Why I Don’t Date

Dave Gutteridge
5 min readJul 16, 2022

A healthy sense of failing at life

A man sitting alone in a long hallway.

The last date I was on was over a year and a half ago. Two years? I don’t remember. The last girlfriend I had faded out of my life without a clear goodbye, and then after that there were some dates with a couple other women I met, but the concept of dating itself faded as well. I don’t know which ended first, the dating or the desire to date.

Is it just age and the absence of the uncontrollable passions of youth? Is it the healthy emotional maturity of not needing to have a human security blanket to smother the bottomless loneliness I used to feel?

When I was in my twenties and thirties, I felt loneliness viscerally. I would be unable to sleep at night, feeling the existential angst of what it might mean to never meet anyone again. I would feel shame and anger at my inability to solve the problem. I could barely focus on anything else in life.

Now I look back on that and it seems like another person. I barely think about being with someone. Specifically I mean a romantic partner. I have more friends now, and an ability to have friends because of so much less noise in my brain devoted to worrying about my relationships with women.

So it all seems kind of a good thing. Maybe. Without the fear that permanent loneliness awaits me just over the cliffs on all sides of me, I create more, I enjoy my time more, I’m more able to commit to the things I would like to accomplish.

It feels more healthy and balanced to not be chained to the dragon of constant desire anymore.

But, also, I don’t want to die alone either.

I’d be lying if I tried to claim that the only reason I haven’t been on a date in a long time is because something inside me has just mellowed out to the point that I just haven’t really pursued dating. That’s part of it, I literally go days without even really thinking about being with a woman, and during that time I don’t really care about it.

And then sometimes I’ll be out and about and I’ll see a beautiful woman, and I’ll think about how she would not want to be with someone who is basically failing at life as hard as I am.

I mean, I’m almost fifty, half the women who catch my interest are probably young…



Dave Gutteridge

I don't post often because I think about what I write. Topics include ethics, relationships, and philosophy.