Despite working with lots of people, moving away from friends and family for his dream job left Lloyd feeling lonely, isolated, and eventually depressed...
"It was an ambition of mine to work for an automotive company in the Midlands I had idolised since I was a teenager, and after years of waiting I had finally secured a job there. But to me it was more than a job, it was a dream come true.
"The job wasn’t located in a big city like any of my previous roles, but I didn’t really give much thought to the impact my surroundings could have. I was more focused on the excitement of starting my new job and finding somewhere to live close to my workplace.
"During my first month, I had starry eyes, amazed that I had made it to a place I held in such high regard. However, things started to change soon after. By the second month I was being asked to work longer hours and come in on weekends as the company was extremely busy and going through a lot of change, eventually developing into a situation where I rarely had a day to myself. There was no reward for these extra hours or days, and by the time I got home I was too exhausted to go out, meet people or even eat sometimes. At least twice a week I’d go to bed immediately after arriving home as I was just so tired. It definitely wasn’t what I had hoped for, and as time went on I started to have a feeling of dread every morning before heading to work and felt really down when I got home in the evening. It was horrible.
"As I moved to the area for the job, my friends and family lived quite far away, and that made a huge difference. No one wanted to visit me as I was living in the middle of nowhere, and I found when I wanted to talk to someone about the pressure from work and how isolated I felt, I didn’t have anyone around. As I was so busy I hadn’t made many friends where I lived either, so talking to someone outside of my close friends and family about my problems on the phone wasn’t even possible. After bottling things up and not talking I became really depressed, only leaving the house for work. Any time I had spare was spent in bed, isolated and feeling like no one cared. Despite going to work in an office with 40 people each day, I was so lonely.
"The situation carried on for over a year, and with no way of escaping the constant feeling of loneliness, I decided to resign and moved away. It took me a good few months to get over the experience and to regain my confidence.
"I eventually started to look for another job in the automotive industry, and found one I thrived at and rediscovered my passion. It was at my new company that I discovered Ben. I wish I’d known about them during the time that I was lonely and depressed, as the work they do in improving people’s lives is amazing. I now make sure I tell people about the charity and encourage anyone to get in touch if they are struggling.
"Life is so much better now. I love coming to work and I’m back living close to my friends and family. My experience was extremely difficult to deal with on my own, so if you’re experiencing loneliness I urge you to get in touch with Ben. Don’t suffer as long as I did."
Tips to beat loneliness
Building your social connectedness and having a strong support network of family, friends and colleagues can enhance the quality of your life and help you look after your health and wellbeing
There’s no magic cure to combat loneliness, but if you’re struggling and feeling alone, it’s important to work out why you feel this way and then take steps to change your life for the better
It’s important to have people in our lives who we truly connect with, but it’s not always easy to meet the right people, make a real connection and maintain friendships
We’re all different and our social needs vary, but having a support network is an essential area for us to pay attention to, so we can look after our health and wellbeing
Many people occasionally worry about social situations, but someone experiencing social anxiety can feel overly worried before, during and after them
Real life stories
Matthew lost his mum at 6 years old and then suffered emotional and physical abuse from his dad’s new wife
Dan found himself struggling when he discovered his daughter had an eating disorder
Rob has spina bifida and sometimes had to ask friends to help him get out of bed as he couldn't afford the electric bed he needed.
Derek was in a motorbike accident that left him disabled and he couldn’t afford to buy the electric wheelchair he needed
Laura was suffering with her mental health and was also struggling to pay the mortgage and feed her family
Jane couldn’t afford a new oven when she lost her job so lived on microwave meals and jacket potatoes for nearly 2 years
Mike was struggling after losing his father-in-law, his uncle’s cancer diagnosis, and starting a busy new job
Winston felt alone after finding out he had Leukaemia. When his boiler broke, he was left for 9 months without heating
Derren discovered he had prostate cancer. He's raising awareness that early detection has good outcomes
Clare hit rock bottom when her grandad died. She was struggling to cope with her grief and suffering with anxiety