Just over half of Berliners are singles. More than half of them are alone in Berlin, searching, despairing or instead enjoying their time alone. After the article “I am alone but not lonely” I thought a lot about being alone and having a life as a single. Mostly, people feel the same way as me. The different reactions of my interviewees were interesting. Many saw the question “Do you like being alone?” as a kind of accusation. “But I’m not,” they replied. I was specifically looking for people who understood me and my world of thoughts. Singles who enjoy being alone. Four people, four emotional worlds.
And one thing in common: we all like to be alone. We are all happy.
LINH, GRAFIKDESIGNERIN, 28
“We’re born alone, we live alone, we die alone. Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we’re not alone.” The quote from Orsen Welles is very accurate. When I’m standing in line, I’m alone at that moment, but not lonely. Probably this feeling also frightens people. They are afraid of the condition. But since I am an introverted person, I enjoy being alone very much. I have the feeling that I feel the experience much stronger. Alone I have the feeling that I can think about and reflect on many things in peace. I need this time and take it consciously. Being alone is no way out. We are social beings and need people to develop ourselves mentally. So we can also prevent that we get stuck in our own thoughts.”
LEA, EVENTMANAGERIN, 30
“I’d rather be alone than have someone by my side – be it out of habit or just because I can’t be alone. That wouldn’t be fair to me or my partner. In my life I was in love three times. Twice I was heartbroken, feeling like not leaving my house ever again. I don’t want anyone to have me by their side just because I’m there. That is not enought for me. And yet I am happy to be alone. I don’t think that’s mutually exclusive. You can be both – searching and yet satisfied with the situation. I love to travel alone. So much so that holidays with friends are often exhausting. When travelling alone, I especially like that it happens at my own pace. That I only do what I really want. And that I get to know people whom I probably wouldn’t have met in my normal setting. Because when I am alone, I am forced to approach strangers. I deliberately choose the biggest room in hostels because I like to be surrounded by new people.”
KAI, STUDENT, 24
“A year ago, I decided to move from Amsterdam to Berlin. This city showed me a completely new side, which I didn’t know existed at all. I love to be alone and actually didn’t have the feeling “I’m alone” even once. I learned that I am more extroverted than introverted than I thought. My thoughts became more and more positive and I became more and more open myself. The move from Amsterdam to Berlin proved to me that I could get out of my comfort zone. For me being alone is a stage in which I get the time to become aware of myself, to reflect and process. And that is by no means lonely.”
ELLA, STUDENTIN, 26
“I think we should get away from always and exclusively starting from this one, seemingly single form of fixed relationship, without even once questioning it. There are so many ways to define one’s relationship with one’s loved ones. Seen in this way, I may not be in the typically fixed relationship, but have several different ties to various people at the same time – most of them purely platonic. Being alone refers to space, but loneliness is a feeling. I experience a lot of love with and through my friends, my family and – very important: myself. One is especially lonely when one cannot enjoy the time with oneself and is compulsively looking for an inner connection to others, but this is not fulfilled. But many also forget that one can also find this inner connection to oneself. It seems to me that these people have not yet got to know themselves well enough.
I enjoy being able to read my newspaper in the morning with fresh coffee and rolls. Sitting in the train with music and letting my eyes wander over the landscape out there. Sometimes it is of course absolutely important to be able to share these thoughts and moments. You have to give yourself time to discover and acknowledge yourself, to learn to love. Sometimes I think: “People who throw themselves from one relationship to the next are constantly so strongly influenced from the outside that they don’t even know how they would act without this influence”.
Thanks to all involved!
Text & Interview: Masha
Do you like being alone too? Write us a comment!
Read the article in German here