The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

Help, I’m a traditionalist!

Are you an Elizabeth or a Jane?


Over the Easter break, my friend from home asked a boy out. She met him, became smitten, added him on Facebook and started messaging him. A couple of days later she asked if he wanted to go for a drink. When she told me this the next day, my insides instantly shrivelled up. How could she be so bold? What if he’d rejected, or worse, ignored her? Most importantly, should women even ask men out?

After some thought on the matter, I realised that whilst I admired her, I would never be able to imitate her. Both my traditional romantic side and my independent ‘I don’t need anyone’ other half are, for once, in full agreement. Sadly, I believe in good old fashioned chivalry and courtship. I don’t want some big cringey gesture, but I don’t want to have to ask my knight in shining armour out first either. I like having the power to be reserved and slightly elusive; by asking them out there’s no mystery and there’s certainly no doubt about your interest.

However, later as I served a group of men at work it I found myself questioning why on earth women shouldn’t ask. Their captivating conversation covering new protein shakes and Match of the Day made me realise that women shouldn’t sit around waiting for these blatherskites to ask. If you know you like someone then there’s no harm in taking the plunge; many, I’ m sure, would find your confidence even more attractive.

The boy that said friend asked out did say yes and a date has been arranged. Whilst I envy her courage and the other women that follow suit, I can’t help but think that that will never be me. Women that ask are the empowered heroines, the Elizabeth Bennett’s of our generation and the rest of us are Janes: slightly more reserved yet (hopefully) ending up equally as happy.