Jamaica Plain-based author Nancy Goldner just published a book, “Living Solo,” aimed at helping people live alone.
A psychotherapist who has now hosted two talks about the subject at JP’s Connolly Branch Library, she told the Gazette that she sees many people who are struggling with facing a future without a partner.
“There are two reasons why people come to therapy. They’re in a relationship or they want a relationship,” she joked. “I began to question, ‘What if we don’t get to have a relationship?’ It was true for me.”
Goldner’s book, published in December, is aimed at those people who find themselves partnerless.
“There’s that expectation that there’s someone for us around the corner. But what if you don’t turn that corner?” she said.
Herself single, Goldner went looking for resources for people like her and found very little that was helpful, she said.
Everything she found “addressed singlehood from a standpoint of deprivation, of ‘here’s what you can do to fix that,’” she said. “It was all about being without something instead of being sufficient unto yourself.”
So Goldner took it upon herself to write the book she wanted to see, full of resources and strategies for people without partners to deal with loneliness and create other social networks.
“I’ve contextualized it in terms of social issues. Partnered people live healthier and longer lives. But what if you don’t have a partner? That effect can be equally achievable through being in connection with others” in other ways, she said.
She differentiates between “emotional” and “circumstantial” singlehood, and addresses both. In the former, bad emotional patterns prevent strong and healthy bonds from forming. In the latter, circumstances just don’t line up for a stable partnership.
Goldner stresses that therapy and her book can help people deal with both kids of singlehood.
“The goal is to enrich your own life,” she said. “I give very practical advice but I didn’t want to preach to people.”
“Living Solo” is available at Porter Square Books and Brookline Booksmith as well as amazon.com.