If you’ve been in the dating game long enough as a woman, you’ve probably been told things like, “you should just settle down with a nice guy,” or “you should just give that one nice guy a chance because he clearly likes you.”
You might even feel tempted to follow their advice, but it might not be as good of an idea as you think.
I’ve Dated Too Many “Nice Guys” In My Life
I’ve been around the block a few times and tried dating the “nice guy” because people told me it was a good idea: often, things start out okay, but eventually, the relationship falls apart and it’s often for the same handful of reasons.
What Even Is A “Nice Guy”?
It’s a term that’s thrown around a lot, but what does it really mean? I feel that it refers to him generally being pleasant, but people also use the term very loosely to describe guys when there’s really no basis for what “niceness” is.
What’s Wrong With The Nice Guy?
Inherently, there’s nothing wrong with a guy being nice—in fact, it’s a good thing—but it’s really the bare minimum. It’s generally expected that the people you’re dating should be nice. Period.
It’s Okay To Want More Than The Bare Minimum
I have had a lot of “nice guys” come into my life throughout my life and, honestly, I think it’s pretty stupid that we’re expected to praise or like someone simply for being a decent human being. In fact, it’s important to ask for more from a partner.
Being Nice Shouldn’t Be A Defining Factor
“Niceness,” in my mind, just means that someone is courteous on the surface and generally pleasant to be around. It’s not really a personality trait that means a lot once you get to know each other.
Niceness Can’t Just Overpower A Lack Of Attraction
I’ll go ahead and say it: you need to feel some sort of attraction to the person you’re dating. If the guy is nice but you literally have zero attraction to him, it’s never going to work.
…Despite What People Will Tell You
I find that women are often called shallow for not wanting to date the “nice guy” who’s interested because we’re not physically attracted to them. The reality is that a guy who wasn’t attracted to a “nice woman” wouldn’t experience the same scrutiny.
Being Nice Says Nothing About Compatibility
Once again, niceness is surface-level and says nothing about their interests, values, lifestyle, or their plans for the future. In reality, having compatible goals and perspectives on the world are way more important.
Niceness Really Is Just Not Enough
I once let the “nice guy” talk me into starting a relationship with him only for us to realize down the road that we had nothing substantial in common: he wanted to live in one city his whole life, I wanted to move. He was a perpetual homebody, and I am incredibly social. There was nothing that pointed to us having a future.
Kindness > Niceness
Some people might think that these are just synonyms, but I personally think there is a difference between the terms. Niceness refers to how someone presents themselves on the outside, whereas kindness is about their compassion and empathy.
“Nice” People Care More About How They Seem To Others
“Nice” people, in general, are good at making you feel good in a conversation. They’re the type of people who open doors for you. People’s “niceness,” however, often stems from the desire to be liked or to seem good to others.
Kind People Really Just Have Good Hearts
These are the people who are good to others even when there is nothing to gain from it: they care deeply about the people in their lives as well as show compassion for total strangers.
Kind People Aren’t Always Nice
Some of the kindest people I have ever met in my life aren’t exactly nice—they’re not the people-pleasing type, and they’re often honest in ways that some people find uncomfortable—they’ll call you out when you’re out of line, which is much more important than flattery.
The “Nice Guy” Won’t Challenge You
A good partner challenges you to be a better version of yourself and helps you grow. A “nice” person won’t hold you accountable or bring up important conflicts you need to address together.
Anyone Who Calls Themselves “Nice” Likely Is Not
I find that the truly nice person, or in general a “good person,” doesn’t really feel the need to define themselves that way—their kindness is inherent to how they live.
“Nice Guys” Can Become “Mean Guys” Really Fast
I have dated a couple of “nice guys” who were pleasant enough at the start but slowly turned into men who were manipulative, demanding, and selfish. Niceness is often a façade—in reality, these guys aren’t all that likable.
Good People Describe Themselves By Their Interests/Passions
In the long run, people show themselves to be nice, kind, compassionate people through their actions. They’re more likely to talk about the things they’re passionate about because they want to connect with others on a deeper level.
What Makes The “Right Guy”?
The right guy is really just a man who is a good complement to you, you’re attracted to him, and you can see a real future together. The right guy isn’t easy to find, but he’s definitely worth it.
I’m Not Saying Every “Nice Guy” Is Bad
A lot of people will use the term “nice guy” as a sign of general approval. However, if you’re being set up by a friend, make sure they have more traits they can share about him.
In Fact, Stop Letting “Nice” Be A Description At All
I would like to officially abolish the term “nice guy” and “nice girl” from dating lingo and instead challenge people to think about what really makes them who they are and what positive traits they bring to relationships. There are so many better words than “nice,” and it would make finding the right person a lot easier.