Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

He's a bit too fecking 'nice'?!

(71 Posts)
aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 20:45:28

I've met this guy, friend of a friend, in January. We got on really well when we met because we just took the piss out of each other and had a lot of laughs as a result. My friend describes him as a diamond, which he is, because he's so bloody lovely and loyal.

He emails/texts every day, telling me how lovely I am, calling me beautiful and wishing me a lovely day/sweet dreams etc. He is consistently lovely to me. He's sensitive and really helped out my flatmate when she was extremely stressed about work - she thinks he's great. He is thinking about retraining as a counsellor, which I think he'd be great as as he has a high level of emotional intelligence.

Problem is, these days I feel like I'm on a bit of a pedestal - he seems to have really fallen for me - and when he's so lovely he can be, well, a bit boring.

Am I being too harsh? i've told him to stop being so lovely all the time as I will end up being a bit unkind (I know myself well enough to know I need a bit of a challenge) - which he does to varying success so far.

So, collective wisdom of MN - what do you think?

What do you want out of a relationship? What kind of stage are you at?

Why would you want a challenge?

I went through a number of boyfriends before meeting dh. He was the one who never ever made me cry, or wait for a phonecall, or stress me out. He was consistent, reliable, loyal and put me first. And I, was worth that.

MidnightMasquerader Fri 22-Mar-13 20:49:55

So all the relationships that have been a 'bit of challenge'...

How did they pan out for you?

milktraylady Fri 22-Mar-13 20:51:41

You are daft waiting for a disaster to happen!
Give him a chance grin

KoalaFace Fri 22-Mar-13 20:53:15

Hello! Are all other areas good for you? Fancy him, have a laugh, etc?

Its hard to know if its a personality clash in that he is very demonstrative and lovey dovey and you not so much. Or if you're just not used to being treated well. What does your gut tell you? Do you instinctively feel you're a good match?

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 20:53:54

I guess I expect a challenge. They've not worked out well..

Is it too sickly too be so nice though - or can I just relax and enjoy it then? I've not been great at long term relationships. He never makes me stress or wait or wonder, I'm constantly reassured about how lovely he thinks I am.

I feel like Groucho Marx.

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 20:56:27

I think he's great. He has indie tastes (oh I sound like a teenager) but he is interesting and interested in things. I earn more than him, but have just quit my job so that might change.

He's very tactile, I'm pretty tactile, but i like a good joke and he's being a bit too soft for my liking. I don't want to get bored.

I stayed at his last night and did the commute to work - he got out of bed and walked me to the station (10 mins walk) at 6.30am even though he didn't have to leave until 7.45am.

bigTillyMint Fri 22-Mar-13 20:56:27

If you've always picked the challenging ones in the past, then maybe it's time to try a different type.

Worked for mewink

CharlotteCollinsismovingon Fri 22-Mar-13 20:57:26

I have felt weird early on in relationships in the past, because you agree to get together and there's this sudden change from friendship to loads of affection - I think I take a while to adjust.

How much time apart do you get to enjoy your own interests and carry on with the rest of your life? Take things slowly, so that if it feels a bit stifling, you get a break from him.

MidnightMasquerader Fri 22-Mar-13 20:58:10

Exactly. The previous relationships didn't work out well.

Instead of expecting/preferring a man with 'challenging' tendencies, why not try something else and at least give it a chance?

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 21:01:31

Right - if you keep doing the same things, you'll get the same result.

I really do have my own life - I just fear he doesn't and depends on me too much. He keeps telling his mates and family about this great girl he's met, whereas I'm just taking it sllooooooowww.

I fancy him when he's not so sickly sweet and has his own things going on, less so when I feel he is too indiscriminate. I think I'm just not quite experienced enough in LTR to know if this is what nice men are really like or if it's just annoying.

Give it time.

Where there's an issue is if the person is too wet/dependent etc as there's a difference to being soppy and having high needs for some reason (usually a past experience).

