I’ve been reading a bunch of articles lately about a supposed ideal breed of man—the “nice guy.”
This is the guy who genuinely cares about you, loves you, and is a decent human being. I can understand why he keeps popping up in articles as the ideal boyfriend. Who wouldn’t want a guy who treats you right?
Usually in such articles, a girl is writing advice to other girls telling them not to let the nice guy get away. They urge you to hold onto him because every girl should want to be with someone who is sweet, and letting this boy go would end up being one of your life’s biggest regrets.
To an extent I agree we should all date the nice guy. We should all be with a significant other who appreciates, respects, and cares about us. But that doesn’t mean every nice guy we meet is going to be perfect for us.
What happens when you don’t love him back? What happens when you’re with a nice guy and appreciate how great he is, but you don’t feel that the two of you belong together? Are you supposed to stay with him because he’s happy and will always be there trying to make you happy?
Last night, I broke up with my nice-guy boyfriend of two years. It was one of the most heart-wrenching decisions I’ve ever had to make. He was one of the greatest guys I have ever met—he would have gone to the ends of the earth for me. He made it known how much he loved me.
However, while I enjoyed having someone so devoted and sweet, I couldn’t pretend forever that our personalities weren’t so different. We listened to entirely different genres of music, could never agree on a movie, and spent our free time doing entirely different things. We had different goals and aspirations. He wanted to settle down with kids early, whereas I wanted to wait until my thirties to have children. It’s hard to be in a relationship with someone who doesn’t share my passions and dreams.
When I decided to end it, I began looking for comfort in other girls’ posts about breaking up with their boyfriends. What I found, overwhelmingly though, were posts warning me not to let go of the nice guy.
So I tried to make it work for a few weeks.
After trying my hardest to make the relationship work over the weeks that followed, I only realized more and more that I was not meant to share a life with this person. I made the decision to break up with the nice guy—not because he was too nice and I wanted someone tougher—but because I wasn’t meant to be with this nice guy. And that’s OK.
The advice from these articles frustrates me because, yes, we should all aspire to be with someone who isn’t an asshole, but that doesn’t mean that we should just grab and hold onto the first nice guy we find. There’s so much more to two humans having a personal romantic relationship than whether or not you treat each other right.
So don’t feel pressured to hold onto a guy just because he’s sweet. If you truly care about him, you’ll make sure that you’re in it for the right reasons. He deserves to be with someone who loves him as much as he loves you.
Once you manage to let go of the fear that you will never find someone as sweet again, you will find another nice guy—I promise.