Men and Women alike have been perplexed through time by the magnetism of the "Bad Boy". As a good guy, you wonder how you can compete with this cocky archetype, and as a woman, you wonder why you would put yourself in such a no-win situation. As with all human relations, the combination of instinct and societal factors can create a complex and confusing circuitry through which we try to find that often elusive "perfect relationship". Many would argue that we experience relationships to teach us things about ourselves and if that's the case, what can we learn from this age-old attraction?
A typical "Bad Boy" is someone who:
1. Is very confident, even cocky
2. Puts himself and his feelings first
3. Keeps women at an emotional distance and often thinks of them as disposable
4. Is not reliable
5. Knows exactly what he's doing when it comes to women
So how could a woman be attracted to such a person? The answer is a complex one. Science tells us that women are often attracted to a dominant (confident, powerful) man's scent because they sense it is an indicator of good genes. Society tells us that dominance is equated through power, whether it be through money, social position, or specific to our purposes: an emotional and mental dominance of people.
For instance, if a woman is starting with low self-esteem, it wouldn't be uncommon for her to be attracted to a "bad boy" in the hopes of changing him and making him love her. The worse she is treated, the harder she works to turn the situation around. She feels like if she could just make it work, her self-value would be that much greater. The bad boy loves attention, but he does not respect the kind of woman who gives him everything and then some; he sees her as weak and so they are locked into a dysfunctional power struggle where they continue feeding off each other.
Bad boys also capture women's imaginations. We are often intrigued by people we could never imagine being ourselves. People who are opposites to ourselves often inject a level of excitement into our lives, and to a woman, this can be a real turn-on. Common reasons why women are attracted to "Bad Boys" are:
1. It is never boring
2. There is a strong passion and sexual chemistry
3. They are strong and self-assured and make the woman feel safe
What can we do to stop perpetuation the Bad Boy attraction?
People move at their speed, and we all need to make our own mistakes before improving ourselves. If you're a woman and find yourself consistently attracted to the Bad Boy type, ask yourself these questions:
1. Does a Bad Boy make you happy or are you just used to having unhappy relationships?
2. Do you have or have you ever had a strong male in your life who treats women the way they should be treated?
3. Write down on paper the qualities you would like to see in a potential male partner. How close are these to what you've had in the past?
The answer lies within - how you feel about yourself is directly reflected in the quality and health of the relationships you experience, and don't forget we teach people how to treat us.
If you're a man and feel you are constantly competing with Bad Boys, don't give up hope. Why not take the positive aspects of a Bad Boy (confidence, independence) and work to enhance these qualities in yourself? Remember you can't change people and if a woman is not attracted to you for the wrong reasons, then she's not the one for you. Not until she figures it out anyway...