I find it sad, mainly. Apparently these men (assuming most of them are men) are desperate enough for simple human contact to pay someone for it.
 As an ex-lonely person: Try meetup.com. It depends a bit on your specific area, but it's a great way to meet new friends.
I submitted beta feedback but I want to say it twice so that others can chime in.
I think the entire TTRPG community has been screaming for something like this for years. Right now when I want a game I have to plaster it on Reddit, Facebook, Craigslist, Meetup.com, etc. before I can get enough people.
So I would highly reccommend removing all of the DnD specific stuff on profile creation and instead ask about how they like to play, the tone of the game, the amount of meticulous realism or item tracking, do they prefer more combat, puzzles, or storytelling in their sessions, etc.
Then let us pick as many different games as we want. Call of Cuthulhu, World of Darkness, Starfinder, etc.
That way, anytime I want to DM a game of Stars Without Number I know exactly where to go to find me 4 players. Basically... take Roll20, make it for 'in-person' instead of online and you'll have a hit on your hands.
I would say your best odds are either going out to socialize or meeting women online. I go to clubs or bars every weekend and I hardly ever drink. I also don't smoke and I've never even tried weed so you really cannot use that as an excuse.
I realize that you work most weekends but I work every day. If you aren't drinking then you have a huge advantage when it comes to waking up for work. I'm able to go out until 4AM on Friday and Saturday and still get to work by 10:30AM on Saturday and Sunday.
You can also try new hobbies and other things that include more women. Try meetup.com for some ideas. There are plenty of activities where you can meet new people and socialize.
Don't be afraid to make friends with other men either. They have female friends and coworkers too.
>First of all I always hire on Upwork,
I didn't need to read any more after that (but did anyway). But /u/ChamberedSwatch sums it up perfectly too.
If I were you, I'd get to know a few devs through meetup.com meets because someone you've met face to face, whose hand you've shaken, and with whom you've shared a coffee or beer, and maybe whose personal mobile phone number you have, is easier to gauge for reliability, credibility, and honesty than the mostly sharlatans (on both sides, and I include UpWork themselves in that description) that frequent UpWork.
Speaking as a female, just talk casually with them just as you would with a man you just met. Talk about whatever interests you, except not sex, other women, or anything related. Make friends the same way as with men, by seeing if you have any common interests. Don't stare at her body parts. Say "See ya later" rather sooner than later. It's good if you can meet in a group so that the pressure is off, like a hiking group on meetup.com. And of course, don't touch them.
Women appreciate being talked to as people.
I found most of my dearest friends at a running group I joined when I moved to a new city and knew no one.
And no you don't need to be fit. 90% of the running were people who just walked together.
The same goes for all sorts of groups on Meetup.com - you don't need to be super into something to try it out.
I second Meetup.com Even if you aren't in a major city, there is probably something happening near you. I joined a dinner club for my town, a history club, and a general activities club. A lot of the members overlap. It's been great.
Welcome to Denver! What are your hobbies? Meetup.com has plenty of groups with a wide range of interest/activities. I found a group to play soccer with using it when I first moved to Denver.
You need to put yourself into situations where you make male friends. They will see the beauty in you once they get to know you. What hobbies or interests do you have? Are there groups where you can do or discuss them? I don't know where you are, but meetup.com might be a decent place to start finding people with common interests.
I struggled with that when I first came back to living in the suburbs, but I found the real underlying problem was that I reverted back to my old living habits instead of living how I did abroad.
What did I do to change?
I've pretty much taken all the things I've missed about traveling and found ways to fill those voids at home. All that walking around my neighborhood helped me discover new restaurants, small cafes, ethnic grocery stores, etc. I try to go to one new place a week. I frequently attend Couchsurfing meetups and language exchange events so I can continue meeting new people from all over the world. I've gone to many museums and touristy places I never even considered in the past. I've stepped out of my comfort zone to take dance classes. The list goes on and on...
These are all things that I try to do while traveling but never thought of doing at home before I was a DN.
Live your life like you are still abroad.
Meetup.com is an absolutely fantastic site if you are new to an area. Not only is it a great way to find stuff to do that interests you, nearly everyone within the meetup group will have things in common with you, making it much easier to bond than simply talking with random strangers at a bar.
My sister moved to Kansas City a couple years ago, and used this site quite a bit to find people, now she has a decently sized friends group that hangs out all the time.
Every single time this topic pops up people just say the same shit.
>Get a hobby! Join Meetup.com! Just look around you 4Head!
I wish someone had experience that was off the beaten path, and was more personalized. Yeah sure you might find that special someone in that Yoga Studio that you pay $100 weekly, or you could run into that same person while walking down the street for free.
If you don't play sport, go to church or anything like that, it can be hard.
I found meetup.com which helps. I have met a lot of people but I still don't have any really close friends.
You need to get out more and stop with the self pity. If you don't like something about yourself or your life, only you can change it, so change it already.
At 21 and working, you have some disposable income. You can, for example reduce the amount of pot you smoke and spend some of that cash on social outings. Sites like meetup.com can help you find groups of people doing fun stuff near you.
Ask yourself: what am I interested in? Maybe you've always wanted to paint, garden, code, sing, dance, sculpt, or build stuff. It doesn't matter where in BC you live, some of those things are happening every month in your town. Maybe you're more of a personal actions type. In that case, local political parties are always wanting volunteers to help out, or maybe a local charity could use your help: a food bank, an environmental action group -- whatever it is, get involved.
You're lonely and depressed because (in your words) all you do is work and get stoned. Your life is a series of choices, so maybe it's time you made some better ones.
I don't say any of this to be shitty. Rather I'm trying to be encouraging, so please don't take it negatively. You alone have the power to make your life better. Friendships don't happen in a vacuum. You need to go out and make them, and that means putting the pot down and going to places where the people are.
Are you a beer person? Check out Barley's Angels a women's only beer appreciation group in Ottawa, they host events and charge like 10$ (which includes a full beer). They often bring in brewers or speakers and talk about things, the do family events (bring friends, kids, husband) to a baseball game each year, and they do field trips to hop farms and things like that.
If you are into sports you can check out Ottawa Sports and Social Club (OSSC) where you can do co-ed type sporting events a couple of nights a week, and they get discounts at specific restaurants so end up going for drinks afterwards so it's easier to get to know other people
Meetup.com is a great place to meet people that are interested in something that you are too, often held in public places it is a good way to get to meet people into hobbies that you also enjoy
Running room offers running clubs and evening "learn to" sessions so you can meet people that way and stay healthy.
