As a male former reader, I stopped reading your blog because it is your clear wish. However, I have a story, which might possibly be of interest to your readers. As a young Christian guy, it's not easy to fight against your fears and sometimes you really mess it up and feel having acted like a psychopath, like me recently.
I fought against myself being too afraid to pursue an amazing girl, though she was very kind to me. In the end, I oversteered in the other direction, and in heavily fighting against my fear, I nearly went crazy.
Since she is a very outgoing person, I sought to impress her with (excessive) [energy]. I didn't touch her, but in another way, I didn't respect boundaries.
I'm a good and sincere guy and I was shocked by my behaviour. So, in the end, I was even happy that she drew a clear line and doesn't want to continue to see me outside of church-related activities.
Looking back, I even betrayed myself because I played the role of being the cool and active guy, which I'm not. While I played the role, I also neglected my own wish to just be able to talk with her for longer than 30 minutes.
Part of the problem was that I wanted to win her friendship first while leaving the way open for more. So I was too afraid, to just ask her to have a coffee with me, since this would mean something like a date. Instead, I made too many idiotic proposals for group activities with 3, 4, or more people. In the end, I have just become egocentric....
For me it is nevertheless a good step forwards. Surely, I have oversteered, but at least I have begun fighting against my fear of approaching a nice girl.
If it is helpful, you can publish it. If not, I wish you much success with your important ministry!
Nice greetings from [German-speaking nation],
Dear Nervous Guy,
Listen, you might as well read my blog because the guys at my parish do, no matter what I say! The combox, of course, is usually just for girls.
I am not sure what it is that you did, but I can see that you are sorry. Since you didn't touch her or, I presume, lock her in a room with you, it was probably not criminal or even crazy, just inappropriate and embarrassing. Of course you will respect her boundaries now.
Your email will be of interest to my women readers, as they often wonder what men are thinking. It could be quite helpful to them. But something else would be very helpful to them and to me. Could you explain to us (it will be anonymous, of course) why it is that you were afraid to ask this nice girl out for a coffee?
You see, I have never been able to understand why young men are afraid of women, even of women who are friendly and kind. You are not the only guy like this; there are many, many Christian guys who seem to be afraid of women, and we don't understand why. Many of my readers wish very much that Christian guys would ask them out for coffee, and wonder why non-believing guys seem so much more likely to ask them out. If you were to explain how you feel about it, this would be very helpful to us, and maybe we could help you, too.
Grace and peace,
Nervous Guy has not written back, but I contacted the two young male colleagues visible in my Facebook messaging window yesterday. Both are confident, outgoing and popular with girls. I asked them my question, and one wrote "Boys can be more sensitive than girls."
The other wrote that there is a terrible risk of rejection, or being told that the woman is already attached, which he said is even worse than being rejected. Approaching women at all is "one of the scariest things to do as a man, especially if you're sober."
This still puzzled me until a female friend pointed out that women feel rejected all the time, so we're a little more used to it than men. For example, many women just feel rejected because absolutely has nobody has asked them out. Most men don't feel rejected just because no woman has asked them out. To feel rejected, they actually have an incident. And when that incident happens, it really, really hurts.
"Like man flu," I suggested.