeks with new people on a non-programming activity. One of the guys is especially compatible with me, and we've met up a couple of times outside of the band.
You lack family, you have coworkers, you have random humans in the area, you didn't mention any sort of buddy. So have 2 or 3 out of those 4.
I'm bummed about spending the last quarter century without a buddy. Family and coworkers and random humans do not substitute. Maybe I have no time for it, but I also think it takes a certain kind of environment. The shared environment of an Internet-free childhood neighborhood and school created the right conditions.
You're in a phase of life where you could live with others, although there's no guarantee of there actually being a good opportunity near by.
I spent a chunk of my 20s living in a student housing cooperative in Ann Arbor, MI, and for the most part it was a great experience. It was big enough, and enough of the population was grad students, that it was easy to be left alone when that's what you wanted. But it was also plenty easy to find someone up for a game of chess or whatnot at pretty much any time of day.
It was also inexpensive, I still had some space of my own, and while some work was owed to keep the house running it was in practice substantially less than I spend on my own apartment with typically better results.
Edit: (start by investigating social hobbies)
Compared to many martial arts, BJJ is very interactive in that you learn something new and then immediately put it into practice against training partners. BJJ gyms don’t really do katas (lining up the class to practice poses/moves individually).
This is nice because you get immediate feedback on what works. I’m a small guy. In a real fight I would probably get smashed by any average sized dude, but my experience diving into jiu jitsu has been fun and interesting. It’s a very technique based and strategic game, so my size isn’t as much of a factor as it would be in other sports.
Most gyms do a free trial period. You won’t have any idea what you’re doing for the first month or two, but I think it’s healthy to get humbled once in a while.
California (specifically So Cal) is kind of the Mecca of BJJ in the US, so a gym should be easy to find. Give it a try everyone.
But, I also submit that the NY area is the central place for jiu jitsu on the US east coast.
Seconded on request for clarification.
Invite someone over!
>If anyone in Providence, RI wants to hang, let me know!
I actually live in Cranston, lol. You like biking? Cryptocurrency? Music production?
What kind of music are you into? I play piano, a buddy of mine is into guitar and Linnstrument. We may be having a board game night tonight actually, been looking forward to it, LMK if you want to stop by.
I am biking the MS150 this weekend, so I may be late to reply. Wish me luck! :)
I've found biking to be an exceptional way to meet new people and break out of the lonliness funk I fell into after moving to a new city where I knew no one. Most shops organize group rides at all skill levels, and most cities have bike groups. It's a wildly social sport, and most rides end at cafes or breweries. It gets me out of the house and there's an instant camaraderie that comes with sweating with a group of people for a couple hours on a long ride.
The flip side of this is that when you do actively seek out opportunities to share, you can instantly meet a lot of people in one go if you're the one sharing, instead of a spectator.
It does take effort, but opportunities are out there. I went to a "bring your own art" event in SF a couple weeks ago that was a public event on Facebook. I took a photography work I had made. I took a robot I had built to Maker Faire. For tech projects, email event organizers, meetup organizers and ask if you can present at their next event. For art projects consider sharing a unique or interesting story or journey, not just a single piece of art. If you actually do make something cool or you have a good story, you'll be surprised how easy it is to get a few yeses.
When you are the creator/presenter/speaker, you meet people quickly because it's not awkward for others to approach you and ask questions. It's a lot harder to meet people as a mere participant.
Seeking out events you can present or exhibit at is not that easy for everyone. But since you're in Providence, you should be able to find plenty of events an hour away in Boston.
Also, if you have a hard time finding events but you have a critical mass of a few friends in the area, consider hosting an event. It can be as simple as a potluck, which means you basically have to do no work except maybe make 1 dish yourself and clean up afterwards. Let your friends know it's okay to bring +1 or +2. Many times they will. You'll meet a lot of new people that way too.
