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Lonely man staring down 40s with nothing to show for it.

Community Member

I don’t know why I am here writing, but I am really struggling. They say all you need is “health, wealth, and love” well I don’t have none of them. Sorry if this turns out to be an incoherent mind dump.

I am a 38-year-old fat, balding male, and I am so lonely. I have been single for three years, I am in a new city and only know people from work. I’m on every dating app and can’t even get a like, let alone a date. I did the wrong thing and downloaded my tinder statistics, yes you can do that. On girls I swipe right on only 0.04% of them will match and reply to an introduction. Which is brutal. Its weird I feel more like a fish out of water than ever, I wouldn’t know what to say even if I got a date. I feel like a bore, and if the two dates ive been on in the last few years are an indication I just interview girls to death. Please don’t tell me to “just be myself”, that’s the problem!

A lot of my friends are married, have kids, divorced even. Even a couple of my exes who I am still good friends with have kids. It just makes me feel like I have wasted my life, and my opportunities. I feel like time is running out to get my crap together, find a partner, have a kid, get a house. It seems things that are basic for most people I can’t figure out. I feel like I am still waiting for my life to begin.

I feel like I have wasted my life, and every time I try and fix something or get ahead, it always goes wrong. I am totally broke. I was getting ahead with some shares and crypto, but the current economic situation has wiped out my merger advances. So, I am unlikely to get another shot at that house deposit, so that is unlikely to happen. How many 40 single 40 years olds get loans to house? Not many I imagine. Not that I am bad with money, I have just been in low-paying careers my whole life up until last year. I was an academic, spent time doing postdocs in the UK which pay less than minimum wage here in Australia. That career fell through thanks to COVID, so now I am in WA doing FIFO. In all honestly, I should have done this from the start.

So yeah, that’s me a depressed, fat, lonely, broke, looser staring down encroaching middle age with nothing to show for it. If you took me today and 20-year-old me, we are practically the same person; single, broke, the bottom of the ladder. I just wish things were different and I could meet somebody, and get my life on track.

4 Replies 4

Dear DoctorRocks,

We are grateful you found the strength and courage to post about your confusion at midlife. We are a supportive community, and some of our members have been in similar situations.

We understand that you are a well-educated man who has done a decent amount of travel and developed multiple skillsets.

We are sorry to hear that your most recent relationship ended 3 years ago, and you are now feeling quite lonely. Our understanding of Tender is that it is a singles matching service which prioritises looks over everything else. We have heard that this has been known to encourage insecurities for some of the both men and women who try it.

It is excellent that you have found ways to move forward after the significant downturn in the various investment markets, especially the highly volatile crypto markets.

What local group could you join which would help you meet people who have similar interests? We understand that this might be a way to meet people who may be compatible.

We would also like to encourage you to call BeyondBlue Support Service on 1300 22 4636, or Lifeline on 13 1114, whenever you are feeling distressed and could use some support.

Thanks again for finding the courage to join our community and start participating.

Warm regards,

Sophie M.

On The Road
Community Member

Hi DoctorRocks,

I'm sorry that life's been so hard for you. Health, body image, relationship, financial situation... life has too many things to manage, to worry about, it's overwhelming for most people. The "just be yourself" things can be toxic, I understand it was supposed to be empowering, but actually they usually dismiss individuals' struggles. I had ppl tell me these things plus the classic "don't need to be perfect", it just started to sound repetitive and annoying. Tbh I have no good advice to offer, and as Sophie said, you can call Support service when you are feeling distressed and want some one-on-one support. I'm just here to listen to you, feel free to share more on here if you feel comfortable.

On The Road
Community Member
By the way, what you said "I feel like I am still waiting for my life to begin" really hit me, I totally resonate with you. But I'm trying to not feel this way as I already reluctantly accepted that "my life's already on the road and everyone's journey is different". It's sad that my journey doesn't seem as good as other people's ☹️

Community Champion
Community Champion



Firstly, it is perfectly OK to do a mind dump if that is how it happens. I get professional help periodically, and sometimes find that is how a session starts with my mind going all over the place. I notice you mentioned things not to say and I think people here generally do not go down that path. 


Have you been able to talk to anyone about your experiences and what has happened to you? I refer to family or friends mainly, and if that is not working out, then perhaps a professional. 


It would also be frustrating if nothing else having spent the time and effort to get into a position where you could do research then lose your job due to Covid. Well, at least I would be mad.  Can I ask whether you liked what you did?


I have my own reasons for not liking to compare salaries for jobs - and perhaps jealous of others and think that  I should have done that. 


That said ... I feel that negative thoughts smother any positives that exist about us, intellectually, emotionally or otherwise. This last part I have spoken with my psychologist about. I don't know what you might have rec'd a PHD in but I think you would have a lots of stories to tell or facts you can throw out on a whim. I don't think that apps like Tinder can showcase this aspect of you. 


Finally there are other people who have posted on the forums about their success or otherwise with dating apps and you might like have a look for these and the replies they received.


I hope you will come back to share more of your story.