By Robert A. Vella

Loneliness and depression, although not synonymous, can be very debilitating emotional states.  In America today, the problem is particularly evident as societal stresses and cultural polarization impose great burdens upon individuals.  Each demographic group may be affected differently and to varying degrees such as older people struggling with rapid social changes, younger people experiencing financial hardship, single mothers burdened by responsibility, outcast males being isolated, minority groups being ostracized and discriminated against, etc.  However, virtually everyone has or will experience loneliness and depression at some point in their lives.

The following test is focused on loneliness, not clinical depression.  Take it if you are so inclined.  Hopefully, the results might provide some helpful awareness or perspective.

From:  UCLA Loneliness Scale

INSTRUCTIONS: Indicate how often each of the statements below is descriptive of you.

O indicates “I often feel this way”
S indicates “I sometimes feel this way”
R indicates “I rarely feel this way”
N indicates “I never feel this way”

1.  I am unhappy doing so many things alone                                           O S R N

2.  I have nobody to talk to                                                                              O S R N

3.  I cannot tolerate being so alone                                                              O S R N

4.  I lack companionship                                                                                 O S R N

5.  I feel as if nobody really understands me                                              O S R N

6.  I find myself waiting for people to call or write                                       O S R N

7.  There is no one I can turn to                                                                     O S R N

8.  I am no longer close to anyone                                                                O S R N

9.  My interests and ideas are not shared by those around me              O S R N

10. I feel left out                                                                                                 O S R N

11. I feel completely alone                                                                              O S R N

12. I am unable to reach out and communicate with those around meO S R N

13. My social relationships are superficial                                                  O S R N

14. I feel starved for company                                                                        O S R N

15. No one really knows me well                                                                  O S R N

16. I feel isolated from others                                                                        O S R N

17. I am unhappy being so withdrawn                                                         O S R N

18. It is difficult for me to make friends                                                        O S R N

19. I feel shut out and excluded by others                                                   O S R N

20. People are around me but not with me                                                 O S R N

Make all O’s = 3, all S’s = 2, all R’s = 1, and all N’s = 0. Keep scoring continuous.

Although the test does not provide a definitive assessment of individual scores, you can do so yourself with some degree of meaningful interpretation.  The range of scoring is 0-60, where 0 represents the lowest level of loneliness and 60 the highest or most severe level of loneliness.  For example, my score was 30 which I interpreted as having moderate, but not extreme, feelings of loneliness.  For a more analytical assessment of the test, see:  A Short Scale for Measuring Loneliness in Large Surveys.

38 thoughts on “Feeling lonely? Take this psychological test and assess your results.

  1. Interesting test. I don’t consider myself lonely since I’ve spent big swaths of my life “by myself” … and have learned to enjoy it.

    I would say any “loneliness” I’ve felt has been since I quit working. Most friendships, at least for me, were developed at work and seemed to fade into oblivion after I retired. And in today’s world, unless you have something in common (club, activity, church), it’s difficult getting to know new people.

    Actually, I tend to think loneliness is a state of mind.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Agreed, loneliness is a state of mind. Isolation, however, is a very real issue which you alluded to. My friendships were also mostly work-related, and the fact that I’m retired and never married creates additional difficulties in getting to know people.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. Yeah. I’m in deep poo-poo. But, I already knew that. I be a loner. Most of the people I communicate with these days are my blogging pals. Good thing for that. My dog is the best friend I’ve ever had, too. Otherwise, I’m alone A LOT. Various reasons for this. Being God-like in all I say and do makes it hard to speak to mere mortals, but I’m trying. Also, I’ve been reluctant to make friends since the Nobel Prize Committee put a bug on my phone. I don’t want to involve others in my legal issues with their harassment of me. The bastards.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Robert, I’m very suspect of psychological tests. They become excellent tools for Big Pharma to pump us with their drugs.

    Before seeing my doctor at the health clinic I attend, the UCLA volunteer assistant asks me all kinds of questions about my mental state of mind. She plugs all of my responses into her computer screen.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ros, I understand your concern. However, trying to understand the complexities of human psychology is an imperative especially now in this dysfunctional society of ours. Big Pharma and their dangerous drugs are equally important, but that’s a separate issue.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Damn, I think I’m a freak. I’m never lonely, even when I’m alone. I don’t have as many friends or acquaintences as I used to, but that doesn’t bother me. I like being alone. I play music, write, listen to music, read, hang out with animals or watch DVDs of old movies or television shows. And I do a bit of traveling.

    Also, a few years ago I married the most amazing person I’ve ever met. I’m dead ass broke and on the edge of homelessness, yet I feel extremely fortunate. My score was so low I’m a little embarrassed. 😮

    Liked by 2 people

Comments are closed.