"If you meet a loner, no matter what they tell you, it's not because they enjoy solitude. It's because they have tried to blend into the world before, and people have continued to disappoint them."

- Jodi Picoult

Before I begin- this is not about being an introvert or an extrovert. This is for both groups. But most of all, this is about those who are caught somewhere in the middle.

It is not wrong to have expectations. It is not wrong to hope that they may be fulfilled. But, it is only going to hurt you at the end if you assume that they will be.

Personally speaking, I know firsthand what being a loner feels like. For the first ten years of my life, apart from my immediate family, I was an absolute loner. That one kid in school that people didn't really hate, but didn't exactly like either. They were just there. Maybe it was their personality- quiet, shy, unassuming, or cold, aloof, dry- that kept everyone at a distance. That little bubble they seemed to exist within- like that was the beginning and end of their world.

Did you ever stop to wonder why?

"Man is a social animal." We've all read this over and over again, somewhere or the other. It is obvious that no one could possibly enjoy utter solitude. What is it, then, that explains these so-called 'loners'?

Pride? Yes.

Arrogance? Could be.

Sadness? Maybe.

Shyness? Rarely.

"They just want to be left alone."? A little.

"They're being dramatic."? Honestly, that's the best you can think of?

"They're just introverts." Never.

No one is "just an introvert". Introversion is not shyness. Introversion is not an unwillingness to talk or to interact with other people. Introversion simply means that, at the end of the day, you need some time to yourself, rather than always being around people. That "me time" is how you recharge.

It is needless to say that no one needs charging all the time.

Then what is it that makes these "loners"?

To some degree, everything that I just mentioned above. But a major part of it is disappointment, of a slightly different kind. They are not disappointed in people. They are disappointed because they haven't found "their tribe". These are the people who are searching for "their kind". They are not looking for more loners. They are looking for people whom they "connect" to, even if their personalities maybe starkly different.

They do not want clones. They want a family. No matter how are mismatched or dysfunctional it might be – it is theirs. It is somewhere they truly feel they belong. Family may be one person or ten. It varies from person to person. Family may not even be there blood. Neither does it have to be. All that matters is that "connection".

As a "loner", I can tell you that the connection makes all the solitude worth it.

To all the loners out there-

I know the sweet pain of solitude. I know how it ends up being the lesser of two evils. Disappointment feels worse, and so we choose solitude. "Ask me no questions and I'll tell you no lies" - that has become our philosophy.

Take it from a fellow loner, and don't give up. Never stop looking. Your tribe exists, but you just haven't found it yet. You may never have met them, or you may have met them before it was time. Don't lose hope, please. Rise above the disappointment, difficult though it may be. They are out there; somewhere. They are there for you, waiting. Seek them out and let them seek you. Do not hide away from the world, simply for fear of rejection or disappointment.

After all, how are they to recognise you if you are always in disguise?

You may meet false tribes and you may join wrong ones. It hurts; I know. And I know that you hold within you the power to keep moving on. Find your tribe.

Find your "family".

You may be a lone wolf, but find your pack.

To quote Kipling's "The Jungle Book",

"The strength of the pack is the wolf; and the strength of the wolf is the pack."

A.N. I'm really sorry for the late post, but work came up. So, for today, you get two posts. :)

This one was inspired by my own experiences, and by a few people I know. Although, this is dedicated to a special one. You are infinite, and you know it.

Thank you for the love you've all shown me! I'll do a shoutout and responses to reviews in the next post, so if you have anything you'd like me to know, hurry up and review!

Please follow for updates on my posts, and you can see my bio or my Tumblr for more information.