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Women And "Bad Boys": What Is The Attraction?
 by Terry Hernon MacDonald

If you're a woman, you may be saying "hmmm" as you hear these words. You know you shouldn't, but you just can't help yourself.

There is just SOMETHING about these guys that draws you in, even as your head tells you to "beware"!

So, what exactly is the attraction?

It's not necessarily that they are more physically attractive or smarter or more successful than the "nice guys." In fact, they can have fewer of these qualities, yet be harder to resist.

So what is it?

Let's begin by defining these guys.

This term is generally applied to males who treat women poorly. Do these behaviors ring a bell?

*calling at 8:30 on a Saturday night to ask if you want to get together

*not showing up for a date - followed by no phone call or apology

*never having any money when you are out

* forgetting or ignoring your birthday and other important dates

*flirting openly with other women when you are together

*hitting on your good friend(s)

*making booty calls at 1am, after they've had a night out with others

*is doing time for a serious felony

Instead of asking "what is it about these guys"; let's instead examine what it is about the women who can't resist them.

The following are actual statements from women who have a history of attraction to these bad boyfriends. See if any of these sound familiar.

* "It's never BORING with him. He's unpredictable and exciting."
* "He's strong, aggressive and self-assured; I feel safe with him."
* "It's not his fault; he's trying to get his life together."
* "I haven't met anyone else that makes me feel the way he does."
* "He's so charming and passionate."

* "He tells me how much he likes me, so he must really feel something for me."

* "He needs me."
* "He doesn't come across as needy and desperate."
* "I can't believe I've attracted someone like him."

Now, on the face of these, they seem pretty benign. We all seek at least some of these traits in the men we choose.

So, where's the problem?

Essentially it's in his inability to meet the woman's fundamental needs. She is the one doing all (or most) of the giving. The question then lies in; "what's in it for her?"

The answer can be found by exploring three basic issues:

*level of self-esteem

*capacity for intimacy

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