If he's nice and soppy but has his own interests & isn't trying to live in your pockets etc then what you're looking at is a normal healthy relationship.

Enjoy! smile

Challenging is fun and exciting, but a bloody nightmare when you're trying to share childcare arrangements, mortgage payments and build a home.

If you're not ready for that then go be wild and promiscuous. But believe me, you'll be grateful for a not-so-challenging partner when you settle down.

bigTillyMint Fri 22-Mar-13 21:04:10

TBF, no-one would ever describe DH as sickly sweet and my ex who was way more romantic, etc, developed into quite a controlling character.

Do you think he might become controlling, or is he a bit boring or is he just in love with you?

CognitiveOverload Fri 22-Mar-13 21:04:12

He wont always be like that...but its a grear starting point. Relationships tend to bring their own won't need extra from him...

(I said the bit about being too dependent because my mum's ex husband had issues in that way due to being in care for a short period when he was small. He was the nicest guy ever and didn't do anything wrong but as time progressed the few interests he had were dropped. He always agreed with everything she said, even if she knew he didnt really agree etc. It took her a while to realize that whilst he was the nicest man she'd ever dated it was driving her up the wall. She felt too responsible for his happiness too. I'm well aware it may not be the case with this guy but thought i'd weigh in in case you're wondering the same sort of thing about this guy. Give it time anyway and it'll become more apparent either way).

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 21:10:17

He's just in love with me, that much is clear. And I'm not quite there yet.

I don't think he's controlling at all. I've got a narc family and have had a seriously narc boyfriend, this guy is completely different.

I just don't know if being in love with me is what it is, or if he is just a bit boring.

onefewernow Fri 22-Mar-13 21:10:41

At the grand old age of 52. I would caution against the sparky challenging ones. They were my bag too. And I married one. But they are hard work. Often more messed up than you know. And selfish.

Nobody likes an h who is a challenge when they have three kids. and many men don't grow out of it.

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 21:11:26

Orchard that's my fear. I don't want to be his hobby and his interests.

defineme Fri 22-Mar-13 21:11:58

Is it because you feel you don't deserve a lot of affection?

Is it because you think affection is weak?

Is it because you're scared of commitment generally?

Walking you to the station is a lovely thing to do.

However, if you feel smothered then you need to let him know. Perhaps he's being full on because he's panicking as you're giving him the message that you're not that interested?

I married my dh because he didn't play games, he put me first, he's strong, loyal and felt free to express his emotions/feelings.

Perhaps you need to be on your own for a bit and consider yourself and relationships-why you are the way you are and what you're looking for.

Oh and what they've all said! ^

If he's not too dependent or reliant on you for his happiness then you reach out and grab it before it's gone and you realize what you've lost! You're one very lucky lady if he is just a goodun smile

bigTillyMint Fri 22-Mar-13 21:13:11

I'd say just take it as it comes - it sounds great ATM, but if he becomes more wet/boring, etc, you can finish it then?

rubyredbeau Fri 22-Mar-13 21:13:24

I met a man like this op, i can say thankfully he has been husband for the last 11 years and we have two fab kids together! Still going strong and he is as nice and kind as he was on day one!

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 21:16:07

Define thanks for your post. I have had a lot of time on my own (I'd rather be on my own than have to face, I don't know, the mirror that relationships are) and had 2 years of counselling to sort through narc-family issues.

Your DH describes this fella. Just avery very new experience to me, not sure what to make of it all. Maybe he is panicking a bit, not thought of that.

Consensus seems to be 'give it time', then?

My DH was lovely and at the time it felt a lot more 'into' the relationship that me, but that was we were coming at it from different perspectives.

I dated for fun, to find out, to see where it went.

He had had a very controlling girlfriend and vowed never to date again. However, when he met me he spent 18 months considering whether or not to ask me out. When he did, he meant it. He'd made the decision that I was for life. It was a bit of a shock.

