At age 50, I ran out of places to live. All my friends and room mates had full lives and I found myself out alone for the first time in my life. I could no longer find a basement to live in, or a spare room. I was, for the first time in my life – alone.

I found a one basement basement in Toronto and started a new chapter in my life. Around the same time I decided to make other changes. I changed the way I ran my business, and started asking for help, which was new to me. I got myself a family doctor instead of using a walk in clinic whenever needed. This allowed me to build a relationship and start on some mental health medication to assist with my obsessive depression tendencies. I even found myself a friendly support social worker counsellor to guide me through this new phase.

It was a big life change. It helped, and I eventually transitioned from a self hating depressive guy to a version of me that actually had some confidence in who I am. For the first time in my life, I actually liked myself and had some pride in who I was. Who I am.

To be honest, I’m still struggling, but I am much better. I feel confident that I could be a good mate for someone, and move into a new life where I am once again living with somebody… but living my own life instead of living in other people’s lives.

I even dated… kind of. I certainly want to. My confidence in my personality is far better, but I’m still a little shy of promoting myself and showing others my confidence. I’m slightly afraid of looking confident. I have a fear of egotism that stems way back to my youth. Although I can say I don;t hate myself, I know it’s easy to fall back into self doubt at the first sign of failure or frustration.

Online dating is horrid. It appears that a good percentage of the women are fake and will never reply… or even faker, and will only reply until you pay a site fee, at which time they all vanish. I’m on one site that has yielded 15 to 20 interested responces, but I have to pay to read them. I have confidence in myself, but I also know that once I pay, none of these women will exist, and no additional messages will arrive. That really sucks.

I don’t know how to work towards romance and datiung in real life. I have conditioned myself and built my liufe around not dating. I can be anyones best friend. It just hapens when I’m around people… but I can’t make the transition to touch or romance. I can’t ask.

I don’t ask may be a beter term, as my therapist points out… but don;t and can’t are meaningless. The end result is the same. I don;t know how, and I fear rejection, so I avoid it.

It’s not so much rejection I fear. It’s more the inconvenience I steer away from. I don’t like to be a bother. I don’;t like to be in the way. I don’t like to interupt youyr life and inject mine. So I look for ways to speak without it being me that breaks the ice. If she speaks first I can continue. I have pride in my personality if they speak first… but I still can’t trtansition from friend to romantic.

So I don’t.

I live alone. I work alone. I sleep alone.

I hate it. I need to be a partner. I need to be with people. It gives me purpose, focus and it keeps me active happy and alive. I need to react to others. I know I’m a good person, and a great partner. I’m a good boyfriend… I just can’t get there, and my anxiety and obsession makes me a bit awkward at first glance. I’m bad at the first date if I know it’s a first date, but I’m great at the friendship date if I’m not being judged.

So I stay alone, living among best friends as an activity partner. It’s good, but not god enough for the second part of my life. I want somebody to make my priority and live to keep happy. My greatest joy is making the one in front of me smile. I’m good at it.

So my request is to the world. If you speak first, we may have a wonderful time together.

Say hi.