We’ve all heard the old adage that even those who are surrounded by friends can still be some of the loneliest people out there. And that’s not even getting into those people out there who end up locked in someone’s basement or who simply work from home and have their sanity gradually eaten away by literal isolation.
However, recent studies have shown that when it comes to combating loneliness, you could be fighting a losing battle, as loneliness is in itself an inheritable or at least “modestly heritable” trait.
A study was recently published online in the Nature journal Neuropsychopharmacology, which asked the participants three big questions:
- How often do you feel that you lack companionship?
- How often do you feel left out?
- How often do you feel isolated from others?
According to this study, there might be an evolutionary component to our human inclination towards feeling pain when being alone. After all, humans likely evolved to become social creatures since forming groups aids in our survival. Loneliness in itself may simply be “part of a biological warning system that has evolved to alert us of threats or damage to our social body,” according to the writers of the study.
As with all scientific studies, however, there is bound to be a caveat. According to reports on a recent study of the link between loneliness and genetics, the tendency of a correlation may only 14 to 27 percent genetic in nature. Added to that, that percentage is somewhat lower than the 37 to 55 percent that had been suggested by other studies.
As with most scientific theories, this one will still need a truckload of grant money before we get close to it even being considered “likely.” But for all the lonely souls out there who don’t have anyone to keep them company, we offer this classic Akon song in good faith.
Look, it was either this or All By Myself, or maybe The Sounds of Silence… and there are too many videos out there with both songs. And a glaring lack of a singing Bobby Vinton squirrel, I might add!