It took a while for our two 'perspectives' to shake down and sort themselves out. I was taken aback when in week two he showed me the wardrobe he had emptied for my stuff shock.

But he's not a smotherer. He has his own interests, life and views on things.

CognitiveOverload Fri 22-Mar-13 21:17:44

Perhaps you just aren't used to it...don't give up on him for treating you well...

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 21:17:51

RubyRed so they don't necessarily get boring?

Tilly (Ps have always wondered about your name, love it, where did it come from?) that's it! I think he's really fun, and has loads of fun with his mates, but with me he's a little wet. So I need to find out which is which.

nkf Fri 22-Mar-13 21:19:19

Having married and divorced a very high maintenance driven man, I don't think I would ever take on another challenge. Sweet and kind sound perfect. And you say boring? After a while, the dramas get boring.

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 21:26:16

Some lovely stories here.

He's travelling 90 mins tonight to come and see me, should be arriving soon. will see how it goes. I've said he has to start taking the piss again.

Happymum22 Fri 22-Mar-13 21:30:03

I remember my first serious boyfriend when I was 17 was just this- too nice and too lovestruck. I took it for granted and always felt like you, it was just a bit too easy and I never had to work for him. I lacked confidence so thought he would fall for anyone and maybe he was desperate.
Anyway I got over this and we had a long and happy relationship but it did hang in my mind sometimes and altered the way I treated him. Sometimes I found him trying too hard that I withdrew, making him try harder, making me even more put off!
I did adore him and have never since been treated so well by anyone.
I dumped him when I went to uni. He found another lovely and very pretty girl a year later, I remained single for quite some time but happy and needed time being alone due to other things that happened in my life.
But a few years later I saw him with other old friends in a bar, he was just wonderful and having been with a few other boys, but none of them ever being clear or forward and no one ever really chasing me, I realised how incredibly well he has treated me and how much he had meant to me. I really began to fancy him again but it was too late. I had learnt the hard way how great he was from never finding nyone who matched up. I am now over him!! I just look back and realise what a life lesson it was that I had such a great boy so early and I wish I had valued him more.

I am now over him..just to put that in there!.. I just admire what a nice guy he was even at the age of 17/18 when most guys aren't so lovely.

So hang on in there and really really try to remember and appreciate how lucky you are to have a great caring guy who would do anything to protect you.. They are SO rare!!! He deserves you to respect and give him the same chance.

bigTillyMint Fri 22-Mar-13 21:30:49

aroom TillyMint was my father's pet name for me (Scouse term of endearment) but it was taken so I added big!

Are his mates nice? If they are, then he's a keeperwink

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 21:34:13

Happymum sorry to hear you learnt the hard way. Good point about him deserving me to respect him and give him the same chance. I am so guarded and prepared to cut people loose, good to hear. I can be a bit callous at times.

You really think this type of guy is rare?!

aroomofherown Fri 22-Mar-13 21:35:34

Tilly - nice name! I haven't met his mates yet. I've been holding back, although they (obviously) know all about me and his family are keen to meet me. Heck!

Lueji Fri 22-Mar-13 22:00:11

After a while, the dramas get boring.

Worse, exhausting.

ElegantSufficiency Fri 22-Mar-13 22:05:25

Is he good company though? if he is, and you dont want him, can i have him? :-p

ElegantSufficiency Fri 22-Mar-13 22:06:43

I dont want drama either. done with that. want somebody i can count on to be good company and decent

Snazzynewyear Fri 22-Mar-13 22:14:40

Wanting to take things slowly is fine, wanting him to be less 'nice' or 'wet' is a different matter and, in my view, short sighted. Don't mistake drama and self-centredness for being interesting and exciting.

melbie Fri 22-Mar-13 22:40:35

I think it is really hard when you are used to men being a bit shit because it feels strange having someone like you that much. You are used to having to "work" for it and so a normal healthy relationship is alien. But give him time and it will start to feel less weird and all lovely

ike1 Fri 22-Mar-13 23:31:49

I'll solve the problem for you....hand him over to me!

tightfortime Fri 22-Mar-13 23:40:01

This is very interesting. Found myself in similar situation last year. After a EA marriage, I was happy dating a few bad boys. Then along came mr nice guy.

