Punchy AdviceArchives

August 4, 1995

"Scared of Scaring Him" asks Kelsey:
I fell in love with a guy at first sight, and at first when I called him he was always home and we talked all the time, and we seemed to get along fine. Now, whenever I call he is always gone out somewhere, and he never calls me, either. He doesn't know that I like him. Do you think I scared him away?
Kelsey Kelsey answers:
Realistically, it sounds like he's not as interested in the relationship as you are. And of course, it's perfectly okay for him to feel however he wants, just as much as you don't have to like some guy just because he likes you. So I would say, basically, let him go.

But since you apparently were good buddies for a while, be honest with him. If you ever do get hold of him, tell him "I just want you to know, I really like you, and I'd like to have a relationship with you, but I guess you don't see me that way." Make it okay for him to be honest with you, too. You may lose a lover but gain a friend.

Rhynn asks Kelsey:
How does a woman define "romantic"? What does a man need to do? I used to cook dinner for my girlfriend whenever she came to visit me. I would bring flowers and small gifts (not all the time because then it wouldn't be special). I never hurried her when we went shopping together, and while she tried on different clothes I would give my opinion when she asked. I would never leave her shopping all by herself except when she asked me to leave. But despite my sensitive nature, I was never considered "romantic."
Kelsey Kelsey answers:
Jeez, I'm tired of being the bad guy. Okay, it's like this...
Bradley Bradley interrupts:
Kelsey, may I? Rhynn, I can identify with your question, because I've had relationships like the one you describe (I'm embarassed to say). Basically, what I've learned is that being "romantic" is not the same as being "nice."

I suppose this lesson hit the hardest when I was taking computer science in college. I had a crush on a classmate named Cyndi. To show her how much she meant to me, I spend all week programming the computer to print out a giant "Happy Birthday" sign made entirely of punctuation marks. She never even unfolded it all the way! Meanwhile, Sherman Morris wrote her a four-line poem about her eyes, and they went to the mountains for the weekend!

I would hazard to guess that a woman considers "romantic" anything that shows that you really understand who she is, and expresses how crazy your are about her as a unique person (not just as a generic girlfriend).

And I don't know why, but women like it when men take charge of where you're going on a date.

How was that, Kelsey? Oh, by the way, I'll pick you up tonight at 8. Okay? Dress warmly.

Kelsey Kelsey answers:
Yes. Yes, that was a good answer! I mean, okay!

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