Loneliness

Loneliness


Filenames: LSNa073, LSNg073, LSNi073, LASAB073, LASAC073, LASAD073, LASAE073, LAS2B073, LASAF073, LASAG073, LASAH073, LAS3B073, LASMB073, LASAdc25, LASAel01, LASet706, LASet606, LASAD606, LASAD706, LASAE606, LASAE706, LASAF706, LASAG706, LASAH706, LASes816, LASAge73, LSNa273, LSNg273, LSNi273, LASAB273, LASAC273, LASAD273, LASAE273, LAS2B273, LASAF273, LASAG273, LASAH273, LAS3B273, LASMB273, LASAB025, LASAC025, LASAD025, LASAE025, LAS2B025, LASAF025, LASAG025, LASAH025, LAS3B025, LASMB025, LASes806, LASAbd20, LASAcdw1, LASAcdw2, LASAcdw3, LASAcdw4, LASAcdw5

Contact: Theo van Tilburg

Background
The conceptualization of loneliness drew upon the cognitive approach to loneliness. In this approach, loneliness is seen as a subjective experience and is, as such, not directly related to situational factors. Loneliness, or subjective social isolation, is defined as a situation experienced by the participant as one where there is an unpleasant or inadmissible lack of (quality of) certain relationships. The importance of social perceptions and evaluations of one's personal relationships is emphasized. Loneliness includes situations where the number of existing relationships is smaller than desirable or acceptable, as well as situations where the intimacy wished for has not been realized (De Jong Gierveld, 1998).
An 11-item unidimensional scale was developed, which (1) assessed severe feelings of loneliness as well as less intense loneliness feelings; (2) consisted of negative as well as positive items; and (3) represented a latent continuum of deprivation. In addition, the scale met the criteria of the dichotomous logistic Rasch model (De Jong Gierveld & Kamphuis, 1985).

Two components of loneliness can be distinguished. Emotional loneliness relates to the absence of an intimate relationship (partner, best friend), and social loneliness relates to the absence of a broader, engaging social network (siblings, cousins, friends, and neighbors). Emotional loneliness arises, for example, when a partner relationship dissolves through divorce or being widowed, and is characterized by intense feelings of emptiness, abandonment, and forlornness. People who have moved to a place where they are newcomers frequently report social loneliness.

In addition to the item-scale direct questions to loneliness have been included.

Measurement instruments in LASA 

11-item scale De Jong Gierveld

1

There is always someone I can talk to about my day-to-day problems

Er is altijd wel iemand in mijn omgeving bij wie ik met mijn dagelijkse probleempjes terecht kan

2

I miss having a really close friend

Ik mis een echt goede vriend of vriendin

3

I experience a general sense of emptiness

Ik ervaar een leegte om me heen

4

There are plenty of people I can lean on when I have problems

Er zijn genoeg mensen op wie ik in geval van narigheid kan terugvallen

5

I miss the pleasure of the company of others

Ik mis gezelligheid om me heen

6

I find my circle of friends and acquaintances too limited

Ik vind mijn kring van kennissen te beperkt

7

There are many people I can trust completely

Ik heb veel mensen op wie ik volledig kan vertrouwen

8

There are enough people I feel close to

Er zijn voldoende mensen met wie ik me nauw verbonden voel

9

I miss having people around

Ik mis mensen om me heen

10

I often feel rejected

Vaak voel ik me in de steek gelaten

11

I can call on my friends whenever I need them

Wanneer ik daar behoefte aan heb kan ik altijd bij mijn vrienden terecht

Possible answers are "yes", "more or less", "no" ("ja", "min-of-meer", "nee").

Direct questions


Questionnaires
LASAB073 / LASAC073 / LASAD073 / LASAE073 / LAS2B073 / LASAF073 /
LASAG073 / LASAH073 / LAS3B073 (main interview, in Dutch);

LASAH112 (telephone interview with respondent, in Dutch)

Variable information
LASAB073 / LASAC073 / LASAD073 / LASAE073 / LAS2B073 / LASAF073 /
LASAG073 / LASAH073 / LAS3B073;
LASAB273 / LASAC273 / LASAD273 / LASAE273 / LAS2B273 / LASAF273 /
LASAG273 / LASAH273 / LAS3B273 (scale scores)
(pdf);

LASAH112
(pdf)

Note: for LASA*025, LASA*606, LASA*706 see documentation on: Depressive symptoms.

Availability of information per observation1:

 

A*

B

C

D

E


2B*

F

G

H



3B*

MB*

I*

11-item scale

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

 

6-item scale

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tel_resp 

 

 

 

Sometimes feel lonely

Ma

 

 

 

 

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

 

Not-moder-severe-extreme lonely

Ma

 

 

 

 

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

 

Last week lonely

 

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

Ma

 

1 More information about the LASA data collection observations is available on:
http://www.lasa-vu.nl/data/lasa/sampleLASAdatacollection.html

*  A Living arrangements and social networks of older adults (LSN);
   2B=baseline second cohort;
   3B=baseline third cohort;
   MB=migrants: baseline first cohort (Under Construction)
   I=Under Construction

Ma=data collected in main interview;
Sa=data collected in self-administered questionnaire;
Tel_resp=data collected in telephone interview with respondent


References

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