Similar piss take at start as I wasn't interested in serious. He persevered. I treated him fairly casually to say the least. Eventually, he asked me to forget the bad boys and give us a chance.

I agreed. I got to know him. Still am.

Turns out mr nice guy is really a gent. But with a wicked fun side I only saw once he got comfortable around me and relaxed the 'perfect man' facade.

He's still fab but I love that he was way more than I ever gave him credit for. Trusting not controlling. Interested but not in my face.

I have blossomed and so has he. So far, so good.

I'd give him a chance xx

Lavenderhoney Sat 23-Mar-13 04:31:24

He treats you well, he is kind, you can get on with work, living, anything without worrying he is off on a bender, worrying about a row, worrying he hasn't sent a text, stressing he is with his ex who is a " friend" etc etc

This to me is what relationships are about. It's supposed to be nice and easysmile
Don't try to make him a nightmare and hardwork! You might scare him off or worse, get your wish..

He sounds nice, relax and enjoy itsmile

TheRealFellatio Sat 23-Mar-13 04:48:04

I think if you have met 'the one' then there is no such thing as either of you being 'too nice' to the other. There is no need for mind games, no need to play it cool and no need to make someone work at it. You need to get past the idea that the only kind of man worth having is one you've had to conquer and tame.

If you find his niceness a bit off-putting and smothering then he clearly isn't the one.

BreasticlesNTesticles Sat 23-Mar-13 08:36:35

You sound as though you are just not that into him tbh.

I've been lucky, I have had several proper nice guy boyfriends. The only one who I didn't find irritating or dull was DH because i liked him as much as he liked me although he is way too much into PDA's than me

RedBushedT Sat 23-Mar-13 09:04:58

If you're not used to being treated well then it can take a fair bit of adjustment to allow yourself to relax.
I've been properly dating DP just over a year now and I still struggle sometimes with accepting how much he cares and wants to be there for me.
Just give it time. What's the rush? smile

Dahlen Sat 23-Mar-13 09:14:51

Nice does not equal boring. If the problem is that he's too nice, the problem is with your view of relationships.

However, if he is boring because he doesn't do much on his own and is dependent on you for his happiness, that's a valid reason to call things off.

mrfrancis82 Sat 23-Mar-13 09:44:25

This kind of thing is why I will never understand women.

The girls who say 'he's too nice' end up going out with absolute pricks who hit them/cheat on them, but then again it is quite a challenge to cover up a black eye at work.

BreasticlesNTesticles Sat 23-Mar-13 09:53:08

I have been out with plenty of nice men, I have also been out with some complete wet pushovers. That is not attractive to anyone.

I'm sure DH is with me because I am kind and considerate sometimes towards him whilst have a mind of my own. I am sure I would have been less attractive to him had I gazed at him saying "whatever you think dear".

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sat 23-Mar-13 10:06:41

When you say 'I've told him he has to start taking the piss again', what do you mean?

I feel a bit sorry for this guy, he is treating you really well and sounds lovely - and you are picking at him and telling him to treat you less well??

Don't ruin his self-esteem just so that you get your 'challenging', dramatic and screwed up relationship to be angst-ridden about.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sat 23-Mar-13 10:07:27

In fact scratch that, I feel a LOT sorry for this guy.

Ali- I took it to mean that she wants a bit more of the banter she says they had when they first met, a bit of teasing taking the piss, not letting her down, etc.

