After a night filled with girl friends and debauchery (too much back story, much disinterest), I found myself wondering why we always fall for the unavailable guy. The one we fondly like to call the ‘bad boy’.
It’s some kind of reverse romanticism, I kid you not!
Like, do we have a knack of attracting such men into our lives, time and again?
Or is there a deeper seated psychology behind our unquenchable thirst and hopeless yearning for the so-called ‘bad boy’?
Maybe, science has the answers that we women have been seeking ever since Adam went and screwed another woman and screwed Eve over… or something like that.
According to Anastasia Dhedia, Chief Clinical Psychologist, Therapist and Founder at Mind Mantra:
“This particular type of male is known for his superficial charm and manipulative personality, to which anyone can fall prey.”
And the more gullible and dependent you are, the more likely you are to fall harder and faster than the rest of us. That’s not to say strong, independent and mindful women don’t fall for such a guy.
You see, this is the alpha male we’re talking about. He wears this sense of pride around being unattainable and distant.
At the same time, he has this air of humility around him. He respects individuals – women and men, alike. He is as independent as he is social. And he is as hardworking as he is savvy.
He knows how to look good and he knows how to feel good.
I mean, your uterus is already biologically rooting to have babies with him before your brain has registered your emotions.
Does this make him evil? No.
Does this make him irresistible? Yes.
And then, you don’t need to be needy or bossy to want to be with this guy.
Problem is – for whatever fucked up, or not-so-fucked-up reason – he doesn’t want the whole ‘happy ever after with you’. He isn’t looking for that.
‘So, why am I reeling?’ you ask yourself.
And here’s the most basic logical reasoning offered to us by psychology.
According to psychological research the quintessential ‘bad boy’ possesses a set of traits – narcissism, psychopathy and Machiavellism – called the ‘Dark Triad’ in psychology – that ironically make them seem all the more appealing to women.
Men, like these, are few; no doubt. And I want to believe that they are conniving psychopaths. But, they’re not.
What I did find is that such men invariably, turn out to be pathological liars, as explained by Chintan Solanki, MD of Psychiatry at DocsApp – a digital app for mental health and psychiatry.
Narcissism in men, Solanki explains, is often viewed as high self confidence with low social anxiety and public speaking behaviour.
This is, of course, coupled with traits women desire – like a steady financial status and consideration to fellow peers, among others.
Truth is, we miss the signs – the ones that have a tiny little red flag that’s waving right at us. We like to believe that we can get by it; like Dido’s White Flag (the song, I mean).
We do this, either because we’re so enamoured by the guy, we couldn’t possibly see our own destruction. Or, because, we’re too far gone in our own emotional space.
Yes, such men do like to pursue women for kicks.
And they’ll make it starkly evident if you stick around long enough. We’re just blindsided by how we’ve been blessed with a man like this!
Then, there’s the other part; where we feel we can change them.
Be the fixers to the fixer-uppers.
And that’s strike two!
“Sometimes, women think of these men as ‘projects’ and make it their mission in life; not understanding that most of the time they are happy with themselves and, in fact, see a problem with the rest of the world,” explains Dhedia.
Yes, the guy has 99 problems and you’re none of them; as much as you’d like to be. You can’t save him.
Right about now, you’re probably asking yourself:
“What kind of douchebaggery is this?”
To which I… no, psychology says: It’s not douchebaggery, it’s just your basic instinct acting and reacting according to certain character traits you find appealing in the opposite sex.
Michael Douglas couldn’t stop wanting Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct, even though he knew she was going to be the end of him. Likewise, Sharon Stone couldn’t stop being a jerk and killing her men off, even though she didn’t look like it.
They don’t always mean to break you; but, that doesn’t mean you don’t end up broken.
So, there you go. Looks, thoughts and actions can bloody well be deceiving. And our basic instincts don’t help when it comes to knowing better.