Learning To Live With Solitude

Book - 2010
Average Rating:
Rate this:
A brave and revealing examination of an overlooked affliction that affects one in four Canadians .

Despite having a demanding job, good friends, and a supportive family, Emily White spent many of her nights and weekends alone at home, trying to understand why she felt so disconnected from everyone. To keep up the façade of an active social life and hide the painful truth, that she was suffering from severe loneliness, the successful young lawyer often lied to those around her -- and to herself.

In this insightful, soul-baring, and illuminating memoir, White chronicles her battle to understand and overcome this debilitating condition, and contends that chronic loneliness deserves the same attention as other mental difficulties, such as depression. "Right now, loneliness is something few people are willing to admit to," she writes. "There's no need for this silence, no need for the shame and self-blame it creates."

By investigating the science of loneliness, challenging its stigma, encouraging other lonely people to talk about their struggles, and defining one person's experience, Lonely redefines how we look at loneliness and helps those afflicted see and understand their mood in an entirely new light, ultimately providing solace and hope. It is a moving, compassionate, and important book about a topic that is affecting more among us each day.

From the Hardcover edition.
Publisher: Toronto : McClelland & Stewart, c2010.
ISBN: 9780771088773
Characteristics: xii, 338 p. ; 22 cm.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Dec 12, 2011

Just heard a podcast interview with the author and look forward to reading the book (On "All in the Mind", Australian Broadcast Corp). She talked about ending the book with finding a relationship that lasted only a short time.

Oct 23, 2011

I read the comment by "aspimenatos" and it motivated me to read the last chapter of the book first. There, the author goes into detail about her romance with "Danielle". I thought -- there is a God after all. Now I don't need to waste my time reading this book. I will return this very unattractive book forthwith.

Nov 18, 2010

I just finished this book & I loved it. This is a subject that really needs pubic attention & I hope that it will help shift public perception about how prevalent & truly debilitating loneliness is among our general population. It needs to be addressed by the health care authorities, but more immediately, we need to examine ourselves & how we interact with the people around us. Ask yourself if you are really connecting with that person talking to you & make the effort to be truly present for the people in your life.

Jul 27, 2010

Author Emily White makes a strong case that loneliness is a distinct mental health issue that deserves the same attention and research as funding or bipolar disorder. Prolonged loneliness can shorten your life.
This book is part memoir of White's own nearly four-year experience with intense loneliness and part science reporting on the latest research into loneliness as a condition. The memoir sections are a bit dry and clinical, I think partly because White is using her own diaries as source material. She seems to be trying to distance herself from her feelings at the time in order to avoid re-igniting those very feelings. Overall, though, the book is engaging and well written.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at WPL

To Top