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" A woman stands in the rain in Chongqing on Valentine's Day on February 14 Wholesale Dallas Stars Jerseys , 2014. Photo: CFP A man rests in his room in a community for single people in Guangzhou, Guangdong Province. Photo: CFP Graphics: GT Graphics: GT Graphics: GT
As more and more people leave their hometowns for work the number of people living alone in China has reached 58 million. Hundreds of thousands of well-educated young people in China's metropolises have chosen to live alone. But though they enjoy the relative freedom from the prying eyes of their family members, coping with loneliness and distancing themselves from traditional Chinese ways of life can be a hard lesson to learn.

It was 2 o'clock in the morning, and Lu Wei couldn't help weeping as she looked at the messy apartment into which she had just moved.

This is Lu's fifth year in Shanghai, and the fifth year she's been living alone. The 25-year-old white-collar worker thought she had gotten used to a life of solitude: she goes to work alone, watches films alone Wholesale Detroit Red Wings Jerseys , jogs alone and travels alone.

But spending the past week moving into her new apartment, and dealing with real estate agents, her landlord, home decorators and movers, all by herself, showed her she isn't as used to it as she thought. Fatigue and stress prompted her to ask herself for the first time in five years: how is she going to cope Wholesale Edmonton Oilers Jerseys , all by herself?

While in the US, it's common for young people to move out of their parents' homes after they reach adulthood and live by themselves before they get married, this is a relatively new trend in China. Living together with one's family is highly valued in Chinese tradition. Just twenty years ago, most young Chinese would live with their parents until they were married. But now, more and more people are choosing to live alone, as migration boomed in the past three decades.

This growing trend is supported by statistics: in 1990 Wholesale Florida Panthers Jerseys , 6 percent of Chinese households had only one person. By 2014, that number had more than doubled to 14.9 percent, according to China Statistical Yearbook, published by the National Bureau of Statistics. By 2013, over 58 million people live by themselves in China. 20 million of them are aged between 20 and 39.

The wealthier part of the country has seen more of the trend. In Shanghai, a fourth of households have only one person. In Beijing Wholesale Los Angeles Kings Jerseys , that percentage is one fifth.

Social isolation is not unique to China. Nor is growing dependence on digital technology. But as most of China's young people have parents who lived in an age of collectivist conformity, living alone and learning to cope with loneliness has become a lesson that single youngsters in China's metropolises

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