When Should You Ask Someone Out on a Second Date?

Hi Evan,

 

I went on a date with a wonderful girl on Friday, and it did go quite well. I noticed the past few days since she has looked at my profile online many times, but I actually was the one who thanked her a few days later for the nice evening. She said she had a great time too, via text. Does this still seem like a promising venture?

 

Thank you,

 

Michael

Sigh.

I appreciate you writing to me, Michael, but I’ve gotta tell you: guys like you really make my life more difficult.

It’s not that your question is bad – not at all – but it gives unfortunate validation to all the women who are wondering where they stand with men who haven’t called.

Consider the emails I get every day about “He’s Just Not That Into You” guys…

Most men know the rules: if we want to see you, we have to ask you out.

“Isn’t it possible that he’s too shy?”

“Isn’t it possible that he’s nervous?”

“Isn’t it possible that he’s not sure if I like him?”

I answer these all with the same exact answer: NO.

Men do what they want, and if he’s not asking you out, it’s because he doesn’t want to. Most men know the rules: if we want to see you, we have to ask you out. Case closed.

And then came Michael.

Now that I got that out of my system, I can tell you, with all sincerity, Michael, that this still seems like a promising venture.

In three lines, you told me that:

You had a great date.

She’s looked at your profile repeatedly.

She texted you a thank you (even though you thanked her for a nice evening).

Apart from the fact that this plays like an episode of “What Not To Do in Dating” Theater, I can’t fathom what other evidence you need to feel confident in asking her out.

Skywriting above your home?

Messenger pigeons carrying a note saying “Ask me out again”?

A candygram from a dancing bear, who then takes off her head to reveal your date?

I’m teasing because it’s a sweet and innocent question – and because there’s only so many ways to say “yes” in a blog post.

And for any guy reading this who also wonders the same thing as Michael, here’s a rule you can take to the bank:

If she had a great time with you on Friday night, you CANNOT go wrong by calling her on Saturday afternoon to ask her out again.

No 3-Day-Rule. No games. No bullshit.

If she likes you, the ONLY way you can mess things up is by hemming and hawing for a week.

Some guys have concluded that the next-day follow up is a failed strategy. Better to play hard to get and make women wait. Not quite.

If she likes you, she’ll be thrilled that you called.

If she had a great time with you on Friday night, you CANNOT go wrong by calling her on Saturday afternoon to ask her out again. No 3-Day-Rule. No games. No bullshit.

If she doesn’t like you, she’ll be annoyed that you called.

Either way, her decision was made on Friday night, not when you made the phone call.

You’re in the clear, Michael. Ask her out now.

Oh, and by the way, do yourself a favor and make a move on her on your next date. Otherwise, I fear I’m going to get another email in eight weeks wondering if she’s “receptive to affection”… Just kidding.

Seriously…good luck…and thanks for writing.
Evan

P.S. If you wonder about this kind of dating etiquette, this is exactly what we cover in my 8-week Passion Course – understanding how to be a great first date, always get a second date, date multiple people, deal with sex and intimacy, understand the opposite sex, etc.

Click here to learn more:

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Comments:

  1. 1
    Marc

    When I was in my 20s in the pre-online dating and text days, I’d stress about whether to call a chick after a first date. Now that I know more, and despite the fact that hiding behind a computer or cell phone makes potential rejection easier to swallow, I still always ask a woman out for a second date at the end of the first, if I’m interested. A woman will let you know with her body language, if she’s genuinely interested in going out again, or if she’s just being nice. You get your answer on the spot and don’t have to stress about it for days or weeks after the date. And yes, Michael, this chick is TOTALLY interested, and she’s letting you know it.

  2. 2
    Selena

    EMK – “No 3-Day Rule.  No Games. No Bullshit.”

    This should be engraved in stone everywhere both men and women could possibly see it.

  3. 3
    Honey

    I agree that he should go for it, though as one of those equally annoying (to Evan, anyway) people who “just knew” on the first date and is happily enjoying both chemistry and compatibility 4+ years in, I admit that my experience and advice may not match conventional wisdom!

  4. 4
    starthrower68

    Guys, women (or at least those of us who read Evan’s blog regularly) are told that it’s a turn off for most of you if we do the initiating.  So you’re going to have to step up your game if your turned off by such a thing.  I take what Evan says at face value, so if a guy says he’s interested but then takes no action to do anything about it, I move on with life.  I don’t follow up because if you like me, you will, if you don’t you won’t.

  5. 5
    moon

    Evan,
     
    Thanks for posting this.  There are guys out there–more than we’d like to think, I believe–that almost do need skywriting.  I sometimes wonder if I, “gave the wrong signals,” but usually conclude that short of throwing a lasso around their feet, some gents lack either the training (by that I mean: having a clue,) cajones or interest to make that call.  In which case they would not make a good partner, because women want some training, cajones and interest, right?  So, yes, call!  Even if she doesn’t, “just know,” most women will welcome a second night out if the first was pleasant.
     
    moon

  6. 6
    Selena

    When you thanked her a few days later for a nice evening, why didn’t you ask her out again then?  If I were the girl, I would have wondered why you didn’t. She took the bull-by-the-horns apparently by texting you she had a good time too – that’s a form of “mirroring” – and a way of asking you, to ask her out again.  A woman doesn’t do that if she doesn’t want to see the guy again. I’m mystified as to how texting someone to tell them you had a good time could be construed any other way.

