“Solitude is important”

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Mr. bag, I prefer to work on new year’s eve than at Christmas. For only two days I’m driving 600 kilometers, to squeeze myself into a crowded train and train two suitcases with gifts. And all this just so that I don’t sit alone on Christmas home – nonsensical, or?

Bag: Like you, it’s likely to be many, and the behavior is not unreasonable. Christmas is emotionally overloaded. It is the celebration of love, of Contemplation, of security. The expectations are accordingly high. We are constantly confronted with images of bright eyes of children in advertising. Almost all prepare for Christmas, buy presents, get the Christmas tree. It is almost impossible to escape the expectations of Christmas, that is why hardly anyone wants to be alone.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: According to a representative survey spend three percent of Germans between 14 and 75 years of Christmas alone at home. Extrapolated to the approximately 2.4 million people. All are lonely?

Bag: Just because you are alone, it doesn’t mean that you are lonely. As a lonely only someone who feels to be alone as a painful, isolated, or nowhere feels a sense of belonging. The feeling of loneliness is not per se something Bad, it is even more important. Loneliness drives us, brings us to organise ourselves. Without the feeling of loneliness, we would be crouching all probably just in front of the TV, the Computer or the Smartphone.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: do already a lot?

Bag: The consumption of Media has in our society increased, but, nevertheless, we are also seeking contact to other people. That smells of urine. Technology can help us also to overcome loneliness. I would prefer the physical presence of a human but always second best, communication via Video is probably because you see To be at least. Calling and Chatting is less personal.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Should not a lot more people just at Christmas alone at home?

Bag: The freely chosen solitude can be very healing, for example, if someone his life rethink wants to, or if a relationship is broken up. The loneliness can help to re-organise itself. From a self-discovery trip at Christmas, I would advise against, however. If possible you should move to in the summer. Christmas is simply charged too emotional. Otherwise, you could sit at the end supposed to be sad alone at home.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: only Protects the presence of other people from loneliness?

Bag: There are people who even feel lonely, even though you have a Partner. This applies especially to women. Do you crave rather then to be understood. Can’t the Partner, you feel more isolated. Also, this does not mean being with the family that you will feel less lonely. In such a Situation, you could celebrate even superior to, better with friends than with Relatives.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Not everyone is free to decide whether he is alone or with the family celebrates. Almost 2.9 million people in Germany are in need of care, many live in old people’s home. Some families let Omi or Opi over Christmas in the hospital, because they want to travel or need a break. Age makes you lonely?

Pouch: Our analyses show that the solitude with the age even decreasing. This could be due to the fact that the Younger ones have not yet arrived in your life. They are often mobile and have not yet founded a family. However, we have only studied people up to 74 years. Other studies show that loneliness can be particularly on the increase in the high age, especially when a Partner dies.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: at what point does solitude become a Problem?

Bag: Everyone feels down and lonely again. If the feeling persists, however, occurs frequently, and the burden is, you should act. An absolute warning signal also thoughts like: My life has no meaning are; or: I am in my life tired.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: What helps the loneliness to pass?

Bag: Every human contact is helpful, even if he is superficial. I experience this often in the case of widows or widowers. If the Partner dies, log in to the community College or make friends with the neighbors. This is not a substitute for the relationship with the Partner, sells but the feeling of Isolation. In an acute Situation of loneliness, it can be helpful to be present at the election of the company too picky.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Still, there are people who on Christmas day alone. What would you recommend to them?

Bag: Who will be alone on Christmas, it should still be on the Feast prepare, and already making plans. This can be a book you have long wanted to read, or a movie. Also, a Christmas tree or a special Christmas dinner can help. Thus, one gets the feeling active, the loneliness distributes. It is also beneficial can, the loneliness. In some cases, the Affected note then, that to be alone is not a disaster.