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Solitude vs Social

Lone wolf vs the pack.

Is it a sign of strength to be able to be able to go it alone or is it a façade?

Is it just a creature comfort, a preferred way of being or is it masking insecurities?

Are you ahead of the curve or have you been thrown out of the group?

Is it curative or a symptom?

Plenty of people will take a side, fewer understand the pros and cons, and even fewer still question whether they might be wrong in their assessment of themselves. This is not just relevant to what I’m discussing here, but a general application on life, and perhaps starting with those four questions has greater clarity now.

“Am I thinking too much or are others not thinking enough? Oh well tomato-tomarto (sic) *shrugs*.”

Choice, everything begins with choice. Is your solitude by desire or is your seclusion socially reinforced? No lone wolf wants to think that nobody wants to be around them, if anything, it’s because the lone wolf thinks it’s too good for them! And of course everyone comes out saying, “fuck the haters” or “you just haven’t found your group yet”, which is what people say when they don’t know what to say, but it sounds nice. It doesn’t really help the person, but then again, the people who say this kind of thing generally aren’t trying to help, they usually just want you to shut up or go away. The people who truly have the knowledge, time and desire to help you are infinitesimal.

“Humans have come into being for the sake of each other, so either teach them, or learn to bear them.” – Marcus Aurelius

It’s probably no surprise that I chose to be alone most of the time, and I really enjoy (and need) my solitude. I’ve written about a number of related topics which I’ll link at the conclusion of this article. Possibly my sanity depends on solitude, but maybe I’m insane for not being around other people more? I at least entertain the idea. I find most people not good to be around, but I’m open to being wrong. That’s why I ask, “is it curative or a symptom?”, am I cleansing myself of the poison from toxic people or am I suffering an affliction as a consequence of my lack of social interaction? Have I been rightly tossed aside because there’s something not quite right with me or have I rightly removed myself from environments that are sickening to my wellbeing? How many people really want to ask themselves such things and are prepared for an answer? No one, that’s why they gloss over it.

We’re still reeling from the effects of Covid-19 with the isolations and lockdowns. I jest that I felt that I was made for it, but many were not ready nor resilient, and less is talked about the ongoing effects of people reintegrating social interactions. Once again, these kind of things get overlooked and then suddenly you’ll see a headline with “BREAKING NEWS: People struggle to be around people after sustained absence.” No shit! The fact that more and more people do not want social interactions is alarming, it’s not to be revered. I’m speaking society-wide here if it’s not obvious, you deal with specific individuals separately.

We are creatures of comfort, I like being on my own, it’s easier and less hassle. Does it make it always the right thing to do? No. It’s not like I don’t know how to socialise with people or want people in my life. However, we can become too comfortable, and this is where the honesty needs to kick in. Are you just using this as an excuse now? What insecurities are you not willing to confront? It’s like people who use their mental health problems to get out of things they don’t want to do, it just incapacitates you even more.

I like to think of myself as a person with a strong internal resolve, but I don’t have the temerity to go around proclaiming that I don’t need anybody. Martyn loves to be loved, but I don’t turn it into a pathological need. Similar to before, those who say “vulnerability isn’t a weakness, it’s a strength”, it sounds nice but it’s really just more misguided good intentions, it misses the point. Vulnerability opens you up for attack, ridicule and derision at our most emotionally and psychologically sensitive point/s.

We have to summon the courage to overcome our (usually impulsive and hardened) defence mechanisms surrounding this vulnerability (of which has the potential for our foundations to crumble). It’s difficult to find someone you can trust who won’t mock you or completely destroy you. This is another (false) reason why people don’t want to really know themselves or repress these vulnerabilities, because it gives them the belief that others can’t hurt them – and that is a very powerful motivator.

I know some of you may feel this is just playing word games or “it’s just your interpretation” or “don’t look into things so deeply”, and if you want to chastise me then go right ahead, but I pity you. Maybe I retreat to my solitude because it’s too sad and too painful for me to keep witnessing the unnecessary amounts of suffering I see people inflicting on themselves and each other, mostly out of childish stupidity and ignorance. Why do you think I created this website and made it free for everyone?

The character in the cover photo, Geralt of Rivia, “White Wolf”, solitary Witcher, one could say a lone wolf, analogous to me except in my case I slice open people’s souls and psyches (and I’m not a specimen of physical perfection). He functions well on his own, but is at his best with a ragtag bunch of misfits (and beautiful sorceresses – key point) cutting down all manner of demons both spectral and not. Perhaps you could “toss a coin” to this Witcher of sorts, so I can carry on helping people keep these metaphorical monsters from manifesting into reality.

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It's a mad world........give me solitude any day :-) XX

Martyn Foster
Martyn Foster
Nov 03, 2023
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Head in that direction 😉 xo ❤️

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