So a thread on FetLife about “Nice Guys” got me thinking. The topic was whether women would date a nice guy. It’s funny, because my immediate gut reaction is “No,” yet I know that my Master is a nice guy. Yes, he is also a bad boy, but that (and why those two things are not incompatible) is a discussion for another day.
So, why the instinctive flinch when I think about nice guys? Why is “nice guy” a death knell when applied to men? I think I have at least part of the answer.
First of all, I’d like to say that there are good and bad sides to the Nice Guy (from here on in I will refer to this subset of the male species as NG, not to be confused with HNG, or “horny net geek,” which is a different subset entirely), and sometimes the good is exactly opposite of the bad. Of course, as it often does, the bad is what stereotypically defines the NG, and makes a woman hate the idea of dating such a person.
I’ve created a comparison chart to show the differences that I can see. NG refers to the Nice Guy subset in the bad range of behaviors, while GG will refer to the “genuine” nice guy who falls primarily into the good range of behaviors.
NICE GUYS FINISH LAST
This is the pathetic whine of the entitled NG who feels that by saying X words and performing Y tasks, the woman (women) of his dreams should automagically adore him, instead of the “misogynistic conceited asshole” she’s dating now.
On the opposite end of the spectrum is the GG, who understands that everyone has different preferences, and just as he does not adore every potential partner that comes his way, neither will the women in his life. He also realizes that not every other man in the world is a misogynistic asshole, just because he gets the girls. His philosophy is two part:
- You win some, you lose some.
- Friendship is more important.
FALLING HARD AND FAST
I have written an entire post on this subject previously because of an experience with an NG, but I will keep this short. NGs tend to fall hard and fast for “the girl of their dreams,” most often without regard for her thoughts and feelings in the matter, and usually without truly getting to know her well.
This “love at first sight” is based primarily on external factors such as looks, public personality, and overall impressions. Sometimes it is also based on the unattainability of said girl, or her attachment to/friendship with the “anti-NG.”
This “love” is expressed through various methods, which on the surface resemble the genuine article, but ring false because they truly have no substance behind them, such as:
- Jokes. The NG uses a joke to express his need/want/desire/unhealthy obsession, so that if a woman were to reject him, he can claim he was just joking.
- Wildly flowery words. The NG uses praise and (often) public adoration to woo. Unfortunately, these exhortations are not genuine and if rebuffed, often turn snarky. Eg., Monday: My passion flower, the star in the heavens that lights my night. Thursday: Crazy bitch.
- Buying love. Many NGs resort to buying attention from women. Taking them out to dinner, offering to support them and getting them pretty gifts, often way too early in the relationship. The women who mistake these things for true love often find that these men would rather buy them a diamond ring than actually pay attention to their feelings.
The GG, on the other hand will take the time to get to know a woman (even the “woman of his dreams”) before presuming that he is in love. Even if he feels “love at first sight,” he is likely to announce that later – much later – because he is not interested in pressuring anyone into a relationship with him.
I HAVE TERRIBLE LUCK WITH WOMEN
This is the hallmark of the NG. Most, if not all of the women in his past have taken advantage of him. They have taken money, cheated on him, abused him, strung him along, and/or left him for an abusive asshole, all because he was “too nice.”
The GG realizes that some people are just not made for each other and that it takes two to tango. Some of his past relationship mistakes are his fault.
NO, REALLY, MOST GUYS ARE ASSHOLES
NGs hate the women that scorn them. Even more, they hate the men they scorn them for, even if they never had a chance with that woman to begin with.
Men who are successful with women are reviled or, in a weird twist of fate, sometimes adulated…
In kind of a sick, twisted guy-crush way, many NGs have “The Guy” whose cast-offs he takes whenever possible, or whose girlfriends are always sweet and loveable (and unattainable). He attaches himself to this man either as a best friend or sometimes from afar. He studies what this man does to emulate his tactics, to replicate his success with the distaff gender to no avail. He has the words, but not the substance.
NGs are insanely competitive with other men, sometimes openly, sometimes in a very sneaky way.
GGs tend to get along with men and women alike, basing their friendship on actual qualities and behaviors, rather than sex appeal and snap judgments. They are comfortable with men in relationships and out of them.
I WOULD NEVER TREAT YOU LIKE THAT
NGs are there for you when you need to talk about your current BF. They listen and support you, and tell you what an asshole he is and how he doesn’t deserve you.
