How does one court / date / start a relationship / whatever with someone else?


#1

So my problem is… not only am I stuck on ‘sqaure one’, but I have no idea how I would go about getting off square one. Well, I think I know the first step actually, which is to meet a / some nice Catholic girl(s). Over the last few years I have met plenty. And that’s where I get stuck. I have tried things which I didn’t think would work (and didn’t work) out of frustration with not knowing what to do, and in some cases I have just tried doing nothing, and that didn’t work either.

PS just for some reference I am a 20 year old guy, not likely to get married in next 3 or 4 years since I gotta finish uni first. But I would like to start a relationship with someone, and try to make it last till we’re ready to get married.

The more common situation where I want to start a relationship with someone is where I am already friends with them and see them around. There’s a different starting point, I suppose, where you meet someone for the first time, talk to them and decide you like them and try and start something from there. In some ways that is a bit easier because at least you can ‘show some interest’ by asking them for phone number or some other way of contacting them, and then actualy calling them. You don’t really have this option with someone you are already friends with (eg, commonly for me, I might know a girl from a youth group) because you already have their number and it in no way indicates you might be interested in them. However I’ve met someone, anyway, just talking to them by phone or over the internet doesn’t really get anywhere… well, we get to have a nice chat and that’s as far as it goes.

So, what to do to start something? You could just tell her you like her (I have actually tried this before, didn’t work). But that is considered very tactless (she might even be offended by you saying that) and besides, how is she supposed to respond? A good Catholic girl is probably demure and wouldn’t say something like “Oh, I like you too” or anything…

You could just ask someone out. But where to? Tell them you want to go out and ask them where they want to go? But that is also, well sort of tactless or uncomfortable for the girl especially if she is demure. You are the guy and meant to be making the move, shouldn’t you say where? Ok then. Say you ask them to a movie or lunch or something. Again, very obvious what you’re doing but I guess if she likes you (sadly this is not common for me) then she will go. But, (you would think) a good Catholic girl wouldn’t go out alone with a guy without a chaperone. But I wouldn’t feel right about bringing that point up… she might never have heard of that idea before. What with all different cultures, how am I supposed to know her approach to dating? Also, if I just ask her out alone then what does it make my motives look like? I’m definitely not trying to get a 1 night stand but does she know that? Even though, whoever she is, obviously I know her if I like her, but that doesn’t always mean she knows much about me (and I wouldn’t want her to have a negative view of me).

Okay, what about going out in a group? What kind of group? A group of others who are also dating? A group of my friends and hers? If they are different groups of friends, then one, its very obvious what I’m doing, and two, why would her friends want to go out with a group of mine? Very strange situation. If it is the same group of friends, how does that differ to just seeing each other as friends normally? Does what I’m trying to do even get across?

Any other approaches? I’m sure I thought of plenty in the past but can’t think of anything off the top of my head. Anyway, whatever I might have tried to do in the past, it didn’t work.

Part of it might be that I’m not that attractive, but surely there is someone who might like me. Part of it might be I always do things very slowly… I don’t normally call someone the next day after meeting them or anything like that… I guess I give people too long to forget me or something. Even with someone who is already a friend, I guess I don’t make enough of a point of trying to talk to them as much as I can in a short space of time. This is just the way I do things though, I don’t really like to be too forward anyway (you wouldn’t think it from some of the things I talked about above, but sometimes I act in frustration).

I have never had any relationship get off the ground. I have known girls who I would have loved to be with and they have just disappeared out of my life and it looks like that’s going to happen with a few more soon. If you can help me with the first / next step it would be appreciated… and I’ll be back to ask about the step after that (-:

Why can’t we have arranged marriage like in the old days? :stuck_out_tongue:


#2

First off… forget about thinking that you are not that attractive. Girls worth anything will be more interested in who you are inside - rather than outside. Having said that… it doesn’t hurt to dress up the package just a bit. Do you have some nice - somewhat cool outfits? They might help to give you confidence.

