No More Mr. Nice Guy

Right. Going by the number of e-mails I’ve recieved, a few of you haven’t quite learned one of the lessons I’m always harping on here at Dr. NerdLove. So it’s time for me to quit coddling you and apply the hob-nailed boot of reality upside your heads.

So. Stop me if this Craigslist blast from the past sounds vaguely familiar:

You might vaguely remember a Platonic guy pal who always seemed to want to spend time with you. He’d tag along with you when you went shopping, stop by your place for a movie when you were lonely but didn’t feel like going out, or even sit there and hold you while you sobbed and told him about how horribly the (other) guy that you were fucking treated you.

At the time, you probably joked with your girlfriends about how he was a little puppy dog, always following you around, trying to do things to get you to pay attention to him. They probably teased you because they thought he had a crush on you. Given that his behavior was, admittedly, a little pathetic, you vehemently denied having any romantic feelings for him, and buttressed your position by claiming that you were “just friends.” Besides, he totally wasn’t your type. I mean, he was a little too short, or too bald, or too fat, or too poor, or didn’t know how to dress himself, or basically be or do any of the things that your tall, good-looking, fit, rich, stylish boyfriend at the time pulled off with such ease.

Eventually, your Platonic buddy drifted away, as your relationship with the boyfriend got more serious and spending time with this other guy was, admittedly, a little weird, if you werent dating him. More time passed, and the boyfriend eventually cheated on you, or became boring, or you realized that the things that attracted you to him weren’t the kinds of things that make for a good, long-term relationship. So, now, you’re single again, and after having tried the bar scene for several months having only encountered players and douche bags, you wonder, “What happened to all the nice guys?”

That, my friends, is the sound of the impotent nerd-rage of The Nice Guy. Ladies, you know this guy. He’s the one who follows you around saying he was your friend, all the while holding on to his not-so-secret agenda of trying to eventually woo you off your feet. Or, more accurately, hoping that you’d see he’s incredible and making the first move for him. Or at he’s hoping to at least wear down your endurance until you give in.

"Maybe if I cry a little this time... maybe then she'll say yes!"

Hey, nothing says “Love machine!” like a short, balding, overweight guy with entitlement issues! Am I right ladies?

If this sounds at all like you, then you need to know something:

YOU PUT YOURSELF THE FRIEND ZONE AND IT’S ALL YOUR FAULT.

It’s time to quit blaming women for liking “bad boys” and start figuring out what it is you can do about it.

“But women say they want to date a nice guy! I’m nice! Why won’t they date me?”

Let’s examine a so-called “nice guy” for a second. A “nice guy”, as the Craigslist ranter above points out, they’re the ones who’re running around with the girl, taking them shopping, buying them gifts, taking them out to dinner, spending all their time with them… and getting nowhere. And getting frustrated by getting nowhere despite all his effort. And crying angry impotent tears. And then sitting at home masturbating and using his tears as lube.

Let’s be honest: you’re not a friend. You’re an Orbiter. You can hover around her as long as you want, but you’re never going to actually come in contact with her heavenly body. Now, granted you do provide a valuable service. To start with, you’re providing free food, gifts and entertainment for others. And you provide a great warning to others.

When a girl says she wishes she could meet a nice guy, she’s saying one of two things:

1) “I should be attracted to a nice guy… but I’m not”

or

2) “I wish I could meet a guy who isn’t a complete dickbag but also actually excited me.”

This should tell you everything you need to know about being a “nice guy”.

Nice guys are passive.
Nice guys are clingy.
Nice guys are predictable.
Nice guys are boring.

Don’t get me wrong here. It’s not as though I’m saying women love being neglected, emotionally or physically abused or cheated on. Nobody is sitting around saying “I’ll call her a worthless whore. Bitches love being called worthless whores.” So what is it about these “bad boys” that revs a woman’s engine?

It’s all about behavior and attitudes. Let’s break it down.

Confidence:

They have a swagger in their walk. Their chests puff out. Their heads are held high. Their presence fills a room. They take up space. They speak loudly. They know, deep down in their souls, that they are, frankly, the shit. Their posture and body language tells you that this is a man who can’t hear you over the sound of how awesome he is.

Contrast this with your typical Orbiter. Your archetypal “nice guy”. They tend to be a little hunched over. They’re soft-spoken. They’re hesitant. They seem to fold in slightly on themselves. They don’t want to make too much trouble or attract too much notice. They prefer being alone with “their” girl because they know instinctively they can’t hold off any competition.

Nice guys have a tendency to be risk averse and a corresponding fear of rejection. They don’t want to take the chance that they’ll make a move and ruin everything, not when they could take their time and live in the vague hope that “maybe she’ll learn how awesome I am and come to me,” This frequently springs from a scarcity mentality, or what I like to call One-itis: the idea that there’s only this one girl who can be this perfect and if it falls apart, it’s all over and they’ll never know love again.

Bad boys? They know that they can have that woman if they want. They aren’t following women around, hoping for crumbs of approval, looking for the slightest hint that there is a chance that she likes him. They assume it’s already a foregone conclusion and make their move accordingly. If she doesn’t like him? Well, hell, there’s more women out there; time to move on and find someone better. This sort of abundance mentality keeps them from being completely hung up on the idea that they have one shot.

Aggressiveness:

See that critical part there? The one about making their move? Bad boys are aggressive. They’re assertive. They’re the types of people who will see what they want and just go for it. Time spent wringing one’s hands in agony over the possibility of being rejected is time that’s not spent actually getting the girl.

Nice Guys are frequently masters of the art of passive-aggressiveness. Because they don’t want to take risks, they put their efforts into manipulating the social contract instead. Nice Guys love to use the rule of reciprocity. This is part of why they put so much emphasis on being the ones who will take their girl “friends” shopping or out to dinner. After all, they’ve made a point of doing something for her… now she should to do something nice for them. It seems like the guy is doing something out of the kindness of his heart but, subconsciously or otherwise, they’re trading on the fact that the girl will feel a certain obligation to them in return.

Bad boys can be manipulative, yes. But the fact of the matter remains: they’re willing to be the ones to make an actual move. They don’t wait for the woman to take the initiative and they certainly don’t spend weeks, months, sometimes even years looking for a hint.

Does she have a boyfriend? Hey, she’s allowed to change her mind. It’s not like there’s a ring on that finger.

Nice guys wait for an opportunity. Bad boys make opportunities.

"Hey, you had your shot."

Uncontrollable:

Women love a challenge. Part of the appeal of a bad boy is the idea of being the one who can contain or even change him.

An example: Back in the day, Warren Beatty was a known rake and man about town. He cut a swathe through Hollywood’s female celebrities like a hot knife through butter. He was considered to be Hollywood’s most eligible bachelor and every gossip rag wanted to know who the woman would be who could finally tame him.

Notice that specific word choice. “Tame”. Like he’s some sort of wild beast and only some special woman has the ability to bring him to heel. And you know what? Most women wanted to be that special woman. That was part of his appeal; every woman wanted to take their shot at landing him.

Bad boys have attitude to spare. They’ll be challenging to women; they’ll be sarcastic, they’ll bust a girl’s (metaphorical) balls. They’ll play hard to get. They can be hard to pin down.  They don’t give in to emotional manipulation or blackmail, and they have a certain willingness to move on if they feel the need. Think of stray cats; they’ll show up to places that feed them on their own terms, allow someone one to give them some affection and then move on. They might come back. They might not.

Bad boys represent a challenge. Women see them and think “Oh, I can take him. I can fix him. I can domesticate him. I can totally make him mine.”

Nice guys, on the other hand, come pre-broken in. There is no challenge to them. Nice guys are so worried about ruining their chances with that “one special girl” that they’re afraid to look at them crosswise, never mind sass them back. They run too and fro like little puppies fetching things and wagging their tails in hopes of getting a treat.

How To Be “Bad”…

Too many “nice guys” eventually come to the conclusion that if girls like bad boys, well, then BY GOD they’re going to be bad! They’ll be the baddest of the bad. And the end result…

Well, it tends to go one of two ways. Some make a show being bad; they try to dress like rockstars, get big sunglasses and ripped jeans and walka round with a sneer, talking a big game that they could never pull off. It’s the nerd equivalent of watching a miniature poodle strut around with a spiked collar. The guys who go in the other direction end up skipping “Bad” all together and just become bitter assholes.

Thing is, there’s nothing wrong with being nice. The problem is being a “nice guy”. So don’t be a “nice guy”. Take those aspects of the bad boy that girls find so appealing and learn how to incorporate them without becoming the sort of jerk that they’re associated with

Be a little more sarcastic. Be a lot more confident. Be a little harder to pin down. Be a lot more aggressive.

Be a good guy.

With a creamy bastard center.

 

Comments

  1. All too often, underneath the guise of Nice Guy is a passive aggressive little shmuck who treats his friend has if she's a video game. If he plugs in enough time and money, he'll complete all the necessary quests, and then there will be sex! And believe me, women can tell.

    Also, certain types of Nice Guys tend to assign an Asshole label to any romantic competition who hurts his target, regardless of the source of that hurt. Did she come crying to her "friend" because the boyfriend did something thoughtless? He's an Asshole. Did she come crying because SHE did something thoughtless? He's an Asshole.