Of course the suggestions above are use at your own discretion but I am a member of a Dungeons and Dragons meetup group and it's a fun night out.. You do you!
Co-worker came on as she was on her way out. IIRC someone else in the office found Jenna and her handle/story spread through HP like wildfire. She 'came out' either after she left or during her final week/s there. Basically all she said was that they didn't know Jenna well but he seemed to really like the kids.
The meetup/LNO crew is the same. They all initially met Jenna when she organized a meetup.com event for her birthday. They stuck for a few years - I believe there was a core group of 4/5 girls that Jenna met up with pretty regularly. Eventually they all slowly stopped talking to Jenna until they had their last straw when Jenna went on a rant about how she had no friends not long after they moved into the cube farm. They basically said WTF to Jenna and she claimed that they weren't friends b/c they couldn't go out with her at the drop of a hat etc. It was pretty shitty all around. They stopped being friends after that. That girl was definitely legit as she had details/photos that Jenna herself never posted.
As for others, Jenna is somewhat vindictive so I can understand why many aren't forthcoming about how they know Jenna.
If you're unhappy enough to be thinking of suicide, then you're probably also accustomed to thinking negatively about basically anything. That's one thing that can lead to suicidal thinking. It's a habit of thinking negatively in the wake of actual negative experiences that becomes so ingrained that it's all consuming.
You should probably consider taking a look at some of the resources offered here: https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/
If you call the hotline or try to do an online chat, try very hard to be patient since you may have to wait in a queue. Either way, the key is reaching out to another person and relating to them. If you can find a way to do that regularly and in a way that works for you, you can find your way out of that pattern. You could also find a local therapist that you relate well to or try to find some activity that allows you to be around people in a way that feels comfortable. You've probably heard this before, and it may seem cheesy, but meetup.com is pretty good for that kind of stuff. It can be a kicking off point at least.
Keep your chin up. Everyone is capable of being happy. It just takes some reminding once in a while and a helping hand.
Edit: Didn't see that you're already seeing a therapist. Anyway, the advice I offered is really just from my own personal experience. If it doesn't work for you, that's okay. I've just often felt that one thing that effectively alleviates bouts of depression is having a genuine interaction or conversation with someone. If you can make that a pattern, in place of the negative thoughts, then maybe you can build a different frame of mind.
I've had a lot of luck with Meetup.com. There's a lot of groups and events in my area that are held regularly.
You can also lookup local game stores near you and see if they have any events that they host. Sometimes game stores have open gaming nights with games you can try.
Unfortunately that's the harsh reality of living in LA. I found many people in Southern California to be largely superficial when I lived there. I had to move away to regain sanity. Don't get me wrong, there are great people in LA, but in my experience, they were rare and difficult to find. It just sounds like your friend group consisted of some shallow people, so maybe they're just not right for you. "Friends" that don't show interest in you are not true friends. While it sounds like you're not as connected to family as you'd like to be, this could be a blessing in disguise. You are free to pick up and move wherever the hell you want to, and you won't feel homesick. I suggest moving to a place where people are more real. If moving is not an option, I suggest meetup.com. Just attend stuff you're interested in, and if you happen to make friends, cool.
As an introvert, you actually have the best chance of having a rich and engaging social life.
Introverts have a super power called LISTENING and ASKING QUESTIONS. Also, even though they may not 1000s of friends, the ones they do have are authentic and genuine relationships.
The challenge is maturing your ability to listen and ask questions. Additionally, you don't have to try and communicate like an extrovert... go to places where there are built in conversation starters, like the dog park, a museum, or the book store. It is even better when you go to places where you have a genuine interest being. Get on to Facebook or Meetup.com to find events and groups to join. I highly recommend you do things in person, because you will experience the greatest personal growth moments.
Also, introverts have keen OBSERVATION SKILLS. Make it a game to people watch and try and learn about the person via body language. Try not to be weird by staring =)
Its called Social Skills because they can be learned and practice!
Don't give up, you got this!
Your sister is a mean person who causes you emotional turmoil on purpose. Stop hanging out with her. See her at holiday functions when you have to or at your parents, but stop hanging out with her and doing fun things climbing. She doesn't deserve to spend time with you if she is going to treat you like shit.
You deserve better than to be treated like garbage. You matter. You are important. Your feelings matter. You don't deserve to be abused, you deserve to be loved.
You also need to find some vegan friends. Have you ever used MeetUp.com or maybe consider doing some vegan activism, that's a good way to meet people. Or volunteering at an animal shelter, not everyone is vegan there, but lots more vegans/vegetarians than other spaces.
You will need to find a new mission in life. I had to as well. After falling a bit into a hole I realized I can find joy in building things without money as incentive. I still like to be successful but now I take things easier and it is actually a lot more enjoyable to work (again). I didnt work for two years but since a few months I'm back building businesses and it seems being so easy going I do even better than before. I recommend you find something where you can see yourself making progress. Also jump head first into socializing with things like meetup.com. It is time now to keep living your life like you did just a bit more relaxed. Enjoy!
This may sound like cheap advice, but you shouldn't tell yourself that ship has sailed. I don't know what age you are, but I know two men in my circle that have gotten married for the first time in their 50s.
You sound nice and like you have something to offer. I think you should make a conscious effort to spend less time with your coupled-up friends and more time with people that are also looking to at least meet new friends (e.g. on meetup.com),
No experience required to at least make friends with some new people. You don't sound socially inept.
Life happens and people are tired. People moving away is a thing. Not everyone grows up and stays in the same place all their lives. Hanging out with friends in your 30s, in my experience, requires persistence.
Look into meetup.com. NYC probably has loads of shit going on all the time.
Other than meetup.com, which others have suggested already, there's also r/lfg
EDIT: Why the downvotes? It's a subreddit dedicated to finding groups for gaming, board games included.
> I am sorry but this is impossible advice for a normal looking guy.
It's true. Only guys that look like Scott Eastwood are friends with women. Normal looking guys are only friends with other men.
Go to things you're interested in, and don't go with the primary idea of meeting women. Have it be secondary, sure, but go with the idea that you're there to have fun.
Sign up for meetup.com and go to the "social singles" or "friends in X location" thing and talk to people there (men and women). There's usually a 60/40 split of women to men, and as long as you aren't a creep and trying to fuck every woman there you WILL find people who want to be your friend.
>Earlier I was planning on starting college so that I could make some friends closer to my maturity level and possibly even a girl friend, but after speaking to other college students online, they told me that it would look creepy (especially since I've always looked older than my age)
WTF kind of drugs are your friends on? Go to a community college. The students there are rarely 18 and rarely going to be "creeped out" by someone older. You're only 25. Many people your age are working on their masters, and are still in school. Even entering college students are often 19. You're not "ancient" even if you look older.
