Don’t apologise – your struggle sounds like a frustrating one and I know that there are others in similar situations. I admire your courage to share.
Have you done much reading about community theory? The key to getting it right is to get the concept right. You need to talk to your potential audience and find out what problem your community can solve for them. Generally, if people aren’t engaging it’s because you’re not offering them a solution to something that they consider a problem.
If you want a reading list to get you started, here is a good one: