I want to become friends with a female without being friendzoned. How can I do this?

Anonymous
I recently screwed up an opportunity to meet up with a very attractive younger woman. She was initially very interested but I think my messaging came off as needy (and inadvertently creepy). We are still talking about in her last message she said she felt “weird” about meeting up. I think I’m toast now unfortunately.

I came to the realization this morning that the way I’m communicating with women is turning them off. My game sucks. Given that I’m getting older I can’t away with saying the same things I used to say at 25. I know that.

But I also am very careful to show I’m interested in more than friends. I want to set proper expectations and make it clear I’m not interested in the friendzone if I’m interested.

I don’t make sexually overt comments but if I think a girl is cute I’ll tell her. That’s what I did with the last girl I talked to. No direct sexual comments (to avoid sounding creepy) but I made it clear I was interested. And it didn’t work.

But this got me to thinking. The lockdown, where I live and just my lack of female extended interaction for the last 1.5 years (since I broke up with my ex) has fucked up my mind a bit. Yes I’m more aware of what I say. But still female intuition is very strong and when compounded with negative emotion (paranoia) I’m always just one misstep away from being labeled something I’m not.

I need to get used to talking to a girl every day. A true friend but not someone I’m attracted to or vice versa. Is it possible to find this?
I want to become friends with a female without being friendzoned. How can I do this?
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