Yeash. This is a big one. Little makes me feel like a loser more than... well, being a loser. It's mostly my fault, I am fairly distant. My sense of humor is based on being weird. I enjoy playing devil's advocate. I'm a huge dude. I'm a bit pervy. I don't take criticism on certain issues well. It all combines to make me difficult to be around.
So this is the state of affairs, starting from the least solid connections...
Romantic interests. I have none right now. I'm working really hard on being more attractive, and loving myself. This shit is on hold. I have cut ties here pretty hard over the last 6 months. Describing that probably warrants it's own post, some of it will probably spill into this one.
Internet friends. I have a bunch of these. People I met playing games in my teens and twenties. People I keep in touch with after one or the other has moved away. They're great. I can think of two people I've known longer online than I have in person that I consider among my closest friends.
Polyamory people. I've met quite a few people in the poly community. I always feel awkward interacting with these people. They're all very loving and kind and well... I never know how to respond to an embrace; if you take my meaning. We'll circle back to these guys when I start talking about my recent attempts to get out more.
Close acquaintances. There's maybe a dozen or so people I'd invite to a party. I'd expect a third of them to show up. We'll exchange pleasantries and whatnot, but I don't see those relationships growing any.
Core circle. It feels weird calling these guys my core circle. I don't think I'm in any of their core friend groups. If I am, I don't know how they manage so little face-to-face interaction. I see two of them weekly. I did a great job making things weird between me and one of them by crushing too hard and admitting to it. I've recently renounced my crush in an attempt to hopefully become better friends with her, but... I'm pretty sure I ought to walk away entirely. That relationship doesn't seem like it'll ever be satisfying. I'm trying to give it some time to heal from the years of strain I caused, but right now the friendship seems terminally vapid. The other person is kind of in a weird spot because of my crush; and he also lives a million miles away so we're not likely to grab a drink after work. There are about a half dozen others in that circle; and none of them seem particularly interested in doing stuff regularly.
So I feel lonely a lot. That's a hazard of working from home full time, I suppose. I guess if I really wanted I could squat in an office at the workplace campus, but since I'm not working with anyone it always feels like I'm on a different pace from everyone else. It's weird.
What am I doing about it? Well, there are several people in the polyamory world who I think like me. The problem is the line between friend and lover tends to be blurry in poly and I'm in no shape to be a lover right now. I went to meet up with one lady the week before last. The passes were obvious and persistent. She's great people. If I were feeling better about being me, I might have taken her up on it. But I don't. So it was awkward. We're still talking and I'm trying to get her to come snowboarding with me this winter. We'll see how that goes. Anyway, meeting up with her felt pretty big to me. There's probably two other people in a similar situation that I'm probably going to try to become closer friends with. I'm a little concerned about the "you're giving me attention, we should sleep together" idea while I'm in this position. I'm interested, of course, just not interested right now. Walking that line is rough.
A friend has asked to accompany me to "sexy" parties. I think she wants the tourist version of polyamory and it's overlap with kink, as well as some general male attention (that isn't from me). And I'm happy to oblige her. I am kink curious, there are a few things on my bucket list that I'll have to get to these parties to find participants for. I've been to a few. They range from a curtained off section of a bar where all the PG-13/R rated stuff happens, to full on orgies. I don't think I need to see another orgy. Good on whoever enjoys those, but it's not my scene. The bar stuff can be a bit much for me, but I suspect if I get to a place where I'm secure with my body in general I'd enjoy it more. Play parties would be the middle ground there. You essentially mingle for a few hours, then find someone you think is interested to act out a scenario with you. I don't think I'll bring my friend to those but... I am looking forward to the day when I'm okay being at one.
Snowboarding is a fairly solitary adventure. You might chat a bit on a lift or something, but it's not a great mingle opportunity for me. I did bowling a few years ago. I haven't really kept in touch with anyone from that. The other group sports that I'd be a little willing to participate in tend to revolve around beer - which I can't drink due to keto. Ever been the only sober person at a party? It's not great.
The only other idea I have is heading to D&D/Pathfinder events at the local nerd shop and meeting people there. Some of my closest acquaintances came to me that way. If I keep trying I'm bound to find people I care for that care for me, right? The problem is my gaming dance card is pretty full. If I walk away from the aforementioned friendship I'll free up a couple nights a week to pursue this but uh... now that I think about it that also means whatever social life I have in meat space will be dead too.
I have no fucking idea what I'm doing here.