Throughout the last couple months, I have been astonished at the poor strategies men have demonstrated in attempts to gain attention or ask women out. A couple weeks ago I was downtown at Maker’s Mark ordering my first drink of the night. As I am ordering, a guy approaches me. Everything was going great until he opened his mouth. His way of introducing himself to me was: “Hey, you are really gorgeous! Can I take you to dinner?!” I couldn’t help but kind of laugh as I asked him again in a joking way what his name was to prompt him to think about how he hadn’t even introduced himself. After telling me his name he then proceeded to say “oh, you won’t go out with me because I’m not cute enough for you, right?” I responded with “wow, no one’s ever asked me that before, I’m not going to answer that!” I then proceeded to excuse myself by saying I had to catch up with my girlfriends and bolted quickly. As I rejoined my friends, they were anxious to know what had happened with the “hot” guy at the bar, but after relaying the type of interactions we had they understood why I had to make a beeline fast. The reality of the situation was that he was definitely good looking enough, but his social skills were so poor I had no interest in talking to him again that evening.
A similar situation occurred when I was out at O’sheas on Bardstown Road recently. A really good looking, well dressed guy introduced himself to me randomly. He and I really hit it off. He appeared to be really passionate about his career as an accountant and was smart and funny. He asked for my number and if he could take me out to dinner that week. The next day, he proceeded to message me the same question 3 times within the hour when I didn’t respond: “Can I take you to dinner tomorrow night” each time with slightly different wording.
The therapist in me has really wanted to ask the same question I ask my clients oftentimes: “Can you tell me about a time or situation that you have done xy or z and it has worked for you?” My only analysis of his thought pattern there was that possibly the increased number of attempts to ask me out would increase the chances. Needless to say, that date never happened. What’s most mind-boggling to me is that the foundation of social psychology operates on the theory that everyone learns through observation of others’ responses in social interactions what behaviors are socially appropriate and normal. If this theory were applied to the poor game demonstrated by the guys I have referenced in this article, it would allure to the fact that these men learned somewhere in their social interactions with women that it is normal to repeatedly ask someone out, pass a message to ask someone out through a friend, or ask them to dinner before you even know what their first name is. Recently, a friend of mine was asked out by a co-worker who had a mutual friend pass on the message to her that “he was interested and
The patterns of poor attempts of gaining attention demonstrated by men are likely related to situations in which men had interactions with women with poor self sense of self responded positively to these strategies. There has to be that element of wonder about what the other person is feeling, accompanied by some level of indication that the other person is interested. The level of indication that individuals prefer to receive from someone else they are attracted to varies based on life experiences and the roles we have observed men and women play in relationships. No matter how good looking, successful, witty, and charming you may be, if one can’t learn how to engage women they are attracted to without being too forthcoming they will run into obstacles with women that are self assured. No one likes someone who lays all the cards out at once. Men often review that women demonstrate a lack of social awareness or don’t know how to “take the hint” when someone’s not interested, as explored in the popular dating how-to book “He’s Just Not That Into You” by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo. The concepts reviewed in this book are applicable to both men and women. If the woman you are attracted to is not responding to your techniques or the multiple texts you’ve been sending, it’s likely she’s probably just really not that into you and it’s probably time to learn how to play the game with a different strategy.