You're Not Obligated To Like A Guy Just Because He's Nice To You

by Candice Jalili
Paramount PIcutres


Let me paint you a familiar little picture.

You've finally ended things with that guy who you were just never quite good enough for. You know the one. Let's call him Jeremy.

You were crazy about Jeremy. Was he into you? Not really. Was he a good guy? Maybe not. Was he nice to you? Definitely not. But, ugh, that connection. Something about you and Jeremy getting together was just all fireworks. And you had a hard time giving that up.

But you finally did! After days and weeks and months and maybe even years of broken promises and unreturned texts and mind games and fights, you are finally OVER JEREMY. Wahoo!

Now it's the weekend and you're out with your friends and, instead of keeping your eyeballs glued to your cell phone screen to see if Jeremy will respond to your text, you're scanning the room. Guys you used to shoo away because they weren't Jeremy are now suddenly viable options, and you're feeling groovy getting your flirt on.

Then, a new guy comes along. He makes some nice friendly, respectful small talk and you indulge him. He politely asks if he can buy you a drink. In fact, he buys drinks for you AND all of your friends.

Suddenly, you have a flashback to all of the drinks you had to buy for Jeremy, and how he never bought you any.

The next morning, the new guy texts you telling you he had a great time and he'd love to see you again. It makes you think about the days after you met Jeremy, when you anxiously waited by your phone for a text that didn't come until four in the morning the next weekend.

The next week, the new guy takes you on a real date where he pays for dinner and everything. Soon, he asks you to be exclusive with him. You think about the time when Jeremy got you a morning after bagel and you convinced yourself was a date, and how you spent nights wide awake wondering who he was sleeping with instead of you.

But there's another side to all of this.

When the new guy bought you a drink, you were stuck making boring small talk until you finished it. He didn't make a move to come home with you, but the truth is you weren't attracted enough to him to invite him. He texted you the next day, but something about the non-emoji smiley face he used really creeped you out. He took you out for the nice dinner date, but you really would have preferred the cheap taco shop down the street.

He asks you to be exclusive and, for some reason, even though this is all you ever wanted from Jeremy, you hesitate.

You want to date this new guy. You want to be exclusive with this new guy. You want to like him. He's so nice! He treats you the way you know you deserve to be treated, the way Jeremy never treated youAnd you promised yourself you're done with douchebags like Jeremy. You're going to start going for nice guys, even if there's no fireworks. This matters more. The stability. The kindness. The respect. That's what you want. That's what you need.

Sound familiar? Yeah, I thought so.

OK, here's the deal. I see where you're coming from. I've been there. We've all been there at one point or another. Finding an actual nice guy — one who doesn't even feel the need to call himself nice — feels like you actually managed to get a prize using that fucking impossible claw machine at the arcade.

But what if the price you got was a cabbage patch kid and you really wanted the giant stuffed Tweetie Bird? You still won, and that's great. But now, you have a decision to make: Are you going to settle for the cabbage patch kid and call it a day, or keep trying for the Tweetie Bird?

And, no, the Tweetie Bird is not Jeremy. You see, the Tweetie Bird is a third kind of guy. He treats you like gold and texts you and invites you on dates. He's nice, too -- just as nice as the cabbage patch kid -- but he also makes you laugh so hard you snort iced tea up your nose, takes you out for fun adventures to all of your favorite places and fits in perfectly with your friends and family. He's a guy you actually like.

Because NEWSFLASH: Being nice is just the bare minimum requirement to date someone. It's what he does outside of being nice that should be the deciding factor.

I guess all I'm trying to say here is that you don't have to choose. It doesn't have to be either the nice guy who makes you cringe or the douchebag who makes your panties drop. You really can find a nice guy who also makes your panties drop.

The Tweetie Bird might take a little more time to find. But he's out there. And, call me crazy, but I think it's worth the wait.