    • Squirrel: Indeed! And I say this as someone who formerly fell into the Nice Guy trap more than once.

      Every supposed nice guy needs to ask himself: if there was no chance for sex, EVER, would I still hang out with this girl? If she finds the guy of her dreams and it isn't me, will I be happy for her? If the answer is no to either question, you're not nice, you're an Asshole pretending to be her friend in order to access her vagina.

      If I had to quibble with this post, I don't think you have to be Uncontrollable to get the girl, or even Aggressive. Just Confident enough to be direct, and secure enough that you can take no for an answer and still be friends with her (if you want).

      Another take on this topic: http://thoughtcatalog.com/2011/on-the-supposed-fa

      • As a girl who actually likes "nice guys," (yes really) I totally agree with Mike.

        In high school, I really liked this particular "nice guy" who, I figured out later, really liked me as well. However, I was too shy to make the first move and so was he. Neither of us made the made the move and we drifted apart.

        Nice guys just need to make a move. I would have said to that guy if he had actually asked me to go out with him. I now realize and accept that I have to make the first move with nice guys guys, but I really hate it. Nice guys, please be gentlemen and make the first move.

        • Have you tried making a move first? I don't see why the guy is required to in this case.

          • Guys don't have to make the move, but if you're interested in a friend and she decides to date someone else or never asks you out then don't blame her for you being in the friend zone. Be direct, be honest and if she says no then be gracious.

    • I've found that guys who can't get a girl put themselves in the 'nice guy' category, when they are often just a different type of jerk. I've yet to meet a 'nice guy' who didn't offend me during every conversation with some misogynistic comment – thinking putting down other women's appearance will flatter me, talking about how nice he is to women (the same women he's just been putting down), etc.

      • Elizabeth says:

        And also, a lot of nice guys don't even think they have to be friends with you. If they're so much as, say, cordial to you at work, you are somehow putting them in the friend zone if you decide to date some guy who isn't them.

        I had a guy do that with me at work once. I was nice to him since he was new, so I assumed we were close friends and that I was going to end up dating him and tried to recruit a bunch of our coworkers in the scheme of getting us together. He never even bothered to find out if I was *single* (and at the time, I wasn't, not that I would have dated him I was), much less actually *interested*, before assuming all these things. It was extremely uncomfortable, but it was all subtle, behind-the-scenes crap while continuing to play the buddy-buddy card around me, so I wasn't sure how to respond. Eventually I just let it slip that I had a boyfriend, and he toned it down a bit, but never completely until he got in a relationship himself.

    • See my problem is, that I honestly am not looking for a person to have sex with. I don't WANT to actually date anyone. I have no problem being single, and am happy being single. I hang out with wayyy more girls than I do guys, and inevitably end up falling hard for my girl best friends. Once that happens, it sucks hard core, because I am already in "The Friend Zone" mostly because well, I was being her friend. I don't think I have ever looked at a girl when I first meet her, and be like "I want to date/go on a date with her!" I am always like "Dude, this girl is chill. We should hang out sometime" and so we do, and eventually I end up falling for them. Anyways, just saying not all "nice guys" are looking for sex or are actually jerks in disguise. Some of us start off wanting to be friends, and then changing later.

      • The thing is, this thing happens to girls all the time, too! And it's a rough situation to be in.

        Basically, this is my barometer: If you develop an interest in your opposite-sex friend, would you be honest with her and tell her how you feel? And if she rejected you, would you genuinely respect her wishes, give her as much space as she needed, and not passive-aggressively punish her for not liking you (i.e. making snide comments about her future boyfriends, "jokingly" talk about the possibility that she might change her mind, forcing you and her into date-like situations constantly — all things that have happened to me, by the way). If you don't act like a dick about it, chances are you're not a Nice Guy.

      • Sure it sucks when you like someone who is unavailable but that's when you move on. Seriously.

  2. Dr. NerdLove says:

    The Craigslist post I excerpted was dripping with that attitude. He literally stated that because he was nice to a girl, she *owed* him sex. And then he wondered why he was still single.

    As for your second point: The man reason why the competition gets labeled Asshole is because he's the competition! He could be the kindest, sweetest guy in the world, but he's still The Asshole because he's the reason* why Mr. Nice Guy isn't with the girl.

    *That is, he's the current rationalization Mr. Nice Guy is using.

    • VigilanteNighthawk says:

      I'm a bit fed up with these types of articles. They don't help, and do only more harm than good. It's more a matter of tone than content, but any real message. What you should be telling people is to respect themselves for who they are, and to look for someone who will do the same in return. That bit is in there, but you *really* have to read in between the lines to get at it. On the surface, however, this article comes more across as more as "You aren't good enough, so you have to get confidence like those guys who use women over there. Wait? What do you mean telling you that you aren't good enough because you lack confidence isn't going to help?"

      Here is the actual problem: Nice Guys @reg; need to understand that women aren't the only one's who chose. The man has to chose the woman, as well, and that goes far beyond simply thinking she's pretty, funny, cute, etc. There are a lot of qualities she'll lack that you will want or need that she'll lack, and there are a lot things about her you ultimately won't like. There is someone out there who will love you for who you are, but you have to respect yourself enough to and develop enough self knowledge to first wade through the women who, however great they may otherwise be, aren't going to be right for you.

      Instead, your post ultimately makes the "nice guy" worse. You've just confirmed that he's broken because, once again, he's failed to meet whatever standard society or nature has set. Telling someone who lacks confidence and then having a comments section filled with dumping on the very person you are trying to help will accomplish nothing.

    • "The man reason why the competition gets labeled Asshole is because he’s the competition! He could be the kindest, sweetest guy in the world, but he’s still The Asshole because he’s the reason* why Mr. Nice Guy isn’t with the girl."

      Wrong (at least in my case). :P

      When I label one of my competitors an asshole, it's because he's genuinely an asshole and said assholitude can be independently corroborated. Signs include:

      - Treating his girlfriend and other people like crap just because he can.
      - Being insensitive and inconsiderate.
      - Being full of himself.
      - Being physically and verbally abusive.
      - Cheating.

      There've been at least two hot girls at my former workplace I was interested in who had boyfriends that weren;t me. Was there some resentment, jealousy, and bitterness there? Of course, that's only natural. But I can't claim they're assholes because we get along well with each other and they treated me well and with respect. If I lose out to good guys, who am I to complain?

      On the other hand, there was British guy I worked with that I thought was a genuine douchebag. When someone I barely knew found out where I worked asked me if I knew him and I confirmed it, he then told me that the guy was an asshole because he treated his female friend like crap when they were together and dating.

      So yes. When two people arrive at the same conclusion, it's probably not just all in your head. :P

      • "Was there some resentment, jealousy, and bitterness there? Of course, that's only natural."

        Natural, huh? Curious to know makes that response more natural than any other?

        How about not wasting your time justifying feeling resentment, jealousy, and bitterness, and instead recognize that (not matter how "natural" those responses are) responding that way will just make everyone miserable? You get to stew in anger, you don't get any closer to the girl…and if the guy is truly bad news, you are failing to genuinely help the girl out of a bad situation. (As that would take sympathy, understanding, and selflessness–which are completely antithetical to jealousy, bitterness, and resentment.)

      • The fact that you call him a competitor at all raises a big red flag.

    • HayabusaJack says:

      I don't think you understand what the word "literally" means. Not once did the post say he was owed sex. I read it like all the romance movies and novels that are eaten up by women. Women chase one bad boy after another until they realize the best guy is right there all along. The guy is trying to be that "best guy".

  3. I completely agree with your last paragraph (well I agree with everything else as well) but that really drove it home. "Nice Guys" need to understand that a girl also wants a man who acts like a man. Just like for the most part we want a woman who acts like a woman. I don't go out looking for a masculine woman so why would a girl go out looking for a feminine man?

    • Dr. NerdLove says:

      Actually, there's a biological reason for women who date more feminine men. It has to do with their fertility cycle; women who are ovulating tend to want more masculine men. Women who aren't, tend to be more attracted to feminine men. There's some question as to how much of an effect birth control pills – which trick the body into thinking it's pregnant – also affect women's tastes on the feminine/masculine spectrum.

      • hahaa I stand corrected!

      • It's also important to remember that there are people who simply deviate from gender norms, just as there are people who are attracted to the same sex, in defiance of what we often think of as the default biological explanations for everything.

      • Elizabeth says:

        Actually, not all brands of birth control work the same way; I still get periods on my mine, so I'm pretty my body doesn't think I'm pregnant. Rather, they trick the body into basically just skipping the ovulation part of the cycle, similar to how women are when they first start menstruating (which usually beings a few years before ovulation does).

    • I was lucky to hook a nice guy who's also a jerk. : ) He's still passive-aggressive and has confidence issues, but that has more to do with his visual impairment than anything else. He's so great. Hooked me on his sporadic compliments, "Fuck You"s and a crazy open mind.

    • I beg to differ. Given the choice between a masculine man and an effeminate man, I would be all over the effeminate man.

      That's actually part of the problem for me. Effeminate men have so become my "type" that I can't even see a masculine guy– like my ex, for example– as being attractive.