Conversation is hard for many people, even if they went to school. For most people it's the opposite reason--they are only used to talking to people their age and they can't relate to people older or younger. College Humor has many videos about this. It's so typical to have a hard time with this that there are "adulting" classes and "adulting" clubs all over. Meetup.com has some great resources for finding people who are likeminded and developing your interests.
Many people have only ever been to chain restaurants. Kids from poor families often never ate anything besides takeout and fast food. They couldn't afford college....and so they put themselves through community college. Only 69% of people have ever entered college and only 35% have graduated. You're in good company.
>I like some anime but please deliver me back to the time when being a nerd meant hanging out with tabletop neckbeards who had read fifteen rulebooks back to back.
Do it! I found a group of nice guys (with a couple of girls) on meetup.com in my area and we play every weekend now. It's great fun. The men are normal, nice, well adjusted men - they're not feminists or anything, they're pretty socially conservative actually, but on the flipside they're not constantly talking about drawn or IRL porn, their fetishes or other nasty shit.
Like I said, I'm so glad I'm through with cosplay. My last straw was dealing with a creepy asian dude photographer (the photographers at cons are some of the worst) who followed me around and wouldn't stop ranting about how all girls were "racist" for not wanting to "give him sex" (which apparently we gave to white and black guys every day).
Also, just a note on a common excuse about skimpy cosplays: The common excuse, at least from the girls (and one I used to employ), is that they're only dressed in such a blatantly sexual way because the character they're cosplaying is also dressed like that. This is of course true, but it misses the very obvious question as to why virtually every single female character in a popular anime series is dressed like something from a roleplay porn shoot, and why so many young girls feel compelled to cosplay those particular types of character over and over and over again.
The dating apps are well-utilized here. I've made many an ex through them.
Meetup.com is a good way to find social groups in general. Make more friends, meet single friends-of-friends at parties...
If you can't find a single good thing about Indy then my guess is you've never been outside of it. I recently came up from San Francisco so...
The people here actually treat you like a human being. The sidewalks aren't packed with tent encampments and human waste. The streets aren't littered with used needles. There aren't murders routinely happening in public downtown. People care about more than just getting wasted every night. Farmers markets here actually sell good stuff. Central library is SUPERB. Symphony has a talented ensemble--particularly the opera. Electronic music scene is cool and tight knit. Stars are beautiful in the evening. The weather is pleasant and warm in the summer. There are bowling alleys and places with good food open pretty late into the evening. There's quite a lot of meetups on Meetup.com for various things.
This is pretty much just the tip of the iceberg. Indy has so much to offer.
Try hosting soccer/sports meetups on Meetup.com. Build a community from the players that sign up. Start off free at first then charge for dues. Depends how competitive the area is regarding field use. Here in LA, we'd KILL for 8 open fields and they'd get taken up pretty quickly.
i have no idea whether lesbian groups near me are actually for lesbians or if they mean the queer definition of lesbians. it would be my dream if we were able to safely publicize groups (like on meetup.com) for lesbians and specify that we mean female homosexuals.
Forget your old family - conditional love is no love at all. Be thankful you now have a good marriage to look forward to. Many of us here ended up being divorced and abandoned by our children due to TSCC.
If you need to get out from under guilt feelings, search for "problems with Mormonism" on Google or YouTube.com
You and your fiance might be able to find some good people to be friends with on meetup.com
I'm too old to have been raised by the internet (born in '86), but I can say with certainty that when I reached my early 20s, my rate of education on simple everyday tasks went up dramatically. I grew out my hair and actually learned how to style it from YouTube tutorials. I've learned to fix anything around the house. The number of really good recipes I can cook increased once I didn't have to buy or rent an actual book and could just watch a video instead. In the early days of the internet, it was all fun stuff (Strongbad cartoons, slow-loading porn, chat rooms, MySpace, weird YouTube vids, long-form blogs you'd read like a little chapter of a book.) I think the internet shaped my music taste in a huge way throughout though. Limewire was an amazing grab-bag of music, and then Pandora's random shuffle, and now Spotify radio. The internet has so many little nooks and crannies. There's truly a place for every person which is really rad. Also I think 99% of my social life is driven by the internet like community pages and local events on Facebook, Meetup.com, etc. which is crazy. We used to have to browse fliers at the library or apartment laundry room or whatever.
In The Better Angels of Our Nature by Harvard professor Steven Pinker, he cites studies that show the absolute best way to break down prejudice against any group is to get out of your comfort zone and spend time with those people. People who were once racially prejudice, for example, start to change when they suddenly end up with a next door neighbor who's African American.
So if you really want to get past your feelings toward LGBT people, spend time with them. Find an LGBT meetup on meetup.com and be honest with them: tell them you were raised in a conservative anti-gay household and you're wanting to overcome the biases you were taught. I guarantee you (as someone with a number of LGBT friends gained since I exited), they will gladly help you and will appreciate how difficult it is for you to do what you're doing.
You really shouldn't be using gay dating apps to find friends. It's a fairly poor method to find real friendships when the vast, vast majority of guys are on there looking for hookups or dates.
I recently moved to a new city, and have been using meetup.com to find things to do to hopefully build friendships. Depending on how large your city is, there are bound to be LGBT groups of various types (boardgames, social, hiking, etc.) If you live in a small city, there will obviously be not as many options. Even non-LGBT groups are great to join because you never know who you will meet. The first time I went to a local boardgame night, I met two LGBT people who invited me to join their kickball team in the city's LGBT kickball league.
I have also joined the local city's gaybros group, which has been a great way to meet people as well.
It will take effort on your part to make friends, as expected. You will meet a lot of people, of which only a select few will end up being good friends. However, the more you put yourself out there, even to things that may be out of your comfort zone, the greater the chances you will end up solidifying relationships.
Just recently, I went to my first gay nightclub in my life with some acquaintances I met the day prior, which was definitely out of my original comfort zone and something I wouldn't have done before. It turned out a lot more fun than I anticipated, even though I was very nervous at first.
Go to a variety of free or "donation" events in your community: lots of stuff going on at libraries and parks, also, gallery art show openings, open mic night, street fairs, etc...Also, volunteering at theaters and concert venues (you get to see the show for free in exchange). You'll start to see the same people repeatedly - they are the ones who are conscious of their spending, even if they're not FIREing. Strike up a conversation; you'll end up finding some new friends.
