In a few weeks, I will be twenty-eight years old. Twenty-eight and still single. Always single.
When I was growing up in Birmingham, Alabama, I was never explicitly taught that the guy should ask the girl on the first date, but it seemed silently expected. Until a few years ago, the idea of me asking a guy on a first date seemed absurd. I knew it should not be, but it felt that way. I flat-out refused to ever ask a guy on a first date. I wanted (and still want) to be pursued; I want the man to step up and ask me.
Just ask me, for heaven’s sake!
But, since then, my opinion on the subject has changed. It has been more than three years since I have been asked on a date. In those three years, I have been on two blind dates, but since they were blind dates, I was not asked by the guys themselves; we were set up by mutual friends. Also, those two blind dates never turned into second dates. So then, what am I to do? Yes, I would still prefer for the guy to ask me first, but if he never asks, that means I never go on dates. I am tired of not going on dates.
In the past ten months, I have asked three guys on dates and none of those three guys have said “yes”. Granted, one of those three guys had a good reason for saying “no”. One of them had a halfway decent reason, but it still is not good enough reason for me. As for the third guy, I am completely unaware of his reason for not saying “yes”, and therefore cannot pardon him either.
Many years ago, when I was probably in middle school, my sister, eight years my senior, taught me something important, a rule by which I still abide (although I have not had much practice). She told me that, when a guy asks you out on a first date, you should always say “yes”. (Creepy guys who seem as though they might take advantage of you in some way are of course not a part of this equation.) My sister said that it was a hard thing to do to ask someone on a first date; the person asking is putting him- or herself out there and making it clear to the other person that he or she is interested. It is a scary thing, putting your feelings out in the open like that. And so, she told me to never say “no” to a first date. The guy has done something difficult in asking and to say “no” would be unappreciative of his efforts and a discouragement from further first dates asked by the same guy to a different girl. Also, a first date is simply that – a first date – a chance to get to know each other better and see whether or not you would like to go on a second date. Asking someone on a first date does not mean you are asking them to say their vows right then and there. It is just a first date.
This leads me to another thing someone said to me very recently about first dates. My friend told me that she thinks a guy should wait until he is sure that the girl is interested before asking her on a date. I told her I wholeheartedly disagree. At that point, I had asked two guys out with absolutely no (or at least very little) knowledge of their own feelings toward me. By asking someone on a first date, you are not declaring your unconditional and undying love for that person. You are only saying, “Hey! I think you’re cool (or nice or intelligent or funny or pretty or whatever other adjective you would like to inject) and I would like to get to know you better.” End of story.
A guy asking a girl on a first date is by no means a Romeo whose first words ever spoken to Juliet were,
“If I profane with my unworthiest hand
This holy shrine, the gentle sin is this:
My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.”
In only the next scene, Romeo declared his love and said he would renounce his name, all for the love of a girl to whom he had spoken only once, and briefly. Compare those bold words spoken by Romeo to the act of a man asking a woman on a first date in today’s modern world. One is a bold, rash declaration of love. The other is just a first date.
And so, what I wish our culture today could learn is not only how to ask other people on first dates, but also that you should answer, “Yes!” when asked on that first date. It is difficult to find the courage to ask someone out and there is no harm in agreeing to hang out with someone one-on-one for a few hours.
Read from the beginning: https://soarwithlaughter.com/2014/09/02/soar-cloud-high/