July 23, 2017 at 12:04 am #1275
I live alone with few social connections. It would not be odd for noone to hear from me for weeks or even months. My brother died last year, and I am concerned about what will happen when I die. No one may notice for a long time and I don’t want to just decompose in my apartment. Is there any sorry of service where you can check in with someone, anyone, who might notice if you are not gone for a long period of time? I know this sounds morbid, but I really worry about it. I suffer from severe depression and often stay in bed for long periods, I just don’t have anyone that I connect with on a regular basis.
My counsellor left and there is a long waitlist for a new one. I have a few family members but they only really call if I call them. Sorry if this is unpleasant – I’m truthfully trying to be practical. I have a cat and don’t want him to die of starvation if something happens to me.
Sorry but please open to any suggestions.July 23, 2017 at 8:00 pm #1276
You say that you suffer from severe depression. As you probably know social isolation and withdrawal are symptoms of depression, and treatment involves actively forcing yourself to engage with other people, engage in activities, and basically stay involved in life. You may not feel like doing this (because of your depression), but again, treatment for depression encourages social interaction.
You also say that you do have a few family members who you contact sometimes. Can you pick one or two of these relatives, to connect with more strongly? This would mean making the effort to contact them each day. Maybe even tell them that your counselor has encouraged this to help improve your mood. You say that they don’t contact you unless you call them, so perhaps you can ask the one or two special relatives who you choose, to call you daily.
It’s important for you to live life actively. Do you have a hobby, an interest, or a cause that you can become more involved in? Can you take a class, join a club, a sport, or do volunteer work? Can you schedule one thing each day that gets you out of the house and involved in a meaningful activity? Is there a support group for people with depression that you can join?
If you fear dying and nobody knowing about it, then a practical solution to this is to maintain human connections, as suggested above. But it will take conscious effort, as you push through the downward pull of depression. Please try. Your cat will thank you for it!July 27, 2017 at 12:30 am #1277
I appreciate your response. My daily effort to make human connections is exhausting and disheartening. I do work, I work with a mental health agency helping others to find hope. I have expressed my concerns to my remaining family members but cannot count on them to come looking for me should I disappear for a week or two. I have worked incredibly hard to develop a few friendships over the past few years, very kind people, but again, we go months without talking.
I realize this is just what happens to introverts who live alone. You die, you decompose until someone misses you and is willing to put the energy into looking. I don’t mean that in a self pitying way, just pragmatic. It just makes me sad some days.
Again, thanks for taking the time to read and respond. Maybe that’s all I needed, to know I’m not 100% alone in this moment.
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