In 2014, a College of Virginia research discovered that folks would quite electrocute themselves than spend time alone. This aversion to and disdain for solitude remains to be alive and effectively, as I realized through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Every week after I arrived in Argentina in March for a sequence of journey writing assignments, the whole nation went into lockdown. The airport in Buenos Aires closed. Complete international locations have been shutting down. Getting dwelling appeared like a pipe dream when even venturing farther than the native grocery retailer was primarily unlawful. The world was unrecognizable.
As a author with a give attention to journey, my occupation was additionally on hearth. From one second to the subsequent, a number of assignments have been canceled, and several other revenue sources evaporated. Then there was the gentle tragedy of being sequestered a stone’s throw from the world’s best steakhouses when the grills had all been turned off, in addition to the comedy of getting a suitcase of flimsy floral clothes and no heat clothes for the upcoming southern hemisphere winter ought to I’ve remained caught in Argentina.
These have been my important considerations. But for some cause, many in my circle have been erratically preoccupied with my lonesomeness.
“I can not imagine you are over there alone.”
“If solely you had a associate to lock down with.”
“You of all folks should not reside life by your self.”
Singlehood, and never the pandemic, was assigned as the most important menace to my psychological well being. Admittedly, the curler coaster of the information cycle tore waves of hysteria via my physique on a couple of event, however my lack of companionship didn’t exacerbate my unease. I used to be anticipated to sink into an prolonged bout of listlessness as a result of my “scenario,” when in reality, I flourished and thrived alone.
Nevertheless, the supposition that contentment and singlehood are mutually unique is problematic. The condolences I acquired for being quarantined in Argentina on my own bordered on single-shaming, whether or not unintentional or not.