Also, check on meetup.com - there are a bunch of investment-related groups in my area. Or you can start a FIRE group.
Your post has perfect timming as far as gaming is concerned.
Bard & Baker has an event every month.
The event is specifically for people looking to get together in a group and play some games. You can show up and they have specific tables set aside for strangers to sit down and play at.
As someone else suggested meetup.com has some really good groups on it for all different kinds of things.
If you are looking for a more serious table top gaming gaming experience I would go down to Zombie Planet on Central and see what people are playing, the guys there are great to talk to and will gladly let you know if like Tuesday night is Warhammer night, etc. Alternatively over in East Greenbush is Flipside gaming, same suggestion as Zombie, just further.
In the South, being asked what church you go to has been the normal way of figuring out if you are "with us or agi'n us" for ages. Ignore those folks, they can't take a joke.
Breweries are a common watering hole in Charlotte, but there are also boardgame meetup groups and a number of places like Lenny Boy Brewing have social events in their warehouses, beer optional.
The kid thing is a personal choice. We have 2 teens, but we aren't near your age range and tend to be sedentary down in the southern suburbs.
OMB does yoga at their place.
Frisbee Golf at Lenny Boy last I heard.
Check meetup.com for the Boardgame group, though I think they used to meet down in Pineville at Waldhorn's.
Hey! Same boat. Except not depressed. Was very in my 20's. Its very hard to meet people in your 30's if you arent willing to put yourself out there. I used a site called meetup.com and went search for things like board game nights or local hobby shops that had Friday Night Magic (Used to play MTG as a kid so every so often I pay $20 and go fuck around n try to win a magic tourney with strangers).
I know you are lonely but dont focus on meeting women or getting a girlfriend. Focus on just getting out the house and doing something fun. Once you start to do that you'll find you've started to build a group of friends who do the things you like to do also and those groups will naturally include women be they group memebrs or sisters of members or friends of theirs or whatever. Thats how you'll get back in the game. Till then just go have fun at least once a week.
I know its hard to leave the house when you can just stay in and play videogames and eat ice cream but even just once night a week of social interaction with peers is going to make a huge difference in how you feel about yourself and that is going to make you more outgoing.
Ok this way long. Haha goodluck plz dont be murderer/rapist that ive just encouraged to get out the house (*crosses fingers*)
As someone who doesn't drink or enjoy the bar scene, I highly recommend taking classes or joining a club. Someone will come in and recommend Meetup.com. I do not recommend Meetup at all after trying many times over the years.
For starters, if you've not passed the N1 exam I don't believe you're at N1 level. Sorry but there's a lot of people here that like to self-assess their level and are often wildly off.
If you're lucky, you might meet one person and they will introduce you to their friends and soon enough you'll have a decent network of people to hang out with.
If all else fails, hit the bars and start talking to whoever will listen. Try and keep conversations in Japanese and get whatever SNS details you can to make some friends that last more than one evening
Seconding meetup.com. It's a great place to sample different activities locally and maybe even find a new passion that will stick.
Keep in mind that making other people in a socially significant manner takes time and effort. Be patient, be genuine. Good luck!
The greater Orlando/central FL area has representation for any and all interests/hobbies that I'm aware of. The best way to make friends is to attend events that go along with your interests and hobbies regularly. Join a community based around that and talk with the other people that attend those events.
Meetup.com has a ton of groups in/around Orlando for varying interests.
Open board gaming days as various stores; Friday Night Magic if you play M:tG.
Orlando Weekly has an [events calendar](https://www.orlandoweekly.com/orlando/EventSearch) and you could just keep going to events.
It seems wholly unfair to children to have them for the sole purpose of filling some abstract void. That's so much pressure to feel like your existence is suppose to make your parents feel fulfilled.
Oftentimes I think they end up just being used as a distraction. Tending to them leaves one exhausted and less inclined to contemplate life and how to make it meaningful by one's own volition. Personally it seems like a lack of imagination on her part.
But anyway, I'm sorry you are experiencing this and I hope you meet some new CF friends. Maybe meetup.com might have some fun local chapters of Cfers?
Whilst I'm still at the early part of my journey, I have managed to avoid the mistakes that many film makers make.
Group of friends:
I initially had no one around me who shared my passion for movies, so I started to go to MeetUp.com events about film and get advice from experienced film makers. Learning about how the industry operates and the roles of each pending team member (e.g. director, producer, scriptwriter, etc.) was my first point of call. I also started to learn about the legal side of film making which is helping me a lot.
Starting off small:
I'm in the middle of building my first team and have already been able to secure some good cameras by selecting members who already have their own kit from doing various jobs.
How to find connections:
Networking, networking and networking. Did I say networking? Just be careful when discussing any scripts you have in mind due to plagiarism.
I hope this helps.
Check out meetup.com There are a lot of groups there with a wide variety of interests. Look for ones that mention coffee shops or bars.
At work, if asked, just say "I don't like to talk about religion at work." Keep saying that and be insistent.
Being single, there is one rule that you should really follow: DO NOT - REPEAT DO NOT - START DATING A DEVOUT MORMON GIRL OR EVEN A MORMON GIRL WHO HAS A TRUE-BELIEVING FAMILY. YOU WILL BE SORRY IF YOU DO. YOU ARE VERY LIKELY TO END UP GETTING DIVORCED AND LOSING YOUR KIDS. READ THE HORROR STORIES OF ALL THE DIVORCES IN THIS GROUP.
I wish you the best of luck and hope you land a great job.
Food for thought, mostly playing Devil's Advocate, but maybe helpful: If I were going to arrange a meetup of any kind I think my litmus test would probably be "is this a meetup for Redditors on r/Wellington" or "is this a meetup for a select group of individuals that I just organized through Reddit but did not intend to be public and open to all". Perhaps the latter case where exclusion is possible or expected would be better served on meetup.com, but could be cross-promoted here?
>Where and how do you find housing?
Craigslist is your best bet, but be prepared to move quickly if you find something good -- competition is fierce and supply is low.
>If I work in Downtown and don't want to own a car, where is a good place to live that is close to public transit/walkable or bikeable?
If you work downtown, living anywhere downtown will be good. It's mostly flat and the downtown area is very walkable, and with a bike it's even more accessible. The only issue will be price.
>On that note, where can I make friends? I don't know anyone there!
Meetup.com is a good place to look for groups that sound interesting. Also, I highly recommend kickball. The summer season just started, but Fall starts up in September. Pretty much everyone in their 20s and 30s does kickball at some point. What kinds of things are you interested in? We can be more specific with suggestions if we know more.
