While men are often more reticent about their feelings, they still wrestle with the same insecurities that women do when it comes to dating. And when we asked 15 single men how they really feel, they were surprisingly direct. This is what some of them had to say.
1. We are really nervous when we ask you out
Stephen talked about how nervous he feels when he asks a girl out. Coming up with a plan isn't easy, either. "Sometimes we have a hard time coming up with ideas." He loves a girl that isn't afraid to offer a few suggestions.
Jeffrey says that girls don't realize how hard it is for guys to ask them out. A guy "doesn't know the girl that well, he's got to plan everything, spend money ... look nice, use deodorant ... it's a big deal."
2. We don't want you to read too much into a first date
Several guys suggest not reading too much into a first date. Michael says, "If I go on a date, even if I go on a second date, I'm interested in finding out more about you. It doesn't mean I'm ready to commit. I'll be clear about when I'm ready."
Lee and Edgar share this frustration. "They act differently on dates," he says. "They act more formal. That mentality changes the whole date and creates awkward moments," says Edgar.
3. We like it when you smile
Stephen explains, "If they don't smile, it's hard to judge how your relationship is." But a smile is "like a green light that I can ask you out."
Josiah adds, "If they're open, they're talking, they're smiling, that makes it easier."
4. We are attracted to women with goals
Michael likes girls with "some kind of passion they are pursuing" while Jeffrey is engaged to a girl who wants "to go places" and "has an idea of what she wants to do with her life."
Kyle adds, "When a girl actually cares about herself, and cares about others, it's just so attractive." Kyle listens carefully when girls talk about their goals because he wants to know that his wife could take care of the children if something happened to him. He wants the relationship to be an equal one. "I want to be the best person I can be for her," he said.
5. We may feel a little awkward on our first date
Lee says, "Don't be too critical on the first date. We might be not talking enough or talking too much because we're nervous."
Eric adds, "I wish they knew that sometimes we're a little awkward and nervous. That's not necessarily a reflection of who we are."
Francisco asks girls to give guys a chance. "Don't make conclusions about the guy right off from the first date. Get to know him a bit."
6. Once we've asked you out, the ball is in your court
The date can be tough for the guys. Lee says, "The guy already has an uphill battle. There's a lot of pressure. He's got to entertain her, have a good time." He appreciates a girl that makes some effort during the date.
Alexander adds, "Respond more. Don't make him do all the work. React positively. Don't act bored."
Francisco says he just had a great first date. "She was proactive. It was 50-50. It was not just one side." He was really happy when she said, "Yeah, you're awesome, I like you. Let's go out again."
7. We would love more cues
Jacob says he would love more cues. "Sometimes I wish that a girl I've been out with several times would give more cues. Is it a free meal, or is she really interested in me?"
Bradford has also dealt with mixed signals. He gave up on one girl only to find out later she actually liked him. The standard phrase, "I had a good time," doesn't mean much to him. He prefers something more personal like, "I really enjoyed your company."
Jeffrey adds that guys really like it when girls compliment them. Guys don't like to admit this, but they need to hear it, too.
Kyle added, "We love to be wanted and needed. I feel like it's the guys chasing, chasing, chasing. If you don't give any signs that you like us then it's not going to work."
8. We are afraid of your friends
Josiah says how hard it is to approach girls who are clumped together. "When they're all crowded, it makes it hard to single one out."
Reed added that it's difficult to get to know a girl if she is constantly "joined at the hip" with her friends. "Nobody can penetrate the circle."
9. Modesty Matters
Wade explains, "If you go on a date with a girl, and she's not dressed modestly, it can make it more uncomfortable." I asked him to elaborate. He wouldn't.
But Kyle adds that it's nice when a girl "gets ready" and tries her best to look attractive.
10. We really think you're something
These guys love girls. Kyle says, "I feel like girls know us better than we know ourselves. That's why we go crazy. We can't handle it sometimes."
Francisco loves it when girls wait for him to open the door. "Women are to be treated like queens. Most girls do not realize how beautiful and loved they are."
It's apparent that while these guys are sometimes afraid of girls, they still really respect them.
Becky Blackburn Griffin writes about dating and relationships. She's compiled top research into an entertaining guide called "Get Out of the Friend Zone." It's available at her website, "A Quality Girl."