    • Sorry but I take an issue with the idea of there being a "Manly/Womanly" way of acting for men and women; For starters, men who act any way at all are acting like men, one could argue, so when I hear somebody say that "Men should act like men" I get irritated by the presumption that 1. there is an objective definition of how a gender should act and 2. any other type of personality/behavior is a sign of a lesser quality of manhood.
      In other words, when I hear somebody say something like "Now that's a REAL man/woman!" I label that person as close-minded.

      • Completely agree Adrian. Gender is not linear, and the attributes attached to it are mere stereotypes, and stereotypes apply to no one. Pop biology and pop evolution has a lot to answer for.

        Whenever I hear someone say ‘men/women should act like men/women’, I immediately feel that person is lacking in the critical thought department. I pretty much presume they lack intelligence and self awareness, and are probably quite boarish, strangley enough, they often are.

  4. glad you got Cyrus in that first picture

  5. You have pretty much summed up the way I've been acting for the just under a mouth or so, being a classic example of a "nice guy". I've hit 25 and still single, it's kind of been driving me a bit insane.

    thanks for the advice.

  6. Being single isn't all that bad. Relationships are a pain in the ass (I know because I was in one for way too long). Plus, I'm terrible with women (the only reason I ever even had a girlfriend was because we met through other people). I eventually just gave up all hope and would rather just avoid women now.

    • >> Plus, I’m terrible with women (the only reason I ever even had a girlfriend was because we met through other people). <<

      You realize that's how most guys meet women, right?

    • A mutual friend introduced me to my now-husband. If your friends like someone, she's probably gonna be someone you'll like too.

  7. "How terrible?" you ask. Well, I girl working at a mall booth whom I was attempting (key word there) to flirt with told me she was under house arrest. She might have been telling the truth, but I'm pretty sure it was her way of making me get lost. When a woman makes up something like that to get you away from her, you know something is wrong.

    • Yep, and speaking as a woman, most of us do not want to be hit on at work because a) we feel pressured to not be assertive, because we're interacting in a context of the service employee/customer scenario and b) we can get in trouble when our boss comes by because it may look like we're spending our shift chatting instead of making sales/doing paperwork.

  8. Ha! I love this article. In fact, all of the stuff in here has been pretty good, but this is definitely the most specific. For years I've been falling into the trappings of being the "nice" guy. My mistakes started off HUGE. Slowly I've been improving as I come to my senses, but this is a perfect sum-up of everything I felt, and everything I'm starting to understand to get better. And best of all, Doctor NerdLove is FREE! Thank you man!

  9. Goddamn it Harris, why are you so freaking awesome? :)

    This was entertaining and informative as hell, thanks mate

  10. Room Temp says:

    Yep sounds like the major crush I had in high school. Eventually we became friends and I had resigned that in my mind with a wouldn't mind if she wanted sex thing. I kinda miss that friendship now.

  11. Then there's what happens if the girl gives in and does date the "Nice Guy." One or more of the following will occur:

    1. It "ruins the friendship." She's told him this many times as a means of deflecting his advances, and what it really means is: "eventually, we're going to break up, and it will go badly, and I'll never want to speak to you again."

    2. She realizes (very quickly) that she's really not into him, but she feels like she owes it to him to make an effort to make it work, because, well, he did all those nice things for her, and doesn't he deserve a chance? So she sticks it out for a little while longer, and the longer it goes on, the more obligated she feels to him, because he keeps doing all those nice puppy-dog type things to keep her feeling obligated, until finally she realizes that she's absolutely miserable in the relationship, because what she really wants is a boyfriend and not a "best friend," so she breaks up with him and it "ruins the friendship."

    3. Scenario #2 becomes a long-term, protracted affair, in which the "Nice Guy" starts showing his true colors as a controlling, manipulative asshole (much like all the ones he decried for hurting the girl in the past), because all along, he's been afraid of losing her, and that fear has been the motivation for his behavior in the relationship. She either stays out of the aforementioned guilt, bottling up all her misery, or she finally gets the chesticles to break it off, even though she's convinced he'll jump off a bridge if she does. Because at that point, she kinda wishes he would. Either way, it "ruins the friendship."

    The commonality in all these situations (beyond the obvious friendship-ruining) is that if the girl gets herself involved with the "Nice Guy," she will have to be the one to end things. He will never leave her. And, if she's been hurt in the past, the assurance that he'll never break her heart can be attractive at first. Thing is, he'll never break her heart because she'll never truly give it to him. Because this is a relationship based on guilt, not on love, mutual attraction, or respect.

    Ladies: do yourselves a favor – keep Mr. Nice Guy at arm's length.

    • THIS SO HARD. I have had my heart broken enough times to learn that self-proclaimed "nice guys," tend to be manipulative, emotionally-abusive assholes.

      Maybe the orange man in the Ed Hardy t-shirt has a heart of gold.

      I KID, but seriously folks, if you have to declare that you're a "nice guy" and "those bitches don't know what they need," you're probably not that genuinely nice to begin with. This advice seems sound, just be a good person, and trust me, women (or men!) are able to see that.

      • “…those bitches don’t know what they need…”

        Yeah, if there's ever a warning sign — on par with a fire truck siren — that a a guy doesn't respect any element of a woman's independence or ability to think for herself, it's saying something like this.

        Little wonder such a person would end up being controlling and abusive. :(

    • "chesticles" is the best word I've heard for.. I don't know what it is, but it's genius.

    • This SO MUCH. I got stuck in Scenario #2 & 3 because my "Nice Guy" actually got up the balls to ask me out, and I figured it was worth a shot. After a couple of years I realized how miserable I was and broke it off, but was too much of a baby to break it clean so we tried to be friends.

      He's STILL the bitter asshole that DrNerdLove referenced in the last paragraph. I wish I had kept my nice guy at arm's length, but at least he introduced me to the friend who would introduce me to my husband!

    • Ladies, if the guy wants to jump off a bridge, I say let him. Odds are that he won't do it.

      I'm speaking from personal experience here. If someone has to get you to stay with him by literally holding himself hostage, if NOTHING ELSE was a big red screaming fire truck siren, that's it. And that's when you grab your stuff, leave, and never look back.

      If you're still really concerned for them, send him to a mental hospital for psychiatric help, and then move on with your life.

      • Elizabeth says:

        Well, any anti-domestic-violence organization will tell you that threats of suicide if you leave them (or do other things they don't like, for that matter) are pretty much one of the biggest red flags there is that you're in an abusive relationship.

      • Hi, I've felt that it was really important to mention this for people who might read this comment that what this person is saying is really irresponsible, 90% of people who commit suicide will tell others before they do it one way or another (It might be an all out threat, or it might be just a joke). If someone threats to commit suicide call a suicide hotline.

        • Yeah exactly, call a suicide hotline on their manipulative ass. They can spend 72 hours being watched and maybe it'll teach them to not hold themselves hostage and mess with people's heads.

  12. well, that was AWESOME

  13. Dr. NerdLove says:

    Originally, I was going to post this as the subject starter, but frankly, it's a fairly large graphic, and that would have made an already long article even LONGER.

    But to help sum up what a LOT of us are saying about being "Mr. Nice Guy", I give you Randal Munroe's XKCD: http://xkcd.com/513/

  14. MisterTibbs says:

    DNL, do you shoot the photos in your blog?

  15. I too am guilty of playing the puppy/ doormat/ "just friend"/ Mr. Nice Guy on more than one occastion. Fellas, if she wanted a puppy, she'd go get one from the shelter. My senior prom experience was made shitty because of this. I took this girl I had a crush on to my senior prom. My affection was very obvious in hind sight. I would go see her every morning before school by her locker just to say hi and what not. Kinda like a puppy. I did the over-texting thing that comes off as desperate and annoying. I asked her to prom over the phone, which was a sign of low confidence on my part at the time. She said yes and all was right with the world. Or so I thought. She got me to wear pink to this thing. I was reluctant to do so, but I did it anyway out of fear I'd dissappoint. I payed for a limo to take us to the dance. Maybe a few days or so before the dance, she asked me if some of her friends could ride with us in the limo, The car was meant for just me and her. Her friends hadn't chipped in for the cost, which at the time being unemployed was alot for me. What I should hae said was, "do they have Limosine money?" But that's not what happened. Like a sheet, I folded and said yes but they ended up not riding with us anyway. When we got to the dance, my date danced and grinded like mad with pretty much everybody else but me, save for a 5 second grind for myself. After the dance, we went to IHOP to eat. In the car ride on the way there, we talked for a little bit, but then some dude calls her and they talk the whole time on the way to the restaurant. She apologized when we got there saying it was a "friend" who called. But no guy calls a girl at booty call hours and has a "friendly" conversation. Her phone was kinda loud. On top of that, our moms had to go with us to the restaurant because at the time we were minors out past curfew. So I don't even count that as an actual date, and what was supposed to be an awesome night went to shit. But you Know what? That serves as a learning experience. Hind sight is cool like that.

    P.S. Hey Doctor, you should patent that good guy with a creamy bastard center as a candy bar. I can see it now… Fudge covered bastards, cookies and creme bastards, and nougut. This site is awesome. I can't wait for more.

  16. Hm. Strange. This explains why when I'm normal with girls they seem interested, and when I try and soften up they seem to become less interested.

