[…20 lines edited out…] Why do I get friend zoned? I’m a nice guy.
Z. 16, Roanoke, IL.

Really, a ‘nice guy’? I mean that’s literally the least you can be ! Aim higher dude !

You are asking me why a girl you like who is not that into you cannot quite put her finger on why she has to keep you at a safe distance? You could ask her but if she has already used a tactic like ‘let’s just be friends’ to avoid hurting your feelings or worse, angering you, maybe it is best just to move on.

And by move on, I mean back out of the room and run the other way. You’ll have plenty of time to read He’s not that into you. Can’t read something intended for another gender? Welcome to the life of girls !

Guys and girls do not have the same motivations for being nice. Guys expect to ‘get something’ for being nice and girls expect to ‘avoid something’ by being nice.

Men are afraid women will laugh at them. Women are afraid men will kill them. – Margaret Atwood, writer

Guys who are playing the ‘I’m a nice guy’ game are painting themselves into a corner. Because not being yourself usually leads to a life of fear, anger and lies.

First things first :

Invest in being a skilled, competent, and accomplished person as it applies to your personality and specific interests.

It’s okay to not know who you are and what you want especially if you are a teenager. You know that period of time where you throw away the privilege of free time, easy food and shelter to pretend to be an adult by seeking out a partner, burdening yourself with worries about conforming to other people’s expectations all-the-while trying to live out other people’s fantasies. Yeah, that period in your life… Reclaim the shit out of it !

And you may still want to run free and learn about who you are and what you want through a series of regrettable relationships and sexual experiences!

But you will never get as much value out of your time as truly investing in yourself. You can drastically diminish the time you invest in passive entertainment and do stuff.

Go on with your life and invest your time into activities you are passionate about.

And you know what? Girls will get to see you at your best, your happiest and your most accomplished ! Then, they are more likely to ‘get you’ from the very start. You will eventually find yourself in a place where you are surrounded by compatible, like-minded people and interesting things will happen. Trust me, it will feel way more easy than struggling to emulate and image.

And all these times you felt like you were being rejected despite being ‘the nice guy’ will not matter. Because being rejected for emulating a personality or pretending to be someone else (or not knowing you are yet) doesn’t really count.

* Novelist Margaret Atwood writes that when she asked a male friend why men feel threatened by women, he answered, “They are afraid women will laugh at them.” When she asked a group of women why they feel threatened by men, they said, “We’re afraid of being killed.” A Woman’s Worst Nightmare by Mary Dickson © 1996 (published on PBS.org)