OK - now onto the where to start bit. Unless you are very outgoing & can carry a conversation, I don’t think a one on one first date is a good idea. Too much talk time to fill by yourself. Pick a friend to double date with. It would help if the girls knew each other also - and of course got along. Don’t pick a couple who hang all over each other… how uncomfortable is that? And then do something that is totally fun… like pizza & a movie or bowling or putt-putt golf & icecream.

As far as how to ask… just call the girl you would like to get to know better & say, " Joe, Susan & I are going to (activity) on Friday night. I was wondering if you would like to come with us also?" Totally non-threatening. YOU pay for the activity… that will eliminate any question in her mind if it’s an actual “date” or just a bunch of friends getting together. At the end of the night… tell her you enjoyed spending time with her… ask her if she’d be interested in going out again. Then call her in a few days… DON’T wait too long.

Remember how I said your looks don’t really matter? Hers shouldn’t either. I knew this guy who wasn’t so hot himself & he only looked at totally gorgeous women - way way out of his league. It was as if he was setting himself up for failure. Don’t make that mistake. Look around for a nice Catholic girl who’s personality is attractive to you.

Good luck! :slight_smile:
CM


#3

Some people here might find it hilarious that I’M offering relationship advice, but I think that skepticism might be misplaced. After all, I do pretty well starting relationships–just not ending them.

The first thing you need to do is write down all your thoughts about what to “do,” or anything that smacks of a “Plan.” Then, crumple it up and burn it.

The bottom line is that you have to be happy with yourself. Confident, in other words. Women don’t like men who appear to “need” “a girlfriend.” (Well, some do…) If you are a confident, focused guy with lots of real interests, you’ll find that you don’t have to go looking for relationships. You’ll be fighting them off. That’s a promise.

There is no magic formula. Well, sure, there are lots of ways to “seduce” a girl, but if you’re looking for someone special, those ways don’t work well. When you’re confident and you don’t need a relationship, you won’t even realize it until you’re well on your way toward being officially in one.

Personally, if I were you, I’d put it all out of your mind. I spent way too much time obsessing about relationships in my early 20’s. They mostly brought me trouble, (and yes, most of it was my fault) and I could have laid a much better foundation for my life if I’d only focused on my schoolwork, my faith and other, more important things.

And, of course, pray. Not for a girlfriend or a wife, but for wisdom and strength to discern God’s will and DO it.


#4

Carol, thx for the idea, but still got some problems… probably better than anything I’ve tried before but anyway -

  1. Double dating still needs a chaperone IMO (other couple goes off and leaves us alone? Can happen… not good for reputation and all).
  2. I would need to know another couple who are dating (which I don’t), ask them when and where they are going out and then just hope that it’s a time and place that works for me and whoever I want to take out. Still, I guess if all these improbable things came together it would work as a good start.

Btw, I don’t just go for good looking girls, I’m less picky (when it comes to looks) than the average guy. So don’t worry bout that.

Ah and I don’t have any clothes that I look good in or anything like that. But yea I hope a girl looks more at what’s inside me than outside, considering that’s what I look at in her. Also, I don’t suffer severe confidence / self-esteem problems (anymore), that’s not too much of a problem (I think).


#5

[quote=Flopfoot]Carol, thx for the idea, but still got some problems… probably better than anything I’ve tried before but anyway -

  1. Double dating still needs a chaperone IMO (other couple goes off and leaves us alone? Can happen… not good for reputation and all).
  2. I would need to know another couple who are dating (which I don’t), ask them when and where they are going out and then just hope that it’s a time and place that works for me and whoever I want to take out. Still, I guess if all these improbable things came together it would work as a good start.

Btw, I don’t just go for good looking girls, I’m less picky (when it comes to looks) than the average guy. So don’t worry bout that.

Ah and I don’t have any clothes that I look good in or anything like that. But yea I hope a girl looks more at what’s inside me than outside, considering that’s what I look at in her. Also, I don’t suffer severe confidence / self-esteem problems (anymore), that’s not too much of a problem (I think).
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Well, it sounds like you’re good to go. I applaud your desire to double-date and keep impeccable reputations, but having never had a group of faithful, Catholic friends, I’m extremely skeptical that such a community exists big enough to accomodate traditional courtship. I’ve always been on my own. It wasn’t until recently that I found a big group of (apparently) faithful Catholics.

