Do you have a question about relationships and flirting?

You can email me about any of your relationship and flirtation questions, and I'll be happy to address them in my blog. Won't that be fun! Its very Dear Abby, but hey...I'm just as good as she is! Just put "Dear Ottis" in the subject. Make sure your letters are annoymous though, to protect you and me. Send all questions to

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Today's is going to be a rather difficult post for me to write. I have been talking to several people about various issues, and it all basically comes down to the same problem: dating confidence. Therefore, I will attempt to address this issue. Note that there are many sides to this issue, and some of them may even be contradicting, but alas, we'll see what I can do.

Men. Dating confidence comes into play right at the beginning for you. After all, a man has to be confident enough to ask the girl out. I think it's important to remember that this does take confidence. . . and practice (girls, remember it does take some guts). Now, here at BYU, most of the girls have the rule about always going on at least a first date to give him a try. You would think that this would relieve some of the fear for us, but it doesn't.

Here is why.

Generally speaking, when a guy asks a girl out, he does so because he is interested. When the girl replies with her default answer of yes, it doesn't really mean anything, because its a yes out of principle. We're not actually privy to knowing whether or not the girl is interested in us in return. There is just as much pressure and insecurity going into the date as there was in asking the girl out in the first place.

Now, you may say, "that's just normal." I would submit that it is not. You see, in normal dating scenarios, the very fact that a girl deemed a guy worthy of going out with her shows that there is some interest. Indeed, that allows the guy to feel some confidence and go into the date more relaxed and more able to show his true self. But when you go into a date with no clue, it muddles things up. In terms of dating confidence, the best way to gain it for guys is just to ask girls out. No need to be awkward about it. No need to be overly creative either. Just be you. There are few things more attractive to a woman than a man with confidence. Just ask. The more unsure you seem about it as you ask, the less confident you come off. Obviously.

Women. Dating confidence for you tends to be less about personal confidence and more about how many boys ask you out on dates. After all, the more you're asked out, the more likely that you'll continue to be asked out. Many wonder why it is in wards that a select few girls are asked out by virtually every guy, while others never get asked out once. There are obviously many factors in this, but let me discuss the one of confidence.

I realize that in our society, women are raised to be self-conscious. We are all bombarded with the beautiful people on TV, movies, and magazines. Let's all be honest, only 5% of the population actually looks that good anyway. Here is what you may not know: A lot of guys don't want that kind of girl. Men don't want someone too perfect. That'll just make them feel insecure for the rest of their dating/married lives. Sure, we all talk about it, and joke, but when it all comes down to it, we want a girl that we're gonna feel comfortable with, who we still find attractive, yes, but who is at least somewhere near our league. So, take confidence in knowing that.

Many of the girls who do get asked out on a regular basis are the ones who exude the most amount of confidence. As my colleague Paxton once said, "if you don't think you're pretty, then you're probably not!" That is to say that when you don't think that you're worth dating, worth loving, worth finding that perfect someone for you, then you are merely creating a self-fulfilling prophecy, as they say. I'm not a self-help guru, so I'm not going to even attempt to tackle that mess, but suffice it to say, we all need to do what we need to do so that we can feel like attractive, desirable individuals. The more confidence you feel, the more guys will see it in you, and therefore be drawn to you.

Now, I realize that lots of you will be saying, "Gee, that's awfully idealistic. It's nice on paper, but that's just not the way that it works in real life." Well, to that I say, "You're un-confidence is showing. . ." Geeze, that's embarrassing. . . You are only as desirable and date-able as you feel. Sure, it's nice to have that confidence come from outside sources (like members of the opposite sex), but at the end of the day, confidence is a personal journey that we all need to undertake! Especially when it comes to dating confidence. So, to all of you readers, get out there. Go on dates. To quote My Big Fat Greek Wedding, "Get married, make Greek look so old!"


  1. I would just like you to know that I do expect to marry someone that is too perfect. PLUS I'm glad you're here to help people because my advice: people care too much. Just ask people out. Go on dates. Why put so much pressure into it? Why be so nervous? Believe me, life is STILL going to go on. But you make a good point on confidence. What is it about our society that makes people not confident. So who cares if I don't look like Brad Pitt? Who wants to look like him anyways. Look at ME! I'm amazing. Anyways, that's basically all I have to say about that.

  2. Lee this is wonderful! you tackled the topic perfectly. I think showing both sides is very insightful. It was a joy to read! You have a very strong writing voice and style that is fun to read.

  3. What would the BYU world do without you? You're amazing. The quote at the end was absolutely perfect. I love that movie! And James' comment killed me... typical, typical... :)