Nice Guy Syndrome

You know that guy friend that you have that makes you feel like a piece of meat? That guy friend that you know is only friends with you because he wants to have sex with you, and he thinks he is such a gem that you are rude for not doing so? That guy friend that treats his acts of kindness like a punch card for sex? “I’ve been nice to you 11 times, on the 12th I get sexual favors!”

You know, those “Nice Guy” friends, who aren’t that nice at all. Of course, they don’t realize it. They see their niceness as currency to exchange for sex, and it would never occur to them that there is something incredibly wrong about that. They see relationships with women as purely for sex, which again, nothing wrong with that in their mind. So they are nice to you. Until they aren’t. But of course you are the ungrateful rude friend.

The problem with these “Nice Guys” is that they are actually terrible friends (and even worse boyfriends). Everything they do comes with strings attached. Obvious strings. Creepy strings. They value the women in their lives purely as a resource for their dick. They can’t handle rejection. They feel their wants and expectations are justified because they are “nice”. But they aren’t nice. They have Nice Guy Syndrome.

Nice Guy Syndrome (NGS) is used to describe men who view themselves as prototypical “nice guys” but whose “nice deeds” are, in reality, only motivated by attempts to passively please women into a relationship or sex.

There are lots of ways NGS manifests. Here are three common examples:

-Guys who feel victimized by the irrationality of women claiming to want “nice guys” but date other guys instead of dating them. These guys also consider themselves to be in the “friend zone”, or a romantic limbo.

-Guys who do nice things and expect sexual reward. Nice Guys seem to expect, at some point, sexual “payment” for their kindness and generosity.

-Guys who feel they are using failed seduction strategies and need to learn better methods from alphas or seducers.

A lot of times, guys with NGS have a fixation on a friendship and are determined to build it over time into a romance. They do so fairly stereotypically by providing emotional support for a woman when she is having difficulties, but the problem is they expect something to come from it that sexually benefits them. Feminists like myself often criticize many aspects of NGS. My primary critique is that guys with NGS are not actually nice guys at all. And perhaps their greatest contribution to the struggle of the female experience is that they don’t realize just how problematic they are.

Why NGS is problematic:

-Romantically or sexually fixating on one person when there is no mutual interest expressed is simply a relationship mistake you have made. You are not a victim of the “friend zone” because you have misread the situation, but rather you are making your friend a victim of your expectations.

-NGS seems to regard a man’s relationship with a woman as successful or valuable only if it is romantic or sexual. If it does not lead to one or both, the relationship is both a failure and a waste of their time.

-By treating “niceness” like currency for sex it further perpetuates the sexist generalization that women want closeness and men wants sex, so you can trade one for the other. And in the process, you cheapen both nice acts and sex. You have made both result oriented, not relationship focused.

-NGS regard women as the moral guardians of sexuality: women should choose them because they are nice and women should reward them with sex for being nice. Women should want them because they are nice. And if a woman doesn’t want them, the super nice guy, then the woman is not fulfilling her moral duty to society. Essentially, in their mind, by not rewarding them sexually for being nice you are teaching them not to be nice in the future. Because what other point is there to being nice if you don’t get sex in return?

-Some men fail to realize they have NGS despite spending their time using misogynistic slurs to describe their alleged friends. They consider themselves heroes for not raping or hitting women in their life, like by not doing those things they deserve a cookie (or sex!). They do not see themselves as guilty of assault or harassment because they were nice first and they were gentle and well intended during. In their minds rape and assault are violent crimes, rather than non-consensual crimes.

Men suffering from NGS have completely missed the point of relationships; be it a friendship, a romantic partner, or a sexual friend. They have deep misunderstandings of the roles women play in society and they have even deeper misunderstandings about the role women play in their lives. And most dangerously, they have failed to realize their contribution to the sexual harassment, assault, and rape problem we have in our society.

70% of rape victims knew their attacker, be it an acquaintance (45%) or a partner (25%). These aren’t strangers committing violent crimes, they are “nice guys” who feel their friend owes them something, “nice guys” who feel they have earned their reward. In my own personal experience, the men who assaulted me were friends at the time.

NGS isn’t just an annoying friend problem, it is the core of the systemic problem with rape and assault. And it is a major problem. When it comes to rape, it is 70% of the problem.

Women are not placed on this earth purely to sexually please men. And while it is nice to appriciate kindness bestowed upon us, it is not required and it is certainly not required to be a sexual favor in return. Women are not obligated to be sexually interested in you. Period. Rejection does not make women rude, and if your “niceness” comes with strings attached, you aren’t being nice at all.

So Gentlemen, if you see women as purely a device for sex, and that is your measurement for the value of that relationship, regardless as to how nice you think you are, just stop being friends with women. And Women, you know the “friend”, just stop spending time with him.

 

-Darci

 

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