As for what to do in the very beginning, if you’re short of friends with whom you all can hang out with, I guess that focuses things a big. You’ll just have to take the plunge and say “Would you like to have dinner with me sometime?” (Have a plan in mind–have at least two suggestions ready.) Make it fun, too. If you tend to get nervous in these situations, a walking date is good (art galleries, fairs, carnivals, etc.)

Like I said, there’s no Master Plan. Every girl is different. If you’re asking this question with someone in mind, it might help if you had any specifics.


#6

If a double date is a problem for you, what about a luncheon date? You know, some Saturday afternoon where you can take her out for lunch and then watch a matinee together. Chaperones are a good idea, but aren’t as necessary for daytime dates.:slight_smile:


#7

[quote=Marian84]If a double date is a problem for you, what about a luncheon date? You know, some Saturday afternoon where you can take her out for lunch and then watch a matinee together. Chaperones are a good idea, but aren’t as necessary for daytime dates.:slight_smile:
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I agree… lunchtime is good.

I’m not so sure that a chaperone is necessary at all… if you are always going to a public place? I just don’t know what I’d think if a guy who was 20 insisted on having a chaperone with us at all times. I guess I’d wonder… who don’t you trust… yourself OR me?? And I know that a chaperone is about more than that… but still… maybe you need to ditch that idea because I think it’s going to be hard to find someone to come along all the time.

You said you don’t have any cool clothes… there are now after Christmas sales all over the place. You might want to hit the mall for one or two cool dating outfits. Girls like a well groomed man. They don’t have to be anything pricey… just go where cool guys shop? My teenage son likes American Eagle. A nice shirt might do wonders.

I don’t think this needs to be difficult. Girls aren’t some rare, strange thing… they are just like you… looking for someone to spend time with. Don’t over think this…

:slight_smile: CM


#8

A chaperone? At 20? No.

Dearheart, any girl who cannot slap you across the face if you get fresh is too young to date. :smiley: And instead of a chaperone, it would be a good idea to pray yourself up and be a Catholic gentleman about it.

Good book for you to read: The Compleat Gentleman by Brad Miner.


#9

[quote=carol marie]First off… forget about thinking that you are not that attractive. Girls worth anything will be more interested in who you are inside - rather than outside. Having said that… it doesn’t hurt to dress up the package just a bit. Do you have some nice - somewhat cool outfits? They might help to give you confidence.

see this advice? This Carol Marie lady is very wise…believe it or not, sometimes the ‘not so handsome’ guys look so great because they have dressed themselves up that they just present themselves with confidence and charm, and that goes a long way. women look for a man with a beautiful smile and confidence, not arrogance, confidence…and a nice Catholic girl, who has put Christ first in her life, wants someone who will be the spiritual leader in her home so that she can be its heart…

OK - now onto the where to start bit. Unless you are very outgoing & can carry a conversation, I don’t think a one on one first date is a good idea. Too much talk time to fill by yourself. Pick a friend to double date with. It would help if the girls knew each other also - and of course got along. Don’t pick a couple who hang all over each other… how uncomfortable is that? And then do something that is totally fun… like pizza & a movie or bowling or putt-putt golf & icecream.

Maybe even something that is happening on campus - an art show, a play or a reading … or something really off beat but fun! When I was at Berkeley, they had (one weekend) a Bugs Bunny Film Festival…how innocent but silly was THAT?

As far as how to ask… just call the girl you would like to get to know better & say, " Joe, Susan & I are going to (activity) on Friday night. I was wondering if you would like to come with us also?" Totally non-threatening. YOU pay for the activity… that will eliminate any question in her mind if it’s an actual “date” or just a bunch of friends getting together. At the end of the night… tell her you enjoyed spending time with her… ask her if she’d be interested in going out again. Then call her in a few days… DON’T wait too long.

Very important about the calling back…follow up and follow through.

