During my senior year in high school, I became friends with Rebecca (not her real name). At first, we just began to talk more during youth group, but we quickly found ways to hang out all of the time.
It was pretty obvious that there was an attraction between us, but I was a senior and she was a sophomore. I knew that I’d be heading off to college soon, and I wasn’t quite sure how I felt about a long-distance relationship. I had a choice to make: either date Rebecca despite the distance, or scale back our relationship to a normal level of friendship.
So which did I choose? I chose to…well, not make a choice. Instead, Rebecca and I began a confusing three-year cycle of relationship ambiguity. I would often say that we were just friends, but my friends, who saw right through me, called her “my pseudo”—short for pseudo-girlfriend. At the end of the three years, I “broke up” with Rebecca, even though we weren’t officially dating. Think about that for a moment…
Ephesians 5: Sacrifice
In Ephesians, St. Paul describes the dynamics of a married relationship. He says, “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her” (Eph 5:25). How did Christ love the Church? He died for Her! If the goal of dating is marriage, then our dating relationships need to start with our sacrificing for the women we love.
When it comes to defining relationships, men take a cue from our culture and many times fail to commit. Why? Because we don’t want to risk rejection. We’d rather just go with the flow and see what happens. This is what I did with Rebecca; this is what boys do. But men step up to the plate, willing to sacrifice their reputation and hearts rather than make women suffer in ambiguity.
My challenge to guys reading this: Choose to act like a man. Fortunately, I didn’t make the same mistake when I asked my wife, Lisa, out for the first time. Whether you’ve never asked a girl out before or have made my same mistake several times, here’s some tips on how to ask a woman out like a man.
Step 1: Ask her in person—DON’T TEXT
Lately, a number of women have told me that they are frequently asked out by guys via text. This is lame and unmanly. There’s no risk involved, it’s impersonal, and it doesn’t honor the woman. If you can’t ask face to face, don’t ask. If you can’t see her face to face, then call her. BUT DON’T TEXT!
Step 2: Tell her why you are asking
It’s helpful to give a little context for your ask. You might mention that the time you’ve spent together helped you realize certain characteristics about her. Some things to look out for here: First, don’t be shallow. Be sincere—but don’t go too deep. No need to tell her about the 50-day novena you’ve been praying, or how you think she’s the one you’ll marry. Just give her a few compliments and a bit of a story so she knows you aren’t coming out of left field.
Step 3: Tell her what you are asking
There’s lots of different types of dating. Perhaps you don’t know her very well and want to take her on a date to get to know her better. Possibly you’ve been friends for a while and want to start dating on a regular basis. Maybe you want to enter into courtship.
No matter what, make sure you articulate what it is you are asking her. The worst is knowing a guy likes you but then being confused about what exactly that means. Give her an easy story she can tell her friends and family.
Step 4: Have a plan
Whether you are asking her on one date or asking her to date seriously, have a plan. For instance: “I’d like to take you to dinner this Friday night at 7. Are you free?”
Don’t ask her out and then ask, “What do you want to do?” If you want to make sure the date goes well, then take the time to ask her friends what she likes to eat. And don’t forgot to plan something after dinner: Make a night of it by planning an activity or two. It doesn’t have to amazing, it just has to be thought through.
Asking someone out on a date this way is hard. There’s risk involved, and that can be scary. What if she says no? I know the feeling. When I asked my wife out for the first time, I knew I would be seeing her a lot in the near future: We were signed up to run a marathon together! Can you imagine running for four hours with someone who turned you down?
But I promise you: It’s worth it! First, show honor to whomever you are asking. Second, even if she turns you down, you now have a great reputation. Other girls will think, wow, I wish a guy would ask me out like that!
Are you tired of today’s toxic dating culture?
Kevin and his wife Lisa are co-authors of the newly released Dating Detox: 40 Days of Perfecting Love in an Imperfect World. The book helps you formulate a concrete plan so that you gain the freedom to love and be loved. Featuring daily chapters filled with stories, teachings, and resolutions, this forty-day detox provides a practical “cleanse” for those who want to purify themselves from the poisoned dating culture and live a life of authentic freedom. Click here for more info!