So you have a date function coming up. I don’t know whose bright idea it was to parade this event around like a fun activity, but someone did. Oh, I think it was some bitch on E-board whose bestie is Social Chair, both of whom are dating seniors who live together in your favorite fraternity. Thanks for that. But for the single girls everywhere, you have the tremendous burden of finding a date, one who is not your boyfriend, and has zero obligation to you or your date function. Awesome.
Honestly, not that he’s going to say no. It took me until my senior year to realize that pretty much any guy who has made out with you once, and texted you once thereafter will probably be happy to go to your event with you. It’s fun to dress up and go to a nice venue, dance, drink (maybe even with an open bar depending on the budget), and honestly, it feels nice for guys too, to feel like “WOO! I’M THE WINNER! I’M THE ONE GOING TO HER DATE FUNCTION!” despite what they’d have you believe. Plus, your propensity to have intercourse afterwards or at least participate in some heavy petting doesn’t hurt.
Once you’ve gone through the seemingly hard part of “who,” you have the ever-more difficult decision of “when.” How soon is too soon to ask him? How late is too late? You don’t want to seem over-eager and ask him way too far in advance that it’s like clingy and weird and seems like he’s your only option, even though he totally is…I mean kidding. You have options. And you don’t want to ask him too late so that he’s already made plans, or has been asked by someone else.
I’d say the distance between the date of the event and the date you ask him should be directly proportional to how long you’ve been dating/talking/hooking up/casually giggling with but nothing at all serious even though you totally want it to be.
If he’s your official boyfriend: Ask, no tell him, as soon as you find out about the event (like at chapter, send him a text as soon as it’s announced) that he is coming, hosting the pregame, and wearing a red tie to match your dress.
You’ve been hooking up exclusively for like a long time and he’s kind of like but not actually your boyfriend: The first or second time you hang out soberly (and the morning after counts as soberly) after you’ve found out about the event, you can casually mention as if you totally just remembered and it wasn’t calculated “oh, btw I have a date function coming up. I think it’s on ______. Want to come? Okay, cool. I’ll look up the exact date and text you.”
You’re hooking up, probably not exclusively, or if it is exclusively it’s not on purpose, for two-four and a half months: This is where it gets tricky. I would say the appropriate time frame is just under three weeks leading up to the event. Like three weeks before is probably a Friday or Saturday…I’d say that like Monday or Tuesday is a good amount of time. You’ve hooked up for long enough to let him know you like him a little bit, so a three-week advance is appropriate to lock him down without making you look clingy and desperate.
You’re just friends or have been hooking up between 1-2 months: I’d say like basically exactly two weeks or just over two weeks before the event is appropriate. It’s pretty last minute. But you’re pretty not-that-serious-at-all. It’s fine. He doesn’t have plans for 14-16 days from now. He probably hasn’t even sorted his plans for 14-16 hours from now yet.
You’ve been hooking up for less than one month: You can’t ask him two or three weeks in advance if you’ve only been seeing him for four weeks. I think the rule is you can only make a plan half the time in advance as the amount of time you’ve been seeing someone MAX. So if you’re at three weeks you’re going to have to do like a week and a half before the event, two weeks, only one week before. Otherwise you’re like “Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy, but come to my date function, all other men are afraid of me because they think I’ll steal their mother’s phone number out of their phones in the middle of the night and call her to ask what kind of laundry detergent they prefer because I want to make sure their skin won’t irritate, but that was ONE TIME. Maybe.”
If you don’t have anyone to ask, just get set up. There’s bound to be a guy whose besties are all going to be there and just really feels like going. Or maybe like your three best friends also don’t have dates, you all vow to skip the function, put on fancy dresses and go to your favorite bar with a picture of some boy you’re obsessing over so you can take pics, pretend like you’re at formal, and drink yourself into oblivion. Kidding, don’t do that. It’s a lot less fun than it sounds.