The Risk of Social Isolation
Woman's Era|February 2021
Can Social Exclusion Lead To Suicide?
Monika Agarwal

Human beings cannot survive without a social network. From an evolutionary perspective, a feeling of belongingness is necessary for social life for survival. When people are intentionally excluded from a group, the experience can cause undue psychological stress, leading to depression and suicidal ideation. Inclusion is essential for safety, physical well-being, reproductive success, and mental health. Being excluded can be stressful on a number of fronts and produce negative thoughts that can weaken the immune system and cause physical illnesses in the long run. As paradoxical as it may sound, belongingness is closely linked to our self-esteem.

Belonging to a group defines our social identity, which is a significant component of our individual identity. Social identity is the image of yourself that emerges from the awareness that you belong to one or more groups, which are in turn characterized by their own values and characteristics. Consequently, social exclusion is one of the most painful experiences anyone can go through.

The marginalization of an individual by a group or even being ignored by another individual can negatively affect the quality of life. If someone is ignored for a short duration, they can recover from the psychological effects. If the act is prolonged, the effect can turn chronic. Chronic exclusion causes chronic pain, which is associated with high levels of negative emotions and a generally grim prognosis.

The effect of social exclusion

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