LETTER : Singling out the loneliness factor

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From Dr Roger Mortimore

Sir: In her reply (Section Two, 23 October) to Angela Lambert's article about young single people, Fran Abrams misrepresents our 1993 survey to which Ms Lambert referred. Respondents were asked which, if any, of a list of 19 things they disliked most about being single (my italics). (They were also asked what they liked most).

A total of 37 per cent chose loneliness as one of the aspects of being single they disliked most. This is not equivalent, as Ms Abrams seems to think, to saying that the remaining 63 per cent were not lonely at all; and it is equally untrue that "more than nine out of 10 had no worries about being "unprotected". Twice as many respondents chose loneliness as chose any other factor, and twice as many chose it as said they disliked nothing about being single.

Yours faithfully,

Roger Mortimore


London, SW1