Ah, the ever-present problem of ‘Nice Guys.’ It plagues the population as a whole and feminists because the typical reaction is ‘but this just proves you’re a man-hating feminist!’ Ah, the things that anti-feminists describe as ‘manly’. Rape, sexual harassment, spousal abuse. I mean, you’d think they’d have a higher estimation of the men they revere as flawless.
Onto Nice Guy Syndrome. See, maybe the title is misleading at first. The point, though, is, that the men targeted by this concept aren’t actually nice. What happens is, boy likes girl. Girl does not like boy, for whatever reason. Girl chooses other boy who turns out to be, in Nice Guy’s opinion, a jerk.
Nice Guy then says any of these things.
She has ‘issues’. That’s why she chose him.
This one is problematic because of the stigma of ‘issues.’ The crazy, overemotional woman is so whenever she’s upset and the man doesn’t particularly want to deal with it so he says something along the lines of ‘take a chill pill’ or the newly popular ‘calm your tits’ or even ‘chill out slut’. Case in point, chill. Your needs aren’t important, nor are your opinions. If you are upset about something you’re being emotional.
I’m not upset about it, the calm, rational man who always knows best, so clearly you’re just over-reacting.
Any girl who goes for the jerks is not worth your time. Move onto someone worth it.
Oh, good. This just strikes me as funny. ‘You’re worthless! Now, why won’t you go out with me?’ The important thing to note here is the single distinguishing factor of a ‘jerk.’ Not necessarily that he actually is a jerk to the woman, but that Nice Guy does not like the guy. Evidence of jerk-hood does not have to be given.
He is a jerk because he took the woman from the Nice Guy even if the woman never claimed to like Nice Guy.
But I offered you advice on boys! I let you cry on my shoulder at every break up! I loaned you my pencil in Math class! I was nice to you! We were friends!
This one is particularly eyebrow-raising because apparently friendship=relationship and sex/relationship is owed the moment one becomes friends.
But I asked you out five times and you said no each time! See, clearly you’re the jerk!
This image does a particularly good job of illustrating the ‘but I asked you out!’ argument. Apparently if a guy likes us, we are obligated to, optimally, like him back. If we don’t like him, we must give good reasons. We simply cannot say no. If we simply say no, it is not enough and we are just playing hard to get. And must be pursued, even a bit creepily, like this fellow here. This plays into rape culture quite nicely as when a woman says no, it is not important to listen.
Ah, it’s no big deal. She’s a whore anyway. I’m better off without her.
First it’s important to note that for a girl to be branded a ‘slut’ or a ‘whore’ it is not necessary to sleep with someone. This is true even for the good youth group girls who parade their ‘Virgin is not a dirty word’ t-shirts around high school hallways and wear their abstinence rings everywhere. Amazingly, these slurs have absolutely nothing to do with sexual habits. All that is necessary is for someone to deem you mean. I remember the first time I was called a whore. I don’t remember why. I think I was standing up to the cheerleader for being rude or something.
I remember turning around, never having kissed a boy, and pointing out the logical fallacy. I also remember being laughed at. Silly, it’s got nothing to do with your sexual habits. You can be a whore if -
- someone doesn’t like you for any reason whatsoever
- you date someone that someone else doesn’t like
- you turn down the ‘Nice Guy’
- you have big breasts.
- Any other reason.
Well, I have to have some standards.
I’ve heard this one plenty of times and have come to see it as a defining hallmark of the Nice Guy. I’ve been told, times-aplenty, that I’m undateable because I’m fat (BAHAAHAHAHAHA). I’ve heard guys say that they don’t like dating fat girls because fat is unattractive and unhealthy. I’d just like to say that if you make that statement in this society, wherein every girl takes up too much space, you have absolutely no reason to whine about not having a date. Only skinny girls, right? So that eliminates most of the pool, as most of us, even if NOT fat, think we aren’t at the right size. Also, when guys turn down a fat girl and then turn around and whine endlessly about all the girls being taken by jerks.
What they mean, of course, is ‘all the skinny pretty girls are taken!’ And since, if you SAY something like ‘I only date skinny girls,’ girls just might talk to each other, you shouldn’t be surprised when you, sizeist prick, become undateable to us women. You know, because we have to have some standards, too.
The point behind Nice Guy Syndrome is that the guys aren’t actually nice. They’re misogynist pricks. Under every comment and rant that they make about the women who didn’t choose them is that women don’t really know what’s good for them. That’s why they choose the jerks after all! If they knew what’s good for them, they’d have chosen the Nice Guy, who, as we can see, has a lot of gems to say about the One Who Got Away. Here’s the thing, though.
I’ve heard a LOT of guys, scorn on rejection, talk about these ‘bad girls’ and their deep-seated need to be loved by ‘jerks’. It’s a popular theory, but I have never heard another girl confirm this. ‘I just love to be treated like crap!’ Nope, never heard it. Sorry.
You know why? We don’t like going out with jerks. Sometimes we accidentally choose them, because we’re people who make mistakes. We don’t have some deep desire to be treated like crap. And please don’t offer up evidence like, ‘but girls go back to abusive relationships ALL THE TIME!’ Abuse is complicated, and it’s not a fair example. Also, way to enable the abuse and make it her fault that she’s still trapped in it. Good job.
Here’s the thing, guys. Yes, guys. The ones who think I’m just picking on the lonely guys who can’t get women. If you find yourself saying these things after you’re rejected by a girl, listen real close:
come a little closer.
Got your attention?
YOU’RE NOT ACTUALLY NICE.
You could have been rejected for any reason. Maybe it’s about her. Maybe it’s about you. If you said those things or thought them, it’s probably about you, because it turns out being called worthless sluts who don’t know what’s good for them is NOT romance-central for us. And take the clue, in case you’re writing me off right now as some radical feminist completely out of touch with reality.
Ask some women about this issue. Seeing as how we’d know. Take the hint. If you quit being a misogynistic jerk, maybe she’ll go for you. If she doesn’t, that’s not an excuse to call her a slut or a whore or suggest that she really doesn’t know what’s good for her, or talk about how she has ‘issues’ because oh yay, the thought that women with mental health issues aren’t worthy of your affection is just delightful. See how it’s really just men who make these arguments, and a tiny minority of women with internalized sexism?
See how countless women are cheering YES, YES, YES when we talk about Nice Guy Syndrome? The hint. It has slapped you in the face. Take it.