I get what you mean when you say you need that. I can really like someone, but would always take the piss if they did something stupid- just my personality. I would hate it if I felt they were going to be mortally offended by that, and had to watch my reactions all the time.

pictish Sat 23-Mar-13 10:19:27


Are we not always telling women on here that it's ok to not want to remain in a relationship for any reason?

I think what the OP describes sounds quite smothering and intense. She suspects he's piling all his eggs into her basket, even though she hasn't quite invited him to do so yet. She only met him in January!
Something is telling her no. Her not-too-sure-about-this prickles are up.

She suspects she is about to become his crutch. That much is obvious to me.

pictish Sat 23-Mar-13 10:21:23

I'm not saying he's a bad 'un. I don't know.

It's worth listening to what the OP is telling us though. She's not confortable with his level of niceness, she feels it's tipping over into being a bit bulldozed.

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Sat 23-Mar-13 10:23:28

I am confused.

You want someone to treat you badly?

In what way?

Ignore you? Mess you around? be a bit mean? Seem disinterested in you?


Alibabaandthe40nappies Sat 23-Mar-13 10:26:59

pictish - so leave the relationship then, rather than trying to get the guy to change his behaviour to suit.

pictish Sat 23-Mar-13 10:33:48


EggandSporkRace Sat 23-Mar-13 10:39:26

The only times I have hated being treated like this were when the bloke wasn't that nice really, but was very 'in love' with me, and it turned me off...I found it intensely annoying to be told 'you are wonderful' twenty times a day - I just wanted to scream.

Turns out it was for a good reason.

Yours might be properly brilliant, or he might be an eejit with a good line in charm - either way if it makes you uncomfortable that's a bad sign.

EggandSporkRace Sat 23-Mar-13 10:42:19

Oh and people said 'Oh he is trying hard...he just loves you a lot...he hasn't said anything horrible!'

this was when he was texting me about how much he missed me, when I'd taken the kids to a day out/ party without him - and how 'the only good day is one spent with you' hmm - and then we got home to a load of shopping we'd neither needed or wanted on our doorstep, he'd known we were out, he was either checking up on me to make sure I wasn't lying, or trying to make me feel guilty for spending the day away from him, or both.

It was hideous - it literally felt like being smothered, tbh.

EggandSporkRace Sat 23-Mar-13 10:43:34

and I had told him it made me uncomfortable prior to this - and he still did it, saying 'I know you don't want to hear it but ...' as though that made it Ok.
He was dependant on me.

That's what you have to watch out for.

pictish Sat 23-Mar-13 10:46:23

The problem with someone falling for you fast and hard, and wanting to focus soley on you, is that you kind of get the feeling that you could be anyone. That you are adored for what you represent.

I ditched a lovely boyfriend years ago. He was sexy and clever, and just adored me...but he was wet. He quickly became my shadow. He always wanted to be holding my hand, picking me up, fawning over me. He loved me three months in. He agreed with everything I said, and went out of his way to do nice things for me ...and I started to feel like he was forcing me to love him.

In the end the soppy eyes and hand holding got too much, and I finished it.

hmm, I can see both sides here. pictish I had a bf like you have described when I was about 18 and it all got too much for me. Smothered is exactly right. And I felt awful ending it, but I knew that I couldnt keep going out with him. He would have sucked the life out of me.

OP - huge difference between him being a nice guy and a life sapper - only you know whether he has his own interests or he is basing his whole life on you.

EggandSporkRace Sat 23-Mar-13 11:02:56

That's it Pictish, it's all about them, and what it makes them feel like - nothing to do with you.

EggandSporkRace Sat 23-Mar-13 11:05:15

Also when I finished with him, he refused to accept it for a while - and then told someone else how ugly and boring I was.

He still sent me messages

It was never about me, just his addiction to a feeling of being 'in love' and thinking I actually cared about him which actually, having found out what he was like, I stopped doing pretty quickly.

It's deluded and very uncomfortable to be on the receiving end of. I couldn't bear to be touched by him towards the end.

