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Misery Loves Company: The Meaning, Causes, and Examples

This phrase is often used when someone is in a bad situation, but they find misery even more enjoyable when other people share it with them. When misery loves company, one person’s misery becomes much more tolerable and even enjoyable because there’s somebody else around to suffer alongside them.

The misery can be caused by many different things such as loneliness, isolation, or just feeling very low on self-esteem. This article will explore the meaning and causes of misery loves company and provide examples for each!

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What is Misery Loves Company?

“Misery loves company” is an idiom meaning that people often share their troubles with others. When you find someone to share your burden or offer them to share it with you, it’s called “sympathy.” It’s the act of feeling sorrow for someone else.

It was widespread in ancient Greece. The Greeks believed that having good friends is one of the essential things in life; they thought only a friend who had shared suffering could be considered trustworthy and reliable. So people used to seek sympathy from their friends—especially before going into battle—to gain support and courage.

Not always, though: sometimes they preferred to face danger alone, not to put others at risk even if this meant dying! If you never even tried… well, let’s say there will be no glory in death either way.

What is the Definition of Misery?

Misery is often used to describe one’s mood when one is not feeling pleased.

Miserable – an adjective used to describe something or someone in a state of deep, profound unhappiness or grief. Happiness – the condition or fact of being happy misery – noun- extreme suffering or discomfort.

This term can also be used as a verb- meaning “to make miserable” If I were feeling very sick with nausea and vomiting, my mood would definitely be ‘miserable.’ And if I am feeling delighted and just won 100,000 dollars in the lottery, my mood would be ‘happy.’

Now you may personally define happiness as a state of mind of being content with everything surrounding you. However, for me, happiness is defined as the absence of misery. So if I am feeling good about my life and family and heard some bad news about something that will affect someone I know (or don’t know), then my mood would not be happy because there is still some misery present: whether it’s concern or uneasiness.

What Causes Misery?

The cause of misery can be many different things. It could be something that happened in the past, something happening now, or something that someone thinks might happen in the future.

For example, someone suffering from depression may feel miserable because they think about how their life has turned out and what they think will happen. They may think about how they’ll never have a healthy and loving relationship with another person and lose everything they care about. Or, whatever happened in their past may still affect them now and create negative thoughts such as “nothing ever goes well for me” or “I’m doomed to fail.”

In the case of anxiety, people could have a pessimistic view of the world, so everything that happens to them is negative. They may also fear what will happen in the future and catastrophize about things going wrong.

When someone has an anxiety disorder, they often believe that their thoughts are true. This is called a ‘cognitive distortion.’ For example, if someone tells themselves, “I can’t handle this!” they might feel as though it’s true because they’re thinking “I’ll fail” or “something bad will happen.”

Cognitive distortions can be unhelpful because it often creates more anxiety when you think something terrible might happen. Living with cognitive distortions is like living your life on a rollercoaster – intense feelings of anxiety and intense feelings of calmness.

What are Misery Loves Company Examples?

An example of this is when a person feels sad because they are not feeling well. I would say that happiness is the absence of misery while sadness is the presence of sorrow. However, these terms can be subjective and different for everyone. The following are some examples that may help you to see what I mean.

Another typical example of how a miserable loving company works is two students who have failed their exams staying home instead of studying for school. In this case, the two students are both failing their exams, and they now have a reason to be miserable together instead of lonely or isolated from other people.

The second example would be a married couple going through a divorce where one spouse is trying to stop the divorce but cannot convince their partner that it’s necessary.

This misery loves company situation occurs when there is only one person in an unhappy marriage. Sometimes, these marriages can last for years just because nobody is around who shares similar feelings about getting out into the world again as single individuals without each other.

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30 Tips to Avoid Misery Loves Company

1. You are responsible for your happiness

2. Don’t compare yourself to others

3. Take care of your mental health by getting enough sleep, eating well, and exercising regularly

4. Create a support system with friends and family who will listen when you need them most

5. Get out in nature – the outdoors is free therapy that everyone can enjoy!

6. You have the power to change your life

7. Know when to ask for help

8. Meditation can be beneficial with anxiety! Try this 4-minute guided meditation, or check out our blog on meditating with an anxious mind.

9. Surround yourself by people you are comfortable being vulnerable around

10. Remember that problems are temporary, but they’re an opportunity to learn and grow

11. It’s ok to cry

12. Even the most challenging battles bring growth and opportunities for happiness later if you face them head-on rather than avoiding them

13. Your emotions are valid, even if someone doesn’t agree with them

14. Take responsibility for yourself – you can’t control everything that happens to you

15. Don’t let your feelings build up inside of you – it’s important to process them, even if they’re difficult

16. Try not to worry too much about the future

17. You are in complete control of how you react to things (not what happens to you)

18. Do whatever YOU makes feel better

19. Stop thinking “what if” or “I should have…”

20. Your mental health is always YOUR responsibility, no one else’s

21. Spend time doing something nice for yourself once in a while! Even a bubble bath can make a difference 🙂

22. Remember that feelings stay us long after an event has passed

23. You deserve to be happy

24. It’s important to take time out of every day to do something you enjoy for yourself

25. Even if it feels like everyone is against you, remember that there is always someone who loves and cares about you and your well-being

26. Make a list of things that make you feel good, and try your hardest to engage in them regularly – even when it feels difficult! We’ve created a post on self-care tools here.

27. Your mental health matters! Don’t neglect yourself by staying silent or trying to handle it alone (if that’s what makes you comfortable) – talk with someone who cares about you and knows the right things to say, whether it’s a relative, friend, doctor, or counselor

28. Make sure you’re eating enough

29. Speak up! It’s essential to have someone who will listen to you and support you when things get tough

30. If something is stressing you out or causing anxiety in your life, it helps to try not thinking about it all the time – make a list of everything that’s bringing down your mood and write them down every night before bed (it’s amazing what we forget about overtime), then check back on it the next day and see which things you were able to eliminate from the list – small steps like this go a long way!


If you’ve ever felt like no one understands what it feels like to be in your position, you are not alone. It can feel as though misery loves company when surrounded by people who seem to have their lives together. The reality is that most of us go through periods where life seems unfair or complicated, and there will always be someone else feeling the same way. You may even find yourself being more grateful for all of the things that don’t bother other people because they remind you how good you have it!

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