>What is the best thing about Santa Barbara? What is the worst thing? (other than the fact that it is expensive)
Amazing weather, tons of things to do outdoors (hike, beach, swim, run, volleyball, soccer). Small town feel with close enough proximity to LA when you need it.
>Oh and most important: where are the good street tacos?
I love Mony's for their tacos and salsa. For not-street-tacos but delicious tacos, try Corazon Cocina.
Hyde Park. It's massive and very easy to get some privacy.
Sorry to hear you're feeling like this. Take a look at /r/LondonSocialClub and meetup.com if you want to try and hang out with new people.
This Reddit has a weekly meet-up event every Thursday at Cooperage Wine and Whiskey. That might be to your liking. Meetup.com is another tool that I have used once, and met some interesting people--tailor it to your interests, and you may meet some like-minded individuals to build friendships from. Surprisingly, most of the pubs throughout the city are conducive to meeting people as well; most folks are largely outgoing, and more than happy to have a conversation. However, if you do not drink alcohol, there are plenty of recreational sports leagues out there, volunteer opportunities, or perhaps within your place of employment. Your future neighbors may be open to friendly banter as well, but everyone's mileage varies when it comes to neighbor disposition. Becoming a regular presence within your neighborhood is bound to introduce you to some people as well. The most important part is to try to break out of your comfort zone, and go out of your way to try to meet people. It's tough trying to make friends in a new environment. Local bars, and pubs have always helped me out--usually there are regular patrons who are more than happy to meet you, and have a conversation.
meetup.com: check who is speaking and who is attending, this will give you a better idea than just by the name of it. Also, larger meetup groups aren't necessary better. Check the ones that have a long-running monthly meetup, rather than the ones that organize sporadic events.
same, the usual comment is "look on meetup.com!" where yes that's true, at least you can try out a few groups and see if you like them and meet some randos along the way.
Even going to a few of these regularly, I would say most are still acquaintance but at least we can 'catch up' in a different way.
I don't drink and I don't feel lonely. I participate in activities through Meetup.com. It's a great way to meet people. Go to the site and search for groups in your area that do activities you enjoy. There's quite a few non drinkers there too who had a hard time meeting people.
Story time at the library (mine has a special one just for tiny babies) and music classes at local play cafes or music studios (a lot of them will have ones catered toward infant crowd). A lot of kids' stores (clothing stores, bookstores, etc.) have free story times too. See if there are new mom meet-ups on Meetup.com, if you live in a well populated area. The isolation drove me crazy as well until I made a point to get out more.
Do you have any hobbies? It seems like almost any hobby has some sort of group around town. Meetup.com has groups both for hobbyists and for just meeting new people.
I had a good time several years ago playing kickball through the Underdog League. A new league starts each season and you can register as an individual to get assigned to a team if you don't have one yourself. They have other sports too, but kickball is probably the most casual.
> This is one of the reasons why i approach such few women.
You didn't approach her at all...all you did was buy something where she works as a cashier. I strongly recommend that you do not start hitting on girls while they are working their service jobs - as someone who worked as a waiter I can tell you it sucks. My female colleagues would get sexually harassed by customers almost every night and they cannot do anything because they have to be nice to the customer. It's pretty fucked up to put someone through that. Instead try to only ask out a girl in situations where she is free to tell you if she doesn't like you without losing her job...which is basically everywhere besides work. Bars, meetup.com interest groups, school, through friends, at a concert, w/e.
I'm also 34 years old. However, unlike you I never had a girlfriend or a wife, so it just means we both lived different lives.
I don't have a lot of friends anymore, so I'm actually going to be going to a friends house for christmas dinner tonight, and christmas dinner tomorrow.
Also, you should cut out instagram and facebook, because I find that it always makes you feel bad about yourself, if you're not the type to post about stuff. Also remember people only post the good stuff that's happening in their lives and not the real stuff that is happening.
Some things that I've done to help with lonelyness is going to meetup.com stuff around the city, learning piano, and looking at my goals for the next year.
Check Facebook or Nextdoor to see if your area has a "Neighbors and Newcomers" group which usually consists of young adults (at 30, you qualify) new-ish to the area looking to meet other people their age. They usually do regular events like bar/restaurant nights, bowling, etc.
If you're even remotely religious, check to see if any churches/temples have a young adults group that meets for volunteer events and fellowship events. At my previous church (Catholic) the YA group had a kickball team, a bi-annual bar crawl, etc. Church/temple groups will likely be the friendliest and most welcoming, even if you're shy.
Speaking of volunteering, find a non-profit organization that you like and get involved or join their junior board. They usually meet regularly and have fundraising events throughout the year. Usually friendly and you'll automatically have something in common.
Get involved in your alumni organization.
Go to meetup.com, pick out a few upcoming group meetings, and check them out to see if you click.
Take up board games or tabletop games and start playing at a local store.
You play music, start a band and start going to shows or open mic nights.
Finally, I know you said you don't really drink, but if there's no moral or health reason for not drinking (i.e., you don't have a history of substance abuse or on meds that are contraindicated with alcohol), consider having a max of two drinks when you're socializing. It really does work as a social lubricant when used in moderate, responsible amounts and will help facilitate conversation.
Don't make any decisions while you are in this state.
Get some exercise. Even if you don't like exercise. A good solid 30-45 minutes of something that raises your heart rate, even if it's just brisk walking. It will feel good, even if it doesn't sound like it right now.
Get some sleep. You're a PhD student, you almost definitely haven't been getting enough sleep. Try to sleep for 9 hours to help you catch up a little.
If you can take some time off, do so. And go somewhere. If you can't afford to travel for your vacation, then at least don't spend it at home, schedule a bunch of fun things to make sure you're getting out of the house - go see a movie, go to an animal shelter and play with cute animals, try to restart an old hobby, find a fun meetup.com group to visit, go to a plant nursery and walk around enjoying the greenness, go to a local museum (not related to your field of study)... fill a week with fun. You need a change of pace to help clear your head.
Hopefully you'll feel better after all of that. If not, consider consulting a mental health professional to get checked for depression.
But *don't* make any decisions while severely stressed and burnt out. Sentences beginning "I was getting really fed up, so I..." almost never end with a good decision. Wait until you're in a better place mentally, and can really think about what matters to you in life and whether or not a PhD contributes enough to that to be worth all the shit. Then make the decision.
I know there's a myth that most men want sex all the time and a "real man" would never turn down a "free" blowjob, but it's just that, a myth. It's toxic masculinity that means most men don't even recognise when they've been violated, let alone feel happy reporting it.
