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Dear males

| Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Dear males,

Where are you? I have many female friends who are the kindest, funniest and most beautiful women I know. Many of them have yet to be sought after by a worthy Notre Dame man.

Some of my girlfriends are worried they will never get married. This is partially because they are in their twenties and have yet to go on a date. If they choose to not date or get married, that is one thing. Singleness is a beautiful thing, as it allows men and women alike to devote themselves to friendship, family and faith. It gives them free time to join clubs and devote themselves to their studies. Single men and ladies for life!

But some of my single lady friends don’t want to be single for life. They like dancing to Beyoncé, but they want boyfriends, husbands and children at some point. They are not desperate by any means, but they are loving people and want a special someone to love.

Relationships are hard. They are both challenging and life-giving. It means you have to think about someone else other than yourself. You have to be ready to put someone else’s needs before your own. Single gentlemen of Notre Dame: are you ready to do so?

I’m not convinced. Many of you seem to miss these beautiful, down-to-earth, intelligent yet humble girls. I can name at least 20 that are not being pursued by guys, at least to their knowledge, and those are just the ones on campus whom I have met.

Young whippersnappers of this university: are you lazy? Are you shy or proud or scared? You can calculate torque, market to a target audience and conjugate irregular verbs, but do you have the courage, maturity or even the desire to pursue a meaningful romantic relationship?

I know that asking someone on a date is risky. Telling someone you are interested in them as more than a Snapchat buddy can be scary. You may get turned down.

If you do, though, at least you’ll know you have more guts than a large portion of the campus who cannot put themselves out there. Rejection is a part of life, whether it’s from romantic interests, employers, PEMCo or publishing companies. We cannot always succeed, but we should always try.

Young men of Notre Dame, I know you are out there. Maybe you are hiding behind the chin-up machine in Rolfs. Pause the lifting and try some living. Pull out your ear-buds. Take a shower. Say hello.

Young men of Morrissey, of Knott, of Fisher: take heed. Hide no longer behind your bro tank and SAO shades. Take off the glasses. Put on a collared shirt. Discover these incredible women you have around you. You may only be here for four years. Four years!

Obviously, don’t rush into a relationship if you don’t feel ready for one. But open your eyes. See these women around you with whom any man would be lucky to spend an hour.

Don’t get freaked out about commitment. A date is not an “I do.” It is simply saying, “Hello, fellow human. I have enjoyed spending time with you in the past, and I may want to spend more time with you in the future. Perhaps we could spend some time together one-on-one and get to know each other better. Would you like that too?”

I know, I should not blame only the males. I can already hear the protest: “Girls can ask guys out too!” Yes, they can. But for the majority of history, men have had to be the initiators. Some girls are fine with taking on that role, but others worry that they will come on too strong or that the guy wants to be the chaser.

So if that beautiful sweet girl hasn’t asked you out, maybe you could ask her out. It could be a disaster. It could be a dream. Either way, you will learn more about yourself than if you stayed home and watched Netflix. Instead of watching people go on dates, you could go on one yourself.

So you did it? You asked her out? Hooray. Thanks, males. I knew you could do it.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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About Erin Thomassen

I am a freshman double majoring in the Program of Liberal Studies (PLS) and French. PLS (aka the Notre Dame Book Club) is the history of ideas through literature, philosophy, math and science. It was the perfect major for me, because I couldn't possibly choose one subject and hurt the other subjects' feelings. French was also a natural pick, since I have been prancing around my house under the pretense of performing ballet for eighteen years. If someone asks me what I do in my free time, I will tell them that I run and read. What I actually do is eat cartons of strawberries and knit lumpy scarves. If you give me fresh fruit, we will be friends. If we become friends, I will knit you a scarf for Christmas. It may be lumpy, but it will be in your favorite color. And if enough people become my friend, lumpy scarves might just become a trend.

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