While this would explain loneliness in cities, I doubt it. I believe it's unrealistic expectations from TV, social media, newspapers, both positive and negative, about relationships and people in general. Just like pornographic movies affect one's love life, seeing unrealistic depictions of social life destroy natural curiosity about other people, lead to doubts and suspicions etc. ... The availability of the option to avoid other people does its part.
Insofar as it's possible, not taking your feelings or life seriously is the best tactic I've come to use. But I'm relatively young, so I might be wrong.
And it's pretty vacuous: so, what, don't act on chasing happiness? Feel lonely but act like it doesn't matter and do nothing? Try to exist in a psychologically-inert routine until you die? Yes. xDD Or, you know, do small things to improve things, but don't try too hard because it doesn't seem worth it.
(My exception to this would be superego, rather than id, shit like revolutionary action which has the potential to take you and everybody else into new maxima of well-being IN WHICH you otherwise try to exist in psychologically-inert routines until death -- because that's at least more meaningful than neurotically ping-ponging around for personal maxima of well-being. More return on stress investment.)
Don't make exceptions about the things that make you happy, even if you know the things that make you happy might change down the road.
libcinder, openframeworks, pure data, faust, three.js, tone.js, there are a multitude of things regular musicians could use but don't know about.
I am in relatively similar situation : I have moved from Europe to SF.
I probably work too much and my main hobbies are movies, video games, books, etc .. all pretty lonely occupations.
Most of the time I don't really mind being alone, not at all, but sometimes it is a painful feeling.
I also have a pretty established routine :
-working a lot
-watching some movies/playing
rinse and repeat.
I know I should probably volunteer to some associations doing good.
I do have a girlfriend .. but we are in a long distance relationship, so we can't always be there for each other.
Open to tips in orer to meet new people in San Francisco !
Now I have my own dogs. Easy to meet people if you go to obedience, agility, or other dog classes.
With a dog you get all of the above, plus the affection from the dog, plus the additional exercise.
It's like saying attend local evangelical church. The people you meet will be potential friends for some types of people. For other types, not so much.
I used the yoga example because people there generally seek self-improvement and cultivate a good vibe, which helps in engaging social interactions
But when you're taking classes with people, or it's a crossfit kinda gym that's totally built around a team concept, great place to meet people.
It is in bay area, and I go-to my company gym which is fairly busy and big.
I guess it comes down to how you operate at the gym, is it a class, lifting, cardio? For me it would be really frustrating.
When I worked out at 8 am, there were a lot of retired and semi retired people that LOVED to chat.
When I switched to lunch time, hardly any of that, people were in a rush to get in and out.
At 5:30AM I met a lot of regulars and also meet a lot of my wife's gym friends as she had been going at that time for years. But I couldn't do the 5:30am thing, really messed with my sleep. Too worried about getting to sleep early enough.
* be resourceful. For example, reach out to old co-workers or people you enjoyed being with and ask them to lunch or coffee
* go to coffee shops just to be around people
* go out to a movie
* use a dating site or app, if for nothing else but to meet and talk with another person
Best of luck!
It's happening already.
• Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US.
• The age-adjusted suicide rate in 2017 was 14.0 per 100,000 individuals.
• In 2017, men died by suicide 3.54x more often than women.
• White males accounted for 69.67% of suicide deaths in 2017.
That's a very interesting statistic considering women attempt suicide 1.2x more than men.
There is a large uncomfortable area within suicide data. In a study, about half who attempt suicide said it was a cry for help. While we can't ask those that die, we do have data that say that those people usually have both a history of suicide attempts and a lack of treatment for it. This combination has a gendered aspect.
So it can be firearms, the culture around treatment, both, or other aspects which explains why men die by suicide 3.54x more often than women while at the same time women attempt suicide 1.2x more than men.
I think the best action to reduce suicide is with the medical profession. Treatment of drug and alcohol addiction, depression, and those who have attempted suicide in the past. We can try to reduce the number of firearms and adding barriers on bridges and subway platforms, but I have my doubts that areas which implement such action actually see a reduction in completed suicides. At best it gives the health care system a bit more time to provide treatment.