This was a sexual assault though, and you are right to feel repulsed, feel sick about seeing her, and want nothing more to do with her. Your feelings about this are valid, no matter what life has taught you that you "should" feel about it.
I'm so sorry she did that to you and that you're in a new country where making friends is hard.
I personally think you should end this friendship because I think she wants more from you than friendship, and if given a second chance she may well try something else in the future.
I know these things are hard for men to talk about but I hope you can find some forums where you can vent and get some advice and if not, just try writing your feelings down. It really can help.
Finally, check meetup.com for local ex-pat or English speaking groups (or you may speak the local language, I don't know). Hopefully, you'll find some groups or events on there where you can make some new friends. When I moved to a new city I joined a Sunday brunch club, a horror movie club, and a sci-fi club through meetup. That as 10 years ago, there's bound to be more choice now.
Check Meetup.com. Several groups are running in town through there. There are a few D&D Facebook groups with people always looking for more as well. I'm running a Pathfinder game, but I'm afraid we're full. Lots out here, though.
You can try looking for groups on meetup.com. Maybe you can join a photography group. Maybe some other activity you like. Activities are better than eating or movies, in my opinion. You could try volunteering for a cause you like.
Honestly you have to get out of your head. People don't care much to be around people that are amazing or impressive on some way. They want to be around people that make them feel amazing. Dear Abby said a charming person walks in a room saying "There YOU are!" not "Here I am!".
Find friendly people to speak with! Check meetup.com, depending on where you live, you might be able to find groups of other foreigners or people learning French to speak with. Sometimes it's easier to start speaking with people who are also not native French speakers or who are at a similar level as you. This can help with your confidence. Also, check discord for speaking groups.
For me, I feel more comfortable speaking after a glass of wine or two, so that might also be an option, although not for everyone! Don't be afraid of making mistakes, you're learning another language - it's how we learn.
You could join a church but if you're not religious then it's probably not the best idea (take it from me) however I did feel a real sense of community when I did go to church.
You could join a sports team (it's okay, I didn't do this either).
This group sometimes does their own meetups (I've never been personally).
If you have some niche interest (board games, D&D, etc.) there are plenty of people around Canberra who do those things.
I'll be honest, I've been here for 9 years and I have friends here but I still don't have any super close friends. My graduate program was great for that at first and then over time we all drifted apart. Eventually I discovered Meetup and met people that way. I met a lot of people through it but didn't make any super close friends. For the past year or so, I've been attending Meetups with a particular Meetup group and I've gotten to know people through that, however we're not BFFs or anything. Then again, I have autism and while I'm reasonably friendly, I was never a master at making friends.
But if you just sit at home watching Netflix every weekend then you won't meet anyone.
Within Copenhagen, I wouldn't worry about it. The distances are fairly short, and you're supposed to be looking at the buildings and listening to the guide rather than doing a time trial. There will be 5-10 times as many cyclists as you are used to, and they expect anyone who's not obviously a tourist (or child) to follow the local conventions, which isn't exactly the same as following the law.
If you want a longer ride, you might find a companion/guide here, or on Meetup.com, or just go alone -- for example, around Amager, or towards Helsingør, or (with a good map) to the six giants.
You should sign up on meetup.com they organize tons of different groups that you can join. You can meet people that interested in some of the same things you are. They have lots of groups on there ranging from sports groups all the way to workout groups.
Unfortunately, the environments you talked about tend to attract the more aggressive personalities in the community. I speculate this is because the consequences for being rude are almost nonexistent. If you decline their advances there are plenty of other people they can go after. In smaller groups of people, like at a gathering of friends or interest-based social clubs, someone acting poorly is more likely to be called out for their behavior and uninvited from future plans.
We're a small part of the larger population, but there are still some environments where the tone is different and you can find better-behaved people. Meetup.com often has listings for queer groups that tend to be more laid-back, for example.
Yes sometimes but I try to focus on what I like. I think it's about finding your community(s). I have a solid gym community, and then with my main friends I do House of Yes or other similar stuff in Brooklyn, or friends / house parties, some cultural events / thursday art night openings etc, and then find events that align with my niche interests on Instagram or through my friends. There are a so many things I'm not doing. But the things I am doing (or the personalized blend of activities I am doing), I know are kinda only possible in NYC. So even though I'm not doing EVERYTHING, I am doing a bunch of stuff that I couldn't do anywhere but NYC.
FOMO will never go away, and sure, some of that is unfortunately about money. But again I think it's about finding good communities that align with your interests. Regardless of what your interests are (even if they're chilling and reading), you can find people who are doing that as well, and to me, being able to find people who are a) really awesome to be around but also b) have similar interests to you - even the super niche ones - is one of the best ways to take advantage of NYC.
I've been here about 10 years and pretty much all the awesome scenes and activities I've gotten into have resulted from connecting with people who share my niche interests. Photography, clothing, cycling, jiu jitsu, psychedelics, art events, etc. Each one of those things has helped me take part in incredibly amazing experiences. Stuff you can't find on Meetup.com, stuff you can't just drop into as a random. So yes, I might not be doing everything, but I can honestly say I've had MANY incredible, rare, special only in NYC type situations. And I think everyone can. But you need to be authentic about what you're into, and put the time / effort into becoming a part of whatever community is is.
What kind of stuff are you into?
not a dating app but give meetup.com a shot, it's free and best of all it's activities you're into to meet people IN PERSON. My buddy is coming off a divorce as well, we went to a few free blues (music) events and he met a great lady and already they had something in common. Worst case even if you don't meet that special lady, it's an event you like to go to anyways so no wasted time
You clearly aren't interested in actual advice that makes you critically think about your decisions.
It's weird to have to explain such basic shit to someone I think might be an adult.
I feel similar to you. I'm 38 and my partner broke up with me after ten years a month ago. I'm doing my best to get out, go to bars (I don't drink), coffee shops, meetup.com events, art shows, hanging with friends. I'm eating right and exercising, lost 20lbs and am in better shape than I was at 20. I've given up on dating apps until I can get better photos and I sit down and write a good profile. It's super hard for me not to get discouraged, but If I don't try and get out there and make a new life for myself I might as well go out in the woods and shoot myself. Get busy living or get busy dying. Good luck bro!
Just avoid xenoids and their cult, checkout meetup.com there are a lot of pick up social sports on there like kickball, volleyball, dodgeball etc. Check out other young professional and young single groups. Go to unique events like the ones based around art, videogames, watching a sport event, whatever interests you. You can find out about events on 614now.com or columbusunderground.com for example, check the calendars.
