Yes you can front squat.....if you really want to.
I'm 50, NEVER front squatted before EVER, last fall after watching some Oly lifting video told my self "i'm gonna front squat....deep"
I ran into the same excuse you did. And i also considered the wrist-strap thing, the plastic thing, and the crossarm method. But then i looked at all those Oly videos and said "hell, they ain't using any of that pussy stuff, they ain't using no belts, no knee wraps, no hoists and they ain't doin no 4 inches down and up"
Give this a try, it worked for an old stiff fart like me.
Start out goblet squatting. i know, i know.... it looks really sissy. Fine, try doin a set of 20 reps with a 150 lb dumbell ATG. Do these until the heavest db in the gym is easy. Then go to the barbell, take the weight you can back squat for 10 reps, now take off 75% and start out there. Thats the worst and most embarassing part. My delts and wrists hurt like hell for a month, but not nearly as much as my pride. Its been four months now, and the lift is just now starting to feel somewhat comfortable. And yes its still embarassing. I use to backsquat 275 lbs for 20 reps on a good day. I struggle with 225 lbs for a double in the front squat. But i'm gonna get better. Plus i'm really squatting now (i.e. not parallel half squatting). So far i've found it easier on my knees, at least for me my knees don't buckle in during front squatting. My lower back and i are now good friends again for the first time in 10 years. The front squat takes the stress off the lower back and moves it up to the upper back, which i love because the next day my upper back feels as good as my quads. I only wish someone had made me do these when i was younger.
its just not gonna come easy, and you have to swallow your pride a little. Its like a good boxer walking into an MMA gym, looks similar, ought to be no problem...until the bell goes ding.