Rule Before Girlfriend: No Good Deed Goes Unpunished
This is gonna be offensive. I’m not going to win any points with the feminists, future girlfriends of mine, or even “nice guys” by writing what I’m about to write. But it’s what I found to be absolutely true. So I have to write it.
A cruel rule of dating (that’s pretty much immutable) is this: anything “good” or “nice” you do for a woman before sex can and will be used against you. That means any time you go out of your way, put in the extra effort, act more respectful or courteous than you need to, or do anything that can be construed as “kindness,” you’re doing yourself—and the girl you’re with—a serious disservice.
Let me explain how I came to this brutal conclusion.
I broke up with my 11-month girlfriend about 4 months ago. Immediately after our breakup, I threw myself into my business, not really concentrating on meeting new girls (plus I needed some recovery time). About six weeks ago, the business really took off and I found myself 28-years-old, pockets full of money, in the summertime, with a lifestyle that completely catered to meeting women.
Feeling emotionally ready to “get back out there,” I hit the trenches like the old days: bars, nightclubs, day game, and dates. Contrary to what the pickup community would have you believe, my approaching skills weren’t rusty after an 11-month relationship—they were actually better. I found myself enjoying make-out sessions, dates, and steamy interactions with gorgeous women.
But as I spent more time with these women, a funny pattern kept emerging…
Recently two smoking hot girls I’d been seeing (but still hadn’t slept with) gave me the same “Let’s be friends” speech that makes heads explode. I couldn’t believe this. I hadn’t heard that speech in ages. Plus, I’d been physical with both of these girls, made-out with both of them, and thought we were building a solid relationship without rushing things.
When I assessed my behavior, I realized my fatal good deeds. With one girl, I took her out for a $160 dinner on our first date. I did this not to impress her, but because I’d been surprised with a $3,500 check for a published story I’d forgotten I’d even submitted to a major news publication. I wanted to celebrate with a hot girl and great food, so I thought the dinner date would be perfect.
Girls you haven’t slept with will always mistake kindness for weakness. My “good deed” wasn’t rewarded, it was punished. Objectively, I did everything else on the date flawlessly—perhaps even better than normal. Yet, my generosity bit me in the ass.
Later that week I went out with smoking hot girl number 2. Again, I was tomahawk dunking the date, executing all the right moves. I was making-out with her in under a half hour. And an hour and half into the date, I could tell she was ready to go home with me. But did I pull the trigger? Nope! Why didn’t I? Because I wanted to build a solid relationship based on “respect.”
On our second date, I was welcomed to the friend-zone.
Alright, so I’m sure some internet tough guys are laughing at me right now and wondering how someone who writes about dating could make such amateur mistakes. Well, anyone who’d wonder that is someone who’s never been in a long-term relationship. See, when you have a girlfriend, being nice is good—in fact, it’s preferred.
A perennial complaint of my ex-girlfriend was that I wasn’t nice enough. It’s bizarre how the “nice” continuum shifts after you have sex with a woman. As my friend Paul Janka once wrote, he’s nice “on the backend” (I’m assuming he intended the pun), meaning he’s nice and generous after sex.
Unfortunately for a lot of guys, this lesson never sinks in. Guys—including myself—don’t see (or forget to see) the patterns: the way you treat a girl you’re “seeing” is different from how you treat your girlfriend. Now, I’m not saying you have to act like an asshole, but you certainly shouldn’t be acting nice either.
I sat down to write this article yesterday, inspired by my own failure. But before I finished writing, I was interrupted because I had to meet another girl for a date. Though, I approached this date with the principles of this article in mind.
When we met, rather than overpay for a cab, I decided we were going to take the subway (even though she was wearing heels). When we were walking through the subway terminal, I didn’t continually look over my shoulder to make sure she was “okay” as she followed me (dragging behind in her heels). When we were deciding where to have a drink, I didn’t ask for her input. When we were conversing, I didn’t always feel the need to dispel the “awkward silences” with questions or jokes. When she made a joke, I didn’t feel the need to force a fake laugh or even smile.
When we finished our drinks, I didn’t hesitate to walk her back to my apartment. When we got back to my apartment and she refused to come inside, I didn’t budge. I just looked at her like she was the one with the problem and said, “Why are you being weird?” When we were in my apartment together, I didn’t try to placate her or alleviate the tension. Nor did I make excuses for wanting to play to game that adults play.
And that’s why, when we ended up in bed together, it came as no surprise. By no means did I act like an “asshole” on this date. I didn’t even act rude. But I didn’t act “nice” either. Rather than kissing this girl’s ass and prancing around her as if she walked on water, I treated her like someone who needed to earn my approval.
So, for myself, and for all my “nice” cohorts out there, remember: no good deed will go unpunished. You’re not only cock-blocking yourself with your “niceness,” but you’re also robbing the woman of an experience of being with a desirable man. Until you sleep with her, don’t give her the chance to mistake your kindness for weakness.
>>>To Learn More From Rob, Check Out “The 4 Elements of Game” where he breaks down game into four simple adjustments.
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About Rob J. Rob J. is a writer and dating instructor in New York City. Themes that resonate in both his teaching and writing are masculinity, genuineness, rational self-interest, and general awesomeness.