“Nice Guy” Syndrome is defined, best, as a guy who thinks that by being kind and understanding and emotionally available to a woman, he is ENTITLED to some sort of romantic and therefore sexual relationship with the other person. Nice Guys expect this sort of relationship as a reward for “being there” for the other person and “being their friend,” and most importantly, when they are rejected by that other person, they paint themselves as the victim. How dare this bitch reject him after he was SO NICE and SO SUPPORTIVE? This guy is always the victim and there is never anything wrong with the way he handled his past romantic situations, or the current ones he is involved in. They also cannot understand why only assholes get the girls and not them; asshole being defined as any guy who is NOT them.
Unfortunately, it can be a lot more complicated than that- first, NGS is not limited to the heterosexual male-female interaction (however, those are the terms I will be using since that’s the situation I am most familiar with). Straight or gay, male or female, anybody can be struck with a case of NGS. To further complicate matters, it can be argued that we all, at some point in our romantic lives, can go through a phase resembling NGS. Who hasn’t been newly broken up with, and blaming everyone but themselves for what happened? Eventually, most of us come out of it and realize that, except in extreme cases where there is infidelity or abuse, it was no individual at fault, but a mutual stream of mistakes that were never mended and built up to the end.
There, perhaps, lies the boundary between someone with NGS and the rest of us. They never came out of that blame cycle and apply that mentality to whoever they encounter next.
To clarify this even further, I’m going to provide you with a case study a little farther into this article of the very first guy with NGS I encountered (who also happened to be the inspiration for this article).
I think it’s necessary to point out that I know a lot of actual nice guys. Until recently, I had never been involved with a man with NGS in any way, let alone romantically. These guys, whom you indirectly met in my research for my article about threesomes, are a handful of college-aged men who have been my friends for years in most cases. I also believe, firmly, that it’s impossible for a man and a woman to be “just” friends. Before you all start yelling at me, let me finish- the “just” is the pivotal word here- a “just” friendship implies that under no circumstances is there a possibility of a romantic/sexual relationship. Not at any point in the future, not because you two were drunk, and not even in fantasy. If a single person in this friendship would be willing under any circumstance to be romantically or sexually involved with one another you’re still friends, but you will never be “just” friends.
My guy friends and I have a complete understanding, without awkwardness, of this concept. We share a mutual, silent understanding that we are attracted to one another in some way and if the conditions were exactly right we’d be bumping uglies like there’s no tomorrow. But those conditions aren’t right now, and they may never be. This doesn’t adulterate our relationship in any way. We’re friends, and in some cases very good friends. But we’ll never be “just.”
So what makes them actual nice guys? The fact that when the time is right, they will risk their ego to pursue a girl while making it completely clear what they want from the girl in question. Sometimes it’s a romantic relationship, sometimes it’s just a night of mutual orgasms, but they are always honest about it. They make mistakes just like everyone else and they break hearts but they have never once “played the game” to get in a girl's pants. The guys who play games and lie to girls in order to get some sort of reward are on the opposite end of the spectrum, as people with NGS, they are the “assholes” to put it in a common terminology. Someone with NGS, however, would claim my friends are assholes, because assholes are the only ones who get the girls and not them.
I’ve encountered some serious assholes in my life, most notably a guy who I dubbed #bigdrummerboy on my twitter handle. He has a bad habit of pursuing me only when he’s in the area (I’m from the Midwest, and he’s from Colorado), in the course of his musical pursuits. His most recent offense was spending half an hour explaining why he couldn’t date me and then, when I explained that I had thought we were just friends-with-benefits, grabbed my hand and rubbed it against his crotch while saying “In that case, are you feeling generous?”
THAT guy is an asshole. Not my friends.
The Case Study
This case study, concerning someone we’ll call Stripe, is about a guy I met in one of my classes last semester. We ended up being grouped together by chance and started talking frequently. I thought he was a pretty normal guy, if unremarkable. I thought I was attracted to him, but I wasn't after one truly disastrous date involving him smoking marijuana while driving with the windows shut when he pulled to the side of the road and asked me if I was going to turn him down. When I told him I wasn’t sure, because I didn’t know him well enough yet, he responded with; “It’s okay. I’m used to it by this point, all the other girls reject me.”
I didn’t know what else to do, so I left. I stopped texting him and when he asked why I didn’t want to hang out with him anymore, I told him it was because he smoked too much pot. That was a lie, though, seeing as it’s not fair for me to judge someone by their vices; I have my own. The real reasons, he wasn’t mature enough to hear (that much I did know about him). I really rejected him because he didn’t respect that I said no to small things: like taking a toke of his bowl or rejecting an invitation to a concert that I didn’t have the money to attend. If he couldn’t respect little no’s, how was he going to handle a big one?
I thought that was going to be it, but then I realized that he wasn’t giving up. He continued to pursue my “friendship” and it slowly became clearer and clearer to me that he was trying to use that friendship and trust to eventually get back into the ring, romantically, with me. I refused again and again, and eventually he got the message. However, very recently he posted something on a social networking site that really cemented my conclusions. He was suffering from NGS. Here are a few choice excerpts.
“So i've come to a point in my life where instead of feeling excited and awestruck when i see a beautiful girl, i just feel deeply sad. I feel sad because i know that that girl will NEVER give me the time of day, simply because i'm not "tall enough" or "rich enough", or "good looking enough."
“We are kind-hearted, loyal, faithful, loving and DEEPLY emotional guys. We are guys that would give every ounce of ourselves for a girl, and all we ask for in return is for you to simply be by our sides. We dont expect you to change for us, even though we will change EVERYTHING about ourselves if it makes you happy.”
Key points here: the beautiful girls are the one at fault - they are superficial, they are shallow, they are the ones pursuing guys who treat them badly and overall are NOT everything he is. He also will change everything about himself for someone, which is a TERRIBLE way to go into a relationship.
This status however, contrasts against another post he made only days earlier:
“its time like these when i am reminded why that psychotic cunt is my EX girlfriend lmao”
He’s kind-hearted, loyal, faithful and loving, ladies! But, if your reject him or your relationship ends, you’re going to be a "psychotic cunt."
Now, I’m not going to claim that his ex isn’t crazy. She very well might be. The problem with this pair of postings is that he put them up at all. Everyone is allowed to be sad. Everyone is allowed to feel like they’re lost and nobody will ever love them (believe me, talk to me after a couple glasses of wine and yet ANOTHER one of my friends getting engaged and I’m a complete mess). But calling your ex a psychotic cunt in a public forum? That’s only going to convince any girl who sees it that she’s going to end up being that "psychotic cunt" in a few months when you cling too tightly, change too much for her, and she needs to let you go.
Regardless, I think I dodged a bullet here. Hopefully, this article will allow a few of you to see NGS when it appears in your life and dodge a bullet.