Lack of independence v isolation or loneliness

Sometimes i wonder whether being in a group home would be better than having my own place. I’d lose independence but with other people around i wouldn’t be so isolated/lonely. I guess if you are lucky you get to have both-independence and an adequate social network.

Have emailed local Rethink re drop ins in the area(they used to have a daily one but they were scrapped with the cost saving restructuring of 4 years ago).


I moved back to group living because I was getting behind the times. I still have my own bedroom for being solitary when I need it.

I tried looking into a group living home here in Oklahoma many years ago and the people there looked so desperate my mom helped me get my own place…I like my house and I like the independence, but I wish I had more friends around me…at least I have family. I am sorry firemonkey that you are lonely…I don’t respond much to your posts, but I am always reading them…keep up the good work…hope your loneliness goes away somehow…it must be awful being a widower…take care man…

I hear you on the isolation piece…if I have a choice I usually choose to isolate. But my independence means the world to me, wouldn’t give up what independence I have for much of anything. But I am a little more isolated since moving back to the area in which I grew up. I’m around family now but don’t know anyone still in this area I wish to meet up with.

Since my 20’s I’ve generally met friends and such in treatment programs I’ve been in as it’s convenient and you don’t have to explain or hide the whole mental illness thing. Unfortunately my last treatment program 4 years ago was all male so that’s been a little depressing.

But I’ve been involved in the clubhouse model movement for the past year and a half and met a lot of new people this way. This is also other people with mental illness as the clubhouse model is kind of like a drop in center (but not) where the work of running the clubhouse is generally performed by us members. I’m currently being relied upon to help open up a new clubhouse in this area (where I grew up and am living now) and look foraward to meeting new people here and perhaps even making friends.

if interested in clubhouse model look up Fountain House in NYC, this was the first clubhouse which opened in 1948. Or simply google clubhouse international.

I live with my parents, if I were on my own I don’t think I’d ever leave my house/apartment whatever it was I lived in. There’d be so much I wouldn’t do that I do now, like eat somewhat regularly. I eat breakfast and dinner every day now, I doubt I’d eat like that on my own. I get up every day now, I doubt I’d do that on my own. Yet sometimes having them home drives me nuts. I want quiet or just some relaxing music when my mom will sit and watch TV all day long. I hate hearing people talk all day.But I don’t think I’d be as functioning as I am if I were by myself.

maybe you can do a trial period and see how it goes ?
take care

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There’s this great push for activities in the community but many long term mentally ill people like me struggle to interact with the so called ‘normies’, and how many of them do you see welcoming the severe mentally ill with open arms ?
The result for many of us is increased social isolation with the closing of day centres and drop ins. Much of these closures come down to cost cutting as much as the direction mental health care policy is heading, and it is probably fair to say that a load of policy is dictated by the urge to cut costs.


Hi Mussel
What do you think of the clubhouse?
I have a sister in California that is trying to raise money for the same thing in San Mateo–also based on the NY model. I think they are having a hard time getting the money, but are still trying**
California clubhouse–it`s on Facebook.
They could probably use some ideas!

There is always a good and bad side to any situation. You have to pick which bad side is the least bad ;>
Maybe your need for company is very important right now. You may change your mind again in a few years…everything changes…

I’ve thought about moving into a group home, but being around people all the time is stressful to me. I’ll probably keep living alone, which is stressful and lonely also.

I have a roommate to share my apartment. This addresses the loneliness or feelings of isolation one can sense when living alone. Of course, then I have to live with my roommates quirks. I also have a cat. Pets are a great source of companionship.

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Finally got feedback from Rethink re drop ins . Two were mentioned. Both church based. The one in the town where i live ,though not in an area i’m familiar with(major problem to begin with), i have been to before with Rethink. The average age minus us lot with Rethink must have been 75 and they insisted on us singing a hymn at the end. It was a really depressing experience. I was 55 at the time but many with Rethink were in their 30s. Is this really the lot of the chronically mentally ill now to commingle with the elderly ? In America you hear of the severely mentally ill being housed with the elderly (dementia). They were chalk and we were cheese or vice versa.
The other is in a small town about 5 miles away and would mean a lengthy bus trip e/w time wise on a route that’s unfamiliar and which if i get off at the wrong point i’m likely to get lost.
Both are once weekly so not places one can just drop in as the need for company dictates.

I got a feeling my illness/character/personality is similar to you,I am not doing very well,I hope you are but whenever I see your post,I feel part of me

Sorry didn’t see this post until just now!

I love my clubhouse, I tell people it’s the most welcoming place I’ve ever walked in the door. Though I’m not blind to it’s downsides I just have little to compare it to as I’ve never been involved with a drop in or peer support center. My only problems with it are the constant state of change it has been in since I’ve been involved but this goes along with being a new clubhouse in a state that doesn’t fund clubhouse. We also have a bit of a motivation problem as all the work is voluntary therefor most of the work falls on those who are willing to do it who end up keeping the doors open for those who prefer to sit around, but that is their right to do so.

As far as funding, like I said our state does not fund clubhouse, they fund peer support exclusively, so we have been privately funded from the beginning. We exist on grants, private donations, fundraising and recently we have hooked up with the state vocational rehab which will finally get us some state funding without all the strings attached which normally comes with this.

We are a very small clubhouse which has only been around 4 years and has only 200 members but things are seeming to really start to take off since we hired a new executive director. It can be very difficult in the start up stage to find funding, I know as I’ve been closely involved in the start up of what will be my states second clubhouse. It took a while and you certainly don’t get every grant you go after, but they now have a location and are looking to open in Sept.

I live in a sort of commune guesthouse type of establishment. I have my own room with an en suite bathroom. I’ve got my tv, laptop, fridge and microwave. I get one main meal per day. My laundry get done once a week and my room gets cleaned once per week. Here is people boarding from age 25 to 91. I sometimes sit and chat with two elderly people but most of the time I stick to my own room. I got a car and drive each day somewhere either to visit a friend, my sister or go to the movies. Although I lodge in this sort of group home I haven’t lost a lot of my independence. People here don’t knowthat I’m MI and nobody bothers me. I’ll stay here for as long as I can afford it.

I live in a group home. If you do decide to go to one shop around, because they vary in quality. My group home does fill the need of having people to socialize with. I thought I didn’t need people, but I do need others to rub elbows with. I’m thinking about moving to public housing, but I’m a little worried about the isolation. In most group homes very little is asked of you. You have to go to day treatment, but other than that, they don’t interfere with you, unless you’re acting out.

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Good luck with the funding!
My sister is working SO hard to get this funded. I believe this will be in San Mateo county.

**This sounds great. I know the only thing we have around here like that is terrible. **