While there are lots of reasons for women to ask men out more often, the one I’ve been thinking about most often lately is that it can help us learn to cope with rejection.
I have a theory that one of the reasons why women don’t ask for what we want – whether it’s a promotion, a discount, a favor, or a loan – is that we’re more likely than men to be paralyzed by the risk of rejection. Boys grow up asking girls out – and most of them get rejected, at least some of the time. By learning in middle and high school that a rejection isn’t the end of the world, boys see that they can just brush it off and move on. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
Girls, however, have conventionally been acculturated NOT to ask, whether it’s for a boy to kiss them or for seconds at dinner. We’re trained to wait for someone to offer. The problem is that no one’s going to offer you what you really deserve. You need to ask for it.
So here’s my proposal – let’s all start asking men out on dates more often. Let’s do it earlier, when we’re younger. Let’s do it, and learn what it feels like to be told “no”. Let’s learn that rejection is really no big deal. And then let’s teach girls that it’s okay to ask for what they want. Because they deserve it.