Loneliness, Resilience and Distress of Indian adults during COVID-19 : Age-dependent Gender Differences

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Kavitha Shaj
Archana Bhat Kallahalla


On March 24, 2020, a nationwide lockdown was implemented on the 138 million-strong population of India as a preventive measure against the COVID-19 Pandemic. Such global social isolation and fear of uncertainty are capable of producing psychological adversities, challenging people’s ability to adapt to a new way of life. This study examines gender differences in loneliness, resilience, and distress among different age groups (students: 17–22, young: 23–40, middle: 41–60) as there is a lack of research that explores how disproportionately the pandemic affects each gender. In the midst of the lockdown, an online survey on loneliness, resilience, and distress was conducted on the adult Indian population. A total of 243 responses were collected and analyzed. The findings revealed that 51% of the population was already lonely, and a significant number of people were distressed, particularly among students (F (2,243) = 4.78, p =.004).Males (M = 8.09) were significantly more distressed than females (M = 4.93) in the middle-aged population (F (1,59) = 8.08, p =.006).Even though no significant gender differences were found in the loneliness scores, there were significant gender differences in the resilience scores of the population. F (2,243) = 5.65, p =.030 states that the male population (N = 101, M = 3.39, SD = 0.53) was more resilient than the female population (N = 145, M = 3.23, SD = 0.62). Thus, the results show that the pandemic has already disproportionately affected girls, women, and middle-aged men, for whom gender-sensitive provision of mental health services, support, and resources is necessary to alleviate the challenges of gender equity.

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Shaj, K., & Kallahalla, A. B. (2022). Loneliness, Resilience and Distress of Indian adults during COVID-19 : Age-dependent Gender Differences. Mind and Society, 11(02), 76–82. https://doi.org/10.56011/mind-mri-112-20228
Research Article