There’s a common refrain you’ll hear from a lot of guys across a variety of backgrounds who are trying to date, but not getting anywhere. “Nice guys finish last.” The nice guys being them of course, who can’t get anywhere because women want good looking jerks with money, or some variation on the theme.
Of course their own lists for the girl they’re looking for rarely begin and end with the word “nice”. Weight, dress sizes, looks, father’s money (if they’re frum), all that stuff factors into it. And nice ends up being pushed way to the side.
Girls have their own version of that in complaining about all the things men are looking for, instead of looking for a nice sincere loving person. Of course like the guys, in real life, their lists tend to be head by things other than “nice”.
Hypocrisy isn’t limited to a single gender, and there’s no reason it should be. Male or female, we’re all human beings, and operate on the same basic parameters. One of those parameters is that we don’t really mean what we say, and that what we think we want, isn’t necessarily what we want.
So what’s wrong with nice anyway? Nice isn’t a word that makes anyone’s pulse race. Nice means “Mostly Harmless” in the Douglas Adams way. It means safe and non-threatening. In theory it means they’re a good person. In theory.
But nice is subjective. One person’s nice, is another person’s jerk. Most people are nice to some people, without being nice to others. The frustrated bachur\bachurette who’s totally nice to his\her aunt, grandmother and best friends… might be a passive aggressive monster when interacting with the opposite sex. And plenty of the “Why doesn’t anyone want nice” crowd have plenty of frustration built up toward the opposite sex, with emerges as passive aggressive behavior on dates that they’re often not even aware of.
And nice doesn’t mean the ability to interact meaningfully with other people. I know plenty of nice people who would be completely dysfunctional in a marriage because they’re incredibly socially awkward and neurotic. So while nice is nice, nice is also relative.
Nice doesn’t drive anyone wild. Maybe it’s because attraction is based on animal impulses which select mates based on primary and secondary sexual characteristics that indicate their ability to be a good provider, or birth many children. Characteristics that can be seen on any underwear ad.
Then there’s the personality side of that, which is projecting confidence. Nice rarely projects much confidence. Male and female jerks do. Which is one reason why letting your biology pick a date is a good idea only if you’re looking to end up 1. Out of money 2. With a disease 3. In a shelter 4. In divorce court.
But contrary to what the nice guys and girls complaining think, “niceness” is not the opposite of that. Goodness is. The difference is that goodness also projects strength. Niceness does not. It takes strength of character to do the right thing and fight for the right things. It doesn’t take much strength to be nice, often it’s the safest option for people with low confidence and poor self-esteem. Which is why despite the puppy dog eyes and the sad sad internet posts, they’re not the ones getting picked.
So yes, nice guys and girls do finish last. Because passivity and whining is its own sour reward. Good things don’t come to those who sit around and blog about how they can’t get a date. They come to those bad and good people who go out and get them.
To stop finishing last, start lining up first. Project some confidence, honestly examine your own values and change your life.