"I love going online for free short sexual trailers. I spend way too much time doing this. My wife died two years ago and I am alone. I was married for 30 years, and she knew all about my homosexuality.
I have tried joining gay groups and at 55 years, it is extremely hard to find someone. I attend a predominately gay church, and I can’t find someone there that fits the bill. Any suggestions?"
Adam: It’s not surprising that after three decades of marriage and the death of your wife, it’s taking you a while to find your feet in the gay world. I think you’re on the right lines: You understand the limits of what online quick fixes provide, and yearn for something deeper; and you are part of at least one community group that brings you into contact with other gay people. I think the most important thing to do is to be kind to yourself, and to take your time. At 55 you’ve got many years’ head start on those who cannot or dare not come out until they are seniors.
Tony: Yes, patience and a firm sense of your self-worth. One other thing -- trust, to yourself and to life. It sounds like you are doing social and community things primarily to "find someone that fits the bill." Why not just do things for the sake of doing them and enjoying them, with no expectation or pressure that you will meet someone? Then trust that good relationships, maybe even that "special one," may naturally result. We can’t make romantic relationships happen, and the more we try, the more it seems we fail. But we can live our lives authentically, generously and actively. Then it’s more likely we’ll meet those who will give us what we need anyway.
Adam: As you do things, enjoy them for their own sake and you’ll be at your most natural and relaxed. It’s this side of you that will draw others to you. If you are a decent man, as I’m sure you are, and are putting yourself in environments that mean that you meet other people, I’m confident that opportunities to form more meaningful relationships will arise.
Tony: I do so hope that you meet the person who will give you their heart, and whom you may also love. In the meantime, I sense you spend much time alone. So one of the biggest challenges, maybe for all of us, is how and how well we spend time in solitude. Please follow your instinct that it’s not healthy to allow too much of that time to dribble away on the internet. In those times alone, pursue activities that lift your spirits and give you genuine pleasure. And get about and share that 55 years of experience you have with as many others as possible. Good luck! You deserve it.
Life partners for more than 20 years, Adam Clark and Tony Dines are the United Kingdom's leading life coaches specializing in the needs of gay men. They have a private practice in London and offer face-to-face, telephone and email coaching to men throughout the world. Check their website for information about private consultations.
Do you have a question about how to improve your life or your dating situation? Send an e-mail to email@example.com
(Photo: Getty Images)