no but k i just need to rant about this for a second
sherlock never knew what being lonely was like before, because he had never had anything to compare the feeling to. paradoxically, in constantly being lonely, he never felt lonely. this frame of mind continues even after he meets john, even after they become friends, because alone is what i have, alone protects me. and then john’s response changes his entire way of thinking because he realises that, in fact, friends protect people. and he has had all this time away from john, missing john, missing company, and he truly learns what it is to feel lonely because he has experienced the companionship he is missing.