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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Teaching RM's How to Date

Dear Bro Jo,

Hello again and happy October!

I emailed you a while back about how I had been pushed a lot (and therefore concerned over) marriage and the next stage of my life. Your advice was short, simple, and sweet. So thank you for that!

I thought a lot more about it, and decided I don't know why I am stressing over it. I'm not doing anything wrong, and I am exactly on track with life...and when I graduate, go to college, and am ready for that next stage, I will be ready..... No need to worry over it beforehand!

So here is my next topic of concern, what do I do with a just returned RM who seems to have a "mini crush" on me?

(Actually, I don't know what you would call it...I don't guess it's really that.)

It's really not a big deal...and don't worry, it's not like he's a wack-job who has come home and proposed to the first girl he's seen (being the only girl in our ward that is a Laurel).

Nothing like that!

It's just quite simply, I feel stuck in a somewhat rough position.

I saw him at Church a bit when he got home, but never talked to him...and he began talking to me via chat on Facebook about two weeks ago.

He seems nice and all, and I mostly kept the subject around books and where he wants to go to college.

I hoped he was just looking for a friend or maybe just using me to get used to talking to girls again (Which I am fine with that.)

But then last Thursday he asked if I was busy over the weekend.

Not what I was hoping for.

I'm in my senior year of high school, finishing up my associates, with a job and an internship AND trying to have a yeah...I was busy (HELLO, if you want to do something with a girl, ask her more than a day or two in advance!) so that was an easy way out.

Then he told me that he was hoping we could "hang out" sometime (what does that even mean anyways!?) and gave me his number and said to let him know if I ever had a chance to do something and wasn't busy.

(Honestly though, no. Set a time, make it official, and don't expect me to call you on the off chance I am free...goodness, boys!)

I lost my phone though which I told him, and I avoided him at church last Sunday just because I didn't know what I would say.

He keeps talking to me on Facebook, and has said "hi" and had a conversation with me via Facebook about 4 or 5 times since.

I don't really know what to do.

I told my friend that I didn't want to "hang out" with him and she said that I was overreacting and it's not like he wanted to marry me (uh, I sort of figured that....) and to just do one thing with him.

But I'm busy, and to be honest, I don't feel comfortable with randomly "hanging out" with an RM whom I don't even really know...especially alone.

I love going on dates, don't get me wrong........but this is just different.

So, how do I nicely show him I'm just not "feeling it"?

Thanks so much!

- B

Dear B,

When a guy asks you if you want to "hang out” you should tell him "I'm choosing to follow prophetic advice ; I don't "hang out " with guys, but I do say yes when nice guys ask me on dates ".

(I wish more girls, like your friend, would get that . . . and guys, too.)

And, yes, if this guy asks you out on a date, you should go.

(Typically I would say that since you're still in High School and he's at least 21 that he needs to wait until you graduate, but in your situation, where you're a touch older and also going to college . . . let's just say I can understand both sides on this one.)

Give each of you a chance.

There's no truth to the notion that you need to be super attracted to or in love with, the people you go on dates with.

That said, there's also nothing wrong with doing a little date education, either, and requiting guys to give you proper notice and expecting them to be willing to work around your schedule.

- Bro Jo


Anonymous said...

It really bothers me when a boy gives his number to a girl and says for her to call him.. No! Then the girl should say, actually here's my number and you call me once you have definite plans. If a boy makes the effort before you've even go on a date, it shows he will continue to make the effort if you end up in a committed relationship or even more so in marriage. Little things add up to big things.

Anonymous said...

It sounds like she is not physically attracted to him and does not want to make the time to go on a date. It is important to be attracted in some way to the people you date. I liked my husband's dark hair and blue eyes:) But I was more attracted to how he treated me. He stood out because he opened the door for me and listened to my thoughts. He wasn't so pushy like other guys I had dated. If you can not see anything interesting then don't waste his time or yours but you should not write him off because he wants to hang out. Being social does take practice. It is important to learn what you want from a man and communicate that clearly. This is a great opportunity to practice. Speak up girl!

Anonymous said...

He was effectively asking her on a date. "Hanging out" one-on-one sounds close to a date to me. But he's just being cautious, maybe justifiably cautious. Some girls tend to overreact when they hear the word "date" and read far to much into it. Perhaps he's had some bad experiences with girls becoming angry and offended when he asked them on a date in the past.

It seems a little unfair to write this guy off purely because he's reluctant to use the word "date" when there's so much confusion around about what the word means. If he's a creepy guy that's one thing. But otherwise perhaps she should gently suggest he ask her out on a date, but explain what this means. No serious commitment, they both agree ahead of time, he pays etc.

Anonymous said...

Using the word "date" is definitely harder for us less-attractive guys in comparison to the cuter guys that girls like. We feel as if we're walking on egg-shells because we don't want to mess something up, and any little thing can mess things up with attractive girls when you're a less-desirable guy. Any little thing that they don't quite relate to, they'll magnify it as an excuse that we're not compatible. On the other hand, "cute guys" can show lots of imperfections, make lots of mistakes, and yet girls still want them and cut them slack...

