I don't understand why some people class "being lonely" and "being alone" as not having a "significant other" (mind the sarcastic speech marks). Feeling alone, to me, is having no friends and not feeling close to your family. Feeling alone is having both but not feeling close to either. Feeling alone is feeling like you have neither. That, in my opinion, is loneliness. It's as if society has planted into our heads that we need this romance in our lives and we need to fall in love and all this bullshit. I respect that romance is a relationship where you have a special bond with, generally, one person and that person only. But not having this doesn't make us alone. We can still be emotionally happy with the love of family and friends. Romance doesn't have to be so significant in our lives. But it is portrayed to be, and it's sad.