Sunday, October 24, 2010

Rethinking "He's Just Not That Into You"

I googled the question, "How to tell if a guy isn't into you," and book reviews for Greg and Liz's book emerged. I have read that book and previously sung its praises, but user reviews on Amazon challenged my thoughts on He's Just Not that Into You.

I must admit, the book really is pop psychology, and can't be considered a scholarly source on dating. It's anecdotal, although Greg does indirectly admit that it's not scientific. I suppose it really is just The Rules revamped for modern, young readers. The book, in a nutshell, says that if a guy likes you, he will go above and beyond to show it. If he's too "shy" to ask you out, he's lazy and not worth your time. The book says women shouldn't have to chase men, call or text men after a date, because a man will come after you.

Now, it is true that some men are shy, some are too busy to think about dating (even if they like you), and some men just don't want to risk rejection by asking a woman out, no matter how much they are crushing on her.

Still though, my problem is that guys in the past were giving me clear signs that they didn't like me, but because I thought they were shy, or secretly crushing on me but insecure or unsure of my feelings, I pursued them anyway. I was the one initiating contact. I was the one asking when to hang out. From age 19 until now, two guys have made it obvious that they liked me (though I didn't like them as more than friends): emailing me a lot, calling me regularly, asking to hang out one-on-one (which I suppose is a date). The obvious ones did like me, the not-obvious, mixed signal guys didn't like me. So for me, there was a lot of truth in Greg's book.

Just the same, after reading the reviews, I am taking HJNTIY a little less seriously. It reminded me that sitting and waiting for the guys to come to you is not always a fun place to be. Also, the guys who are very assertive and very obvious in their attraction might be the wrong kind of guy for you. I don't really want a very extroverted guy, no matter how charming he seems at first. They could be very demanding, possessive, and traditional in their gender roles.

So I'm still in a conundrum. The HJNTIY type is really not my type, but my type would probably never tell me that he's into me. That means I have to initiate. But how do I distinguish Shy Guy from a man who isn't into me?...

Maybe I should just stay single. This relationship stuff is too complicated!



    I've been following your blog on and off for a while now so I figured this would be a good time to put in my two cents.

    Although I never read HJNTIY your comment about how "If he's too "shy" to ask you out, he's lazy and not worth your time" is true is some situations, but not in others. Coming from a shy, introvert like myself, trying to push yourself on a woman you are interested in is a very risky endeavor. What if this girl is not into you? What if she is friendly to you because she is just a friendly person and not because she wants you? For guys who have a lot of women in their social circle, there is little risk if he goes all out, if she's not interested, he can move on to another girl. But if you're the type of guy who doesn't have that many women in your social circle, sometimes you can't take the risk of revealing your romantic feelings to a woman because if she doesn't feel the same way you loose out on the all illusive she-friend.

    That is of corse unless the woman gives off some obvious, and I mean OBVIOUS signals that she is interested. I can't stress this enough, ladies. Asking a guy out for lunch every once in a while or casual flirting here and there is not enough to convince a shy guy that you are interested in him. You have to lay it on a bit thick, physical contact says A LOT. I'm not talking about groping or anything like that, stuff like sitting next to a person, shoulder to shoulder (especially if you don't have to do it), grabbing his hand to pull him closer to tell him something, that sort of thing. If you do that and the guy still doesn't make a move, then you can say he's not into you. Honestly, having a mentality of "a man will come after you" only takes away your power and leaves shy, quiet guys like me in the dust.

    Keep doing what your doing, FLAMENCOKITTY. I may not agree with everything you say on here, but it's great to hear what it's like on the other side of the fence and a bit morbidly comforting to know it's just as difficult for women as it is for men ;)

  2. Thanks for your feedback theycall! It's good to hear what real, introverted guys have to say. I'm glad you're honest about what a struggle and risk it is for a guy to push himself on a woman he likes, especially if the guy is shy and has a limited number of female friends. The number of men in my social circle who I would consider dating is small, so I feel you there.

    To clarify, I'm not so sure I agree with the "if he's too shy to ask you out..." thing either. That was a message in the book.