Remember how I said your looks don’t really matter? Hers shouldn’t either. I knew this guy who wasn’t so hot himself & he only looked at totally gorgeous women - way way out of his league. It was as if he was setting himself up for failure. Don’t make that mistake. Look around for a nice Catholic girl who’s personality is attractive to you.

And if there are activities at your Newman Center or the local parish where you are active, that is another place where you can go for dates

Good luck! :slight_smile:
CM

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from me too - your new, online Auntie…


#10

Just ask her out! If you’re interested in a girl, from, say, your youth group, ask her out one on one, to lunch, dinner, coffee, whatever, just so she knows it’s not just a “friends” thing. If you’re talking to a girl you don’t know well, ask for her number. I don’t think there’s any easy way to do it, but just know that girls stress over this stuff just as much as guys do. Fix yourself up really nice and go for it!


#11

[quote=carol marie]I agree… lunchtime is good.

I’m not so sure that a chaperone is necessary at all… if you are always going to a public place? I just don’t know what I’d think if a guy who was 20 insisted on having a chaperone with us at all times. I guess I’d wonder… who don’t you trust… yourself OR me?? And I know that a chaperone is about more than that… but still… maybe you need to ditch that idea because I think it’s going to be hard to find someone to come along all the time.
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Ok I’ll try explain the idea of a chaperone… he / they are not just for physical safety, but more that it is the right thing to do anyway and good for rep. and etc. In my (Lebanese) culture, a good girl would not wanna be seen going out alone with a guy - by alone, I don’t mean it’s not a public place but that there’s no one going out with / watching over them. She shouldn’t want to be seen as the kind of girl who would do this. According to my dad, a friend is an ok chaperone but much better to have your brother or cousin there. As for who don’t I trust - according to my dad I shouldn’t actually trust myself… although this is one I sort of disagree with him on. I know I’ve got enough fortitude to not do anything seriously wrong. So it’s not so much a matter of not trusting as just, why put yourself in that situation. Make the occasion of sin impossible rather than just unlikely.

Another thing - I am not the one who is supposed to insist on a chaperone, coz (traditionally) it’s not really my reputation or my safety that’s at risk. So the thing is - when I ask her out, do I suggest to her that she brings someone along? Or do I say she can bring someone if she likes? What about if she doesn’t worry about it because she’s not been brought up like me… then what am I to think? (One problem is if she did go out with me ‘alone’ I know my parents wouldn’t respect her as much and then say, see you should have gone out witha Lebanese girl… or something like that). I guess I could sorta let her know how I feel about the issue (and warn her about what my dad will think) and let her make the decision from there.

Hmm, as for suggesting going out at lunchtime, I never really thought much about the difference between day and night but it sorta makes sense, people would not think you’re trying anything ‘funny’ if you went out dring the day and had them home before dinner time (-: sounds like a good idea. Btw what’s a matinee? Ah also, so what should I say, when we are talking should I just ask something like “can I take you out for lunch tomorrow?” Or what should I do / say?


#12

As a New Zealand girl born-and-bred of a very similar age, the idea of a chaperone is, quite frankly, laughable to me and I imagine it would be equally as strange to the majority of Aussie girls. My suggestion would be, go somewhere with a group of friends to start with. As other posters mentioned, it takes a lot of the strain off the situation by making it more casual and having more people to add to conversation. Something like pool is ideal, since you can still talk one-on-one. If things are going well, after several dates, definately explain what you did to us about your cultural view of chaperones. If she’s the kind of girl you’re looking for, she’ll appreciate the heads up and can choose to invite someone along when you get into more private dates. I know that’s the kind of approach I would appreciate.


#13

Start with the Ave Maria singles Web site.

It is for serious “daters” who are seeking marriage. That fact alone is a useful ice-breaker.


#14

My first thought about the chaperone was “Dude! You’re 20. Get over the chaperone.”

I understand now that it is a cultural thing. In the U.S. you won’t need one. The lunch time date is a good safe way to start.