    Normally I'm very sarcastic, somewhat emotionally distant, and I make slightly mean comments in a joking fashion. That's my personality when I decide to be social. And when I act like that, girls seem interested in me. However, when I decide it's time to maybe be nicer and less sarcastic, all of a sudden the interest seems to lessen enormously. It makes a little more sense now that you put it this way.

    • Also, if you say the sarcastic is part of who you are, the trying to be nicer sounds like it is fake. And if the girl liked you for who you were originally, she isn't going to like you much when your personality suddenly shifts

    • Women who like sarcasm hate to see it suddenly gone. I grew up in a witty, sarcastic household (friendly sarcasm), and when people suddenly can't banter with me, it seems strange.

  17. I have issues with this. On the one hand, sure, being passive, clingy, predictable, and boring doesn't sound that hot. But being a male stereotype is also very unsexy in my view. The "would I hang out with him/her if there wasn't a chance of sex"-rule is a good one, but a lot of the advices here rubs me and my queer-feminist attitude towards gender the wrong way.

  18. The guys who think they're "nice guys" are usually not that nice. It is not nice for him to continue to push for a relationship when the girl says she only wants to be his friend– it shows he's either not listening or her has no self-respect. It is not nice to give and give and give to a girl just so she'll put out– it feels like prostitution. It is not nice make the girl feel like a mean person because she did what she found enjoyable in the relationship while the guy did not– it's the guy's job to not send mixed messages and have boundaries. It makes the "nice guy" things he did into mean guy things because it sends the message that guys will only be nice to a girl in order to get into her pants. Plus, it muddies the line of all of the real guy/girl friendships by making people paranoid about the other person's intentions. And let's face it, even if you want to be just friends with a person of the opposite sex, that doesn't mean you want him or her to feel compelled at every opportunity to tell you how much he or she does not want to sleep with you. 

    A fake nice guy becomes creepy clingy if the girl does nice things for them. If she makes him dinner or laughs at his jokes, he escalates his feelings big-time because she's they only girl who could ever possibly feel that way about him. That's an icky amount of pressure. She shouldn't feel like she has to like him for fear of emasculating him or turning him into a bastard. Back to the confidence thing, it's much hotter to like the guy because you agree with him that he's a catch. If someone's willing to sell a Mercedes for $50, you're gonna wonder what's wrong with the car. 

    Basically, a cool girl chooses her partner because she likes him and doesn't need him to disingenuously bend himself over backwards in order to be wooed. A decent guy clearly states his intentions in a relationship and listens when a girl states her intentions. Both people have self-respect and like that the other person knows how to say no to be true to him or herself. Neither the girl nor the guy is being nice when the guy gets laid because the girl feels guilty about the lopsided effort in the relationship. 

    The reverse is also true. The girl that sleeps with the guy to get him to like her when he "doesn't want a relationship" is not being cool. The guy doesn't deserve to be called a jerk just because she didn't listen to him. It's a different kind of back door method (so to speak,) which also never works.

  19. While this is a well-written piece, I beg to differ slightly on the best way to solve the problem of "nice" guys. My advice to guys? Don't be nice. Be kind. There's a difference. Nice, as others have said, implies that you expect something in return. Kindness is done selflessly, without thought of reward. It's altruism, it's compassion, and it's what works. I try to be the kindest, most thoughtful person I can. While it works against being a "bad boy", and doesn't stand out as much, it still works extremely well. Women find the concept of a guy who *isn't* a douchebag, and shows no signs of becoming one, rather alluring, apparently. I rarely get friend-zoned; in fact, it's usually the opposite that happens. I come into contact with a women with the expectation of *only* being friends, only for her to develop feelings for me. It can be a bit awkward at times, especially when it isn't entirely mutual, but it's also lead to some great relationships. Furthermore, knowing this has given me a huge confidence boost, which as the Good Doctor has said, is key to attracting partners.

    • This is an excellent comment. Nearly all of the "Nice GuyTM" characteristics are really manipulation tactics that come close to the creeper zone.

      To the "be kind" statement, I would also like to add, "Be YOURSELF." Let who you really are (including what you really like) show through in your interactions. If she isn't attracted to you when you are being yourself, a relationship with her is never going to work. Who you really are will eventually become apparent to her, and if that isn't someone she is attracted to she will eventually break up with you.

    • Helen Huntingdon says:

      This really is the best way to solve the problem. Nobody actually wants a creamy bastard center around for long.

    • I definitely agree with this comment. The article was entertaining and made some good points but as someone said previously, you have to read between the lines in order to see some truth behind what the person is writing about and when it comes to dating, most of us are clueless enough to need the truth unveiled. Kindness and compassion are the keys to attracting any person no matter your relationship. It helps in work, in friendships, in family relations, and especially with romantic situations. A kind man is far more appealing than either a nice guy or a bad boy.

    • Elizabeth says:

      Yeah, this. I actually tend to be more into shy guys than the confident, smarmy kinds, although I would obviously rather date some guy who is too confident than too needy. There are women who are into the types of guys that Nice Guys (TM) think they are. The problem is that they AREN'T those guys. The reason we're rejecting them is that we can see through their act. We know when someone's being genuinely kind to us vs. just playing nice to get into our pants.

    • Thank you! That's the "other way." I don't want a "nice guy", but I do want a Kind Man, someone who is secure in himself and knows what he wants. I want him, but ONLY if he wants me! I have had the best rejections from Kind Men, and they remain good friends to this day.

  20. Hey, just read several of your posts, and I must say, they are awesome and entertaining. (Did not intend to comment on this one in particular, but this happens to be the last one I'm going to have time to read today… well… maybe just one more.)

    First of all… I totally thought you were a girl at first D: And I don't even know why because I recently realized I sometimes assign 'man' to 'doctor' (even if said doctor had the same last name as me…)

    Oh wait, it's probably because guys are usually dicks that actually think women's rights is a joke and all women should stay in the kitchen and make them some goddamn sandwiches.

    But you're not one of those people so stay cool, man. Peace.

  21. This seems like ok romantic advice, somewhat outdated for the modern world, except for being confident, emotionally healthy, and making a move. People should treat each other with respect, including romance. The idea that men should adhere to the macho role of being a manipulative fantasy, a bit of a jerk with a secret heart of gold, is only useful if it fits the situation. When you're dating, remember that you're not dating an entire gender; you're trying to date someone specific. Why are you interested in them? Why should they be interested in you? If they won't give you the time of day unless you're a mysterious bad boy, ask yourself if that's who you are or want to be for them. (It's ok to be a fantasy for someone, as long as you both understand what the truth is.) If it isn't, save yourself the trouble. Find someone who wants the same thing out of a relationship as you, whether it's a short fling that burns bright or a strong love that lights a lifetime. It's no prize to lure someone into a bad relationship, and it's no fun being someone you aren't.

    • "Girls" (are you talking about women under 18?) aren't a monolithic type.

      For all the genuinely "nice guys" out there (not passive aggressive jerks who think they're nice) don't worry about being neglected or not finding a woman. If you're genuinely kind, caring and empathetic, you'll find someone. Don't use buying stuff as a manipulative tactic, because that's what it is, manipulation.

      "Does she have a boyfriend? Hey, she’s allowed to change her mind. It’s not like there’s a ring on that finger."

      That raises a big jerk flag to me. Respect is definitely a plus.

      As someone who's dating a "nice guy" (people are always more than archetypes, so I'm not even sure what the hell this means) and who knows many women repulsed by "bad boys" (I grew out of them as soon as I left high school…which is why I'm wondering what audience this is meant for) let me assure you that all you have to be is yourself…and if you're genuinely a manipulative jerk who makes sarcastic comments and puts her down a lot, then yeah, you're screwed. You guessed it, bad boys are more likely to be assholes.

      "Bad boys represent a challenge. Women see them and think “Oh, I can take him. I can fix him. I can domesticate him. I can totally make him mine.”"

      Yes, ladies, we all want to domesticate men. Apparently. If you're in a relationship because someone sees you as a rehabilitation project, then get out.

      When women look at men they want an intimate partner. There's no ideal type, and the idea that men need to be aggressive, sarcastic and not "clingy" to get with women is wrong. There's a reason why "bad boys" are miserable too. Women are different. Women don't want the same thing in their relationships. Some women want something casual, and some women want long term security. Some women want someone who'll treat them like a princess, and some women want their relationships to look more like a debate match.

    • Yep.

  22. As I've been witness to in my life (and on both sides of the coin), getting what you want (whatever that may be) out of your dating life all comes down to confidence. However confidence is not something you can just give yourself. The only thing more annoying than over-confidence is false confidence. When it comes to self-confidence, the best thing anyone — nerd, geek, or otherwise — can do for themselves is to take care of yourself physically.

    Yes, it requires a little bit of discipline and hard work; but as soon as you reach a point where you feel like you've got some confidence in yourself (the way you look, the way you feel, your energy level, etc) everything becomes easier, you get more done (or more attention, or whatnot) and you — guess what — gain confidence! It's a snowball effect, and it doesn't take living in the weight room to accomplish.

    - Stop eating so much sugar.
    - Actually drink water more than non-water.
    - Hit the gym or the community center or your basement (where the unused weight set is, not where the PS3 is) 3 hours a week.
    - Little things make a big difference!
    - Don't expect instant results.

