Nice For Me But Not For Thee

A few weeks back, on my Questions or Suggestions page, commenter Nathan asked these questions:

“Is Girl-Game just the female equivalent of being the “Nice Guy?” If so, then why do we praise Girl-Game as a positive virtue while chastising being a “Nice Guy” as a negative vice?”

He then added this:

I’m not suggesting being a “Nice Guy” is a good thing, but then why do we praise women for doing basically the same thing.

Sorry for taking so long to get back to you Nathan, hopefully this post will make up for that somewhat. I will begin by repeating (in a cleaned up format) what I said in reply to your original comment:

Men and women are very different, so what works for one may not work for the other, and vice versa.

As for a longer answer, Vox at AlphaGame has a post up linking to this study. Some snippets:

Scientifically, nice (heterosexual) guys might actually finish last. A study published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin recently found that while men were attracted to nice-seeming women upon meeting them, women did not feel the same way about men. Researchers from the University of Rochester, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya in Israel investigated a possible mechanism explaining why women and men differ in their sexual reactions with receptive opposite-sex strangers.

In the first of three studies, researchers explored whether women or men perceived a receptive opposite-sex stranger as sexually desirable and, if so, whether that “responsive” quality registered as overtly feminine or masculine. The researchers found that men who perceived possible female partners as responsive found them to be “more feminine and more attractive.” Past research suggests that physical cues of femininity stimulate sexual attraction because they suggest higher estrogen levels, better overall mate quality and solid reproductive health.

On the other hand, women didn’t necessarily perceive a responsive man as less masculine, but they also did not find a responsive man more attractive. What’s more, when women perceived their male partner to be responsive, they were less attracted to the man.

In other words, it appeared that in an initial encounter men liked nice ladies; women thought nice guys were kind of lame.

There is plenty more, I suggest everyone read the whole thing. Here is what Vox had to say on the matter:

Men find nice women to be attractive. Women don’t find nice men to be attractive. The Masters of Game have been observing this for years; science is finally beginning to test some of the Game hypotheses, and unsurprisingly, are confirming them. It’s very simple. Being nice to an attractive woman is a display of low value. Being a jerk to an attractive woman is a display of high value. Women are drawn to DHV and repulsed by DLV. Because hypergamy.

Nice does not work for men. It just doesn’t. At the very best it does nothing positive, and at the worst will torpedo a man’s chances with a woman. Being perceived as “nice” lowers a man’s perceived Masculine Power in the eyes of women, rendering him less attractive.

But the opposite is not the case- nice can and does work for women. I wouldn’t exactly say that a nice woman is more attractive, but I would say that she is more desirable. So it won’t be a huge help (although it cannot hurt) to a woman who has otherwise lost the genetic lottery, but for even an average woman it can make a significant difference. This is because men tend to classify women above their attraction floor into two categories: women who are to be used and then discarded, and women who are to be possessed and kept. Begin nice as a woman, in fact “Girl Game” in particular, is all about being perceived in that latter category.

So, in summary, being nice is a bad move for men and a good move for women. It makes a man less attractive and makes a woman more desirable. Women are “praised” for pursuing “Girl Game” because it works for them- we praise success, not failure, which is all that “Nice Guy Game” ever entails.

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19 Comments

Filed under APE, Attraction, Blue Pill, Desire, Femininity, LAMPS, Masculinity, Red Pill

19 responses to “Nice For Me But Not For Thee

  1. great post Donalgraeme!
    this is why women don’t want nice men….
    http://amanhiswifethebible.wordpress.com/2014/07/27/the-teaching-that-made-me-hated-but-helped-heal-my-marriage/
    nice=passive, no leader, no protector

  2. Why is it called “girl game” then? Having game in there implies it is a game, IOW, its fake, a dance, to get what they want. Genuine nice girls don’t need game cause it is who they are and it radiates through naturally. Same for genuine dominant men, they too don’t need game cause its at the core of who they are. A woman is not going to be possesed and kept long once the game/percetion/appearance of her niceness wears thin.

