Sunday, July 21, 2024

Alone or lonely? This is the question.

ID-10085924 imagerymajestic

“Our language has wisely sensed the two sides of being alone. It has created the word loneliness to express the pain of being alone. And it has created the word solitude to express the glory of being alone.” Paul Tillich

There are some animals which live alone, some which are living temporarily in a “relationship” in order to procreate and some which live in a community. Sometimes, people tend to think that living alone is the most primitive way of living and that social life (aka relationship) is far better. This is far from being right.

Every alive being has a primary motivation: survival. The different types of social aggregations represent for the respective species the best way to survive.

Here are some advantages and disadvantages of the two types of living:

Lonely individual

The lonely individual captures his food alone, the food is not big, but he can keep it entirely for himself. For the territory he has to compete with others and mark it. He also has to protect himself and his offspring all by himself. Which is not so difficult, as we may think. Lonely animals have remarkable abilities for phenotypic and behavioral camouflage of the individual and his offspring. Within a social group, the camouflage is less efficient, though not excluded.

Social individual

The groups can capture a big prey, but the dividing is not entirely correct. For example, analyse a big company and it’s employees. How is the money divided? The land is marked by the group, but each individual gets a not as valuable plot as the higher ranked individuals, the leaders. A big advantage for living within a social group is not having to be permanently on alert. There are always sentinels watching for possible dangers. Living in a social group does not protect the individuals against the micro-predators: parasites, bacteria, viruses, quite the contrary, the individual is more exposed to parasites and pathogenic germs.

What about reproduction?


Both the lonely individual as the social individual can procreate, assuming they are healthy and in reproductive age. Why does a woman need a partner, leaving aside the cultural, religious and hollywoodian expectations?

1. Protection

2. Food (aka financial backup)

3. Educational assistance for the children

4. Social status

Nowadays, it is not seldom seen, that women are earning at least as much as men do or even more. Men do not have anymore the shape needed in order to protect their partners, and many of them don’t know how to raise a child (even if they are trying hard), or don’t care about it.

So, the decision regarding needing an assistance for raising the children is entirely the women’s. If they are social animals, they need to accept the good and the bad sides of their belonging.


For the males, the reproduction is a complicated process. They have to fight with their competitors, they have to gain the acceptance of the females. Though, it is easy to remark that women are complaining about not finding the “right” partner. Why is that?

There are two possible partner types:

1. The alpha male, that many females want, because of his genes.

2. The stay-at-home partner, on whom a female can rely, but who’s genes aren’t maybe as good as the alpha male’s.

The first one is desired by many females, therefore his incompatibility with a permanent relationship, the second one is the reliable one, but genetically imperfect.

So. Next time when you are feeling incomplete, sad, unfortunate for not finding or having a partner, ask yourself: Do I really need a partner? Can’t I make it on my own? Or is it possible that I don’t want to?

Image courtesy of  imagerymajestic   /


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