Q. Do you think that women should make the first move in the relationship?

A. I’ve got thoughts about this question for both men and women. In the interest of chivalry: ladies first.

Ladies, if you Google “should women ask men out?” the Internet (probably Cosmo or Glamour or someone like that) is going to tell you that you’re strong and powerful and you should go get what you want. That is all true – you are strong, and powerful, and capable of going after what you want – but when it comes to dating, especially from a Christian mindset, I think the woman’s right move is to allow herself to be pursued.

I fully believe that it’s perfectly within the woman’s role to show her interest, when she’s interested. But I would recommend stopping that interest short of asking a guy out on a date. Honestly, is always taking the lead what you want out of a relationship – or is this just a question you’re asking because no men are making it happen and you’re tired of waiting on them to do something about it?

Men (even though we don’t always show it) like the challenge and chase of pursuing a woman. Nothing builds our confidence more than putting ourselves out there and discovering, miraculously, that the girl we like actually likes us back! In relationships, the man’s job is to follow God’s example and pursue the woman the way God pursues the Church. We were created for it.

So why does it seem like no guy is stepping up to the plate and making the first move? The simple answer is that we are scared. Rejection is just so hard to take – you know that, you’re afraid of rejection, too. It’s hard to put yourself out there. On top of that, technology has made it harder for us to actually talk to people, especially men to women.

I promise you that there are guys out there who will make the first move and it is worth waiting for a guy who wants to pursue you instead of one that is interested in dating simply because it was easy. To put it a little more bluntly, if the guy isn’t willing to man up and make the first move, move on and don’t waste your time.

However, if he does get the courage to ask you out, please answer honestly and directly. If you say yes, then go on the date. If you don’t want to go on a date, that’s okay. Thank him for asking, and kindly and clearly let him know that you’re not interested in him that way. This will help give him the confidence to ask out someone else in the future, and that will help everyone.

Men: I know you’re reading this, too, and it should be pretty clear where I’m going with this one. Sure, it’s easier to have all of your communication be on Snapchat, Instagram, or texting, but that’s not how real men act. It’s also much easier to ask a girl to “hang out sometime” or “Netflix and chill” than it is to ask her out on a real date, but that’s not right, either. Quite frankly, that’s not what women want. I know – I’m married.

Women want you to show up with flowers just because it’s Tuesday. They want you to put in some effort and plan something fun. They want to be pursued, and that’s your job. I know it’s scary, but that’s where courage – which is a gift of the Holy Spirit – comes in. Courage is active, requiring you to move, even when you’re scared. To steal a line from We Bought a Zoo (incidentally a great movie), “You know, sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage. Just literally twenty seconds of just embarrassing bravery. And I promise you, something great will come of it.” Use that twenty seconds.

Be brave. What’s the worst that could happen, she says no? Let me recommend hitting up Ben and Jerry’s and eat your feelings, because Salted Caramel Core is the perfect way to drown your sorrows.

So, how do you ask a woman out? It’s really quite simple. Be upfront. Ask her out on a date. Use the word “date.” Ask her in person. Have a day and time picked out when you ask her. She will notice the effort, and she will love not being confused.

And once the date is over, be VERY clear about your intentions. If the date went well, ask her if she would like to go on another date. If she says yes, plan another date and go out again. And if it wasn’t a good date, tell her you had fun, but you’re feeling like it’s best to remain friends. Then stop trying to date her and simply be her friend.

It’s really that simple. Men, your job is to pursue, and women, your job is to let them.

Do you have a question about dating and relationships you’d like to ask David and Rachel Leininger? Email them at Itscomplicated@lifeteen.com and your question could be the next blog post!

About the Author

David Leininger

I am a professional nerd and my brain is constantly torn between creativity and logic. I build Life Teen’s website and apps. I don’t drink coffee, but I love coffee shops. I love tattoos, Apple products, Liverpool FC, and beards. More important than all this, though, is that I am married to my wife and my obsession with pizza, being Catholic, and my devotion to our Savior. Twittering tweets from @LT_DavidLein

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