    Just some hopefully helpful advice from a guy that used to have no confidence but learned how to find some.

  23. "It seems like the guy is doing something out of the kindness of his heart but, subconsciously or otherwise, they’re trading on the fact that the girl will feel a certain obligation to them in return."

    It's not just that confidence is more attractive, either. This also ties back to the articles on being a creeper, and being a threat…

    Confidence is _safer_. The guy who thinks I'm attractive, but if I don't want him, "you know, whatever…" That guy doesn't come across as someone who is going to hurt me, because why on earth would he? He has other avenues for sex and he doesn't have anything to prove. He's not likely to feel any need to assert his power over me because he's already comfortable with the power he knows he has. It's a disarming lack of motivation to hurt me, and that in turn inspires my receptivity to him. Doesn't mean he won't trip my threat meter later, but he's at least got my attention in a positive way.

    The Just-Friends Guy who lacks confidence and doesn't ever make a move? He's doesn't have a disarming lack of motive. He has a promise ("I just want to be your friend") that, if he does want to date me, is a lie. And that you got through my defenses by lying to me? That is terrifying, and threatening, and not going to get you anywhere.

  24. "Take those aspects of the bad boy that girls find so appealing and learn how to incorporate them without becoming the sort of jerk that they’re associated with"

    Oh, yeah, and how does one do that Mr. Wizard? Maybe years and years of trying and failing lead to a point where there's no confidence left. Maybe even the slightest use of aggressiveness has been shown to make them flee in the other direction. And maybe by my nature I'm not unpredictable. What then genius? You make a lot of high-handed observations, but they're very vague. I get sick and tired of people like you pontificating and saying, "Well all you need to do is this very vague thing".

    • Dr. NerdLove says:

      Well if you'd read the article you might have a better idea on how to incorporate the aspects of the "Bad Guy" that women find appealing into your everyday life. But let's take a moment here.

      If women are turning tail and running at "slightest use of aggressiveness", then you might want to consider that perhaps you're doing something wrong. There's a fine line in not waiting for someone to make the first move and, say, trying to maul their face the instant you think there's an opening.

      In fact, if over years of trying you have been having issues then you might need to consider that the common denominator in all of this is, frankly, you.

      Your sterling attitude isn't exactly something that women are going to find appealing under the best of circumstances, and frankly isn't really suggesting much in the way of self-awareness. You – and really, most men – need to learn to take an honest and analytical look at yourself and start trying to pin down exactly what it is you're doing that makes women run.

      • Spiffy response. You read two paragraphs and have my whole life figured out. For your information, women actually love me. As a friend. And nothing else. Their faces light up (and I'm not using hyperbole in the slightest here) when I enter a room and they smother me with huge hugs. And then I shake hands with or hug their husband, fiance, boyfriend, etc. They talk about how much they miss me when they don't see me, blah blah blah. It's happened my whole life. Having trouble with their fella? Bestie pissing them off? They call me right up. Catch a film? Have a drink? Sure. Anything else….not so much.

        And believe me I've taken an honest analytical look at myself, with the help of a trained professional no less. My venom here is directed at the flippant, high-handed way you give your advice. So if I'd just read the article I'd understand? Actually I did. Just think you're full of it.

        • That girl that hates says:

          you sound like a lonely, self righteous asshole. and if you opened your mouth at me i would turn tail too. GEEEEZ.

          You've obviously had your fair share of rejection, but don't take it out on Dr. NERDlove for your failures.

          Maybe he he doesn't word his advice the perfect way but that doesn't make him a jerk for your failures.

          hiding behind a computer sounds like a pretty regular thing you do.

          GROW UP.

  25. There are a lot of things to like in this post, but sentences like "Women love a challenge" aren't among them. Blanket statements like that immediately set off my bullshit meter — for one thing, Nice Guys ™ make blanket statements like that. Viewing women as a monolith is sexist and wrong — plenty of women don't want a challenge. Our culture romanticizes changing the bad boy, but not everyone actually wants to do that. There are loads of exceptions to pretty much every blanket statement, especially when it comes to humans.

    That said, I heartily agree that Nice Guys ™ should ditch the entitlement and work on the positive qualities "bad boys" have — self-confidence and assertiveness. Being happy with who you are and not being desperate to get into a relationship is attractive. Being a whiny, entitled, desperate doormat only attracts people who are also mentally unhealthy.

    I used to be married to a Nice Guy ™ — until I worked on myself and got to a better place mentally and realized how toxic our relationship was. I'm now with a guy who is nice, which is a totally different thing than a Nice Guy ™.

    • Helen Huntingdon says:

      I agree, and further, I seriously doubt telling the nerd guys things like, "Women love a challenge," gets them anywhere closer to a date. In my long experience of being surrounded by lonely engineering dudes, blanket statements like that just result in the flip side of the same coin. Instead of,

      "Hey! I'm being such a Nice Guy™ here! WHY DON'T YOU LOVE ME?"

      they ricochet over to,

      "Hey! I said a few jackass things and then ran away. I'm being a challenge over here! WHY DON'T YOU LOVE ME?"

      From the perspective of a woman interested in a relationship with an adult, not a man-sized toddler, these look pretty much identical. And they are pretty much identical, since they both contain the notion that you should be able to press the right buttons and your lady-love will swoon into your arms. Better to skip being a Nice Guy™ and skip being a challenge, and focus on kindness and reciprocity.

  26. I just want to chime in as one more girl who's been run through all kinds of hoops by "nice guys." See…I'm a geek, and a pretty nice, nonpsycho attractive female. And no, that's actually not any fun for me. I also hate hurting anyone's feelings and have dated more men than I care to admit who were rotten for me because…drumroll please….they were just so darn "nice" and I didn't want to be "mean" and I should give them a chance. At this point I shy away from a LOT of male friendships because I am so tired of "really it's ok that we're just friends…stalk, stalk, stalk, stalk…" It's not attractive. I feel that if I can be honest about "Hey I'm not into you that way" or "Ummm, you did notice I'm already dating someone" I should NOT be guilt tripped into feeling like I am personally responsible for the entire emotional health of someone that I've already flat out said no to.Part of that is about me learning to sever toxic relationships rather than letting the guys cling…but really the point is start with finding a way to be happy with yourself and don't lie. If you can't just be friends don't say you can and try to guilt the girl into feeling bad for you because it's not fair. On the other side of that a lot of us girls do like sincerely nice guys, you do just have to make a move. The last man I was in a relationsip with was quite a bit older than me, balding, yadda yadda yadda. We only broke up because he persisted in never making any moves even once we were already dating and I eventually started feeling like he just wasn't into me! So…I sense a theme in these articles that I like….be honest, be yourself, be sincerely kind, and for heaven's sake just be aware of the girl you're talking to whether that means you need to back away or take a risk and pursue!

  27. I hate it when guys say this, but are really manipulative little creeps. I try to be a good guy and help all my friends like this if I have time, regardless if they're guys or girls or even straight or gay (although I lost a good friend because he felt like I was leading him on even though I'm not gay). At this point in my life, I've gotten used so many times, I'm terrified of romantic relationships and prefer friendships. It's easier that way for me and gives me more time for studying.

    Science wise DrNerdLove, you're dead on. I'm getting a PhD in neuroscience dealing with pair bonding and can say there is a physiological basis for this. "Bad Boys" tend to have more testosterone on average, making them more aggressive and outgoing. Women, usually nothing happens 100% of the time, subconsciously see this and think more T=good genes so that's who I want to father my kids so they have the best chance of survival. The caveat to this is if women are on the combined oral contraceptive pill (I'm sure other hormonal contraceptives do this but I've only seen research on the COCP). It tricks the body into thinking it's pregnant. This makes the women tend to want "tamer" men because they are usually better at child rearing. Extra-paternal behavior is the norm in animals, it's not suprising that all people tend to be sexually attracted to one type but like to hang out with another. Really good article Doc.

  28. I have to say that I like what I'm reading from the article itself and a lot of the comments. In high school, I was bullied more or less daily for 2 years and then another 2 years occasionally and ended up approaching life with a chip on my shoulder. Walking around I'd be hunched over, hands shoved firmly in my pockets and more or less walking around looking on the ground. Once I got over my anger and lost the damn chip on my shoulder, I noticed something great. People were actually willing to interact with me.

    I'll be the first to admit I'm not the most attractive guy out there, not by any stretch of the imagination do I even remotely resemble a guy that is smooth with the ladies nor do I dress that well when I'm just going out and messing around with friends or going to the shops but, admittedly very rarely, I have noticed the odd girl looking at me. Now, I don't know if I'm reading too much into the looks, but I choose to think that they might be interested in getting to know a bit more about me, regardless of whether it's in a romantic or a platonic friend nature. For all I know she could be looking at me thinking "I can't believe this guy doesn't realise he's got a huge booger hanging outta his nose!" and trying not to belly laugh, while I'm thinking I'm the bees knees because a hot girl looked at me and smiled. Simple things like walking with a straight and natural posture helps. Don't shove your hands in your pockets and look down while walking. Look up and look around! It's a beautiful day, clear blue skies, the buildings are amazing, how the fuck did we as humanity construct this. Society seems to get more cynical and negative everyday and it just crushes everyone so it's a matter of perspective and let's be honest, no one wants to hang around someone that's a downer all the time. Just being happy and joyful in and of itself will improve chances of finding friends and dates.

