More than half of lonely adults fear no one will notice if something bad happens to them

'Every one of us would want someone to reach out to us if we found ourselves all alone'

Sabrina Barr
Monday 26 November 2018 13:32 GMT

The majority of adults in the UK who experience loneliness are afraid that no one will notice if something bad happens to them, new research conducted by the British Red Cross has found.

Approximately nine million people in the UK say that they often feel lonely, with many struggling to make lasting, social connections with others.

The British Red Cross has recently undertaken a study investigating the extent to which people across the country suffer from loneliness and social isolation, with almost a fifth of individuals stating that they don’t have friends that they can turn to in times of need.

A survey of 4,000 adults in the UK was carried out between 30 October and 15 November this year.

The findings revealed that 53 per cent of adults who feel lonely fear that they'll have no one there to support them should something bad happen to them, and one in nine people don't feel that they have anyone in their lives that they'd be able to rely on if they were experiencing a crisis.

The research conducted by the charity also found that of the individuals who often feel lonely, two thirds frequently feel completely alone even when surrounded by other people, and more than a third of people don't know how to cope with loneliness.

Zoë Abrams, executive director of Communications and Advocacy at British Red Cross, explains the importance of forging close connections with others.

"Loneliness and social isolation doesn't discriminate," she says.

"Life circumstances can change in the blink of an eye, meaning it can happen to anyone, no matter your age or background.

"We all need someone to turn to in a crisis, but the findings of our research suggest that there are many people in our communities feeling they lack meaningful, human connections."

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A recent study carried out by BBC Radio 4's All in the Mind in collaboration with the Wellcome Collection found that young people are most likely to experience loneliness, with 40 per cent of people aged between 16 and 24 stating that they feel lonely a lot of the time, in comparison to 29 per cent of those aged between 65 and 74.

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