1. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    How to get over loneliness?

    Discussion in 'Research' started by stormcat, Feb 10, 2015.

    My MC is longing for her husband. Too bad for her, because she's not going to see him again for a long, long time. In fact, she almost comes to terms with the fact she may never see him again until he suddenly shows up. Just what are some of the symptoms of loneliness and what coping mechanisms can my MC use until she finally reunites with her husband?

    Also it's 1889 and they can't communicate by means other than hand-written letters.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2015
  2. Chinspinner
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    Chinspinner Contributing Member Contributor

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    Forming "relationships" with characters on the TV.
     
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  3. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    It's 1889, there is no TV
     
  4. Chinspinner
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    Chinspinner Contributing Member Contributor

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    That would have been quite a useful bit of information in the OP.
     
  5. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    Where is her husband? Why is he gone? Does she know why he left? Does she accept why he left? Does she think he's dead, cheating on her, leaving her? All of that depends on how she reacts.

    General longing and loneliness: stomach pains, trouble eating, constantly wanting to sleep to forget their feelings, or being unable to sleep because they are so upset, lethargy, not wanting to socialize with anyone (a desire to be alone), a feeling of disconnect, lost of interest, general depression.
     
  6. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    He's sent her to a relative's house far away, so she can be protected from a man who is stalking her and threatening to kill her. She is still of the impression her husband loves her, because his last and only letter made such a declaration. She can return home as soon as the stalker is dead/captured but not before.
     
  7. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    My dear chap, it was in the original post. :p

    That sort of separation happened quite often in those days. Men sailed out to India and left behind wives too delicate to take the Subcontinent's climate. Men-- it was generally men-- went to America or Canada or Australia to forge a new life and wouldn't send for their families until they'd established the farm or made their fortune in the mine or what-have-you.

    Symptoms? Emptiness. Longing. Heartache. Listlessness. Hiraeth. Weeping. Wearing a locket with the loved one's hair in it next to the skin. Kissing a miniature photo (tintype?) of the absent one. Feeling every bit of emotion expressed in a song like this:



    Coping? Are you going to adhere fairly closely to late Victorian mores?Where does she live? Does she have female kinfolk? Children? If none, she could take in an orphan. If she's good for anything at all and doesn't plan to go into a Picturesque Decline, she might immerse herself in Good Works. Or nurse sick relatives. Or write sentimental poetry. If she has even more gumption, and the husband is kept away by a particular interest or subject of study, she might become a Bluestocking and study up on her husband's interest and publish her findings under a male pseudonym. It might make her feel closer to him. Or maybe she sees it as her joy and duty to maintain the household and build up the nestegg he's left her (if any), and the loneliness is kept at bay until she puts the account books away in the rolltop desk.

    It doesn't sound like you're planning on having any predatory males offering to "comfort" her . . . it happened. Having a cad like that around when she's faithful and steadfast could make life even more difficult for her, and you know how we writers are for piling it onto our characters . . .
     
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  8. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    Now, if she's a dependent in a relative's home, that could make things easier or more difficult. Depends on the relative and how he or she treats her.
     
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  9. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    The relative is very supportive, even offering her a temporary job in an office, but She is concerned my MC is spending too much time fretting over her husband. The MC won't go into decline, but needs something to distract her and help her bide her time.
     
  10. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    If her husband is in a position to send her away to a relative, I'm very sceptical that an office job would have been on offer - just wouldn't happen in the class where you've got relatives who can put her up. Good works, perhaps. Could her new host be a man of the cloth?

    I'm also very sceptical about a "stalker" in the Victorian era. After all, without the internet and cars, how would his stalking manifest itself except by physical presence? And I'd expect that to be very quickly dealt with...in the class that I'm seeing hubby as being in.

    If it's not set within "the better classes" they'd have lived very close together within an extended family environment, probably with all of their relatives within a couple of streets of each other, so nobody to send her away to. And, again, with an extended family all around, how would a stalker get close?

    If you're seeing a Jack-the-Ripper scenario, wives didn't go out on their own much.
     
  11. matwoolf
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    It's an intriguing write. You could have some fun with this. Thinking - you shall have to get yourself into a melancholy trance, write all poetic and desperate, then construct a pathetic routine that kind of appeals to the reader: a reassuring relationship formed with dots on a distant hillside, or the insects that scamper across a kitchen table. She should take walks for her constitution, but instead she bakes, kneads, her needs. Then maybe introduce a sordid, almost accidental and abusive relationship with the flour man or landlord. Yet she pines for her true love, and he returns, finds her el flagrante with Doctor Whiskers.

    'By Bucharest, you whore!'

    'Jeremiah, my love is you...'

    Then a long sequence of sweeping with @Catrin Lewis music as background.
     