  3. @ Jenny

    nice=passive, no leader, no protector

    Amen! Women want a man like David or Joseph, not a weakling who gives in to everyone and cannot defend them.

  4. @ LGR

    I use “Girl Game” in quotes for a reason- I don’t like the term. But then again, I don’t like “Game” either. It shouldn’t be a game, not should it be something that you “practice.” Rather, niceness, or confidence, or any other positive trait, should be genuine and part of your character 24/7.

    I’ve been meaning to write a post about being genuine and not fake for some time time, perhaps this will finally inspire me to actually write it.

  5. I think of girl game as seduction, and it’s definitely a game, a fun one at that.

  6. deti

    Note what the study uses as its definitional test material for “nice”. It’s talking there about “responsiveness”, meaning a couple of things: (1) the person’s actually and perceived readiness to indicate sensitivity and understanding of the other’s wants and needs, and willingness to satisfy or meet those wants/needs; and (2) the person’s receptiveness to others.

    In plain English, it’s (1) giving others whatever they want on demand; and (2) accepting others regardless of their value, worth, or manner of treating you.

    They’re not talking about affable, personable, approachable, gregarious or kind. They’re talking aboot submissiveness, supplication and pedestalization.

    So: a woman giving a man what he wants and accepting him regardless of his value? What man wouldn’t want that? This woman will increase in value to him.

    A man giving a woman what she wants and accepting her regardless of her value? A woman will likely welcome this treatment from a man, but she will not see him as sexually attractive. This is the kind of treatment she gets from her sisters and girlfriends. And this is why a woman will not be attracted to such a man.

  7. deti

    Another problem I see as I’m thinking about this is that affability, personability, approachability, gregariousness and kindness are good traits to have for men and women. They are part of common courtesy, the lubricant that greases the gears of western society.

    Whether we like this or not, a man demonstrating these traits is perceived – rightly or wrongly — as being feminine, submissive and soft. It’s better for a man to tone down those aspects of his personality around most women. He doesn’t have to be a jerk. He just shouldn’t be overly expressive, helpful or loquacious.

  8. Part of it is a legitimate test. If a guy can’t stand up to a woman, then he can’t stand up for her – i.e. the protector part.

  9. My problem with this study is that it does not take into account the various cultural and regional interpretations of “niceness”. What is considered “nice” in one culture or region, can be viewed as downright rude in another!
    (As a hafu, I’ve spent pretty much my entire life navigating the minefield of cross-culture interactions. Even the most innocuous activities can lead to an etiquette snafu)

    From a hard-science perspective, I cannot consider the studies’ data relevant, since it does not seem to mention that participants were of the same culture.

    At least the study acknowledges the “niceness” may not be authentic: [i] […]”Women may perceive this person as inappropriately nice and manipulative [/i]

    There’s a lot of smooth-talking, vicious people in the world. Being suspicious of a “nice” stranger, if anything, is probably a normal human reaction (at least until their niceness and intentions can be verified).

    Men may be more receptive to nice female strangers, because guys (especially the college aged guys in the study) enjoy any interaction with a woman. Even if the woman might be a criminal stranger trying to con them. (Just Google “funny police blotters”. Men getting robbed following ONS’s is a rather common one)

  10. A man giving a woman what she wants and accepting her regardless of her value?

    Actually, that sounds more like how little girls are treated by their fathers. (As a ‘lil girl I probably drove my poor Dad insane. But he still agreed to sit down and play plush-animal tea party with me).

    Women who reject nice men = hidden anger/reject of ones father (Wow, that’s possibly the most Fruedian thing I’ve ever written…)

  11. Edit/request for editing of above comment: I meant to say perhaps “women who reject nice men = hidden anger/reject of ones father?”

    I forgot to type the question mark.

