Meeting women is easy—except when it’s not. Those times when it’s not tend to be the moment you get tongue-tied, or when she says something completely confusing, or when she goes silent. It’s then that you could use a wingman with answers.
Well, I can’t be with you every time you stumble, but I can help you figure out what happened so that you can soldier on. With that, let’s look at some recent questions guys have had about the women they’ve approached. (Names have been changed to protect the guilty.)
This girl is perfect: a 10 for sure. She’s in a few of my classes, and she approached me after some eye contact. She asked me about my iPad and we talked for a few minutes. It looked like it was on. About a week later I approached her after class and we talked for quite a while, until I had to leave for an appointment. Then after the same class the next week we talked again, and I got her number with the idea that we could study together.
Well, at the study date the next week, we seemed to really “click,” but she really didn’t make a move to touch me. But I was satisfied with the progress. Then after the next class we hung out yet again, walking and talking for quite a while. She even touched my arm. We e-mailed back and forth during the next week, and even talked on the phone a couple of times.
Finally, I decided to ask her out to see a band I had been making plans to see, but unfortunately she was going to be going out of town. At that point I joked nervously about a few things, but it really felt like the wind came out of my sails. I hung up with a bad feeling, and after that she didn’t reply as usual to my joky text messages. What do you think I did wrong?
Well, Ben, first off I always get a little suspicious when a guy refers to a girl as a “10,” because it usually means he’s putting her on a pedestal from the start, which means you devalue yourself.
And I think you definitely put her right there on that pedestal. The first sign is that it’s taken what, four weeks to get up the nerve to ask her to do something that is remotely close to an actual date? You also mention the fleeting moments when she touched you, but never once talk about making a move to touch her.
Ben, this is veering uncomfortably into the “friend zone,” and when she told you she was going off to have fun without you (out of the blue, even though the two of you supposedly had talked in the meantime), it really hit home.
An extremely important part of getting to know a woman in the way a guy wants to know a woman is to actually let her know your intentions. You don’t have to tell her, “I want to take you home now and get you naked,” but you do have to gradually make her comfortable with you as a man. And you had the opportunity: if she’s touching your arm, touch her right back. High-five her and hold onto her hand for a moment. Guide her with your hand at the small of her back. Have her take your arm to cross the street. These are all very simple, non-groping ways to introduce touch. From there you can escalate into holding her hand or putting your arm around her.
You could have also introduced plans for something other than study before the one-month mark. Listen, I know you want to take it slow and careful, but taking things this slowly really make it seem like you may never make a move, and well, a girl’s not going to wait forever. I can’t think of a single girl I’ve dated who I didn’t kiss well before the four-week mark. The secret for me, I guess, is that if I don’t want to just be her friend, I don’t try to be her friend.
Too many men spend time being friends with women they really want to be with romantically because they don’t want to somehow frighten her, but it will frighten her worse if after months of friendship you suddenly try to play tonsil hockey. Get closer sooner, and I mean physically.
Moving on to this one from Derek:
So I’ve been trying to meet women, mostly on the street (the weather’s nice here and the streets are always buzzing). It’s not going so well. I start with an opinion opener like, “which of these stores would be your favorite to get a gift from?” Unfortunately, soon afterward I lose the conversation and I end up having to bail, and then I can’t approach another woman for a while after that.
I was wondering, I tend to, um, take care of myself before I go out. I’ve heard that some pickup coaches tell their students to “ban the hand” until they’ve started to make successful approaches. Do you think that might help me stay focused?
Normally I’d say something about TMI right here, but you bring up a valid suggestion. The reason it’s valid isn’t necessarily because not, ah, waxing the dolphin has any real effect on the brain, but that it’s more like the pro athlete who has to wear the same undershirt every day during a winning streak: the ritual is what helps him focus on the task at hand.
So in that spirit I’d say yes, don’t punch the clown for a few weeks, and see if it makes a difference. And not to downplay the sexual frustration aspect either: not training your dragon for a while might subconsciously prod you to move forward so that you can get some satisfaction already.
Just don’t let superstition get in the way of learning. Make sure you’re always thinking about what you could have done better or differently. If your attempts are dying in the middle, think of some better questions or observations you could make at that point. Look at your body language and correct it if it’s weak or too threatening. Practice thinking on your feet when you’re in situations where you’re not specifically trying to meet women. Try a direct approach and see if that helps.
After you’ve procured two or three phone numbers, you can reward yourself by hoisting the scimitar again. Just don’t get carried away.