Nice guys get a bad rap. Girls overlook them, they get friend zoned, and they have a reputation for not going after the girl. Well, there’s actually a reason for that—and no, it’s not that they’re just too nice. Ruby Love, a dating coach who worked at E-Harmony, is an expert on love and relationships. We chatted with her about nice guys and came away with a few reasons for the negative reputation. Take a look at some differences between dating a nice guy and a good guy, and find out why nice guys might not be good for you.
Nice guys will let you decide every aspect of the date. It might seem like he just wants to make sure you’re having a good time, or he can come off as being a pushover.
What a good guy will do is ask you on a date and make it a team decision. He may ask what you like and for any recommendations, but he will also chime in with what he likes to do or where he likes to go. This way, he takes an active role in the decision-making, and you know he’s genuinely interested and interesting in his own right.
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During the actual date, nice guys will sit and listen without expressing an opinion. They only want to cater to you and avoid antagonizing or challenging you in any way. This may sound like a good guy to some women, but there’s a trap in all that passivity—even if he disagrees with you, he won’t express it because he just wants you to like him.
Agreeing with your every word could make for a smooth (and boring) conversation on a first date, but this can be a cause of conflict down the road because when the nice guy gets more comfortable with you, he may express opinions that are contrary to yours or surprise you—in a bad way. More damage could be done in the long run when you’ve already become emotionally invested.
A good guy will be more genuine. He will be honest about whether he likes something and not do or say anything simply for the sake of impressing you. He may listen to you and agree, but he’s actively engaged. For example, he might express his opinion and then ask for your take on the issue. He discusses things in a way that shows he wants to be an active participant in the conversation rather than a bystander.
Because of the good guy’s honesty, you know what you’re getting yourself into. Nice guys are often not as self-aware. This sometimes translates into girls saying a guy isn’t confident or ambitious enough. That’s not always a bad thing, since people undergo personal development at their own pace, but if you’re looking for a long-term relationship, you need to make sure you know what level of uncertainty you’re comfortable with.
Similarly, if nice guys don’t know what they want for themselves, they may have a—albeit unconscious—desire to please other people. This is where the “he’s so nice” comment comes in. The hope is that being nice and pleasing others, whether it’s parents, a partner, or even just society in general, brings the nice guy happiness and acceptance. But if there’s no internal satisfaction, that niceness becomes hard to maintain.
Though the nice guy may sound good to some people initially, it may come at a cost in the future. Girls tend to avoid a nice guy because many of them have experienced the heartbreak of thinking you know someone only to find out it was simply a mask, hiding other important parts of someone’s personality. At the end of the day, an empowered woman needs someone who listens and supports her but also is honest and challenges her, someone who constantly tries to help her become a better person while also maintaining that goal for himself. Now that’s the definition of a good guy—the right guy for lasting love.
Find out how Ruby Love transforms nice guys into the right guy for love at goodgentleman.com.