  7. 7
    Patti

    Great advice, Evan. The last date I went on, I didn’t hear from the guy for 3 or 4 days – even though he had several ways to get in contact with me (email, IM, text, phone) – and even after that, it was at least 3 weeks before he even mentioned the date or asked for a second one. But by then, I had assumed disinterest and moved on and didn’t accept his second date.  He seemed disappointed, but what did he think was gonna happen? We need a female online dating coach who caters exclusively to men, because it’s a shame how many nice and decent guys are clueless. Bad profiles, bad pics, bad first emails, bad first date impressions, bad follow ups. They just need a little handbook.

  8. 8
    Queenie

    I don’t know why dudes think they should wait when asking a girl out on another date. Honestly, I think a guy should ‘prep’ for the next date by saying, “We should do this again sometime”, so he can get a feel for how she feels. If she smiles and agrees, then they both kind of know which direction it’s going in.
    The 3 day rule is so last year!

  9. 9
    Suzanne

    I keep asking myself, “Did I miss something?”  What’s with all the fear?  And I keep going back to this line:  “But I actually was the one who thanked her a few days later for the nice evening.”  What? Does he think he took an incredibly unusual and bold step by calling her after 3 days, (and why did he wait that long?)?   Oh, the consternation!   The truth is, nobody (not even Evan) can actually guarantee that this woman will be eager for a second date with him.  Dating’s a gamble, and most of us get a lot of  “No thanks”  before we get a Yes.  So, rather than tell him he should go ahead because all the signals look like she’s a positive Yes, I think it would be better advice to let him know there are no guarantees in dating, and the sooner he gets used to hearing No, the more fearless he’ll get. 

  10. 10
    starthrower68

    @ Queenie,

    I have even been told “we should do this again sometime” and never heard from the dude again, though I know that’s not the point of this particular blog, so I won’t go there.

    Evan has said quite well before that women WANT the NICE guys; but we want nice guys with masculine energy and that is spot on.  A confident, assertive guy who behaves with integrity and character is captivating.

  11. 11
    Selena

    If I heard “We should do this again sometime” I’d likely think the guy was just trying to end the date on a polite note and wouldn’t hold my breath waiting to hear from him again.

    “I had a great time tonight, can I call you tomorrow?”  THAT’S a guy I would consider interested.

  12. 12
    Diana

    I am wondering, “How old is Michael?” Despite having a good date, a message stating she had a great time, and a continual peeking at his profile, he seems unsure, and that can be an attraction killer, on top of what she will likely see as indecisiveness on his part. Michael’s actions are speaking louder than his words. He’d best call soon or risk losing what might have been a great opportunity.

  13. 13
    Diana

    I meant he had best ask soon.

  14. 14
    PortiaOnLine

    Wow. What a timely post. Last Wednesday  I had  what I thought was a great date with a guy named, ironically, Michael.  Although new to internet dating, this guy gave all the signs there would be a second date. At the end of the date he said he had a great time, wanted to see me again, was I interested? Yes, I replied. Explained he was sorry he had already registered for a tennis tournament and wasn’t available over the weekend. Long good night kiss on the front porch. He called the next afternoon, said again what a great time he had. Seems I would have heard from him for a second date this weekend, right?  Nada. Poof!
    A male friend of mine who I was telling about this suggested I invite the guy to a party he’s having next weekend. But I keep thinking about Evan’s standing on the beach analogy and doing that feels like chasing him. Guys do what they want, right? But after reading this, I’m thinking, well, maybe he needs some more encouragement. Dang.  Just when I was starting to think I was getting pretty good at this.
     
     

  15. 15
    A-L

    I guess I’m going to sound unsympathetic here.  But if you’re a guy, and you’re interested in seeing her again, then ask her.  Worse comes to worst, she’ll say no.  And you’ll still live.  Since that’s what the vast majority of men do, women are trained (including by Evan) to be receptive and mirror, but not to be proactive.  So if you’re ever to have a chance with the girl, you have to take action.

  16. 16
    rich men rock

    It’s pretty obvious. Girls don’t want to be the first move. If you want to have a second date then you go and asked her not the way that she is going to asked you first. That’s too embarrassing for a girl to do.

  17. 17
    JB

    As we all know, there are no rules in dating. If there is who’s going to enforce them?….lol People do what they want to do. If 2 people want to get together they make it happen.I agree with Diana,like a lot of scenarios on this blog we have no idea how old Michael is but I’m going to guess he’s closer to 17 than 37.

    @Patti # 7 There’s about a million places and “handbooks” online for men to learn everything about dating/relationships.How do you think I found Evan? Now not all of them teach the same thing or even what you want men to know and understand because just like Evan’s advice/point of view it’s all opinions.We take what we feel is useful from each “expert” and apply it as we see fit to succeed in reaching whatever goal we may have.It’s that simple. If a “real” man is interested in a woman she’ll know it.PERIOD

  18. 18
    Helen

    There is something so sweet about this post that it made me smile. :)  I was wondering the same thing as Diana #12 – Michael seems quite young and is afraid of messing things up.  Go for it, Michael.  Your lass will be happy you did.