  12. @Butterfly Flower: But even in Japanese culture, the aloof, mysterious and even sometimes cold guy was always seen as かっこいい (the “cool one”).
    You see this not only in T.V. and dramas, but also in real life.
    Some of the women I’ve known, who have dated or currently dating Japanese men, said in the beginning (when they were friends) they weren’t sure if their current boyfriend/husband liked them or not.
    This isn’t to say that women don’t appreciate kindness, they do, but with reservation.
    I certainly don’t appreciate it when men assume that all girls like bad boys, which certainly isn’t the case. I think most women just don’t want to be pedestalized.

  13. K

    “Part of it is a legitimate test. If a guy can’t stand up to a woman, then he can’t stand up for her – i.e. the protector part.”
    “nice=passive, no leader, no protector”
    Yeah man, I remember when Abraham protected Sarah, twice even! One in Genesis 12 and the other in Genesis 20.
    Wait that’s not what happened. Both times he gave his wife to the company of other men, saying she was his sister, and both times he knew these men thought his wife sexy and beautiful. Both times he greatly benefitted materially, once before the other man knew, and once after.
    It seems Abraham (or Abram then) would fail by any definition of the word “protect”. Yet his wife still loved him enough to let him have sex with a maidservant.
    And man, that Isaac. He sure stood up to his wife when he wanted to back his favorite son Esau and bless him. Luckily he stood up for Esau and was the leader in the situation otherwise it might have been Jacob getting blessed because of his mother’s wiles, and Esau and his descendants might be condemned to a lifetime of serving him!
    Oh. Wait.
    If we go by the speculative definitions being thrown around here about what a man should be, most of the patriarchs would have failed to meet those definitions.

  14. @Lovelyblanc7:

    But even in Japanese culture, the aloof, mysterious and even sometimes cold guy was always seen as かっこいい (the “cool one”).
    You see this not only in T.V. and dramas, but also in real life.

    That’s exactly what my original comment was addressing. Unlike Western society, Eastern cultures consider quiet and aloof to be “nice”. A “nice” Japanese/Chinese/Korean person is considered rude in the West! (its even a TV Trope – “Asian Rudeness”)

    Like I said before, if the study did not take into account the various cultural interpretations of “niceness” than its data is merely junk science.


    This isn’t to say that women don’t appreciate kindness, they do, but with reservation.

    Quiet Asian = bad boy? *bursts out into laughter* I apologize, its just I assure you, the stereotypical quiet, aloof Asian man is no bad boy. My husband is the biggest sweetheart I know; he just behaves, well, Japanese-y. Quiet, reserved, to use an English term “a cold fish”. He’s very kind; he just cannot express himself well.

    @ K:

    If we go by the speculative definitions being thrown around here about what a man should be, most of the patriarchs would have failed to meet those definitions.

    I think the error Christians often fall into when defining “Biblical masculinity/femininity” is that their personal definition is merely an excuse to justify their unBiblical values (Which is really not much different from the Evangelical tendency to Biblical-ize whatever weird lifestyle trend currently being promoted in the Oprah book club).

  15. @ K

    Wait that’s not what happened. Both times he gave his wife to the company of other men, saying she was his sister, and both times he knew these men thought his wife sexy and beautiful. Both times he greatly benefitted materially, once before the other man knew, and once after.
    It seems Abraham (or Abram then) would fail by any definition of the word “protect”. Yet his wife still loved him enough to let him have sex with a maidservant.

    And man, that Isaac. He sure stood up to his wife when he wanted to back his favorite son Esau and bless him. Luckily he stood up for Esau and was the leader in the situation otherwise it might have been Jacob getting blessed because of his mother’s wiles, and Esau and his descendants might be condemned to a lifetime of serving him!

    Well, K is a troll, but I suppose refuting it should be done for others.

    1. Because God blesses someone who sins is not a reason to sin.

    2. Not even a remotely close example. Isaac can’t “stand up” when he was deceived — Rebekah and Jacob went behind his back — and thus had already given out the blessing. Blessings are irreversible.

