By Tim Metzler
Online News Editor
Valentine’s day is Thursday, Feb. 14, and many men and women on Viterbo’s campus will endure the day alone. Perhaps the most pestering of all questions surrounding this situation is not why more men don’t ask out women, but, rather, whether or not the women can ask out the men.
“Females technically can ask out the males but I don’t think they should,” Shane Reinbold, a junior social work major from Bismarck, North Dakota, said.
“I think it’s the man’s job to pursue the relationship and it’s the gentlemanly thing to do to ask them out,” Reinbold said. “I think that women should express their feelings to the man but the man still needs to initiate the relationship. If he can’t initiate it then maybe he’s not ready for a relationship.”
Reinbold is not alone in his opinion that males should be responsible for initiating a relationship.
“Females cannot ask out males,” Molly Machometa, a freshman nursing major from McHenry, Wis., said.
“I think that men are just too afraid to ask out women,” Machometa said. “They just don’t understand that you don’t need to ask out someone in a special way. If you like each other then you don’t need to write out your love in rose petals. It isn’t prom, it’s real life.”
While both Reinbold and Machometa lean to the side where males need to ask out females, not everyone agrees with their perspective.
“I think females can ask out males,” Claire Doughman, a junior liberal studies major from Loveland, Colo., said.
“I asked out a boyfriend in the past,” Doughman said. “We originally hung out in groups. Later we started hanging out, one on one, and we both knew that we wanted a relationship. However, he never asked me out.
“Eventually, I got sick of waiting,” Doughman said. “I determined that there was no reason I couldn’t ask him out. So I said, ‘do I have to ask you out on a date or are you going ask me?’ He was speechless, so I said, ‘let’s just go to a play and get some dinner, you little pansy.’”
Clearly, there are opposing opinions with the matter of which gender can ask out which. Perhaps today’s males aren’t what they used to be.
“I was asked out by my boyfriend, so I don’t think that today’s males are too chicken to ask out females,” Megan Carlson, a junior nursing major from Eau Claire, Wis., said. “But men definitely aren’t like they used to be,” Carlson said. “They aren’t respectful and nobody opens the doors for women anymore.”
“I think today’s men are more interested in being manly and less interested in being gentlemanly,” Carlson said.
“I think men and women in today’s society take the easy way out,” Reinbold said. “Essentially, young men and women are afraid of commitment. They’re scared to take the first step.”
“People are afraid not of being in a relationship but of why they are in that relationship,” Reinbold said. “Dating is not for recreation. Dating is to find a spouse—someone you will spend the rest of your life with in marriage. You date to get married and you marry to help each other get to heaven.”
“That whole progression is overwhelming,” Reinbold said. “That, I believe, is why both men and women are afraid to take the first step. Alas, that’s why people settle for casual relationships.”
So, Carlson believes that men aren’t what they used to be and Rienbold believes that relationships aren’t how they should be. What’s the answer to all of this?
In regards to relationships, Reinbold believes that relationships have specific requirements.
“Both the man and the woman should identify and be strong in Christ, on their own,” Reinbold said. “Once this happens, then each person can start looking for a member of the opposite sex, who is right with God and who shares similar values.”
“Really, the goal is for both the man and the woman to get as close to Christ as possible, and to help the other person do so.” Reinbold said. “Unfortunately, that idea is counter-cultural. People nowadays can’t find true love because they are looking for true lust, not true love.”
In regards to relationships, Carlson believes that guys are not hopeless, but they could use a little help.
“The worst thing a guy can do is cheat on a girl, so as long as you stay away from that sort of thing you are on the right track,” Carlson said.
“There’s no such thing as a perfect couple,” Carlson said. “And girls don’t want a perfect guy, either. We just want someone who treats us with respect.”