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Loneliness kills

Supposedly, loneliness kills middle-aged men as readily as does heart disease or cancer.

While the sad lonely man who lives alone is the most obvious version, men can have feelings of loneliness even when surrounded by family. There are different forms of loneliness.

Camaraderie is often readily accessible when you're growing up if you're the least interested in having mates. Of doing the minimum amount of work required to be a good friend. Or to at least be compelling, amusing, or simply around.

While there are conditions, attitudes, and fears that make it hard for some to make themselves open and vulnerable to friendships, given half an attempt and some shared interests—or even just proximity such as living in the same neighborhood, attending the same school, or even drinking at the same bar or lifting at the same gym—friends happen.

It's generally pretty simple and passively rewarding. It's just the way life is. Easily taken for granted.

What is loneliness? Is it being alone? Is it being with someone who treats you in such a way where you feel even lonelier than if you were flying solo? Is it the state of not having anyone to look out for you, make sure you're healthy, and keep you safe? Or is it more about invisibility or losing personal agency? People can, and do, become invisible.

When you live a discrete life where you're trained to feel comfortable alone, too feel safer and more self-reliant alone, when being alone makes you feel more self-reliant, ruggedly-independent, then it's hard to of and when alone by choice becomes left alone becomes isolation becomes loneliness.

Snipers and forward observers are alone and with a mission. So are some field agents. So many spies are extremely well compartmentalized. Some were hardwired to bifurcate at a minimum; others were trained and conditioned. I know sundry sociopaths and psychopaths and even they crave attention, at least, even if they never necessarily feel suicidal levels of loneliness. However, I bet that enough boredom might very well make even a sociopath suicidal.

And by suicide, I don't mean topping yourself with a side-by-side in the mouth; rather, a slow-but-sure descent into madness, sadness, and despair, stemming from loneliness. Of even having the thought, "who would care whether I even lived or died—I mean, really."

That kind of existential hopelessness that makes every cell of the body and all the hormones to desperately hunger for rest, in pursuit of entropy.

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