Congratulations, young freshman lass, you have arrived at _______ University. You have survived years of awkward adolescent boys, pimples on their faces, sweat under the nose bar of their glasses, those youth group boys who find beating each other senseless with giant foam fingers at basketball games a less frightening experience than having a conversation with you. You’re finished, you’ve graduated, and perhaps in your mind, you have set foot in the Promised Land of dating: the Christian University.
Now, before you romp off to search for milk and honey, please take a moment and listen to an older, more experienced voice, the voice of an alumnus of Eastern University, the voice of an alumnus who left Eastern with something more precious than a princess cut diamond engagement ring: wisdom. I would like to impart some of that to you, and perhaps save you a few tears as you journey. I would like to introduce you to the six guys you’ll meet at a Christian University.
Guy #1: The Gaming Hermit
You could sit behind this young man in freshman orientation, and every subsequent class after that and only learn his name if you happen to pay attention during the roll call. He might as well not even have a name, because he won’t be introducing himself to you or any other female on campus because day after day, month after month, he will retire to his residence hall where he will play any number of video games late into the night with his hall mates. You will recognize this young man because he will have a particularly glossed-over expression, indicative of a long night of gaming. Since your school is no doubt a dry campus, we have come to recognize this condition as VGHO, or Video Game Hangover. This young man and his compatriots will travel in flocks to and from class, the library, and the dining hall, making it impossible to distinguish one from the other. Eventually you will stop noticing that they attend at all, and if you happen to sit next to one of them at graduation, you may see him playing Tetris on his cell phone during the ceremony.
Guy #2: The Lord of the Harem*
He’s good-looking, he’s outgoing, he’s charming, he’s sensitive, he’s…too good to be true. This guy attracts girls like a bra clearance sale, and that’s the problem. He is constantly traveling in a harem of adoring young fans. He may alternate the ladies in the harem from time to time, choosing new members to follow him around. He’s good-natured, which makes it difficult to despise him. Don’t worry, you will in time. He may from time to time choose one girl from his harem and spend extra time with her, but then seeing how this upsets the rest of the posse, he will insist that they are “just friends” and return to relating to the girls communally, often choosing a new girl just to show he is serious about being platonic. If you find yourself in one of these harems, don’t worry, you’ll be traded out in time. This guy, in his inability to choose a favorite girl, has decided to keep all his options open for as long as he can. Does that make you angry? Don’t worry, in the end, this guy graduates with nothing but a gaggle of faithful pen pals. *alternate names include: The Platonic Pimp, Mr. Indecisive
Guy #3: Mr. Girlfriend-From-Home
This will be the most disappointing of the models. This guy is everything you want, sweet, sensitive, Godly, motivated, friendly, and taken. He has a girlfriend from home, and they’re serious. Now, there are certain degrees of “serious”. If you have fallen into the unfortunate trap of liking Mr. Girlfriend-From-Home, pay attention to the following: are there pictures of him and his hussy from home in his dorm? Are there notes from her tacked to his bulletin board? Does he appear to take phone calls from her regularly? If any of these markings are present, the relationship is most likely at a high degree of “seriousness”. Take caution and do not have high hopes. If the relationship survives its first year of separation, abandon hope completely, this couple will most likely make it. You might even be recruited to host this girlfriend when she visits from out of town. Be the bigger person, invite her to stay, make her feel welcome. You could get a wedding invitation out of it. Bring a date.
Guy #4: Mr. God-Card
He stands in the front row in chapel, he never misses a chapel, and he’s been known to leave comments like “praying for ya, bro” on the Facebook walls of his friends. Naturally, girls are drawn to him, and he enjoys this. Like the Lord of the Harem (see above), he can also gather quite a loyal following of hopeful girls. But this guy’s game is completely different, he’s not afraid of losing his options, he’s afraid of losing…his soul. That’s right, unfortunately, this guy has “kissed dating goodbye”. He has committed himself to courtship, and is determined to “not date”, that he might be free to meet and pursue “the one”. You may ask: but how will he pursue “the one” if he is determined to never date? Well, he hasn’t quite worked out the details yet. But he couldn’t be more confident in his course. When your friendship with him grows intimate enough to beg the question of “where is this going?” this guy, with all the sincerity in the world, will look deep into your eyes and say “I’m sorry, God told me to just stay friends with you.” You will blink, and wonder why God chose to tell him everything and leave you in the dark. Don’t worry, you’ve not been left in the dark, you have been the victim of Mr. God-Card. This model should elicit more pity than all the other ones, because in his sincere search to find God’s will, he could very well miss it because he is too afraid to take any sort of risk. In this refusal to risk anything and live as safely as he can, he eliminates the need in his life for faith altogether.
Guy#5: The Stalker
I know what you’re thinking, shouldn’t I be afraid? No, The Stalker will do you no harm. He will just irritate you. Warning: Freshman orientation week is a perfect breeding ground for this model. He will learn your name, your residence hall, your favorite color, and he will remember it, creepily, for all four years of college. This guy will talk to you constantly about nothing at all, perpetually ask you why you guys don’t hang out more, and will not take “no” for an answer. You will have to develop an arsenal of excuses to ward off The Stalker, my suggestion is to group together with other girlfriends and develop a rescue strategy when you see that someone is trapped in conversation with this individual. He will try to impress you with things that are utterly unimpressive, and when he sees that he can no longer elicit your admiration, he will go for the next most accessible emotion: your pity. He will complain about anything and everything, try to recruit you to help him with homework or any kind of thing he has to do, just so long as he can spend time with you. But again, he is harmless, albeit annoying. He won’t be the first annoying person you meet in college, and he certainly won’t the last. Get the better of the situation by learning how to deal with such individuals with grace, a skill you will use long after your college years are over.
Guy#6: Mr. Right
Despite the familiar connotation, “Mr. Right” will not be your boyfriend. He will probably not be your husband. “Mr. Right”, as far as this alumnus is concerned, is the guy with whom you can laugh, talk, study, and just goof around. Nothing romantic really ever develops, but you’re glad he’s in your life, because even if it’s never anything more than a friendship, believe me, it’s exactly what you need for now. If you leave your four years at Eastern with a boyfriend, that’s nice, like a bonus. But if you leave having friends, real, solid, encouraging friends, you’re truly rich. “Mr. Right” might not be the guy you marry, but he’s the guy who God uses to shape you into the person he wants you to be. God’s plan might be for you to be a wife someday, but His plan is definitely that you be a woman first, and that will give you plenty to do while you wait for God to grow the guys in your life into the men he wants them to be. It doesn’t get much more “right” than that.
Buckle your seatbelt…
Thanks for the listening ear. I hope you enjoyed your whirlwind tour through the male community of ________University, and that you feel more confident to enter the jungle of male-female relationships. Keep your wits about you; God knows you’ll need them.