He likes me... or he likes me as a friend...
February 20, 2014 6:02 PM   Subscribe

I met a guy recently and interact with him in a school and social context. How do I figure out if he wants to date me, or is just happy to have a new friend in an area he recently moved to?

So we're in college and have a class together. He just moved here and hasn't met many people socially, but he joined a group I'm part of (not having any idea I was a part of it). We've hung out in a group context, and I invited him to hang out with a few of my friends from another social circle, which he came to and enjoyed.

He's a bit shy, and I've probably been sending him mixed signals (for various reasons including that I wasn't feeling well all week and now have the flu :/). I'm hesitant to ask him out because he's someone I'd like to have as a friend regardless, and don't want to nip that friendship with awkwardness.

So, interactions that make me think he's into me: at 1st social event, we were talking alone (I initiated the convo), and a friend of mine who was there later told me we looked like we were on a date, leaning towards each other and such. During that night (note: he was getting drunk), he asked to be FB friends (which he requested the next day), asked for my number (which I said sure, but didn't give him at the time), and said we should watch a movie sometime. Then at the other social thing, he walked with me to my public transpo ride home and waited for several minutes with me, and after class waited for public transpo with me even though neither time was he taking it. We've also been chatting online.

Complications: I know I've sent him mixed signals, partially cuz I was unsure if I wanted to pursue anything at first. He's an introvert, and I'd rather him make the first move, so it's complicated... So I've tried to show that at least I like having him around by inviting him to things, but these are things that could easily be read as "just friends" things, and also because I do tend to be very open to adding new friends into my social circle (which he knows), he could be reading my invites as trying to form a platonic friendship. Also there's been a couple times where he's held his gaze on my face without talking, which seems like a flirty thing but I get awkward and look down.

So at this point, I'm unsure if he likes-likes me or not, he's probably feeling the same way, likely neither of us want to rock the boat, and I think he might be too shy to flat out ask me out. I know I should "just ask him out," but the thought flat-out terrifies me (in part because of past bad experiences). I also haven't been dating recently because of some self-esteem issues that I'm working on.

Any light y'all could shed on determining his feelings would be awesome.
posted by Chaussette Fantoche to Human Relations (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Oh my god, just ask him out.
posted by kagredon at 6:06 PM on February 20, 2014 [39 favorites]

...asked for my number...and said we should watch a movie sometime.

Sounds like he already asked you out.
posted by Diskeater at 6:10 PM on February 20, 2014 [8 favorites]

He asked for your number and you didn't give it to him. The ball is squarely in your court at this point. Ask him out.
posted by amro at 6:10 PM on February 20, 2014 [4 favorites]

Everyone wants the other person to make the first move. He's an introvert: it isn't going to be him. Ask him out. Be clear it's a date. You can cover your ass with something like "I was wondering if you wanted to go see $movie, as a date or just friends if you're not into it."
posted by DarlingBri at 6:10 PM on February 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

He asked you to watch a movie together. He's pretty much already asked you out. Give him your number and say you'd like to go see that movie. He'll probably ask if you want to get dinner beforehand. That will also mean he's into you. If he's too shy to you can suggest it and I bet he'll say yes, plus that makes it clear that you're into him.

I once had a similar situation with a boy I was friends with and I wasn't sure he meant it as a date until he got into the car wearing cologne. Question answered!
posted by MsMolly at 6:18 PM on February 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

Forgive me, but him asking for your number and saying 'we should watch a movie some time' is him asking you out. Make plans for a movie, pick something a bit romantic, and then do that super adorable thing where you slowly move into each other's space, incidental contact first and then let your hand sort of sit beside his and then let them touch and then hold hands... ahh, crushes.

It is totally normal that both parties sort of feel out the situation and gently nudge it along; this is how it happens with almost everyone; and there is always going to be a little bit of doubt, because you need that, in case one person reads it wrong, so that you can plausibly pretend nothing happened. But the pattern - can I get your number - we should go see a movie sometime - spending time around you - holding your gaze - these are all signals saying "I am interested in you".

You don't have to come out with "date". Some people like certainty, but in a fragile situation the word "date" is big thump which A. might cause a skittish person to back away where a gentle touch might have let them warm up, and B. can't be un-said, if the other person does back away, and thus will hang in the air forever. From this distance I am about 95% certain he is into you, but if he's not, that's why you let your hand sort of accidentally brush his first before grabbing his hand -- he'll either move closer, or pull away, and if he pulls away you can both pretend nothing happened. But you do have to be willing to move into his space a little, and you do have to be ready to move closer to him when he puts out these signals, because he will be waiting for encouragement from you. Go for it.
posted by PercussivePaul at 6:18 PM on February 20, 2014 [7 favorites]

Ask him out.

On a date.

Use language that makes it obvious that it will be a date.

I know you say you don't want to make the first move, but your choices here are to make the first move or do nothing. You wouldn't be asking this question if you were comfortable just doing nothing.

You're not going to catch on fire if you ask someone out. I promise. The worst case scenario here is that he says he has plans and never follows up further, or tells you he has a girlfriend or likes guys or whatever. He's not going to point and laugh or anything, I swear.
posted by Sara C. at 6:31 PM on February 20, 2014

Ok point taken. I've been way over-thinking this because we're in class together and don't want to make the next 3 months awkward. But I just checked chat logs and he DOUBLE asked me to see a movie cuz we were talking about a specific one and he said we should watch it together. Duh.
posted by Chaussette Fantoche at 6:42 PM on February 20, 2014 [3 favorites]

Oh my god, just ask him out.

Oh my god, just ask him out.

posted by munchingzombie at 7:34 PM on February 20, 2014 [3 favorites]

After you've asked him out or gone on that date he's already double asked you out for, let us know how it went.
posted by crossoverman at 8:56 PM on February 20, 2014 [8 favorites]

he's held his gaze on my face without talking
Bingo. He fancies you.

You two must be super-cute to watch.
posted by lizbunny at 1:50 PM on February 21, 2014

He ended up going out of town for the weekend, but texted me as soon as he got back and we hung out and watched a movie (or "watched" a movie, however you want to read that). And we're going out tonight. Yay!
posted by Chaussette Fantoche at 6:17 AM on February 26, 2014 [3 favorites]

Yay! Have fun!
posted by kagredon at 7:12 AM on February 26, 2014

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