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Alfred001

Is there an evo psych explanation to why women like bad boys?

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I recently heard a girl talk about how she says she likes sweet, nice guys, but when she actually meets one, she finds that she finds them boring and that she is attracted to guys who treat her like trash. Is there some evo psych explanation to this and why girls like bad boys more generally and why nice guys are boring?

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Is there anything beyond confirmation bias suggesting women like bad boys? A definition for bad boy that is more precise than waffling and hand waving, perhaps?

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A bad boy = someone willing  and able to ignore conventional behaviour (whilst understanding where the line is drawn)?

 

And do men unconsciously look for women who display the opposite trait?

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59 minutes ago, geordief said:

A bad boy = someone willing  and able to ignore conventional behaviour (whilst understanding where the line is drawn)?

 

And do men unconsciously look for women who display the opposite trait?

Are you serious?

1 hour ago, iNow said:

Is there anything beyond confirmation bias suggesting women like bad boys? A definition for bad boy that is more precise than waffling and hand waving, perhaps?

No such luck.

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Are you're suggesting NLP is somehow instinctive in 'bad boys' (who incidently, by definition don't know where the line is.) which it's not...

7 minutes ago, geordief said:

Are you?

Sometimes 

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4 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

Are you're suggesting NLP is somehow instinctive in 'bad boys' (who incidently, by definition don't know where the line is.) which it's not...

Sometimes 

I am  completely unfamiliar with NLP. I was just trying to respond to Inow's request for some kind of a definition for the OP's "bad boy"

 

If it is a workable  definition ,then perhaps it needs exploring.  Otherwise what is the point?


 

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18 minutes ago, geordief said:

If it is a workable  definition ,then perhaps it needs exploring.  Otherwise what is the point?

Indeed.

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I would like to add that evolutionary psychology is suffering from a number of issues, and is one a the forefront of the replication crisis. Many of these issues stem from ill-defined research questions (to which I would include OP). Originally, the premise was fascinating, and there have been successful studies. However, many aspects in human evolution in this field are based on extrapolation, which are often not based on solid evidence. As such, a lot of these studies may be  just-so stories. As a result solid science is mixed with heavy storytelling and the latter unfortunately  dilute the former.That is not to say that the field is useless, but rather it is still a field trying to figure itself out.

The worst thing is probably the fact that the interest in these studies are not in line with the level of evidence they can provide. Pop culture often takes tentative studies as ultimate validation of some long-standing assumptions and stereotypes. 

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There are some girls who always fall for "bad boys". Just as there are some girls who always fall for other girls. And girls who always fall for tall guys. And some for older men. etc. etc. 

The "bad boy" phenomenon, in my opinion, is just a trait like any other, but one that gets noticed, whereas the boring traits do not. I have five sisters, and none of them chose "bad boys", but that's boring, so you don't make up an imaginary rule for it.

Edit:  One factor that might operate though, is that good looking guys might be able to indulge their egos more, in the knowledge that if they get dumped, they are confident of moving on to the next willing "victim".  So being an attractive male might make you more inclined to act the "bad boy".

Edited by mistermack

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