As for the looking good part, I really have to disagree that looks shouldn’t matter. Looks are important for initial attraction. That doesn’t mean that she or you have to look like a supermodel. But you should try to be presentable. Why would you want to date and eventually marry someone you aren’t attracted to? It’s biology. Attraction is important.

Go ahead and ask. But be polite and don’t say “I like you”. That is really assumed when you ask a woman out. But you have to ask. In the months leading up to when I met my wife, I had more dates than ever before. I had been very reluctant to ask women out for fear of being rejected. After a I missed my opportunity to go on a date with a woman I thought was drop dead gorgeous (too late I found out she was interested) I realized that I didn’t have anything to loose by asking. I realized if a woman turned me down, nothing changed since I was already not dating her. No big loss then.


#15

If you asked me out & then told me that your parents wouldn’t respect me unless I brought along a chaperone I think I’d RUN in the other direction. You are an adult man - why must your Dad have an opinion about a lunch date? If you honestly think this is going to be an issue - maybe you should try to date a Lebanese girl who was raised as you were? This might be one of those cultural differences that make/break a relationship.


#16

Ah just spoke to my dad and he said while it’s good to go out with a chaperone (and hence it’s good to go out with other Lebanese, coz they think the same), he wouldn’t actually not respect the girl I was going out with or think less of her for it (unless it was really reckless, eg going to a non-public place alone) because it’s not her fault, that’s just the way she was brought up. So I guess I don’t have to make an tissue out of chaperoning and whatever.

Ok where were we? Ah yea… back to the question of ‘so what exactly do I say?’


#17

[quote=Flopfoot]Ah just spoke to my dad and he said while it’s good to go out with a chaperone (and hence it’s good to go out with other Lebanese, coz they think the same), he wouldn’t actually not respect the girl I was going out with or think less of her for it (unless it was really reckless, eg going to a non-public place alone) because it’s not her fault, that’s just the way she was brought up. So I guess I don’t have to make an tissue out of chaperoning and whatever.

Ok where were we? Ah yea… back to the question of ‘so what exactly do I say?’
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You’d pretty much say the same thing that you’d say to a guy friend… “Would you like to go to ______________ with me on Friday?” So easy. You could call her on the phone… maybe that would be less intimidating? Also, you could tell her you’re a bit nervous and not very good at this whole “asking out” thing… just about everyone appreciates that sort of honesty.

Stop stewing about it & just do it! :slight_smile:
CM


#18

I’m not ‘stewing’ - others are busy or on holidays at this time of year and I’ll be on holidays for first week of January so I won’t be able to ask anyone out till after then. So I just thought I’d find out what I should do when I get back (-:

Hmm I’ve realised another sort of problem… an esteem problem. Not so much self-esteem, although that hasn’t been great lately (but it’s not without reason that it’s low - I been a bit lazy and selfish and etc) but more esteem in the eyes of others. I don’t think that anyone out there I might like has really seen the best of me like I have seen the best of them (and hence me liking them). Some of my good qualities and good actions are more or less between me and God. And for people from my youth group, say, since I’ve had a few problems with ppls there they’ve probably seen me angry and such… and also some might not understand why it’s such a big deal to me to try and promote morality there, they might not see it as a good quality… but I’m digressing a bit. Point is I don’t think I look very good in other’s eyes at the moment. And a lot of the good qualities I admire in them either I don’t have those qualities or if I do, I don’t show it that often at least in public. I dunno what to do about this, but I just figure, that I can’t have a relationship with someone if I see the good in them but they’ve never seen the good in me.


#19

Flopfoot,

I honestly think you are selling yourself short. I don’t even know you… except through your posts and even I can see the good in you. I’m sure others do also.

But if you are concerned that maybe you haven’t been putting your best out there… perhaps you could work on that a bit before asking someone out? Pray that God would help others to see you as He does…

But I really think you just need to be yourself. No one is perfect…

:slight_smile: Blessings,
CM


#20

*** How does one court / date / start a relationship / whatever with someone else?***

Don’t ask me, I’m single and turn 50, in February 2006, and I still haven’t figured that out yet.


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