Bitchisms: Nice Guys Can’t F*ck
My psychologist would blame my attraction to “bad boys” on my father.
Words Leah McSweeney Photos Jacob DeKat
Why can’t “nice guys” make me climax? Wait, what exactly is a “nice guy?” My psychologist would blame my attraction to “bad boys” on my father. Not that my dad is a “bad boy;” he and my mom have been married for 45 years.
He is quiet and intellectual and spends his free time reading, painting, and playing the guitar. He is a truly kind man, but while I was growing up, he would rather be reading Dante’s Inferno than connecting with me.
But in 2008, after a near-death experience that left him in a coma for almost two months, my father woke up a changed man. And watching a machine keep him alive for 60 days made any kind of resentment I had held against him evaporate. Since then, my father and I have become super tight. So with that being said, I don’t think I can blame this problem with men solely on the history I have with my father.
This isn’t only about daddy issues.
I decide to call my ex to see if he knows why I’m always unsatisfied by “nice guys.” I take the opportunity to point out that, “You’re not a nice guy.” He says, “It’s not that I’m not nice, I’m just depressed.” He goes on to share his theory that “…women register niceness as weakness.” I hastily stop him from continuing. Is this why he was such a prick to me? All of the bullshit this motherfucker put me through; he didn’t do it because he hated me, he did it because he thought I would find him more attractive and desirable? I call him an asshole. He tells me that I’m an asshole, too. And while that may be the case, our relationship was one of my most passionate…and most painful. Passion and pain—do the two always go hand-in-hand?
In fact, it was so emotionally and psychologically draining it actually resulted in him researching
suicide techniques online, and me being prescribed a variety of anti-depressants.
But the sex? The sex was fucking incredible; it’s the only reason we stayed together for far too long. He finishes the conversation off with this piece of wisdom: “Leah, no guy is ever gonna fuck you like a guy that’s mad at women.”
I hang up on him.
Mind blown by this one sentence. Is he right? I think about my past lovers and if the good ones had mommy issues. And now I’m wondering about the new hot dude I’ve kicked it with a couple times and whether he hates his mom or not. I’m now weirdly hoping he does. I’m kidding. Sort of. But really, is this the compromise we as women need to make in order to get f—ed properly? I certainly hope not. Maybe the once-suicidal ex has it all wrong. What if this bad boy attraction is the female version of the Madonna/Whore Complex? Maybe I can’t sleep with a man if I can’t objectify him. And I can’t objectify a nice guy. I can only objectify a dick to be able to really let myself go and experience the satisfaction of pure lust.
Still confused, I call my mom…
She’s affectionately known as Bunny and has been a therapist for 40 years. I explain that I’m working on an article about women and their fascination with unavailable men. I ask if she considers my dad a bad boy. She says that she defines bad boys as “womanizers and broken men who get women to take care of them.” So no, she doesn’t consider my dad to be a bad boy. I remind her how emotionally unavailable he is (or was) and she says she never wanted a man who nagged her, so my father worked out perfectly.
I’m beginning to understand myself better because, like her, I also don’t want a dude telling me shit.
I once dated a “nice” guy. He was great on paper. Had a job and came from a good family. He was hot, funny, and smart. This might sound like basic stuff, but NYC is full of broke-ass bum dudes trying to find women to feed off of. So, I was pleasantly surprised to meet this man. We exchanged numbers, and the next morning I received a text from him, “Hello Madame” with a screen shot of the Wikipedia definition of Gerbiling—Google it if you don’t know.
Not too many things leave me speechless. At first, I figured he meant to send it to a friend. Not a girl he just met. Was this his idea of an ice breaker? I wrote back and asked if he knows who he is texting. He did. And he seemed embarrassed. Feeling bad for him, I went on a date with him.
The next morning, he texted me at 8 a.m., I remember rubbing my eyes, wondering to myself if I was seeing right. This was not something I was used to.
At first his behavior was cute. I tried to tell myself, “This is what a nice guy is like, Leah. You deserve a man that’s nice and crazy about you.” He brought me home to his mom; he drooled over me in front of his boys. I had been so used to the uber-cool, aloof man that I thought this was what I needed. I went along with it feeling ambivalent. Though most of the time something didn’t feel right in my gut. I mean literally: something didn’t feel right in my gut.
The sex was weak. He didn’t understand the anatomy of a vagina. He didn’t clasp my ass right in his hand. He wanted to cuddle when I wanted to get slapped around. He was a great looking guy and the attraction was there, but I had one orgasm in the approximate 90 days we dated. My vagina and overly available men just weren’t meant to be.
So, he was added to the list of men who probably hate me. Could it be that maybe he just happened to be a nice guy who wasn’t nice in the sack? Yes. But this was my experience with the first nice guy who I had finally given a chance…which leads to my conclusion.
I asked this guy that I recently went on a pseudo-date with if he’s a nice guy. He said he’s in the middle. Then he decides to go further and say that “compliments, affection and emotional support are not my strong points.”
I literally laughed out loud when I heard this. And then it hits me: This type of shit would have gotten me off in the past. The perfect recipe for pain. But instead, I’m left feeling pretty bored and uninterested after he shares his character flaws. Even just on a friends-with-benefits level, I am completely turned off. So, where does this leave me?
I used to love the challenge of trying to get unattainable, emotionally damaged man to change. I was even successful to a point a few times. It was exciting and fun. I even enjoyed the painful part when I realized no changing was going to happen in certain cases. But now, the once intriguing unavailable bad boy is finally a total snooze feast. But on the other hand, my only experience I have with available men leaves me orgasmless and repelled. What a clusterfuck.
Luckily, I am in no rush to figure it out. I already have a daughter, so the biological clock isn’t ticking away on me. My business takes me all over the world and leaves me challenged everyday. I don’t feel like anything or anyone is missing from my life. As good as that feels, I can’t help but be a little disappointed by my overly independent way of living. But for now, I guess it’s just the way it is.
Is it okay to just be in a place where I don’t exactly know what I want from the opposite sex? There I said it. I don’t know what I want.
This article appears in Mass Appeal Issue 54. Subscribe to the magazine here.