How a Sociopath Got the Girl

My friend, Barbara, once went on a bad Tinder date. When she told him she didn’t want to see him again, he began the classy process of blowing up her phone several times a day. Since “leave me alone” didn’t work, she threw a temper tantrum and deposited it in his inbox.

But she mistyped the email address and got a response from a man called Bruce. His reply was all kinds of charming. He had hoped, he said, to have met her before she wrote him off so cruelly. Wasn’t she rejecting him a little too soon?


That’s how Barbara’s life turned into a rom-com with its own meet cute. She and Bruce exchanged emails for a month before she decided she had to meet him. Two years later, he moved to South Africa and married her. Barbara says theirs is the most mature relationship she’s ever had, and no wonder. Bruce is kind. He’s honest and thoughtful. He has all the “boring” traits Tinder Guy says he has but doesn’t.

Tinder Guy is the type who calls men like Bruce sociopaths. If Barbara chose him, he’s clearly an asshole because women always choose the bad boys. Tinder Guy doesn’t remember his two weeks of stalking when he’s polishing his halo. He forgets the way he ignored her “no” and remembers that one time he sent her a flower emoji.

Just like all nice guys, he’ll tell you how compassionate he is while calling his last Tinder date an old, fat bitch. He opened her door. He sent flowers. He once stopped groping her when she asked. He pays attention to all of that niceness because he needs to look pretty hard to find it. You probably don’t remember your every thoughtful gesture because you’re not using it to fuel your entitlement. Nice guys do. The fact that they pay for first dates is yet more evidence that all womankind owes them its nakedness.

Nice Guy cherry picks his self-beliefs until the entire orchard dies. Confirmation bias ignores everything that doesn’t support its premise, and Nice Guy needs to ignore a lot. Reality is an inconvenient burden, especially when he needs to justify his incel status, so he remembers the fact that he paid for Barbara’s dinner and justifies his stalking with his entitlement. She owes him, so the entire stalking situation is just another way the world is stealing what’s rightfully his.

If Mr Nice Guy looked at his beliefs and actions, he might just start being a nice guy. As it stands, though, Bruce got the girl because he doesn’t itemise the thoughtful things he does for the woman he loves. Bruce is grateful for Tinder Guy, though–truly. He chased his wife straight into his arms.

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