Home alone...are you becoming a growing statistic?
Does it strike you as ironic that the more advanced we become by the way of technology, the further away we get with each other? I mean, why go to the store and buy stationary and a stamp, come back home, write a letter then wait for the postman to come to your house and pick it up to deliver it, when we can just sit at home and send an email and touch no one and nothing other than our computers?
Recently, CNN did a report on loneliness in America. It talked about the irony of the fact that we have never had more people, almost 300 million, but we've also never had as many one person households, around 27 million. It seems that we aren't connecting with each other because it's easier not to. There has even been studies conducted that show that we don't even have the same quantity or quality of friendships that we use to. Think about it, how many times have you turned down an invitation to go catch a movie and have dinner and opted for cable and take out...alone? Instead of going to spend that "quality" time with a friend for their birthday, we send e-cards and e-mails, faxes and instant messages saying "happy birthday...enjoy your day". We even use caller ID as a way to avoid those friends that call to remind us that we haven't been out in a while.
It really shouldn't be a surprise why we are the way we are; Disconnected, unattached, and inpatient. Not to mention not very understanding or tolerable about people or things that are different. It's no wonder we haven't really moved any further along in race relations because we aren't moving along period. How do we truly live up to our title of being the "melting pot", when we can't even get everyone into the kitchen...let alone the pot?
Your perfect partner could be online right now...
What are you looking for?
Loneliness use to be something we associated with the elderly. Not anymore. Our children are lonely because their parents have to work more to keep up with the Jones'. Our teens are lonely because they have spent more hours at home on their own computers, watching cable TV or playing video games instead of outside making friends and learning to get along with others. Then when they make friends in high school, these are the same ones that they stay in their dorm rooms at college to IM and chat with on line, instead of going out on campus to meet and make new friends.
As I say and write this I do realize that there again lies some irony and contradiction in what I say. The internet is a wonderful ‘tool' to get to meet more people in a short period of time. However, it should never take the place of that one on one, face time. As humans, we long for and need to be touched...literally. There is no substitute for that. It seems to me that if we spent a little more time and effort getting to know people ourselves, instead of relying on the media to define a group, race or nationality of people, we could better judge and form our own opinions about who we want in our lives. How comfortable would you be if the only representation of your race came from TV characters, like, Archie Bunker, George Jefferson, or Cheech and Chong? Would these images really make you want to run out of your house and meet someone of a different race?
I mention television because more than any other media, it makes us think that we are connected with the outside world when we really aren't. We sit in our houses alone and see the celebrities living these lifestyles that we can't compete with, so we don't even try. Do you realize that loneliness can increase your risk of heart disease and depression?
Do this for me, get off the computer right now and pick up the telephone or walk out of your house and talk and touch someone today. If you have to stay on the computer than email someone and make plans to get together this week.
This is Leticia...are you still here?
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