Anonymous said...

If we like a guy yes we give them some slack because we like them. Attractiveness is completely subjective and a lot of it has to do with confidence so beating around the bush and acting coy about a date and being unsure of what it is actually makes you less attractive to whoever you're pursuing. If a girl isn't interested in you at all she will most likely convince herself that you would never work out before you even get to the date. Your job is to make sure she doesn't go from neutral to not interested at all and by being unsure isn't the way to do that.
Picture a scale from 0-20 10 is neutral 0 is not interested at all and 20 is very interested most guys register between 5 and 15 for me but if a guy that is 5 asks me out on a date he would jump to a 12 but if he asked me to hang out he plummets to 0. Someone would have to be at a 20 not to plummet to 0 but it would be a close thing. My point is most girls actually are more interested in confidence and personality than looks.
For example I prefer taller think 6'3" to 6'6" fairly muscular with darker hair and pretty eyes (I prefer green but have seen gorgeous blue and brown eyes) even though that is my preference my current crush might just make 6' has greyish eyes (yes I think they're pretty) has sandy blond hair and while he is fit he doesn't have the musculature that I'm typically attracted to. What made me see this person as attractive is he is confident, kind, friendly, and laughs a lot which are traits that are important for me to find in anyone who could be a future spouse.

Anonymous said...

He's also 6'0" tall. Let's be real: if he were my height (5'6") then he would likely be in the friend zone. Not trying to offend but let's not kid ourselves here...Anyways, I have more to say below and I really want this post posted.

One comment you made DEFINITELY stands out and is a major problem in dating: "If a girl isn't interested in you at all she will most likely convince herself that you would never work out before you even get to the date. Your job is to make sure she doesn't go from neutral to not interested" And then you mention the scale between 0-20, in which a non-attractive guy is rated very lowly and has a ton of work and convincing to do...that he's unaware of because he doesn't know he's at such a disadvantage going into the date.

Bro Jo (AND old married people that want to help YSA's date and marry), can you now see why guys get nervous about first dates and don't want to go on them? Can you see how difficult it is to go on one when a girl you find attractive has that mindset? I have always said that "a chance" IS NOT "going on one date with a guy" and that girl's comments back me up 100%: How in the world is "one casual first date" supposed to be considered "a chance" when the girl has been talking herself out of the possibility of dating you seriously before even going on the date?! What's the point in going on a date with someone that's there in outward appearance but whose inside appearance has convinced herself that she wants nothing to do with you? That's terrible.

Bro Jo said...

Dear Anon,

Speaking for myself, but imagining that others will agree, we've always known why you "get nervous about first dates"; we also happen to know that if you use your nervousness as an excuse and don't get over it and date anyway you'll be alone a lot longer than you should.

This particular girl's opinion is not universal.

And, frankly, I know guys your height (and shorter - assuming that's your point) who do fabulously well with women. Lot's of them have married very well, by the way.

Terrible or not, you still need to keep dating.

Widen you circle, brother. Not all girls are shallow.

- Bro Jo

Bro Jo said...

Oh, and while I understand your frustration, my guess is that it's your bitterness that's more of a turnoff than your height.

Happiness and confidence.

I'm sure you're a great guy. Let those two traits show through and I have no doubt girls will find you attractive.

Besides, any girl that is so shallow and pathetic as the girls you're talking about isn't one you want to marry anyway.

Consider it a bullet dodged and gratefully move on.

- Bro Jo

Anonymous said...

Yes in my case guys your height would go into this thing called the friendzone but that has more to do with the fact that being a clumbsy person I feel larger than I am and don't like feeling like I'm going to crush the person I'm dating.
I am fairly average when it comes to looks and even though I eat healthy and walk to school a mile away rather than drive and workout 3-5 times a week burning 500 calories minimum each time I still weigh 175. I am also 5'6 all of that puts me in as the average female. I could say that the reason I don't get asked out often is because guys look over me for girls that are skinnier taller shorter and prettier but I know the truth is that I like guys who are "out of my league" when it comes to looks (easier to say I'm interested in someone and not expect anything to happen). There is also the fact that not only am I not as confident as I should be and flirt with guys I also have a persona that says stay at arms length. I think more girls are willing to give guys they aren't that interested in more of a chance than I am.
My mentality of kicking the guy out of the ring before he enters probably is partly from sexual abuse that I experienced as a child. Like I said I try to be cheery and everything but I still have the persona of stay away. That is also why I like bigger guys with muscles even though I'm not dealing with the abuse any more I want to be protected which means I initially look for guys taller and more muscular than my dad, so to you the fact that the guy I like is still 6 foot means he's still tall, to me it means he's four inches too short.
If your height is the worst thing you have to overcome you are lucky I am going through counseling so I can get a different outlook on how to interact with men in a healthy way instead of intentionally finding problems with those I'm not interested in and ignoring/avoiding guys I could actually date while intentionally picking guys out of my league to crush on.