How do I find a sexual partner after 20 years of celibacy? | Ask Philippa

You’ve been chucked, insulted and then infected. It’s no wonder you’ve lost confidence. You must feel the fear and do it anyway or you will stay stuck

The question I’m a 59-year-old gay man who has been celibate for nearly 20 years. Up until Covid hit I was content with my lot. I had good friends and many interests. That died back during the pandemic and hasn’t really picked up again. However, during lockdown, I rediscovered myself as a sexual being. I found guys online who miraculously seemed interested in me. In the loneliness of lockdown, I felt oddly alive again.

Previously, my one and only relationship, which lasted many years, ended badly with my ex telling me that sex with me had always been bad and, by the way, I need to get tested. I tested negative and, although he had tested positive, I felt the loser. I had a brief fling with a guy about a year later (and another trip to the clinic), before eschewing sex altogether. Now the online sex I found over the past two years has awakened something in me. I feel like a sexual being again.

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