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Confessions: I have a great career but I am lonely, where do I start?

Readers Lounge By Simon and Boke
I am not good at chatting up women though I would love to get married and start a family (Photo: Shutterstock)

I am 36 years old and I work as an IT Technician for a top firm. I am really good at my job and I really work hard at it. My life from afar is perfect but the truth is, I am quite lonely. The problem is that I am not good at chatting up women though I would love to get married and start a family but I don’t know where to start. Where do I meet a good woman? Is there a way to make myself more approachable or should I reconcile myself to a fabulous career and nothing else?


What the readers say:

I read low self-esteem. Is it that you have never tried or is it that you tried and did not succeed? They say, 'mwanaume ni effort'. Make some effort, bwana! Not all relationships are engineered by men. If this has never happened to you then you are indeed not sociable. Sisters can also bring us girlfriends. We could as well get the phone number to the lady of our interest and start conversation; in case you can't meet them face to face.

{Ouma Ragumo}

If this is not the case then you need to get yourself a date before time catches up with you. Do this; spot a lady and find a close friend who will help you connect the two of you then start from there.

{Brian Jakababa}

Find and call this good woman and meet in a romantic setting then lay down your expectations. It's better to have a failed engagement and be hurt than have a broken marriage.

{Dolly Olimba}

What scares you is your shadow! Identify the lady of your dreams and let her understand you from the word go. By sharing with her your limitations, you gain more confidence and she learns to fill in for you. Should the lady be uncomfortable with you, then she is not for you, walk on. Cheer up man, stammerers and dumb men have married some of the best queens around.

{Tasma Saka}

To me, you are just too shy for nothing. Please be a man and a full man. Join a social club in your workplace, church or estate. You can also talk to your aunts to look for a 'good woman' to marry or talk to your mother and tell her your problem.

{Onyango Outha}

Simon says:

Andrew, at 36 you really should have gotten over some of these things. I am tempted to ask what you have been doing all this time but, nonetheless, you are in a situation and this is why we are here - to help out.

So, you want to have a relationship that will probably lead you to marriage and having a family? This is the right path and even now, there really is still some time and everything can work out as per your desires.

Speaking of desire, have you let this desire be known among your friends (both male and female)? This could be a good starting point and, as a matter of fact, most people will tell you that they met their spouses through their friends. This might be a good place to start and you could get some interesting references from here for which you will have a head start.

As you wait for a suitable reference from your friends, you may also want to put yourself out there with the hope of also finding someone who is also looking. Putting yourself out there may include regular visits to social places and functions e.g. weddings, church, parks, social places, malls, etc.

You may want to attend more soical functions and try to blend in with the people and something may just come out of that as well. Positioning is critical and it shall determine how much work you will have to do. If you met someone through a friend, you will not be starting off as strangers hence you may not have as much work to do.

Now, about your perceived "inadequacy in chatting up ladies", this is a weakness that all men have and this remains with them for a very long time. Try and learn a few things from movies, read romantic novels and most of all, practice. Lose the nervousness and build up your confidence - you will need it. Learn to deal with your feelings of insecurity and fear of rejection.

As you walk to a lady be in the know that she will be just as nervous as you and she will not show it. Try often, first with your friends then you will see how easy it is to talk to people. You will only find it easier to strike and maintain a conversation with a woman you will not have met.

You must, however, be ready for rejection - you will be rejected a time or two as well as you reject. Do not also just accept anyone who comes your way. Lastly, invest in yourself, looks go a long way into working through the hearts of ladies and keep an open mind. Remember that just as you are looking for someone to start a relationship with, many women are also looking for the same so take the few bold steps and you will soon write in with a testimony.

Simon Anyona is a relationships counselor

Boke says:

Dear Andrew,

Congratulations on your career progress. It is a good thing that you desire to advance in other spheres of your life. You sound to me as an introvert. An introvert is mostly reserved and calm. They may appear withdrawn even in the wildest of parties. They are the opposite of the extroverts who are more sociable and outgoing. Unlike extroverts, introverts do not make friends easily. This does not mean that they are unfriendly.

All these are just personality differences, none is better than the other. Even more important to know, is that no individual can predetermine their personality. The best you can do is being the best of you. It will interest you to know that some of these aspects you do not like about yourself would actually draw someone else to you.

As for getting a girlfriend, start from building friendships. Join social groups from the neighbourhood, alumni, religious organisations, clubs and various societies that bring people together. Gradually grow your social skills from there and with time you will have created a circle of friends. The circle of friends in many cases provide a good catchment for a potential spouse. Endeavour to be a nice person to be around. Show genuine concern for people. This will make you irresistible.

With time you will realise that you have many good qualities than you thought. I believe that the beauty of any relationship is in the unique and distinct quality that each individual brings. What you need is to agree and not to be identical. So be happy in your skin. Someone will be glad to have you in their life.

Hilda Boke Mahare has a background in Counselling Psychology

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