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  12. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    The Stalker's stalking has in fact taken on a physical presence. He's also sent threatening letters, dead birds, and even attempted to kill his target once already. The Police are overwhelmingly corrupt as is and they cannot protect one lady, no matter what her social standing.

    Her host ABSOLUTELY CANNOT be a man of the cloth as all priests in my story are amoral and corrupt as the police. My MC's Job is a secretary at a hospital, so she's technically already doing good works, but for a secular cause. In fact, the importance of a secular society and the utter chaos that comes with religious fundamentalism (albeit of a fictional religion).
     
  13. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    I've already got the melancholy poetic trance bit down, I need my MC to find a way to heal that does not involve seeking a relationship with another man. She is faithful to her husband.
     
  14. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    She takes in a stray cat. This is what you want us to tell you, anyway. You got a cat for your avatar looking like Sherlock.
     
  15. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    But he's got Watson's hat!
     
  16. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    But . . . but . . . how can you have 1889 Chester; indeed, 1889 Britain, without the Church of England??? :confused: (All of whose priests are not corrupt, I might add, and I say this as someone who went to theological college with the son of a former Bishop of Chester :angle: ). Nor was the C of E in Victorian times particularly "fundamentalist." If you're going to do this, make sure you come up with your own, alternative-universe definition of "fundamentalism."
     
  17. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    This story is separate from my victor Highcastle story. It takes place in a world where a religion knowns as "Exceptionalism" rose to power.
     
  18. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    Oh! And here I thought they were one and the same. *blushie fayce*
     
  19. ChickenFreak
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    Sorry to cause you more trouble, but if you're kinda sorta following real world culture of the time, I don't know if a woman could realistically be a secretary. I believe that that was a man's job in those days.
     
  20. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'd already made the point that women in general weren't employed in 1889, except when they were working in t'mills, so I'm totally in agreement.

    However, Stormcat has made the point that he's in an alternate universe with a religion of his own creation, so employment trends can also be his own invention. I'm not, in fact, sure why he felt the need to set it in any particular year in OUR world, except to limit our scope for creativity.
     
  21. matwoolf
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    I see Stormcat's lady as a pioneering libertine with a chainsaw. Whilst she is essentially 'lonesome' in her stump-side shack, she has access to uncle Graham Bell's contraption, and in despair stumbles into a lurid world of antique chat lines. She is overwhelmed by the 0898 chaps, each one details a disgusting series of perversions over the blower, over several pages, until finally the ghastly truth is revealed that the foulest of all the boys: Captain Chopstick is in fact her one-time beau. Our heroine is conflicted between her enjoyment of his fiendish backside swatting fetish and the need to reveal her true identity. Meanwhile the bills mount up, and there is much tension.
     
  22. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    No, I'm not. this is a fantasy (sort of) setting.
     
  23. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    made some corrections. Anyway, the year was only to give people an idea of what sort of technology these people do and do not have.
     
  24. Mckk
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    Wow it sounds like you have a very one-dimensional society. ALL priests in your world are amoral and corrupt, and so are most, if not all, the police? That's one heck of a simplistic world. You seriously risk making things too simple, and thus unbelievable, even bad. I mean a bad story, by that.

    As for the stalker, personally I'd be looking into hiring an assassin. You try to compromise my wife's and my family's honour - that could probably warrant an honour killing.

    You call this woman your MC and she has to bide her time, you say. So what's the actual plot/story? What goal does your MC have that actually drives the story that makes her the MC? And wouldn't that very purpose be the very thing that would hold her loneliness at bay? There's no magic formula with loneliness - generally you have to just distract yourself. With a goal strong enough to drive the story forward, I struggle to believe it wouldn't be enough to keep her loneliness at bay and help her bide her time, as it were. With that said, why do you even need to look for any special methods of coping?
     
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  25. stormcat
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    stormcat Active Member

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    The Priests are all corrupt because the religion itself is corrupt. This is not run of the mill christianity, it's a religion called "Exceptionalism" which believes that they may "take exception to" any existing law they don't like. Many of the police are fellow exceptionalists so they may bully the populace. It's really quite chaotic as the more brutal and violent gain power while people with a moral code are trodden upon. The Exceptionalists in turn use "religious tolerance" to get away with their atrocities. Anyone who stands against them is "Intolerant" and "persecuting me" and they can use the court system to persecute them. This is not anything unrealistic, this is how the Westboro Baptist Church makes their money.

    Now as for My MC, She is the second-in-command of an anti-exceptionalist group. She has just been shot by her stalker, and he's vanished. An assassin would be incredibly useful at this time, but because the target is missing, tracking him down needs to be done first. MC has been put up in a secret hospital where she can continue her work with the anti-exceptionalist group, but she does get a bit lonely.
     

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