    I think the most important things are to be happy, don't prejudge, don't take yourself too seriously and just be yourself. As nerds (the guys anyway, don't know if it's the same for the girls), most of the time we over-analyse everything and come off as a bit rehearsed and a bit awkward which is probably the worst thing as far as dating goes. Natural and comfortable is the best way to go. Don't dominate conversation with things that you like and not let her talk about things she likes, but by the same token don't let her talk about everything and make her feel like she's dominating the conversation. Let things flow naturally and leave out the crass and rude jokes that we all know.

  29. Stereotyping women much? You do good analysis, so step back and run this post under your analysis — understand what's wrong with it. You've identified a legitimate problem and have given it a nice interpretation. But you then reduced it to a single situation with a single cause and a single (sorta) solution.

    Example: Mr Nice Guy might just be worshipping a "wrong girl": the early crush that, going unresolved for some time, becomes an ideology. Changing to fit her perception of nice-vs-bad can end in alienating her or truly-compatible others (once free of her emotional grip) by being "not yourself".

    If the goal, as it is usually assumed (erroneously for many), is to find "the one", then consider this: every past girlfriend, crush, or relationship that did not end up in life partnership is a failure. Now take a minute to rethink your approach for your next installment of "stereotypical advice for a stereotypical problem by a stereotypical blogger".

    (Remember that this is referring to this post only, as I and I believe others have enjoyed your analysis on other posts, thus I think you are capable of putting together something great here if you took another swing)

  30. Dr. Bastard says:

    "I was your best friend! We were so close! WHY don't you want me?"

    There's a saying that goes "Friends are the family that we choose." If you're a guy and you're my friend, I think of you as a brother. And where I come from, we don't fuck our kin.

    • Logical error. Your partner is your lover and your best friend.

      There's nothing wrong with not fancying your best friend (I don't fancy mine – might be nice if I did), but the reasons for not fancying them are often not because they're your best friend.

      Fucking your best friend? Yes please! That's exactly what I want – someone who is my real, genuine best friend, is terribly hot (to me) and I can build a future with.

      • Ughhh. Love it when people uses phrases like "Logical error!" to denigrate someone's opinion.

        That's great if your partner is your best friend. But for some people that's just not how things are…or have to be.

  31. Being on the receiving end of the "nice guy" manipulation, I agree with this article and the advice the doctor gives. And to the ladies who encounter these nice guys and their advances, if they don't get the message the first time, don't try to "stay friends" and hope their feelings for you change overnight. I made that mistake once and it was a long drawn out dramatic experience that made me realize that being friends was never his goal and will never be that way.

  32. Can we please stop talking about 'bad boys' – it's a load of rubbish. Yes, there is a distinct difference between a 'nice guy' and a 'guy who is nice'.

    A secret : the 'bad boys'? They're playing at being bad, too. People (not just women) don't actually want someone who is genuinely bad – a lot of this is about sexual dominance, attitude and appearance.

    It comes down to how much you're prepared to compromise to be with someone. You will be judged based on your clothes, body, height, personality, conversation, friends, places you hang out, activities you enjoy and a whole lot of other stuff. If you're spending a lot of time frustrated about a lack of relationship this means that either a) you need to change some of the above factors to attract a mate and/or b) your life generally needs a reboot.

    I have a particularly poor record in finding and maintaining relationships. This is not because I'm clueless about what's required to attract someone – it's due to not willing to make the trade off between a very active social life, not caring a lot about various mainstream interests and compromising that just to find a relationship. I did get offered a serious relationship recently, and turned it down because it wasn't right for us. A relationship will happen, but I'm not wasting lots of time looking for one – that's the choice I make understanding the consequence. It may not be what you want.

    I would make three particular points about the joys of the dating game and being an adult :

    1) As an adult, it is your responsibility to communicate clearly and unambiguously how much you like someone and to maintain some form of relationship (this includes friendship) if the level to which you like each other is unequal and the relationship is worth it. Learn to give and accept 'I don't fancy you' without asking for more detail, and understand that difficult emotionally draining conversations are the price of maintaining all levels of relationship (including friendship) at times. The other person is worth the effort, right?

    2) Don't shoot yourself in the foot unless you have to. Whilst it's good to be yourself, many identities come loaded with prejudice prospective partners simply will not bother to challenge. These include : definitely not wanting children, refusing to have anything to do with very popular activities in society, any suggestion (for men wanting women) that you are not sexually dominant (yes, there are dominant women, but in general unfortunately the stereotype of women being submissive in bed and dating tends to hold), overt suggestions of kinkiness unless you're actively targeting that community, certain jobs or the general impression that the person will have to change a lot of their lifestyle to be with you.

    3) As part of your ability to grow as a mature, rational person, consider why you are restricting yourself based on any choices you might have about choosing a partner. If the phrase on your lips is 'that's just what I fancy' then you lose at life and need to explore your feelings a bit more. Yes, sometimes things cannot be reduced down from 'this attracts me' but often exploring your own choices reveals them to be prejudice in disguise. You don't want kids? What if they're grown up already? Not all drug use is equal. Bisexual people aren't necessarily non monogamous or into threesomes. Kinky folk don't always have to be kinky with their partner. Not all accountants are boring (no, I'm not an accountant). There's a surprising amount of variance of opinion amongst people who pigeon hole themselves into certain religions and political leanings.

    People are complex. Actually talk to them and don't assume.

  33. The line "creamy bastard center" made me cream my pants a little……

    My husband! was a nice-guy-nerd-shut-in, but he managed to avoid nice-guy-syndrome with one thing: He did not REQUIRE my affection. He was mysterious… He never socialized with anyone, and it was rare to see him outside his home. When I started hanging around him, he didn't give away clues, and he treated me the same as he treated everyone else: with a sense of humble superiority. If that makes sense….

    And the thing that made me stay with him was the knowledge that he wouldn't mourn my absence. Now that we've been married for a while… I still feel like he'd be fine without me, but he cares for me as deeply as the Nice Guys profess to care about the objects of their affection but without the creep-factor, and I adore that man for all his faults. :)

  34. I have read many of your articles and was introduced by the gawker sites. I just want to vent with my post. This topic feels useless to me, this won't help me and people like me and those who are already successful don't read any of these types of sites or female blogs like Jezable. These bad boys obviously are successful in what they do cause generally they're not Introverted. This is pretty much what I've learned so far from these types of blogs and sites like yours, jezable, askmen, PUA sites and the like, it's the same thing over again. Don't be too nice, be cocky and confident and the best one is be yourself. REALLY? well that's the whole problem right? it's not working so guys like me slog through this plethora of sites to learn wtf is wrong with us. I grew up in an all female house hold with just My mother and sister so you'd think I would be naturally good with the opposite sex well that's not the case. my mother didn't teach me shit about talking to and having relation's with the opposite sex (RIP to her August 2007), I had to learn the hard way about How a menstrual cycle can cause mood changes. (Just assume your in the wrong all the time).

    My Sister is getting married maybe this year and every time I'm at her house I just stand there while she and her friends just shit talk about men and males in general then they say to me "we don't mean you, your a nice guy why don't you have a girl?" I just look at them confused and ask what type of guys do you prefer? Well they should have a job, be tall, funny, A car and EDUCATED but still likes to go clubbing. Hmm interesting let me take some notes….. So are these the rules I have to follow?
    1. Pay for all dates especially the first
    2. must be successful in life
    3. Must be outgoing (Introversion doesn't exist)
    4.BE yourself (but not really, just fake it till you make it)
    5. Treat women as equals but still be chivalrous (hold open a door for her, just acknowledge she didn't need you to and then apologize.)
    Any who, failing this hard at 25 is just pathetic it's truly worse for a man to not be able to get "laid" or have a relationship than it is for a woman and the longer it persists the worse it get's. There's many forms of Depression but this has to be the worse cause of it. Basically through this Journey of reading and rereading blogs, post's articles on various sites Including some feminist sites I have come to the conclusion that according to Society Men are potential rapists no better than animals who watch porn cause all they'll be is "forever alone". That finding women attractive is "Objectification" and that Introversion, shyness what have you is the signs of a serial Killer.

    "BLAH BLAH life's not fair just go back to your basement troll". Ok I will……… I truly Hate Myself for what I've turn into. This isn't living it's just existing.

    • KillerGecko says:

      I…can sadly relate. Back in high school. I was in the "friend zone" with one of the hottest girls and school and just about every guy who was interested in her know I was her closest male friend. I thought this was a good thing so they would back off, but of course some didn't care. She ended up dating a grade-A douche bag by anyone's standards for 2 weeks and in my head I was like "finally, you experienced how it feels to be treated like trash, now notice my awesome." Never occured.

      Eventually, A LOT of her close girlfriends kept asking her "Why, don't you just go out with him." This panic'ed and didn't talk to me for a few weeks. When I finally got her to talk with me she said "I don't like being pressured into doing things." I now know this means "I like being friends with you because I get all the perks of being a girlfriend without actually being one and you will always be there." After that conversation a light bulb went off, and I got out.

      I got the courge to ask out this cute shy girl after that fiasco and it turned out we had more in common than we could ever imagine. I have been dating her for 3 years now even into college.

