What is it about?

This paper reports on a series of 80 in-depth interviews with older people living in retirement communities across the UK and Australia. We reveal the hidden dimensions of loneliness that older people experience and explore how ageing gives rise to these experiences.

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Why is it important?

Our findings help us to understand what loneliness really means for older people and the ways in which ageing gives rise to unique dimensions of loneliness. It is essential that we listen to these experiences if we are to develop compassionate and humane responses to loneliness in old age.


I hope that readers are better able to appreciate what loneliness feels like for older people and how there are complex and unique factors about loneliness in old age. Since the publication of this work, I have had numerous people contact me to tell me that it clearly resonates, either for them or for their older family members.

Sam Carr
University of Bath

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: A gradual separation from the world: commentary on a qualitative exploration of existential loneliness in old age, British Journal of Community Nursing, December 2023, Mark Allen Group,
DOI: 10.12968/bjcn.2023.28.12.586.
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