Whether that is the truth, my verdict is still out, but the literature seems to point that way.
My verdict leans heavily that suicide is always a failure in treating the underlying issue. Depending a bit on who you ask the wast majority of suicides is caused by untreated mental or emotional disorders, most commonly depression. A untreated disease which definition is the inability to feel happy and recover from feeling sad seems quite relevant in the context of suicide, and when we know there is a difference in treatment and see a difference in outcomes then that should be our first stop in our logical conclusions.
Threads about suicide on HN are suboptimal because most people don't really know what they're talking about and the CDC data is fucking impossible to use (compared to data from the UK).
What is discussed is the cause for it. The theory smells that men are violent thus they choose violent methods and women are vain and thus choose vain methods. It just conveniently fit our gender stereotypes perfectly which should be a rather big red flag for anyone looking at social science with a critical view.
There are several contending theories. To the degree that suicide attempts are a cry for help the difference in how society react towards men and women likely impacts the method of choice. An other theory is convenience where more women get opioids prescriptions then men, while more men are involved in activities with high gun ownership.
There are more. Gender differences in mental health, differences in alcohol consumption, and difference in social support networks are all additional suspects in explaining why we see a gender difference in outcomes and methods.
One of the data point that looks a bit odd is that even if we account of difference in method, men are about 60% more likely to still die in the attempt. As far as I know this difference is still there for methods like self-poisoning which is the most "preferred" method for women. Unless we want to go into the bucket of stereotypes again and simply state that men are more competent with suicide regardless of method it seems like we should entertain the idea of other causes for gender differences.
I left out the statistic that mentioned in 2017, firearms accounted for 50.57% of all suicide deaths. Didn't want to get misconstrued because I support the 2nd amendment and people like to use this fact as ammunition against it.
But now I would like to see a breakdown of that statistic by gender, to see how many firearm-related suicides were men vs women.
I'm curious what the breakdown is in Japan where suicide rate is high but firearms virtually non-existant. However, I understand suicide statistics from there may be unreliable.
To quote the source:
"For men, the most common method is hanging (首つり, 69.3%), followed by jumping (飛降り, 8.8%), and suffocation by burning charcoal or a similar substance (練炭等, 7.3%), and for women the most common method is hanging (59.8%), followed by jumping (14.2%) and drowning (入水, 6.3%)."
For both sexes, jumping appears to be significantly more common for children under 19 than other groups. Train jumping (飛込み) is much less common than you might think, but is common for the "age undermined" (不詳) group (men 14.3%, women 42.9%), presumably because the remains are hard to identify.
 https://www.mhlw.go.jp/wp/hakusyo/jisatsu/18/dl/1-6.pdf (page 30)
These all seem like pretty awful ways to die. I don't even know how you go about drowning yourself. I'm surprised medication isn't more common.
is it still the case that women try more and men die more? By what ratios?
> I understand suicide statistics from there may be unreliable.
Why is that? I know suicide rates are high there, but isn't there information to glean from it?
1- Women can't figure out how to effectively commit suicide and fail at the attempt at a rate that is 400% greater than men because they aren't capable - I don't believe this for a minute.
2- Women engage more in the cry for help attempt, while men go through with it all the way more often.
Personally I'd go with 2, but I'd be open to hearing any other alternative explanations.
The 'women do it wrong because they want to look pretty when dead' or 'women can't figure out violence' (a version of #1) seem like condescending conclusions drawn to avoid having to deal with the probability of #2, which sounds simpler.
Men to do it to end their own existence and choose things like hanging, gunshot, jumping off a bridge etc.
What bearing does that have on whether or not loneliness is a contributing factor to overall depression in the US?
People sleeping in their car at the airport to make their current gig(s) possible in the gig economy are already living in the future. Especially now that Uber has a STFU option. And not all gigs involve face to face clients.
We are also still learning about the gut-brain axis. The human microbiome is inheritable, and many modern practices (infant formula, C-sections, antibiotics, processed foods) having detrimental effects.
What's worse is humans seem to have an instinctive trend of self-isolation in the face of psychological distress, which worsens the condition.
Add the inevitable downstream effects of climate change (economic uncertainty if not another world war)... and, yeah, it's bleak.
But on the second point, I'm really not sure that online social networks are just a "surface-level mirage." I met my spouse online, and many of my closest friendships have developed online, by instant message, etc. I don't think the alternative to "online communication" is necessarily that we will all socialize in person. If we got rid of the internet and instead (just for a random example) we were all alone in our houses reading books by ourselves, I think that would be a step back.
If we look at Tinder, there was a study of millennial users a while back which found that about 70% of them had never met anyone through it and didn't intend to. Moreover Tinder has economic incentives to keep you on their platform, swiping, texting, paying subscription fees, and viewing ads, all things you stop doing when you meet people and enter into a committed relationship.
Most social networks unfortunately follow this model; they have monetary incentives to keep you as engaged as possible in their all digital, all the time lifestyle, rather than unplugging and physically sharing space with other humans.
Healthier business models can certainly be imagined and maybe they'll even be implemented someday, but they aren't prevalent right now.
I like the idea of these platforms for content creators like photographers, athletes etc. but overall I see a lot more negative than positive for common users.
Online dating apps are the worst and I even found myself getting sucked into the whole attention thing. I quit it when I realized a lot of women I was talking to/went on dates, was just to get the ego boost. It was very unhealthy for me and definitely not fair for the other person.
This is an easy trap for humans to fall into. "The sky is falling" type stuff.
Humans have faced lots of problems over the millenia, but the reality is that our lives continue to improve as a whole..not get worse.
Then there's AI, and sex robots. Why bother with a real boyfriend/girlfriend when you can talk to your phone and have an artificial companion? Real humans have their own wants and needs and may not do what you want. Worse, they might leave you. Your robot girlfriend on the other hand, you could have endless conversations with her in which she tells you exactly what you want to hear and never challenges you.
That's far-fetched, you say. In the near term, I tried Tinder and it's pretty addictive. An endless stream of new people I can meet. Most of them want nothing serious though. They don't even want to sleep with you more than once or twice for the most part. It's all about novelty-seeking. It seems to me like increasingly few people want a sustained relationship. Breakups hurt, so let's never risk having one, a constant stream of lovers is emotionally safer in a way, I suppose, but I can tell you it definitely leaves me feeling lonely.
That's untrue. Human civilizations tend to go through cycles. They rise, eventually stagnate, and then decline over the span of hundreds of years. The Akkadians, the Mycenaeans, the Romans, and the Maya all collapsed and the lives of people living in those empires got worse, often for a very long time.
It's reasonable to think that a similar type of decline is happening in the west today.
That isn’t to say we don’t face challenges, but they’re fundamentally different from those of the empires of old. Something changed with true global markets, and mutually assured destruction.
> We learned our lesson. We’re not building empires, not waging expensive wars
I don't know where you live, but here in America we've been at war with various Middle-Eastern nations for the last 2 decades. About 90% of the history of our nation has been spent involved in some kind of a war. Those are expensive wars too. We've spent trillions on Afghanistan alone. We have around 800 formal military bases in 80 foreign countries.
I think that we are far more imperialistic than the Romans, even though our culture doesn't acknowledge it.
> global markets, and mutually assured destruction
Yeah, we have better technology too and a very different financial system. However, this hasn't saved us from expressing many of the same symptoms that ancient collapsing empires had... Especially the social issues that this article talks about.
I think this is no longer true. Life expectancy is actually on the decline in developed countries, driven by (among other factors) the loneliness epidemic described in this article.
You can argue over 5,000 years or something things have improved, sure, but in the present day there's a strong argument that quality of life is getting worse.
A little fear, and skepticism of the future, is a good thing.
This is true for some, not others.