  19. 19
    Karl R

    Michael asked: (original post)
    “Does this still seem like a promising venture?”

    It was a promising venture the day after the first date. After you’ve wasted this much time … I would now call it a long shot.

    If the girl is into you, she’ll be happy to hear from you on the next day. If she’s not into you, she’ll be annoyed to hear from you the next day. The outcome was determined while you were on your date (possibly during the first 5 minutes).

    However, if you wait several days, you appear disinterested, indecisive and lacking in confidence. None of those are appealing traits (in anyone).

    Michael, I have one question for you: Why are you bothering to ask Evan’s opinion whether this is a promising venture? If you ask the woman out on a second date, you will know the answer within two days.

    You have two options available to you: You can ask her out or not.
    You have two possible outcomes: A relationship with her (the desirable outcome) or no relationship with her (the undesirable outcome).

    If you don’t ask her out, you will always get the undesirable outcome. The only way you can achieve the desirable outcome is by asking her out. What part of this decision is difficult?

    PortiaOnLine said: (#14)
    “But after reading this, I’m thinking, well, maybe he needs some more encouragement.”

    I would call that a long shot. If you want to call him based on a long shot, that’s up to you. I wouldn’t recommend bypassing any other opportunites in order to pursue a long shot.

  20. 20
    BeenThruTheWars

    @PortiaOnLine #14 – a guy who likes you, as in REALLY likes you, as in enough to want this to turn into a dating relationship, doesn’t need “encouragement” to call and ask you out again.  The likelier scenario is that he’ll keep trying to contact you until he catches you in.  All the encouragement we need to provide men is to show up, smile, look nice, be nice, smell nice, end the date first to leave them wanting more, thank them graciously for a lovely evening, and resist the urge to chase them afterwards.  Everything else is (should be) up to them.  If he likes you, he’ll call.  If he isn’t sufficiently interested to bestir himself, he won’t call.
    My first date with my husband was Sunday lunch.  He called me the very next evening to ask me out for the coming Saturday night.  I didn’t even have 24 hours of “wondering,” and it was great!  He told me much later, after we were exclusively dating, that he’d agonized about whether to call so quickly on account of maybe I’d think he was desperate – for about ten seconds.  Then picked up the phone and said heck with it, because he wanted to make sure he could see me the following weekend.  The “3-day rule” goes out the window when a guy likes you.  And whoever said they turned down a second date offer when the guy had poofed for three weeks – good going.  Two weeks go by, and a guy finally calls you again?  You can pretty much figure he’s out of the picture.  Three weeks, you can pretty much figure whatever he had going with some other girl fizzled, and you’re second choice.  Who needs it?
    Men speak volumes by their actions.  Words are secondary.

  21. 21
    Robyn

    If a guy is this indecisive and wishy-washy over the decision of whether to aks a girl out, then how on earth is he going to handle the really difficult and/or complex decisions that a couple will face in their life together?!!!
    I have learned the hard way that this sort of behavior/attitude in a man at the beginning of the relationship is a major red flag.

    Michael – As they say in the classics, “Faint heart never won fair maiden”. If you want a woman to take you seriously then you need to demonstrate that you have more balls than she does!

  22. 22
    hunter

    There is a very good chance that, this man has a low sex drive.   

  23. 23
    Joe

    Or he’s shy.

    Is anyone else no longer getting a date and time stamp shown for each comment, or is it just me?

  24. 24
    A-L

    Joe, the date and time stamp are no longer shown for me either.  I’d love it if they came back!

  25. 25
    Evan Marc Katz

    Sorry, kids. No more time stamp. It made conversations from 2007 seem really dated and I want new readers to embrace old posts as if they were new…

  26. 26
    Joe

    I’m taking my ball and going home!

  27. 27
    Lance

    For Michael: here’s an easy rule of thumb. If the date went well enough, you will actually make plans for date #2 while still on the date. Almost certainly you will talk about cool stuff you have going on or like doing, and that should be a perfect lead-in for setting it up. Example thread: I like wine! – I like wine too! – Awesome I know this great wine bar! etc etc
    If I’m on first date and we’re not pretty much mapping out the next few dates, I know it’s not really happening. You should never be left wondering what the next step is…it will reveal itself.

  28. 28
    JB

     6/24/2010 – 8am
    After re-reading my post saying “there’s no rules in dating,and if there are who’s going to enforce them?” It made me think as I watched a TiVo’ed episode of Seinfelds’ “The Marriage Ref”. Why can’t Evan host a new spin off show called “The Dating Ref”? He could have special guest “dating experts” as his panel etc…. and solve dating dilemma’s between couples who aren’t married. Just a thought. Can’t we put our own time/date in our own post?  6/24/2010 – 8am

  29. 29
    Joe

    Eastern, Central, Mountain or Pacific? ;)

  30. 30
    Christina

    I don’t know why all Guyz have this problem (fear of getting rejected)

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