I happen to be the author of the post. Just want you to know you are not alone.
I second neverNonLearning's pointing you to clergyproject.org. They can help with practical matters for people who are in career ministry. Also seconding that you are in control of timing, particularly if your job is at stake. Don't feel guilty about this, you don't owe anyone anything.
Finding community is hard but a search on meetup.com for humanist or atheist groups should get you some IRL contacts.
Please feel free to reach out to me if you want to talk through things.
Stop looking. Just start doing IRL stuff you like. Meetup.com is a good place to start, but there are other options. Some groups cater to LGBT exclusively, but that's not a necessity. Having similar interests tend to foster emotional connections.
As I applied elsewhere, Mississippi has places. Jackson has these groups. Literally google or search meetup.com for stuff in Jackson. And as someone who was stationed at in Biloxi, the Biloxi and Gulfport areas have stuff. Hell, you literally can drive from Biloxi to New Orleans in 90 minutes. Again, While you're situation is not ideal compared to other places, especially if in a rural area, you literally just have to look and you find somewhere to go to meet people.
Tough situation, and I feel for ya. I think it's also part of being a grown-up. I don't know how old you are, but once people establish lives with certain sets of friends and activities, not to mention jobs and kids and homeownership stuff, there's less time for the effort it takes to cultivate new friendships.
u/ShittyShittyNameName mentioned meetup.com, and it was a great place for me to meet people when I needed to. A lot of the interactions were more superficial, but through those, I met people I felt closer to and eventually developed friendships with.
Volunteering is another good way to meet people, especially if you're into doing a river cleanup or pouring beer for Downtown After 5 or something. Again, the initial interaction is a little superficial, but with some time it might become something deeper.
Maybe you've tried all these things, I dunno. Hang in there.
Hey man we are almost the same age. I turn 34 in six days.
I've been studying web dev in my spare time(pretty much any time I'm not at work) and I work a full time job 40-60 hours per week.
I think with your current financial responsibilities, it's not a good idea to quit your perfectly good job just to study, especially with all the self learning resources out there. I don't even have kids and I'd never even consider quitting to go to school. If you get laid off that's a completely different scenario, but at least ride it out until they throw you out the door.
You've definitely got this on your own. You have a leg up on me because I'm just a production foreman. I have no related experience whatsoever.
Lemme start off by saying this is two Meetup.com meetups you've been to where there was a clear majority of women. I might, MIGHT be fishing in the wrong ponds.
And yeah, a lot of dudes, and probably a lot of chicks, but certainly a lot of dudes, would consider that a "First World Problem," being so popular on Tinder that you get 30 messages a day. One woman's hassle is another man's salvation from crushing loneliness. Did you feel like an outsider because you don't get many Tinder messages? Or did you feel like an outsider because you were put off by that statement?
Honestly, get on meetup.com, look for groups that are into the same hobbies as you and attend. Go to local comic book shops, go to the penny arcade expo,south by southwest in Austin, etc. But, also, hit the gym. Make yourself your best self and don't sell yourself short. You're a successful guy with a stable career and no debt. Drop a few pounds, build up confidence, and find someone that shares your interests.
My mental health took a definite turn for the better when I let people know I no longer believed in the church. I'd strongly recommend you tell your bishop. Shoot him an email or a text message: "Hi Bishop, you may have noticed that I don't believe in the church any more. I'm not coming to meet with you and I respectfully request not to be contacted by anyone in the church."
If you don't know of social events in your area where you can meet like-minded people, maybe see if there's anything in your area on meetup.com that interests you.
It sucks to be in that in-between phase. I remember it and I'm glad to be past it. If it helps, things get better. Wishing you all the best.
I say ditch the dating apps and do meetup.com. You can meet loads of women in person doing activities you like. If you spark a connection with someone that's great, and if not you're out having a good time anyway.
It's creepy as hell. Don't do this. You're going to be hard pressed to make friends this way. It also sounds like you're only contacting the women who are following you? If you want to make friends there are plenty of ways to do so using apps and online sources. Meetup.com, google an adult sport (soccer, capture the flag, etc) that meets up in your area. Bumble BFF. There are plenty of options. Instagram is a terrible way to do this. I wouldn't call you an A, but you're being really ignorant to how making friendships works.
> Do I have any chances of going to america for work eventually with a regular uni Bsc CS?
As far I know you need to have Bachelor Degree and Full-time job offer from US company in "the filed" to qualify for TN Visa source.
This is the hardest part of your life but if you stuck with healthy and learning attitude you can do it. Here is what I have done that worked
Solid routine - Good 8 hour sleep, wake up early in the morning (6:00 a.m.) and have breakfast.
Spend 2-3 hours sharping your skills (6-9). This could be solving leetcode problems with pen on paper. If stuck google and arrive at solution.
9 to 12 apply for jobs (LinkedIn, craigslist, Indeed etc)
12 to 1 - have lunch / watch new relax a bit
1 to 3 follow up calls from your last week application. The success ration is 1/6; to speak with actual person.
3 to 5 prepare for up coming interview
Spend weekend and evening building a project - pushing at git hub. Or re-do your school projects and push up on git hub.
If you need money that find part-time or weekend jobs that way you can apply for jobs during the day. I have always applied jobs during business hours. I got job because of follow up call (thank you career center for pointing this out).
I would also go to meetup.com and find local meet up in startup. Just go there have free food, meet people and make connection.
Have you had a look at Meetup.com? There's lots of stuff on there happening in Belfast, for loads of different interests. Basically a lot of people in the same position as you, who want to make new friends! I recently joined a book club through it - would invite ya but it's girls only! Hope you find something.
meetup.com is a good start to find people with similar interests. There is a discord chat for nerds and gamers if there is any interest. I can send invite.
Bailey Park does free Yoga every 3rd Wednesday until October. Footnote offers 1 hour yoga class Mon-Fri for $10 which includes coffee drink.
If you aren't allergic I am sure the humane society could use volunteers. Habitat for Humanity might be worth looking into for more hands-on work.
You might actually go try another route like Meetup.com where at least you can find people with commonalities in activities vs. OLD. OR even volunteer work, just meet them in person first is what I'm getting at. At least you know there is something you two would have in common and can talk about, and people have a tendency to let their guard down when it comes to fun activities and not always looking to hook up
I've described MeetUp.com to other people as Tinder, but for friends. You might have to slog through a lot of small talk before you make any meaningful connections, but keep at it long enough and you'll meet some people that you can hang out with outside of the meetup.
