Dating: Do girls really want bad guys?

Backhanded insults and monosyllabic texts aren't cutting it.
Backhanded insults and monosyllabic texts aren’t cutting it.

A few years ago I criss-crossed the country talking to guys about sex, love, and dating as research for my book, “Are All Guys Assholes?” Something I heard repeatedly from guys all over was that “girls love assholes.” Through a combo of dating books, their own experiences and observing the success of friends around them, many guys are thoroughly convinced that nice guys finish last and, as one put it, “being nice is a mistake.”

Well listen up guys, because the overly cocky pickup artist D-bag angle is played out. Trust me when I tell you, girls want to be with guys who are sweet. According to an analysis of a half-million first contact messages sent on the dating site OKCupid, considerate is in! Guys who sent a message with the words “sorry,” “awkward” and “apologize” were all significantly more likely to get a response back.

I know what you’re thinking: “But I had just perfected my ‘I don’t give a shit about you’ texting response times!” Well un-pop your collar and pay attention.

Being “nice” has gotten a bad rap because it’s a synonym for boring. It’s not that women don’t want to be with guys who treat us well, it’s that we don’t want to be with a guy who has nothing to say, has no personality or doesn’t command respect (especially from us). Occasionally, yes, we fall into the asshole trap. But that’s less about deep-seated masochistic tendencies and more about the fact that sometimes our attraction to confidence gets misguided.

You can be nice and confident at the same time. And actually, since ladies know that guys act like jerks as a way to fake confidence, being nice proves to us that you’re comfortable enough not to have to fake it. Be who you really are, and be willing to stand out from the crowd. Show us your interest, but don’t give the impression that you’d let us push you around. Showing respect for yourself and consideration to us at the same time is never a bad way to go. Whether online or in person, I promise you, this is ultimately the strategy that wins.

Amber Madison is a trained Manhattan-based relationship expert and dating coach who is currently accepting clients. She is the author of ‘Are All Guys Assholes?’ for which she traveled the country, spoke to more than 1,000 men and discovered that the answer to this question is no. You can follow her on Twitter @ambermadi



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