“And when nobody wakes you up in the morning, and when nobody waits for you at night, and when you can do whatever you want. What do you call it, freedom or loneliness?”
— Charles Bukowski
A report1 published in February 2022 by Harvard suggests that a large number of people experience “serious loneliness” (feeling lonely frequently or almost all of the time) — 36% of the roughly 950 participants in the surveys. Within this, 61% of young adults felt seriously lonely.
Socialization was commonly found in a third place, but the Covid pandemic has impacted people’s ability to participate in a physical third place. Online third places have replaced physical ones, however I suspect that interacting exclusively in an online format that the social benefits are less pronounced than if one were to meet in person.
Interesting reading on loneliness: