Being disconnected from yourself is always at the bottom of loneliness. If you’re not connected to yourself, you can feel lonely in the middle of all your friends.
Once you’ve been disappointed or hurt, being afraid is natural, and it’s even a healthy response to facing a situation you’ve had trouble with before. Your fears are saying, in effect “I’ve had a bad time with this before—I don’t feel prepared to do it again.” Rather than letting that message frighten you away, learn to love your emotions for wanting to keep you safe, and discover a new, slower, safer path to tread. But don’t give up on the goal. You have learned a lot in your lifetime, and all of us can always learn something more about love.
Contributor: Tina B. Tessina, PhD, (aka Dr. Romance) psychotherapist and author of It Ends with You: Grow Up and Out of Dysfunction