Real Live College Guy Joel: Why He Won't Make the First Move

Desperately trying to understand the inscrutable mind of the college male?  Real Live College Guy Joel (replete with a name way cooler than those of RLCGs Joe and Joey) is here to help you out, call you out, write you a poem to show you’re great and to stop worrying, etc. From major emotional drama to the minutiae of social interaction, use him as your one-stop shop for guy advice.

There is a guy who I've been hanging out with and texting over the past couple of weeks. It's obvious that we have a level of attraction towards each other and I even straight up told him that (though it was through a text...). He mentioned that he thought I was out of his league. Anyways, I've had a hard time getting him to make a move. Last week we watched a movie together and I was clearly giving the signal for him to hold my hand for about 30 minutes. Finally, I just grabbed his hand and said, "is this okay?" and he said yes. I've really been wanting to kiss him, but I feel like I've been the one to make all the first moves so far and so would like him to for once. I can tell he's into me because I feel like if he wasn't he wouldn't still be talking to me and hanging out with me so much so I have a feeling he is just shy when it comes to girls. Considering this I need to know - should I make the move to kiss him or should I wait for him to do it? After talking to a couple other guys who are shy around girls, it sounds like if I sit around waiting for him to do it, it'll probably never happen. So taking that into consideration I would be willing to make the move. However, I don't want that to be a continual pattern for our relationship. I also can't tell if he's too shy to make a move or if he's simply wanting to take things slow. Please help! - Confused in the Cornfields at Iowa

Confused in the Cornfields,
Wow, I thought I was shy. This guy sounds really nice, but he’s well beyond being inhibited. Any guy who tells a girl he feels she is out of his league has a troubling lack of self-confidence. For some girls, this sort of situation may feel unusual but actually strengthens their feelings because they like the guy’s sensitivity. However, this guy’s self-consciousness seems to bother you.

He sounds really inexperienced. I would guess he’s totally clueless about your “signals.” He’s new at all this, and he’s totally terrified. Perhaps he’s been really hurt by past crushes so he’s scared to put himself out there. He definitely likes you if he’s really communicative, but he has no idea what he’s doing. Most girls would get frustrated and give up, so I applaud your initiative; you’ve been assertive but not too forward.

This is just the type of person this guy is. Usually as a RLCG I see relationship problems as a two-way street - they need to be solved with communication from both parties. But, in this case, I think what happens now is entirely on you. I would agree with your friends that you’re going to have to keep making moves. This may sound crass, but just kiss him and see what happens. He will almost certainly like it, and his confidence may very well increase as you move forward. You’re getting ahead of yourself by worrying about how he may behave in the future. If he’s still behaving really shyly after you two get closer, then you’ll need to reexamine if your feelings for him are worth all this work. For now, though, continue the pattern and make the move. It’ll either help things considerably, or show you that this guy isn’t right for you. No matter what happens, you’ll be glad you had the courage to put yourself out there, and he might be glad as well.

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