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What A Man Should Expect If YOU Ask HIM Out

Dating

I already know I'm about to step onto some toes with what I'm about to say, but feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section because I'd honestly like to hear your thoughts. Ready?


Why is it that when gender roles are discussed in relationships, a lot of us are quick to say that those thoughts and principles are antiquated and even unnecessary? Oh, but when the topic of a woman proposing to a man or even asking a man out on a date, suddenly those same women are saying things along the lines of "No ma'am. That's what a man is supposed to do"?

If you're looking for my personal take on things, I'll just say that I'm more of a traditionalist than not and leave it at that. And while I'd personally prefer to be proposed to (in part, because I want to be sure a man is marrying me because he's ready to, not because he doesn't want to hurt my feelings if I were to ask him), I'm not the one who gasps in disgust or even confusion whenever a woman asks a man out. I don't think it's needy. I don't think it's desperate. I actually think it takes a confident and self-aware woman to do it because whenever we ask anyone to do anything, there's a chance that we'll hear "no".

What I will also say is that I do know some women who want to take the initiative to ask a man on a date and then want him to do all of the work after he says "yes". Should he be a gentleman? Of course. But should he suddenly act like he's the one who asked in the first place? Personally, I don't think so. Personally, I feel that when a woman asks a man on a date, there are certain things that are OK for the guy to expect…should he accept.

You to Plan the Date

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I remember once talking to someone who was on the fence about asking a guy out. After she finally got the nerve to do it, although the guy initially said "yes", he ended up taking a pass. Why? Because after she asked him, she expected him to figure out what they should do. Yeah…that's not how it works. I mean, how would you feel if a guy asked you out and then called you to see what you had in mind and when? It doesn't seem like he's super invested, does it? Asking a guy out doesn't only consist of him agreeing to spend time with you; it's also about figuring out what the two of you should do together—and when.

I asked a few of my male friends what their idea of a great date would be. Some of them, I had to sit on the phone with dead air because they said that they're so used to planning dates that they never really gave their own dream date much thought. But once they got over the initial shock of my question, some said going to a sporting event, others said they'd want to do something outdoorsy that had a bit of an adrenaline rush to it and others said a live music event or binge-watching some of their favorite movies would be fun.

So yeah, that brings up one more point about planning dates. Although a lot of us like to be surprised, again, most men are thrown off-guard just by you making the initial request. That's why asking them what they enjoy doing doesn't come off as "lazy". If anything, it translates as being extremely thoughtful.

You to Pay for the Date

I would think that it's a given that if you ask a man out, you should be the one who pays, even if he offers to. For any of you who don't agree, please post in the comments section why because I don't get the logic behind expecting someone to finance what you planned for them in the first place. But hey, you don't have to take my word for it. An interview that actress Lauren London did several years back featured her take on who should pay for dates. After explaining her ideal date, her response was perfect (to me)—"Who pays on the first date? It depends on who asks. If a woman asks a man on a date, then she should be willing and prepared to pay…When you invite someone to your house for dinner, you don't expect them to bring the groceries." Amen? Amen.

For There to Be No “Uncomfortable Surprises”

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Maybe it's just me, but I don't know a ton of guys that are big on surprises, in general. Unless it's from someone who knows them really well (enough to know what they like and don't know) or who's been with them for a while, being caught off-guard typically isn't their idea of a good time. That being said, asking a guy on a date and then "surprising him" by turning it into an impromptu double date with a couple of your friends, bringing some of your family along or taking him to one of your events like a wedding or work-related function without his knowledge really isn't the smartest idea in the world.

8 times out of 10, it translates into being a super pushy move or worse, a manipulative one. Even if he's a nice guy and sees the date through, I wouldn't be shocked in the least if your first date ends up being your last one as well.

For There to Be No Pressure Following the Date

So, you ask the guy you're interested in out, he says "yes" and the date is amazin'. There's chemistry and a connection. You both enjoy similar things and he even mentions going out again with, this time, it being on his dime. Good for you, girl! Wanna know how to totally mess all-a-dat up? Constant texts and phone calls. Not letting him bring up follow-up plans in his own way and time. Becoming passive aggressive when after—wow, a whole—week, he hasn't put anything on the books.

No matter how wonderful a date is, I have learned from personal experience that men can lose interest real quick once stress, anxiety or pressure comes into play. The same kind of confidence that you had to ask a guy out in the first place? Keep that same energy once the date is over. If he's into you, he'll make it known. LeToya Luckett's husband, Tommicus Walker, made that fact crystal clear in a recent interview on our site.

To Not Make Him the Bad Guy if Things Don’t Work Out

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One reason why I think it's a good idea for us to ask a guy out every once in a while is so it will (hopefully) give us a new respect and insight into what they go through when they find the courage to, not only ask us out, but to deal with how the date goes should we accept. And here's the thing—just like you should not be considered low-key evil if you go on a date and the connection is simply not there or you're just not interested in going out again, neither is the man that you ask on a date.

Sometimes we think that if someone isn't interested in us that something is wrong with us when really, they simply aren't our person. In this instance, that doesn't make a man a bad guy. Maybe he's meant to be a friend. Maybe he was just a tool to give you the boldness to try something new. But please hear me when I say that until—or unless—you are able to ask a man out and know you can handle however it plays out, for the sake of all parties involved…wait. Either the opportunity will present itself at a better time or, if he's interested in you, maybe, just maybe, he'll beat you to the punch.

And then worrying about asking him out will cease to be an issue.

Featured image by Getty Images

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ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
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