They all believe that if they are “good” and do everything “right,” they will be loved, get their needs met, and have a problem-free life. This attempt to be good typically involves trying to eliminate or hide certain things about themselves (their mistakes, needs, emotions) and become what they believe others want them to be (generous, helpful, peaceful, etc.). I call these men Nice Guys. Up to now we haven’t paid much attention to the Nice Guy, but he is everywhere. He is the relative who lets his wife run the show. He is the buddy who will do anything for anybody, but whose own life seems to be in shambles. He is the guy who frustrates his wife or girlfriend because he is so afraid of conflict that nothing ever gets resolved. He is the boss who tells one person what they want to hear, then reverses himself to please someone else. He is the man who lets people walk all over him because he doesn’t want to rock the boat. He is the dependable guy at church or the club who will never say “no,” but would never tell anyone if they were imposing on him. He is the man whose life seems so under control, until BOOM, one day he does something to destroy it all.
Every Nice Guy is unique, but all have a cluster of similar characteristics. These traits are the result of a script, often formed in childhood, that guides their lives. While other men may have one or two of these traits, Nice Guys seem to possess a significant number.