Here's Exactly Why You May Be Turned Off By Someone Who Is 'Too Nice'

After years of dating, you may come to a point where you just want someone nice. Someone who doesn't give you the runaround, someone who's dependable, someone who'd walk through fire for you, and someone who'd drop everything they're doing to be there for you at all costs. But sometimes, when you finally come across such a person, things aren't exactly what you expected. In fact, you may find yourself thinking, "This person is too nice."


"Most of us want someone who we can imagine being a kind partner or parent in the future," dating and intimacy coach Erika Davian tells Popsugar. "But when someone is too nice, it conveys a lack of boundaries. It may be a signal that they are not taking care of themselves and their own needs first."

People who are too nice tend to put everyone else, especially their partner, first. They're selfless, overly positive, and can easily be manipulated. In fact, their niceness — which is also viewed as obedience — can lead them to doing things they wouldn't normally do at the behest of someone they care about, according to a study published in the Journal of Psychology.

But it's not just a perceived lack of caring for themselves or lack of boundaries. There's more to why someone might turn you off if they're "too nice."


It can appear desperate

Even if it's not their intention, people pleasers tend to look desperate. They don't want to rock the boat; they don't want to disagree, they want to solve everyone's problems and will go to great lengths to make sure everyone is happy. While this is great and even an admirable quality, it can be too much for some people. Ever heard of toxic positivity? This is a perfect example of this thinking.


"That much attention can be perceived as desperation or a lack of independence [on the part of the person showing interest]," clinical sexologist Kelley Johnson, Ph.D., tells Refinery 29. "It could mean that they're a little more codependent than you'd like them to be."

It's hard to respect someone who's so nice that when you say "jump," they ask, "how high?" It's as though they have no thoughts of their own, and what thoughts they do have revolve around their partner and making sure their partner is as content as possible. It might sound a bit fantastical, but someone who's too nice can actually ruin a relationship.

It's genetics

According to a study on how altruism affects mate choice published in Science Direct in July 2020, the scientists "consistently found that individuals displaying moderate levels of altruism were rated as more desirable than those displaying higher levels (and both more so than non-altruistic individuals)." In other words, "too nice" is great on paper but not so much when it comes to what we regard as attractive and desirable personality traits.


Another theory is that we're wired for drama. According to Dr. Amir Levine, author of "Attached," our attachment styles play a role in what we think is too nice and why it might make some run. In an excerpt from Dr. Levine's book, as reported by Vice, "Because you are used to equating an activated attachment system with love, you conclude that this can't be 'the one' because something is missing, for some reason no bells are going off. You associate a calm attachment system with boredom and indifference, and because of this fallacy you may let the perfect person pass you by."

As much as no one wants to come out and say they love themselves a ton of drama, the reality is that some people really do. If there's no turbulence, then what is there? Oh, there's niceness. Although this isn't to suggest that all people are turned off by a partner who's too nice, for those who are, there's a legitimate reason for it — so, no, it's not just in your head.