      My advice to nice guys(which I was and still am) is to screw all other advice you get and just do this:

      Be yourself WITH ONE EXCEPTION. You have to turn off your introvertedness off for 10 seconds and JUST ASK THE GIRL OUT! Just ask, really. You don't need a pick up line, you don't need to be cocky, you don't need men and black shades. If she says no, guess what, now you won't have to spend 2 years like I did HOPING. That is the worst feeling. I remember on Valentines Day, the hot girl was so sad that no one bought her anything and she said the holiday was stupid(because it is really "Singles Awareness Day"). I surprised her, and gave her a gift and she was happy and I finally thought "yay this is it!". Wrong again. I should have just asked her out and let her reject me.

      I am introverted (I got a 90% Introverted on the myerrs brigg personality test) so I know how hard it is. Frankly, you need to find somone who understands that "Hey, sometimes, I just want to be left alone."

  35. I would say that bad boys are not quite like stray cats. Stray cats, in my experience, will come to my door and stake a claim on the porch. They will be king of the porch. They will be the addressee of the occasional bowls I set out. They will fight for that throne. And they will continually yowl with impotent fury when they see my two indoor cats curled up smugly in my lap. They will be fickle, sure, when I give them attention, but there seems to be more of a coveted spot for them to fight for.

    I am therefore forced to say that bad boys are more like wild dogs. They have their pack of friends and a hierarchy. They're alpha, and answer to no one. They'll see something they want and go for it. They will kill your chickens, and no matter how much you scold them, unless you can provide them with a good incentive for otherwise, they will continue killing your chickens.

    :'D

  36. Iktsuarpok says:

    As someone who fits every point in this article except some finer spots, -go to hell-.

    Yeah, I said it. This article actually really hurts to read. You think you have some right to make a judgement on someone who does for someone else? You call it pathetic? What I think is pathetic is that I'm told that I have to become the image of what I think is wrong with relationships and people today to fit what you -think- is right.

    You want to see confidence? Here it is. I'm worth -more- then what you said here. I stood beside a person I liked every step of the way, throughout her breakup, and through other personal problems in her life.

    You want to see aggressiveness? Here it is, I'm sick and tired of being walked on for liking someone and treating them to things they'd like, for treating people in a manner I'd -like- to be treated in. A relationship is a two way street and you know what, I had the balls to walk up and I had the perseverance to stand beside her during her worst. So you mean to tell me I don't deserve a shot at her best?

    So you want me to be wild, untamed, uncontrollable? I'm six foot four, four hundred pounds, and I'm pissed off. Try controlling me, go ahead. I throw things for a living. Yet? I turn that off. I'm able to turn off being angry, being a jerk, being unconcerned for the things I burden myself with, because someone is special enough to treat delicately, with care and compassion. Is it wrong to want that reciprocated? Is it pathetic to you? To control and be controlled is part of a relationship, it's normal, there is always a give and take with everyone, for any number of reasons.

    There's solid reason to be adverse to risk and chance, you put effort and time into building a relationship, that shows dedication, thoughtfulness, and stability. If you want to just walk in like a douche bag and let confidence and aggressiveness rule your relationship, no wonder why divorce courts are making money hand over fist. Relationships aren't something you take out with the trash when you feel like it, I wasn't raised that way and I sure as hell won't act like a modern-day jerk-off just because an article on the internet feels like treating everything I value as being inapplicable.

    There is also solid reason to treat a person as being individual, special, and worth sticking around for; the fact that their individual, special, and worth sticking around for! You say it like it's wrong to treat someone like they're special enough to hang on for. So what, I have to be a douche and treat a woman like I can replace her? Guess what, you can't. You can just fill the gap with some other person, but every individual you share with is still an individual, they're still special enough to warrant that attention in your mind and thus there won't be anyone who will do the same thing for you.

    You know what? The one thing I agree with in this article, is that changes in this go one of two ways. Either desperately trying to fake this crap that society contends as the acceptable method to court a woman, or to become a bitter asshole. I think I know what direction I'm going in now.

    You know what? In one response post on these comments, I see a person with a shred of sense who was really worth reading. KillerGecko, thank you, what you're saying here made me feel like I've actually got some shred of -hope- in my future. I was on the "two year plan" with this one person I know just like you, and you know what? I had a lightbulb-goes-off comment too. Again, thank you, I really felt angry until I read your comment.

    • If you think that being supportive through someone's breakup earns you a right to date them, you should probably reread this article.

      Ask her out, if she's not interested move on. I don't think that she'll be any more impressed than any of us are with you nerd-Hulk posturing but I do wish you the best of luck, regardless.

  37. Nice guys should also be careful because the routine of being the guy she never notices becomes addictive. That feeling of being such a martyr for the girl feels good on some level to nice guys and it prevents the possibility of any healthy relationship.

    I've known a few. There was one who was pining away for my friend who was in a solid, long term relationship. He told me that I was also attractive. I was single, and interested in him. But he deliberately chose to never date me, just pine away for the girl who wasn't there, drinking and moping about it. That made it easy for me to not be attracted to him any more. I felt patronized… if I really was so "attractive" to him, then as the available alternative it shouldn't have been hard to at least date.

    Then there was the more recent one who did all sorts of favors like drive me to the airport, buy me dinner, go dancing with me, but thought I wasn't interested in a relationship. Of course, the moment I told him I was, then he ran away so fast and so hard that I had to have grief counselling because I lost a friend. Then later said he really liked me. But kept his distance.

    What nice guys really want to do is surrender the power, so that they are never to blame when things go wrong because they are convinced things will go wrong. The moment they are asked to step up and make a decision for their own good, they collapse. Even if it's the one they swear they want. They can be toxic.

  38. Elizabeth says:

    This, pretty much. A lot of guys who are shy and nerdy assume it's the case, when often it's not. As a matter of fact, "shy nerds" tend to be my "type," and yet the ones who I'm not into STILL assume – without ever meeting the people I actually date – that I must have rejected them because I like cocky jocks.

    It's funny because a lot of the times I end up rejecting them because they're not geeky enough or they're the WRONG type of geek (i.e. it's a lot more important that I share my academic geekiness with my partner than the "nice interests" type of geekery like sci-fi and anime. Someone who has an encyclopedic knowledge of Star Trek but otherwise isn't too bright or concerned about the world around him is not the guy for me).

    • Very well said. ‘Geeks’ are also very much my type also, but valuing and being attracted to intelligence, I prefer this in my partner. Not necessarily academia driven, but it helps. For me, ‘Geekery’ is something to be proud of, not something to try and change.

      But because I ‘like geeks’, I’ve seen similar assumptions. Because I may not be attracted to their kind of ‘geekery’, then I must just one of those women who goes for assh*les and ‘bad boys’.

      No self respecting woman would be attracted to a ‘bad boy’.

  39. I think someone else to realize is this: remember that silly ensemble movie "He's just not that into you"? That's not just advice for women. Sometimes a woman just isn't into you. Maybe she doesn't feel any chemistry, maybe she's looking for something else (not necessarily assertiveness either). She has a right to not be interested in you and if you're really her friend you'd accept that.

  40. "Nice Guys." Erm… no, not always. Time to grow up.
    You are not a "nice guy" if you have a secret, boning-your-platonic-lady-friend agenda. You are immature and dishonest. There is a difference between innocently and genuinely harboring a crush on a friend and being someone's "friend" because, and only because, you want to sleep with him/her. So ask yourself, Mr. Nice Guy, which is it? Are you friends with her because she's hot and you think you might be able to "nice" your way into her pants, or because you actually enjoy her company sans sex?
    If it is the former, realize that when your intentions come out, as the truth is want to do, she may very well see it as a betrayal of trust. Why? Because you were dishonest.

    Now there is the other situation- being friends with a person and subsequently developing a crush on them. Sadly, unless they too have developed a crush on you, you're in for disappointment. However! You may still legitimately refer to yourself as nice, and she'll be far, far less likely to run off and tell all her friends that you're an unfuckable troll.

    Coming clean about your feelings is tough, and it doesn't ever really get any easier. But then, from her side, discovering that your "friend" has been intentionally misleading you about their intentions is creepy, hurtful and disheartening. She does not owe you anything, particularly if you have trying to curry favor through manipulation and deceit.

    So in conclusion, don't be nice. Be good. Be kind. Be honest.

    • So being sexually attracted to someone means that you're immature and evil? Wow. You must be one of those women that believes all sex with men is rape, right?

      • That's quite an impressive distortion of what she said. Thank you for bringing a little amusement to me, too.