You see, NGs secretly believe that deep down inside, if you would just give him a chance, he would never let you down. He doesn’t realize that you are not out searching for a backup plan, and even if you are, it probably won’t be him.
Any man who hurts you hurts you because he’s an asshole, a misogynist, inconsiderate, self-centered (the list goes on), not because sometimes everyone makes mistakes or because people in relationships argue sometimes and that’s just the way it goes.
You see, the NG would be the perfect mate because, well, he is just so darn nice.
GGs understand that you just want to vent and to talk. They do not use every argument you have with a man as a chance to drive a wedge between you or to get into your pants. Even if they adore you, that’s just not their style.
PEOPLE SHOULD LIKE ME FOR WHO I AM
This is one of those big lies that has a small kernel of truth in it. Yes, in general people should love you for who you are. However, that does not mean you cannot improve.
NGs don’t like to hear suggestions or criticism. Actually, 99.99% of people don’t like it, but NGs HATE it. You see, their egos are so fragile that they can’t stand to hear that they are not perfect just because they are nice.
GGs often get that way because they take it to heart when people say they can improve, and they do – whenever it falls within their value system.
WASN’T THAT CONCERT WONDERFUL?
NGs have this way of trying to develop a relationship based on the most tenuous of connections. For example, you are out with girlfriends at a concert, and see the NG, say hello and chat for a few moments. Now you are best friends, because you share that experience, that love of SmashBand.
Even better, NGs will look for any chance to drag this newfound connection out in front of everyone, going on and on about how much you both enjoy x and so, or letting you know he just got the new whatever, and you should get together and share it.
GGs look for things in common to build a bridge of friendship and common ground to you and from you. If they do mention it in front of others, it will be casually, not as the focus on a conversation designed to make you notice him.
HE GIVES YOU THE WILLIES
NGs get a bit creepy sometimes. In the lifestyle, we see this particular phenomenon most often in creepy subs. There are Creepy Doms, and they share this trait, but not the rest of the NG traits… and that is another subject for another time.
It’s hard to put a finger on it, but it is often one or several of the following things:
- They get too close, invading personal space. They do not see you flinch or tense.
- They ask intimate questions that they have no right to ask, and get pissy when you prefer not to answer. (“Because we are both adults here,” or “It’s all in innocent fun.”)
- They make sly insinuations, giving people the wrong impression about your relationship.
- They try too hard, they laugh too loud at your jokes, and/or they agree too often.
If any of these things are pointed out, it is turned around to be YOUR fault. You are being either self-centered or paranoid or both.
GGs would be appalled and apologize if they were told that they were doing any one of these things, much more so if they were told they had done them in combination.
YOU SENSE HIS BITTERNESS
NGs are kicked around by women. They make a point of telling you so. What they don’t tell you, but you can often sense a deep level, is that they have secretly condemned all women based on their experiences, and are as misogynistic as (sometimes more misogynistic than) the average woman-hating asshole.
If you listen, you can probably hear it in his tone of voice when he talks about how women have treated him in the past and are treating him in the present.
You can hear it when he triumphantly proclaims the demise of the relationship his ex left him for “I knew it wouldn’t last. She never should have left me for that asshole.”
You can hear it when he turns on you because you did not live up to his fantasy of accepting him just because he is a nice guy.
IT’S NOT ENOUGH
All in all, what NGs don’t understand is that being a nice guy is not the be-all, end-all. It is something that is expected in addition to other important qualities. Proclaiming what a nice guy you are just makes me want to ask, “So what?” I expect any person I choose to interact with to be “nice.” It’s the other personality traits that make you stand out.
IT’S NOT JUST THE MEN
Yeah, I’ve been calling them nice guys, but ladies, this applies to us, too. Nice girls are just as bad, sometimes worse. NGs (nice guys/nice girls) use their niceness as a shield to protect them from having to do or be better, from having to learn social interaction, from having to actually pay attention to others, from being honest with themselves, from creating true relationships, and most of all from having to take any blame for the things that go wrong in their relationships with others.
IT’S NOT JUST YOU
As I’ve written this, I’ve spotted behaviors that I have been guilty of in the past, and a few I will probably be guilty of in the future. Now that I have them written, it’s easier to see my own flaws, and to hopefully correct them as I go, so I can be more GG and less NG.