ImperialBlether Sat 23-Mar-13 11:52:41

He is showing you how much he likes you as well as telling you, isn't he?

It's not just nice that he walked you to the station when he could have stayed in bed, it's the sort of thing a normal caring man would do. You're not used to that, are you?

If you are uncomfortable with the compliments, is it because you think he compliments you so much that he can't mean all of it? Do you think you're not worth it? Maybe he does mean it. Maybe you are lovable. Maybe you are beautiful. Did other men not tell you that, or only tell you after an argument or when they were persuading you that what they'd done wrong was only because of you?

Judge him by how he's treated your friend, not you.

ImperialBlether Sat 23-Mar-13 11:56:01

One thing you could do is this.

Think of a friend who has a lovely husband and a really good relationship. Ask on here if you don't know anyone in real life like that.

Then ask them. "When you first met your husband and he was mad on you, would he have walked you to the station early in the morning?"

I think you'll find those on the Relationships board with bad relationships for whatever reason - entitled, cheating, lazy etc - will say "No" and some might add, "He would tell me he loved me and then go back to sleep."

Others with good relationships, who feel loved, will look bemused and say, "Of course he did."

aroomofherown Sat 23-Mar-13 13:23:16

Ah thanks everyone. Interesting read. I think I just don't know him well enough yet to know if he will smother me, part of me thinks he might, and part of me just isn't used to the nice things (which are normal in a good relationship) as someone said. Think I just need to give him time to find out.

RockinD Sat 23-Mar-13 19:16:12

My DH spent nine months getting to know me before he asked me out and by the time he did that, he'd pretty much made his mind up. Six weeks in, making cocoa, and with his head in the cupboard, he said 'Well, I guess this is it then.' We married 18 months later.

As the abused daughter of a narc mother and an enabling father with no perspective whatsoever, all - and I mean all - of my relationships had been abusive.

It took me a long time to get used to a man who called when he said he would and was absolutely reliable, a long time to get used to a relationship without the 'buzz' you get from the bad boys. There is just no drama - and it's great. We've been married nine years and he still tells me every day that he loves me. I trust him implicitly (and he me) and I wish, I so wish, I had met him in my 20s, not my 40s.

Please, give this guy a chance.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sat 23-Mar-13 19:22:13

DH would have walked me to the station.

He used to drive 3 hours twice a weekend to come and see me, and got his work to transfer him so that he could move in with me, which he did after 6 weeks. grin

NotMostPeople Sat 23-Mar-13 19:52:52

I had a boyfriend like this, after a few weeks I told him straight that it was too ich and that he needed to back off. To be fair to him he did just that. About a week went by and I found I was really missing him, so I called him (from a phone box pre-mobile) and said that I'd like to meet up for a drink. Within six months we were married.....

...... And within three years we were divorced. He went from worshiping the ground I walked on to being totally ambivalent, apparently a pattern that he still follows twenty years later.

I don't think it's about picking the bad ones, it's about feeling that your relationship is equal. I respect my DH (no2) but I didn't respect my first H.

WafflyVersatile Sat 23-Mar-13 21:56:51

Have you asked him about his previous relationships?

Maybe he's a bit of a pleaser? That can be a bit off-putting and mean that he doesn't have great boundaries himself. Do you think he has good boundaries? Does he say no to requests for help or does he bend over backwards to help everyone, every time? Does he always want to do just whatever you want to do?

How far along with the counselling stuff is he? I think you have to be counselled yourself during the training.

Maybe he's just nice and considerate.

If he's so emotionally thingummy you should be able to talk to him about this.

ReturnOfEmeraldGreen Sat 23-Mar-13 22:17:21

I can't help thinking about Bill Hicks (RIP) - "Chicks Dig Jerks" confused

aroomofherown Sun 24-Mar-13 22:14:44

OK have spent the weekend with him, told him to be a bit more lighthearted and he's been a gem - loads of fun but also lovely.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now