  41. ok been there i m not strong when it comes to the opposite swx, but the thing is being catholic from early age i been told that i i do enought nice thing or good deeds i would in to heaven or if i even up a bad thing with a good thing it calls rependence, and involves making up for the bad you done, its some kind of karma, the thing is that it sticks in your head when you grow up, that a reward will wait for you if you act like a martyr and give up some of your time, or money, but is still a give and take, mentality, its how should work. otherwise people will never thank you they would just expect that you would them the favor like lending them money, accompany them to something you dont wanna go. so when you give without expecting something back them youre a nice guy, but when it comes to passion, its the martyr thinking that comes back that if you do things for her youll end up with her, its something that all guys do in some extend, instead of picking up the girl and have sex with her, the nice guy tries to wowed her with his favorites fixing up the house the car, buying her flowers perfumes, shoes, clothes. it is a cultere of the man triyng to provide for the women, but is an old way of thinking, thats why i hate when people ask me for money caused i myself dont even ask my mother for that. i would give away stuff that i dont need i m very at bussines instead of selling i give it away. but its an act and ladies know that it is an act, because women do the same they put on an act when they are intrested in a guy, not all but the old fashioned ones its the stuff that our parents put in our heads, i have learn that its a give and take world if you only give and dont reseve then youre a smuck, and everybody will use you. i know because i was and sometimes still are put in that situation trying to do good. socring to get in to heaven. same shit i did to get in to a girls pussy. didnt work, just now that im older i starting to understand you hafto have limitations to what you can allow people ask you for. put a stop, to moochers that allways wangt money allways take your clothes and your cool stuff, as if tit was theirs. in the begining of a crush everybody male or female try to be their best, for the person they are intrested in.its an act. its difficult for unsecure people to be honest.

  42. ok another thing there alot of people out there in my country how are very sheep, if they invite you to a party they charge you for the drinks you were invited to. on occasions i trough out my paycheck on pretty girls and friend at the bar, and i dont expect them to by me later, or pay me. its my treat.

  43. Katyusha says:

    The nice guy is basically acting like a girl in courtship, except that they are like the girls who are only interested in having sex/a relationship with men and not friendship, and as society is still sexist it obviously doesn't work. Why do I say that ? Well, women seldom make the first move (I mean, "bold" move, like kissing the guy, initiation the FIRST sexual intercourse, and so on, not just going to talk to him asking "What time is it ?") and wait for the guy to do it. I'm not here to discuss the rights and wrong of this, of course women are blamed if they do the first move (slut-shaming), and men are blamed if they don't (I would call that pussy/virgin-shaming, being blamed for NOT having sex/a relationship), but I just want to say that what nice guys do is the equivalent of what some girls do (I've already met girls who cut all contact with me because I was only interested in a friendship and nothing more). Of course if "nice" guys were using their brain a bit more they would know that is doesn't work, because if the situation was reversed, it would be like that :

    - An attractive guy meets a women that he doesn't find attractive, so he's not trying to make any move ;
    - She may try what she wants, she won't become attractive (especially if she acts like a "nice guy")
    - She will look like a women who is gonna stalk you/be a massive clinger if you ever get into a relationship and break-up, because she feels entitled ;
    - That's not a healthy relationship that people would like, and the "nice" person wouldn't be satisfied with a one-night stand/being a fuckbuddy (no one wants that in the beginning because there's no "two-way attraction", but if the "nice" person meets someone who finds them attractive, it can be a big no-no to look like a fucking stalker/rabbit boiler/jealous ex even before the beginning of the relationship).

    Because yeah, "nice guys" (almost) never fall in love with an average woman, she has to be really hot most of the time even though themselves don't pay any attention to their appearance.

  44. An older yet kickass article. Nonetheless there's plenty wrong with being nice and not just "nice". Nice means spineless-good at the best of times. Someone whose claim to goodness is that they don't commit crimes is nowhere near on moral par with a good person who pro-actively works to improve their own life and the lives of those around them better. But by the same token how are "bad boys" necessarily bad unless they're outright lying and abusive? Most rakes/cads are most likely good guys in that they never lied about their intentions (unlike the "nice guy") and a women knows ahead of time if he's going to be there for a good time not a long time.

  45. Cinereo Bellator says:

    I am an ex-orbiter, i fucking admit it I was an orbiter. The thing that snapped me into attention was my code of honor and morals. My best friend had something I didn't I have never been able to figure it out but what ever. He got rejected the first time he took a shot, what a shocker(sarcasm). Anyway she came to me not two days later and told me she wanted to be with him(This is three years into my being an orbiter, I was a LOT sad.). I decided that next week, he was crashing at my place, at like 5 am to tell him to go talk to her, god it hurt but they would be happy. So another week later and they got together. Now over a year later things are great they are happy, I have an amazing girl friend and it is all looking up.

    Often orbiters end up stuck and what they have to do is pull away and throw in a bit of confidence and self improvement. To find a girl that makes them happy that isn't secretly laughing at them. So my advice is go do good by you and break away from the orbit and improve it'll take time but you will learn to be awesome, confident and aggressive. – Sincerely An ex-orbiter.

  46. Astounding Wolf-Kid says:

    Hi Dr.Nerdlove, this is my first time here and I already ate a decent bunch of your articles. I haven't much reading (that's worth the time) about being a "Nice Guy" and what it implies so your article is most welcomed. Now here is my question, a random thought I have been thinking just a little and thought you might be the adequate person to ask: Is there a such thing as a "Nice Girl" and what is the behavior or difference with these people if there is any? I hope you can give me your opinion on this.

  47. Or maybe, women don't like Nice Guys because of the fact that often, the only reason they were doing all those 'nice things' was because they want to date/fuck the girl, and believe that doing those things makes them entitled to having her put out for them. MAYBE, women want friends who befriended them BECAUSE THEY WANTED TO BE FRIENDS, not friends who are only doing those things to try and get a date and who will turn on her (often using names such as slut, bitch, whore- wow, what a Nice Guy huh) as soon as she says she isn't interested in anything more than the friendship she thought they had.
    Crazy thought I know, but MAYBE: "NICE GUYS" ARE ACTUALLY THE ASSHOLES.
    It's literally that simple.

  48. NO! All women DO NOT want ‘bad boys’. Ey ey ey! More stereotypes – none of which apply to the real world, but I’ll go with it for a while. ”Women love a challenge”? Really? I don’t think so. ‘Women want to change men’? Oh purlease. Frankly, most women, including myself, have more self respect than to be attracted to the ‘bad boy’. If a guy has obvious ‘bad boy’ issues, most women move on.

    But going with it for a while, one of my pet peeves is a woman (as few though they are) who says she loves ‘bad boys’ then moans when said ‘bad boy’ treats her badly. Grow up, get over your messed up ‘I can change him’ Mills & Boon complex, and stop being a victim.

    BUT, my other pet peeve is the other side of it. Guys who moans about women who go for ‘bad boys’. The irony of this is he is the counterpoint of what he moans about – I.E – he is the one masochistically chasing after the unobtainable woman, the ‘bad girl’, trying to change her and tame her.

    But my biggest pet peeve is the perception here that some how a ‘nice guy’ will just never cut it, he must change, he must be assertive (the flip side being that women are somehow passive! Not this woman. (Measured) confidence is always attractive, but telling men to be aggressively assertive whilst taking onboard a few assh*le qualities? That would put me right off, and it would put off most women I know.

    I’m with wonderful ‘nice guy’ who happens to be the love of my life. He had the self confidence to ask me out (I would of asked him, but he got there first), but he had no need to fake some BS ‘machismo’ complex. Dudes who come over all ‘dominant’ and machismo are NOT attractive to me or any woman I know.

  49. Davey_McCrazy says:

    I think the hostility towards "nice guys" is rather unnecessary. It's very easy to fall into the "friends trap", especially in highschool / university when one's "game" isn't fully developed, yet you find yourself interacting with many many women.

    Perhaps legitimately you became friends with a girl, in the way that people just "hang out" at that age, but after doing that for a while realize that she's the "perfect" woman in your opinion, because you actually enjoy hanging out with her. Regarding her attractiveness, she doesn't have to be top flight talent… because lets face it, to men of any age (much less overly hormoned teenagers) the majority of 18year old women are still plenty attractive enough to be sexually intriguing.

  50. Davey_McCrazy says:

    However, once the friend zone is achieved, it's tough to break out of it. I was stuck there with a couple girls back in the day. There was a bit of sexual tension, and even a couple minor bouts of fooling around, but there was never quite enough momentum to break free of the "friends zone".

    The good news, for all the young readers, your confidence (and therefore your game) will improve through your 20's. Everything becomes much easier (assuming you're not a TOTAL write-off), there are no high school cliques etc, and I don't think the "friend zone" even exists by 30. It seems to have been fully replaced by the "fuck zone" Ha! :D

  51. phaedrusbrowne says:

    Here DR NERD love basically gives the same advice as PUAS what a hypocrite.Why the hell shouldnt women make the first move anyway? isnt that part of equality?

Trackbacks

  1. [...] is Mr. NiceGuy?  Well, if you’re unaware, here are a couple primers: Heartless Bitches and Dr. NerdLove.  Yes, at one time I too fell into the trap of being the insipid doormat willing to be walked all [...]

  2. [...] Even the Nice Guys fall into the commodity frame of sex; they view sex (or, more euphemistically, a “relationship”) as something that is rightfully theirs as long as they collect enough Nice Guy tokens. Once they have enough, they can redeem their tokens in exchange for the sex that they’ve been working towards. [...]

  3. [...] been about six months or so since I addressed that perennial bugbear of nerd dating, the Nice Guy, and after some of the comments I’ve seen, on the blog and elsewhere, it seems like as good a [...]

  4. […] when it comes to talking about dating issues, whether it’s about the problems with being a Nice Guy, online dating, or even just approaching new people: the idea that women hold all of the power […]

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