He’s So Shy and So Am I

the perpetual, ever-present perception of selfQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I’ve liked this guy for almost three years now. Last year he started to like my friend. I wasn’t really friends with her at the time, but now I am. I’m not invited to anything with him around, but he knows that I used to like him. I am super shy and so is he. What can I do to get to know him better, without coming on too strong?


A Dear Ikkatut:

Step One. Confront your shyness (tip: read this advice from Elinor Glyn).

Step Two. Confront your man (tip: read “How Do I Get Him to Ask Me Out?” and others).

Step Three. Prepare to date!

1925: Frank Advice to Unmarried Girls (Shyness)

Another defect girls often have which drives desirable men away is shyness, and very few people stop to analyze its cause. Shyness, when we have got down to the bedrock of it, is pure personal egotism. People are shy because they fancy others are observing them. If they were not so conscious of themselves they would not be obsessed with this idea; they would realize that they are probably not really very interesting, and may never have struck others’ consciousness at all. But no ~ the perpetual, ever-present perception of self makes them awkward, makes them wonder what effect they are producing, makes them nervous and the prey of every foolishness. Whereas, if they were not so sensitively occupied with their own feelings, they would do natural things without a tremor. I have no patience when I hear a woman being excused for stiffness and brusqueness by the plea of, “Oh, she is so dreadfully shy!” It is not real humility ~ real humility would not be conscious of self at all. It is vanity and egotism; and when seen in a grown woman casts a very poor reflection upon those who had the charge of her bringing-up from earliest childhood. If you are shy, take yourself sternly to task, analyze what makes you so, and overcome it. Bashfulness and shyness are as great faults as boldness, and perhaps cause more unhappiness. The antithesis of shyness is bumptiousness, and this also comes from egotism; it is a different expression of the same fundamental fault. Try to eradicate the root if you have a tendency to either of its demonstrations.

Source: Glyn, Elinor. This Passion Called Love. Auburn, N.Y.: The Authors’ Press, 1925.
~ pp. 82-83 ~