Monday, July 16, 2012

A Guy's Guide to Dating (GDD: Part 3)

Ok gents. I hope you didn't think you were getting out of this one. You may not want to hear this, but dating begins with you. YOU are responsible for making sure girls have an opportunity to let good dating happen.

"Young men generally take the initiative in asking for and planning dates." - For the Strength of Youth (2012 edition)

That's what it says, brother. You have a charge. It's scary, I know. I've asked guys out before. I feel your... not pain. Insecurity is a better word for it. Think about it this way: you think it's scary asking out your friend to play laser tag for an evening? Imagine how intimidating it will be when you ask the most amazing, beautiful girl in the world, who you love with all your heart and would do ANYTHING for, to be your wife for time and all eternity. Even though you know she'll say yes, it's scary. Better get some practice in putting yourself out there and doing things right. Even the girl you propose to will have to be asked out on a date BY YOU at some point. (Logically, right?)

Let me walk you through a scenario. The bold text is your scenario, and everything else is my commentary.

-You realize that you've got nothing to do next Friday. You talk to one of your guys, and decide that you want to do something different than just "chilling," playing video games and your guitars. You come up with the idea to ask two young ladies you know to a picnic.

                        First of all, good choice. You can hang out with the guys anytime, but this is the initiative we were talking about before. You'll need it outside of high school dating, at places like work and college, so it's good to develop it - it is a talent! Plus, girls find it really attractive.
                       Also, you chose a picnic. It's cheap, fun, and no pressure. You don't have to worry about rides, and you know you'll have an opportunity to just talk.

- It is now Monday, and you are seeing Alison that day. When you see her a little off to the side, and not right in front of all her friends, you look her in the eye, smile and say "Hey, Alison. I was wondering if you were free Friday evening for a picnic. Jeff and I were thinking of getting a double together, and I'd love it if you would go with me."

                       Thank you for not asking in front of everyone! That makes it awkward, either because it looks like you're trying to show off, or if she isn't free, it's uncomfortable for her to decline and arrange another time with you. It doesn't have to be all secretive either, because... That's weird.

                      When you actually spoke, you gave her just what she needs to know. You told her the date (Friday), approximate time (evening), activity (picnic), that you were doubling, and that it was in fact a date! You smiled, made her feel special. Way to be.

- She accepts, and you have a date! You tell her "Great! I'm looking for to it. I'll see you at 5:30 at the park? Do you need a ride?"

                     Always check. Make sure she's clear right then the timing of everything, and that she'll have a way to get there. If your mom needs to drive both of you, that's fine. NO SHAME.

- It's now Thursday, and you have to make sure everything is going to happen. You check the weather to be sure it's not going to rain. You run with Jeff to the grocery store to get sandwich makings (and maybe some junk food). You gather the soccer ball and a blanket. You've got this. You are an ace.

                    That's pretty much it. By making sure everything is in place beforehand, you're guaranteeing that you will be able to relax and have fun on your date. You ARE an ace.

- Your date starts, and you are having a blast. You are talking to Alison, who is actually really different when you talk just to her without a huge group of people. You've already learned that she loves Kit Kats and hates Milky Ways, that she wants to be a doctor, and really wants to go to Africa on safari. She's really cute when she laughs and brushes her hair out of her eyes back behind her ear. You also learned that she can kick your butt in soccer. (No one else needs to know that.) Jeff and his date are a lot of fun too. The four of you are having a lot of fun. You haven't checked your phone, and you have just been talking to the people around you.

                  There is so much going right. A+. You are talking to the people present, and not to anyone on your phone or the "textline." You are doing things according to plan, but left it flexible enough to do what you felt like. You are paying the most attention to your date, and not to Jeff, or worse, Jeff's date. (DON'T EVER HIT ON SOMEONE ELSE'S DATE.) You are just having fun. That is what dating is.

- When it's time to leave, you give her a hug, and say "Thanks so much for going out with me, Alison. I had an awesome time. It was a lot of fun. Maybe next time, we should go to the baseball game! I'll see you around. Thanks again!"

Yes, you THANK HER. The girl didn't have to go out with you. You read that right - You hug her. Don't try to force anything more on her. You went on one group date - don't make things weird. If later on, you've gone on a few more dates with her, you can go for a kiss, but remember: Dating is not to get a girlfriend.

A note on the physical stuff: I know you know that guys and girls are different. They place different meaning on physical affection. I hate to break this to you, but girls vary as well. To one girl, holding hands may be a way of saying "I like you and I'm having fun with you," while to another it may mean "I love you, and this is a sign of commitment." A kiss may be "Thank you for an awesome time, and I really like spending time with you," while to someone else it means "I want to be with you forever." Just be wary about what kind of message you want to send. Some girls want to save their first kiss for over the alter, and some girls throw their lips around, looking for someone to kiss. (Stay away from those girls... Nothing but trouble.)

Well guys, I'm almost done with you. I want to give one little speech before you hit that red X on the upper righthand corner.

Although every girl should be treated with respect, not every girl deserves the young man that you are now and have the potential to be. Remember that. You are an amazing person, who is trying his best to be someone good. You have talents, you have LOADS of potential. You don't get the self-esteem speech as much as girls do, and I think that's terrible. You are working now to be someone who can hold a job, support a family, AND have fun. You may not be thinking about it all the time, but if you sat and thought hard for a little while, you'd realize you have some goals and dreams that you want to achieve. Not every girl will be able to help you get there. I know I say "it's just high school," and "dating is about fun and friendships," but seriously. Do you think that some of these girls will help you be the MAN that you want and can be? They are distractions. They do not deserve you. They will hold you back. Have fun, be chill, but be careful. The people you surround yourself with now will impact who you will become. Besides, your future wife is out there. You are going to think that she is the most amazing person ever (because she is!), and are you going to want to tell her about your manslut ways in high school? Of course not. Basically it comes down to don't be a jerk. Ask girls out. Have fun. Learn a lot. Put yourself out there. Be rejected a few times - it's normal and healthy. It sucks, but it's okay. Make some girls you know smile. Be the kind of man that you want to be.

Think about it.

Questions/Comments? Comment below or send me a message - I'd love to hear your thoughts!

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