It is so common for a closet-misogynist creep to describe himself as a “nice guy” that the term is now charged with the contrary meaning. A “nice guy” is one who claims he only wants to be a woman’s friend, then gets mad about being “friendzoned” and cruelly judges her for dating anyone who isn’t him. He’s someone who banters lightly until a woman tells him she’s not interested, then calls her a whore — only to later complain that women always “lead him on” instead of being honest with him. Most crucially, though, the “nice guy” is living out a peculiar delusion: that his romantic failures and frustrations are the cost of gentle, empathetic chivalry. Apparently, he thinks, there is no room in this rude world for someone with his moral bearing.
To combat nice guy behavior, it might help for men to see how that mindset — the expectation of sex in return for a bare minimum of performative decency — looks from the outside. They’d learn a lot from a Reddit thread that asks, “What’s the most uncomfortable position a ‘nice guy’ has put you in?” The stories flowing from this prompt add up to a searing indictment of dudes who imagine they’re sweet, sensitive boyfriend material but often threaten and intimidate the women they’re interested in, all while hewing to a boilerplate and rather artificial politeness.
Case in point:
The ‘Self-Described Better-Than-Your-Boyfriend’ Guy Hitting on a Woman at Work
Here’s a tip: Talk to single women instead of trying to talk someone out of their relationship.
The Guy Who Demands a ‘Goodbye Kiss’
The Guy Who Thinks You’re ‘Lucky’ He’s Not Forcing Himself on You
How nice of this gentleman to not turn a platonic sleepover into a full-blown kidnapping!
The Guy Who Audibly Complains About ‘How Girls Don’t Pay Attention to Him’
Don’t you hate it when you say “hi” to a woman and she says “hi” back? The nerve!
The Guy Who… Oh, No
Can’t believe this didn’t work.
The Guy Who Insists on Driving You, Even When You Say No
Aggressively doing a woman “favors” that she keeps refusing? You’re definitely a nice guy.
The Aggressive Back Rub Guy
Trapping someone so you can give them a non-consensual massage? Vintage nice guy.
The Guy Who Doesn’t Believe in ‘Just Friends’
A shame she didn’t barf on him during a roller coaster ride.
And, Finally, This Dude
Aaaaaand I have left my body.
The whole thread is worth a look, if you can stomach it. Who knows: You might even read about that time you terrified a woman with your bullshit and didn’t realize it.