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Welcome to Simp Nation, TikTok’s New Softboi Club

‘Simp’ may be a fresh Gen Z term used mostly as a joke, but it has a lengthy misogynistic past

The self-identified fuckbois of TikTok have a message to anyone who dates, flirts with, respects or is friends with women: Welcome to #SimpNation. You’re the new CEO.

What is Simp Nation? And what, or who, is a simp? Basically, Simp Nation is a collective of young men united in their romantic failures. A simp is, basically, what misogynist men’s rights guys would call a beta cuck — someone who buys a woman dinner and doesn’t get laid in return, or a man who comforts their female friends when they’re having relationship problems, or a guy who tells a girl he knows that she looks nice today. And unlike the elite and exclusive TikTok groups like “Hype House” that the #SimpNation hashtag seems to be riffing on, Simp Nation is always welcoming new members.

“Simp” may be a fresh Gen Z term used mostly as a joke, but it has a lengthy misogynistic past. Even today, while many TikTokers surely mean no harm, simp has increased in usage among the vocabularies of potentially violent incels.

The word itself sounds pathetic, which is surely intentional. Rhyming with “limp,” the “simp” is someone who overvalues women, at least, by another man’s estimate — he, essentially, worships a vagina of subpar quality. It’s all right there in the name: Simp, as an acronym, stands for “Someone/Sucka Idolizing Mediocre Pussy.” But like “cuck,” simp has evolved past its original, more precise definition, and is now another catchall misogynistic term, seemingly aimed not directly at women but rather the men who value them.

As per the top definition on Urban Dictionary, a simp is:

“Basically someone who gives redundant and over-the-top attention to women that are of far less value than the attention or praise given. Usually the recipient of this praise is knowing of this and is taking full advantage knowing this fact…..Thus the term ‘sucka’ is the main attribute and usually the results in the pending downfall of this kind of man. Affiliated words include ‘pathetic,’ ‘hopeless,’ ‘sad,’ ‘whipped’ and ‘desperate.’”

A secondary definition offers a multitude of examples of the simp in action:

  • “A man that puts himself in a subservient/submissive position under women in hopes of winning them over, without the female bringing anything to the table.
  • A man that puts too much value on a female for no reason.
  • A man that prides himself with ‘Chivalry’ in hopes of getting sexual gratification from women.
  • A square with no game other than ‘Rolling Out the Red Carpet’ for every female.”

And while in some contexts, a simp is the sort of “nice guy” who deserves being called out — a guy whose sole interest in a woman is sex, and who expects it in return for basic decency — it more frequently seems to be a guy who simply treats women well, or just not like trash.

These definitions are from 2015 and 2012 respectively, but according to Google Trends, interest in the term has doubled in the last year. Although “cuck” is still winning — it’s around four times more popular in searches — simp continues to gather steam.

Despite its recent adoption by the masses, the word has been around in black culture for years: Take the track “Sippin’ On Some Syrup” by Three 6 Mafia, for example, which was released way back in 2000. As pointed out by SingleBlackMale, Pimp C opens the first verse with the line, “I’m trill working the wheel, a pimp, not a simp / Keep the dope fiends higher than the Goodyear Blimp.”

But it’s found a new life as a broader term for the “beta” male so bemoaned by the manosphere. Case in point: The Men Going Their Own Way (MGTOW) group, who reference simps frequently on their subreddit (almost all of the results for “simp” on Reddit come from this group, in fact). This depressingly unsurprising post is a typical example of how the term has been used in the last year:

“Women demand that men look like a chiseled Adonis, drive a nice car, have a six-figure salary, live in a nice house, etc etc but yet most women look like fucking zombies without makeup, usually have a ‘few extra pounds,’ drive a piece of shit hooptie or don’t even HAVE a car, work a shitty minimum wage job, and live in a cockroach infested studio apartment. They’re truly delusional, and the worst part is the simps with good incomes that will give into their demands and turn these worthless thots into housewives sweeping them off their feet. If these simps came to their senses, these bitches would stop looking for the ‘perfect man’ and start looking for extra-large litter boxes for their 20 cats they’re gonna get…”

It’s pretty clear from this, and other posts like it, that so-called simps aren’t hated by MGTOW men because of their perceived weakness, but rather because the very concept of a simp — a guy who’ll willingly surrender his masculinity in order to please a woman — conveniently supports their narrative that women only want to manipulate and control men for their own selfish ends.

In this context, then, simp-hate isn’t about the man after all: It’s yet another scapegoat for MGTOW misogyny. If you support women in any capacity, the thinking goes, you are, by default, a simp. You don’t even have to be in a relationship, you just need to be a man who considers a woman to be a person of complex thought, nuance and value — that is, more than just a mediocre pussy.