Big To Do
About Us

“Saving Love Lives The World Over!” e-mail e-mail to a friend in need

December 5, 2008

Broken Heart Bob

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 10:10 am

Classic LetterToday we present the original “loft-builder” letter from January 19, 1998, which inspired Paul The Intern’s origin as well as this classic animation!

Dear Breakup Girl,

The thing I fear most in life is “I just want to be friends.” Or “I don’t want to ruin our friendship with a relationship now.”

I have been trying to get to know these women in college. I did all the things a “nice guy” does. I helped move big stuff into their dorm rooms, set up computers and bed lofts, what have you. That’s how I am: When I like a woman, I try to help her out. Well…then I get to be her best friend. I’ve tried not to be a “nice guy,” but I just can’t. It’s instilled deep within me. So what can I do to not be the best-friend/older brother/father/confidant and be someone’s boyfriend?

– Broken Heart Bob

Dear B.H. Bob,

Of course you can’t not be a nice guy. You are a nice guy, whether you like it or not. And trust me, women do like it — I mean, even LIKE like it.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: when women say “he’s NICE, but…” they are not speaking some weird cryptic secret Woman Language. In most cases, it’s just a lame generic catch-all phrase for that no-chemistry feeling that’s otherwise impossible to describe. (Come on, surely you know some girl whom you think is perfectly, yes, NICE, but who just doesn’t happen to do that voodoo to you. That’s all it is.) That, or there’s some Oprah self-esteem issue going on where they think they “don’t deserve someone so NICE.” In which case, it’s really her problem, not yours.

But listen: the thing for you to do is to be a nice guy, not a Nice Guy. Be nice because you are, not because you’re trying to. It’s your character, not a campaign. If Miss Thing needs help plugging in her PC, then MacGyver will be glad to help her — if he’s free. If Miss Thing’s roommate is feeling weepy, then Uncle Bob’s shoulder is available — usually.

And reconsider your approach — you’ve got a role in setting the tone, you know. The next time a girl piques your interest, ask her out on a date before you fix her loft.

Breakup Girl


  1. [...] (Or, for that matter, “nice.”) If you don’t believe me, read the next letter. Love, Breakup Girl Tags: clichés, friends, lame lines, Nice Guys, Richard Simmons, white lies [...]

    Pingback by Breakup Girl » What to expect when you’re rejecting — December 5, 2008 @ 10:11 am

  2. Based on my own experiences, being a “nice guy” or “not nice guy” is mostly irrelevant to getting a girlfriend. Being a “confident guy” is highly relevant.

    Since Bob doesn’t feel comfortable asking women out, he waits until he gets to know them. During this time, he becomes their best friend & confidant. Instead, I recommend asking women out before getting to know them. They might say “No thanks,” but they certainly won’t ask to be “just friends” or worry about ruining a relationship. And since I’ve asked them out before investing a lot of time, effort and emotion into a relationship, I don’t end up feeling broken-hearted.

    As a bonus, by asking the ladies out sooner, I come across as more confident.

    Comment by Karl R — December 10, 2008 @ 12:32 pm

  3. I think it’s safe to say that by not letting on almost right away that you have a romantic interest in these women, they are assuming you just like them as friends. And they become your friends because they have slotted you into the friend category. It’s sort of one or the other - friend or potential boyfriend. And it’s hard to switch from one to the other once you’re slotted. So my advice to you is to be more honest up front about your interest and intentions. Flirt a little, show them your stuff. If they aren’t interested, you’ll find out a LOT sooner and, as Karl R says, will find yourself less hurt because you didn’t invest in them so much.

    Comment by Poppy Goodwill — December 12, 2008 @ 5:07 pm

  4. [...] on Broken-Heart Bob’s classic letter! Tags: friends to lovers, loftbuilder, Nice Guys, YouTube [...]

    Pingback by Breakup Girl » “The Loftbuilder” — February 12, 2009 @ 9:05 am

  5. [...] filmmaker. Living off a long ago success he’s now searching for his "second" break. From a Place of Darkness. He finds that in the seedy world of snuff films. He interviews Vic, a seasoned pro with a [...]

    Pingback by From a Place of Darkness, 2008 — December 25, 2009 @ 2:55 pm

  6. [...] surprise here.  At BG HQ we like nice guys!  As this classic letter affirms, being a good person does not have to mean being the (sad trombone) Nice Guy who [...]

    Pingback by Breakup Girl » Women LIKE-like NICE-nice guys, guys! — February 12, 2010 @ 10:32 am

  7. [...] myself a little bit here, because I’ve addressed this issue occasionally (see, for example, Broken Heart Bob)– but why reinvent the spiel? So listen up. (I know you’re all great [...]

    Pingback by Breakup Girl » Curse of the Friend-Boy! — March 19, 2010 @ 9:08 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment

**Mean or otherwise out-of-line comments will be deleted. That’s just how we roll.


blog | advice | comics | animation | goodies | to do | archive | about us

Breakup Girl created by Lynn Harris & Chris Kalb
© 2008 Just Friends Productions, Inc.
| privacy policy
Cool Aid!

Important Breakup Girl Maxim:
Breakup Girl Sez


Powered by WordPress