How Social Identity Influences Social and Emotional Loneliness

Dissertation Results on: “How Social Identity Influences Social and Emotional Loneliness”. In my research, I tested whether or not individuals will evaluate their level of loneliness when thinking about their identity as tied to a group (in this case being a college student) versus thinking about one’s personal qualities, or two other control conditions. I found that when individuals are asked to write five qualities of being a college student their level loneliness is significantly less than the other control conditions and almost half as lonely when compared to writing down five personal qualities. Why does this matter? Recently, several … Continue reading How Social Identity Influences Social and Emotional Loneliness

Responding to Criticism on my notion of loneliness

By: Curtis Peterson © Recently I have been criticized for my views on loneliness, even though these views are deeply seated in current research on the topic of loneliness. I would like to respond to some of the criticisms I have received. For this blog, I want to take on one of the most salient criticisms I have received Criticism 1: Loneliness is not a product of an individual’s social world, but rather a disposition of a person and psychological disorders. This criticism mostly comes from individuals who work in the mental health field, and work with individuals who report being … Continue reading Responding to Criticism on my notion of loneliness

The Historical Research Development on Loneliness

By: Curtis Peterson © This blog describes the historical development of the study of loneliness   Early conceptions of loneliness associated the experience of loneliness with more dispositional and personality qualities rather than as a part of normal social motivational processes. Additionally, according to early conceptualizations of loneliness, the experience of loneliness often leads to dysfunctional behaviors. Early focus on consequences of loneliness included study of the lonely housewife and cheating behaviors (Sells, 1948) or the lonely soldier drinking excessively and engaging in sexually promiscuous behaviors (Frosdick, 1918). Indeed, as will be indicated later in this chapter, individuals who experience severe levels of loneliness can lead to … Continue reading The Historical Research Development on Loneliness

Theoretical Framework of Loneliness

By: Curtis Peterson ©   I have been asked a lot lately why I think a person’s social identity would reduce a person’s experience of loneliness. So I have decided instead of retyping the same thing over and over I would just provide a link to the theoretical framework of identity and loneliness that I have developed over the past few years. Theoretical Foundation In this section the theoretical basis for the hypothesis that saliency of social identity may reduce an individual’s current subjective experience of loneliness will be explored. Figure 1 represented the combination of four formalized theories that together … Continue reading Theoretical Framework of Loneliness

What is loneliness?

This article is dedicated to my mom (Becky) my daughter (Latasha), my son (Taylor) my niece (Katie) and my beautiful grandchild (Erin). In a previous blog, I compared the pain state of rejection with the negative motivational state of loneliness. In this blog, I will delve in deeper into the negative motivational state we call loneliness. Loneliness as a motivational state was first described by Psychiatrist Harry Sullivan in 1953, who stated that like many emotional states loneliness motivates us to fulfill one of our basic human drives which in this case is an affiliation and the socialization with others. … Continue reading What is loneliness?