  16. K

    @Deep Strength

    1. I never said or implied that it was. My point is that lots of people are throwing around what men SHOULD be, but even the vast majority of men in the Bible do not fit that description nor does God tell them to fit that description. Then the question begs as Butterfly Flower saw immediately: Are these definitions being thrown around really what the Bible espouses, or are we taking our own personal tastes and using the Bible to support them? I suspect the latter.

    2. His position as head of the household was clearly challenged yet he did nothing about it after the fact. No punishment, no correction, nothing. This goes against what commentators think here when making bold statements as

    “this is why women don’t want nice men….
    nice=passive, no leader, no protector”

    And to your statement
    “Isaac can’t “stand up” when he was deceived — Rebekah and Jacob went behind his back — and thus had already given out the blessing. Blessings are irreversible.”

    How can a man be “deceived” into giving God’s blessing to someone else? Can the pope or a pastor be “deceived” into giving God’s blessing to someone else? No, it was already God’s will Jacob should receive the blessing, and Rebekah/Isaac was merely the means.

    but since you don’t like that example Deep Strength lets take a look at another example.

    Samson was not nice. Samson was not passive. Samson was a leader. Samson was a protector. All metrics espoused in the previous comments in this thread as a man a wife would love. Samson, however, was doomed by his wife. That’s a weird way of showing love.

    Could it be, that we are seeing trends in the world (or saying we see the trends we want to see) and then backwardly applying them to the Bible?

    “I think the error Christians often fall into when defining “Biblical masculinity/femininity” is that their personal definition is merely an excuse to justify their unBiblical values (Which is really not much different from the Evangelical tendency to Biblical-ize whatever weird lifestyle trend currently being promoted in the Oprah book club).”

    Ding Ding Ding

    I don’t know how old you guys are are, but part of the reason we are in this predicament today is precisely that. Decades ago it started, and Churchians and Evangelicals looked at society and said “women like nice guys”and they even found Biblical proof! Just look at Hosea! Boaz! Etc… and it led to a weird asymmetry in the church. Now we are starting to do the opposite. “Women don’t like nice guys because XYZ” hey, here are a few Biblical examples David, Joseph, etc.! Going in the opposite direction of wrong is not right.

  17. @Butterfly Flower: My dad is the most quiet man I know, but it is important to note that quiet doesn’t equal bad boy. That is not what I am saying.
    Being quiet and aloof are two different things; they are not synonymous. Somebody can be quiet and shy or they can be quiet and confident. There is a difference.
    The quiet, shy boy isn’t going to come off as a “bad boy”. But the quiet, confident man who is reserved, will come off as more masculine.
    Also, not being nice doesn’t mean bad boy.

  18. femininebutnotfeminist

    I wasn’t going to respond to this post, but was going to just keep my mouth shut because I knew my response would just fall on deaf ears. But particularly in light of the recent “Anomalous Behavior” post, I’m going to respond anyway.

    From the OP: “Nice can and does work for women”

    No. It works on a small amount of men, but not even close to all men. The men around here aren’t like average men. We all agreed on that, I assume. Being nice has seemingly acted as a man repellant of sorts for me. Far too many men have (IRL) told me that I’m the nicest person they know and other such similar comments, and have made no moves of pursuit. Instead, I typically get treated like a little sister or a pet, not as a prospective mate. I can see a man wanting the woman he has already snagged to be nice to him, but nice certainly doesn’t attract a man. when being nice to a man works for me, then and only then will I believe it. When men start picking attractive not-slutty nice girls over equally attractive slutty not-nice girls, then I will believe it.

  19. femininebutnotfeminist

    Perhaps a better way to phrase my comment is this: nice girls aren’t sexy (in attitude). And men want, and expect, sexy. They are not likely to be attracted to a woman that doesn’t exude that.

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