Should I Say Hi To the Hot Guy at the Park?

There’s a handsome guy you’d like to meet but lack the nerve to introduce yourself.

The Dilemma

This is probably the most ridiculous question you’ve ever been asked but here it goes. There’s a hot guy who works out in the park that I’m crushing on. I think he’s gay. Well, I’m pretty sure he is because I’ve seen him out.

Anyway, I want to say hi. But I chicken out because I’m afraid of being rejected. Pathetic, huh? Any advice on this one?

-Mitchell

The Solution

I can honestly tell you this isn’t the most ridiculous thing someone has sent to “Ask Jack”. Not even by a long shot. But that’s not why you wrote – to hear about follower emails. Instead, you need insight on how to handle the hot guy you’ve been seeing in the park.

I can imagine being in his presence is thrilling and stressful at the same time. On the one hand, you get worked up upon seeing him doing his thing. But on the other hand, you don’t’ want to make it obvious you are watching.

Can you relate?

Oh, man. If I had a dime for every time a situation like this has popped up in my life, I’d be rich. But here is the thing. Your experience is universal to so many gay men. It doesn’t matter if it’s a park, the gym or a grocery store. We’ve all seen a that “special someone” who regularly catches our eye.

The question is: What to do?

Maybe it’s best to start off with what not to do. Don’t stare. Even if the guy is gay, it still comes off as creepy, you know? Instead, it’s best to be direct. But for that to happen, you’ll need to work on a few things.

More: Gay man busted for staring at hot gym guy

To begin with, let’s go with the assumption that he is gay (or at least bi). After all, you’ve seen him out, which I’m assuming means the bars – or something like that.

Along those lines, how do you know he hasn’t seen you, too? Moreover, what if he’s been noticing you as well whenever you walk in the park?

Have you allowed for this possibility – even just a little?

I only ask because sometimes when people struggle with a fear of being rejected, they subconsciously blind themselves to opportunities. A case in point can be found in a buddy of mine. We’ll call him Eric.

He’s a 30-something-year-old office worker from the Midwest. Nice looking guy, athletic build, and a funny personality. He makes decent money and is a responsible guy. Sounds like a nice catch, right? I certainly think he is.

But here’s Eric’s problem. He doesn’t see himself in this way. Instead, he’s plagued by deeply rooted body image issues. Moreover, he thinks other guys are better looking than him and therefore wouldn’t give him the time of day.

As a result, Eric never meets anyone. Oh sure, he’ll hook up with some random dude here and there. But that’s only after the person hits him up on an app and not the other way around.

Why? Because he fears being rejected.

The funny thing is that when we’ve gone out on weekends to a club, other guys seriously check him out. Trust me, I’m standing right next to him and can see it with my own two eyes.

But for Eric, he hardly notices. Not because he’s arrogant. Instead, it’s because he literally can’t allow himself to “see” that he’s attractive.

“Nobody will like me,” and “I’m so fat!” are regular comments he makes about himself. It drives me nuts to hear him say this s*-t because I can see how it messes him up. Even when I’ve called him out on it, he still thinks these things about himself.

Does any of this strike a chord of familiarity? My point is you won’t be able to talk to that handsome guy you’ve seen at the park unless you allow for the possibility he’ll like you. Sure, he could be a jerk and ignore you. But even if that were to happen, your self-esteem isn’t tied to his response. That would be more of a reflection on him than you – if that makes sense.

If you are fantasizing about saying hello and him suddenly fist bumping you … saying, “OMG, you are the one!” I’d say you are setting yourself up for failure. But if it’s simply a random encounter to see what’s possible – then hey, why not?

So, let’s ask some questions since we are going there. What are you expecting to happen?  Is it a “hello” back? Maybe some small-talk? Perhaps a date? As stand-alone items, none of these things are outside of the realm of possibility.

But what is unrealistic is thinking his response somehow validates you as a person. Because let’s be honest. You don’t know anything about this man (other than he is hot).

He could be the sweetest guy on the planet. But he could also be a narcissistic jerk. Regardless of how he comes off, it has absolutely zip to do with you. Keep this in mind should you decide to move forward in some way.

We can only control ourselves and not others.

Mitchell, one of the best things you can do right now is focus on how you view yourself. Carefully assess your self-statements and ask: “Is that really true?” More often than not, I’m willing to bet the answer will be “no”.

The last thing I want for you is to end up like my buddy Eric; a guy who on paper looks like husband material but lacks the confidence to accept even the most basic compliment.

So, are you going walk up to Mr. Hottie in the park the next time you see him? If so, what do you want to happen? Finally, if it doesn’t work out the way you hoped, what are you really losing?

Need some dating help? Email Jack, the Gay Dating Coach at: [email protected]

About Jack

Jack is a wise but mysterious figure whose exact whereabouts and identifying details remain unknown. What we do know is that he's really, really good at gay dating. He’s been on more dates than you can shake a stick at, and he’s here to help other gay men step up their game.