Nice guys finish last. It’s a statement that every guy, who’s ever been dismissed by a woman, takes to heart. And now, according to a new series of studies, there is apparently a lot of truth to it.
Researchers at the University of Rochester, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya in Israel investigated a possible mechanism explaining why women and men differ in their sexual reactions with receptive opposite-sex strangers, Newsweek reports.
Their discovery, first reported in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin: that for heterosexual men, women just weren’t interested in the so-called “nice guys.” However, men were crazy about nice girls.
More from the Newsweek report:
One hundred and twelve undergraduate students volunteered for the study at a university in central Israel. The volunteer pool was split evenly between men and women, and participants were paired randomly with an opposite-sex individual they hadn’t met before. The study examined burgeoning sexual interest and the participants’ feelings on the possibility of long-term dating with their new ‘partners,’ and how those connected to their perceptions of a personality trait the study calls ‘responsiveness.’
“In the study, responsiveness is defined as a characteristic ‘that may signal to potential partners that one understands, values and supports important aspects of their self-concept and is willing to invest resources in the relationship.’ A limitation of this definition, the authors state, is that the concept of ‘responsiveness’ is ultimately elusive — it can mean different things to different people. Nevertheless, the researchers felt they could use their definition to help get at some of the different ways men and women perceive potential partners.”
“Sexual desire thrives on rising intimacy and being responsive is one of the best ways to instill this elusive sensation over time,” lead researcher Gurit Birnbaum explained in a press release.
In other words, “responsiveness” is key to any relationship, whether it’s friendship or romance; but it’s not as important when first meeting someone, the study’s authors denote.
In the “nice guys finish last” study one of three, researchers explored whether women or men perceived a receptive opposite-sex stranger as sexually attractive and, if they did, whether the “responsive” quality registered as overtly feminine or masculine.
More from Newsweek:
The researchers found that men who perceived possible female partners as responsive found them to be ‘more feminine and more attractive.’ Past research suggests that physical cues of femininity stimulate sexual attraction because they suggest higher estrogen levels, better overall mate quality and solid reproductive health.
“On the other hand, women didn’t necessarily perceive a responsive man as less masculine, but they also did not find a responsive man more attractive. What’s more, when women perceived their male partner to be responsive, they were less attracted to the man.
“In other words, it appeared that in an initial encounter men liked nice ladies; women thought nice guys were kind of lame.”
So there you have it, ladies and gents. Nice guys finish last, as proven by science. For more on the story, as well as the other two studies, make sure you check out the full article here.
And make sure to let us know if you agree with the study’s conclusions in our comments section.
[Image via Flickr Creative Commons]