I look for meetups that focus on a specific activity that I'm interested in. I've made some friends/acquaintances by going to board game meetups or arts/crafts meetups. Don't feel like you have to put yourself out there all at once when you show up. Feel free to take your time to feel people out and chime in on conversations when you feel comfortable.
I don't typically comment on this type of situation, but I can relate.
I was the same until age 23, it wasn't nice, it was deeply depressing.
However, to focus on how bad things seem right now, isn't wise. Well done for sharing your story on here, that's a great first step.
The key is baby steps. You can't go from super-shy to super-confident overnight.
Here are some small steps to consider, that can get you on the path to confidence:
Have a think about the positive areas of your life, spend time with people who you like and practice valuing yourself more, day by day. This is an essential part of success in any area, you must appreciate how valuable you are. This has nothing to do with money or girls, it's about you and the way you treat yourself.
This can be anything from regularly asking the time or directions from strangers, to asking the girl serving you coffee how her day is going.
The more people you meet in low pressure situations, the more confident you will become in yourself and the more opportunity to practice social skills and basic conversational flirting skills. I highly recommend you checkout Meetup.com and either create or join a few groups. Do it just to be social and you should meet some girls who have the same interests as you. This isn't about dating loads of girls, it's just simply socialising and then occasionally having a drink with a girl/few people from your group.
If you do these 3 things, you will at least move closer to a happier more confident life. I'm not a life coach, I have been through this stuff myself. You can transform your life, just take small steps in the right direction.
speaking on behalf of IT: If there are any incels reading this, please know that we actually do want you to succeed. We don't hate you, we hate the mindset. We don't like seeing people like this, it isn't healthy and you need to get help.
Speaking for myself: I get it, I really do. I've been single for 4 years now and I would have been an incel if I hadn't met my ex. The one line I kinda agree with is "Cope or Rope, its up to you". Complaining about women on the internet isn't going to lead to anything except more depression. I can't help you find a girlfriend but I have been coping very effectively and honestly, I'm a better, more interesting person now than I ever was with my gf. Here's what I've found to be helpful...
-Go out and do something every day: If you're not out doing something, you should be going to the gym. That way you'll either get in great shape, or if you're like me, you'll experience lots of new things trying to avoid the gym. Just this past month I've tried mountaineering, caving, and swing dancing for the first time. This is also a great way to meet new people.
-Get a pet: I was super lonely alone in my apartment before I rescued my cat. Now I get lot's of cuddles.
-Honestly, Just masturbate: sex is honestly overrated and while I do miss it, you're really not missing out on much. Only thing I would warn is that if rock climbing is one of the activities you get into, your hands are going to be really rough with calluses.
-Have something you do regularly with your friends. For me it's bar trivia night and occasional board game nights. If you don't have friends, try joining something on meetup.com. those groups are always friendly, my personal recommendation: join a grotto of the National Speleological Society, I don't care how socially inept you think you are, you can't weird-out cave people.
Yep. She was pretty deep into meetup.com for a while, mostly into the single parent groups ironically (she was big into being a solo parent at the time). IIRC she said she did that b/c she didn't have friends in CA at the time but wanted to go out for her bday. While many of the women never were around again a few did stick for about 2 years.
Well, you have no interests. So you have to start somewhere. What seems like it might interest you? Fishing? Sports? Going shopping at vintage stores? Reading? Pick something, research it a little to see what it might cost to get started, and get started.
Socializing is like any other muscle. You need to use it. Find one of those things that interests you, and look it up on meetup.com Look for other people into the same thing.
That was fast ;) But for real I've found that people struggle with going offline unless they can replace that time with something fulfilling. You could try searching online (eg. on facebook, meetup.com) to find some events to go to? Things like seeing a movie, joining a class, picking up a hobby or whatever it may be would help. Also try as best you can to treat the internet mindfully when you do use it - so with that sub for example you could search the top posts of all time for any tips that could help then try to stay off of reddit until you can think of something specific you want to check on or search, you know? Subs like /r/Mindfulness and /r/Meditation have some good posts on how to get rid of that dopamine 'need stimulation need stimulation need stimulation' addiction spiral.
Try new hobbies (Like Rock Climbing at Climb Kzoo or Improv Classes at Crawlspace Eviction)
Check out Glitch Gaming Lounge or Nova VR, they have events sometimes
Get involved a bit at Western even though you don't go there. They probably have gaming clubs and stuff like that.
Keep track of events and classes going on, especially recurring events.
It's a slow process, involves a lot of work and getting out of the house as much as possible. These are just some ideas. Meetup.com is also a growing place to find groups and activities. Kzoo Makers is great if you want to learn how to make things.
I think the first step is you getting comfortable with going places alone. Try MeetUp.com and search for groups with similar interests as you. If your city is featured on idontdoclubs.com try some of those events as well. Also, try the public library for their events as well as local recreation centers for cheap classes that may be in of your interest or your local African American Community Center. Volunteering with organizations like Habitat for Humanity or other things you're passionate about can also get you in the space to meet people who share similar passions. I think unless you are willing to forge out alone, this is going to be damn near impossible to meet people outside of work. Good luck!
Start with a professional profile at LinkedIn. Join groups in your field or a field you aspire to be in. Go meet people at Meetup.com - search for groups in your area. It's a great way to meet people. When you meet people, eventually, you'll meet people who know people... --- and may be helpful to get you where you want to go
yep, meetup.com join some groups that interest you. Go on a few outings. The other people that attend are fairly normal and just looking to do stuff too. It's a social networking site that actually promotes social interaction.
Opportunities happen! Wholesome gay encounters happen! You'll also find kindred spirits along the way. I'm lucky enough to be in a company that's inclusive and even has a LGBTQ network. You might want to consider a LGBTQ meetup.com event.
Also, psshhh BTO
This doesn't really exist and isn't part of our culture, though you may find it in certain pubs whose clientele skews a little towards the older market. It's difficult to find them, though.
Your best bet might be game/activity bars, of which there are a few and are easy to google: ping pong, board game places, pinball, arcade bars are constantly popping up over town.
Take a look at /r/LondonSocialClub and Meetup.com too.
Step 1: Talk to your friends. It's the best place to start.
Step 2: look for a Friendly Local Gaming Store. Often times these places will give RPG groups a bit of space to play.
Step 3: if the previous two steps fail to net you a group to play with, subreddits like r/lfg may be a good starting point, as are sites like Meetup.com or even Roll20.com for online play.
Step 4: be patient - if you keep looking, you'll find people to play with. Eventually.