Ladies, if you’ve ever responded to friends and family this way:
after introducing them to one of these:
then you, my friend, have dated an asshole and just didn’t want to admit it. Yes, it is a tale as old as time and a new study in this month’s Journal of Personality & Social Psychology attempts to explain why women date bad boys. Researchers claims the reason may be biological. There go our vajayjays again, getting us into relationship trouble. Vajay, why don’t you think sometimes? Bad vajayjays, bad. Maybe this will teach you a lesson:
According to an excerpt that was published in Live Science, biology comes into play once a month when Aunt Flo comes to town (a phrase I used in front of my Dad to which he responded, “You don’t have an Aunt Flo.” Dads.) and women are ovulating. To quote one of the researchers, Kristina Durante:
“Under the hormonal influence of ovulation, women delude themselves into thinking that the sexy bad boys will become devoted partners and better dads,” Durante said. “When looking at the sexy cad through ovulation goggles, Mr. Wrong looked exactly like Mr. Right.”
Well, I will have you know, Ms. Durante, my ovaries wear a monocle because we have it like that. Seriously, I didn’t know women looked through “ovulation goggles.” But let’s agree that we do, I still don’t know if I I fully buy that because I know I’m not the only woman who, upon spying a father kneeling down to open a Capri Sun for his child, gets bovaries (aka boners of the ovaries). Bonus points if he is wearing sensible sneakers like New Balance. So I think an ovulating woman will go just as gaga for a doting dad as they will for a sexy cad rather than thinking that the sexy cad will be better father than than the non-sexy cad.
Durante and her team of researchers wanted concrete evidence to back up this theory so they conducted an experiment by asking women to look at online dating profiles of either sexy or reliable men when the women were at levels of high and low fertility. As the French would say, “What ze fuck?! Men can’t be both sexy and reliable? Those traits aren’t mutually exclusive. Just watch Felicity. Noel was both. Anyway, The women, when ovulating or close to it, chose the sexy dude as the one who would be the best dad and contribute most as a parent. Now, I wasn’t in the room when this study went down, but this is what I think happened. The researchers showed typically attractive men for the sexy category and then showed a bunch of Bill Nye, the Science Guy type guys for the reliable category and of course, any woman with a half an ounce of sense and a full ounce of vagina (I don’t know how much vaginas weigh and I can’t bring myself to type that question into Google while at work…oh, who am I kidding? I looked it up. No one has been able to weigh a vagina yet. Somebody needs to get on this ASAP) is going to pick the better looking guy if no other reason that nobody, and I mean nobody, wants an ugly baby. Who wants an ugly baby? You want an ugly baby? Thought so. I hope you guys realize that if I were a scientist, that is how I would run studies and the answer “thought so” would legitimately count as data. But for real, for real, I think this study flawed.
Nevertheless, the researchers did a second study where they had actors play the role of sexy cad (again a Denzel Washington type) or reliable dad (a Mr. Feeny from Boy Meets World type at his peak, which would probably be 15 years ago, thus making him a Rick Santorum type) and the results were the same. That during the time of ovulation, women believe the bad boy they are dating would make for a great partner and father. Durante breaks it down:
“When asked about what kind of father the sexy bad boy would make if he were to have children with another woman, women were quick to point out the bad boy’s shortcomings. But when it came to their own child, ovulating women believed that the charismatic and adventurous cad would be a great father to their kids.”
Look, I’m not going to deny that biology plays a role in mate selection. We all know that to be true. However, I think it’s a hair too simple and convenient to make the prevalent factor in choosing a man. There are other glaring factors that were not taken into account during theses studies that affect the type of men women are attracted to such as maturity, having a strong male figure in their lives or the lack thereof, misconceived notions about what relationships should be – after all, Hollywood, books, close girlfriends all reinforce the myth that the bad boy, the one who brings the most drama, is what you should strive for in a lasting union, and good old fashioned low self esteem. Maybe, just maybe some women think they ain’t shit, so they don’t think they deserve a guy who isn’t shit? Yes, that concept won’t make it into any articles published in journals anytime soon; however, it is a concept that requires some consideration.
It is oft said that people tend to date people they think they’re worthy of, so wouldn’t it be fair to assume that if a woman only thinks an asshole is all that she is worth, why would she date the reliable guy, even if he was good looking? She’s not going to trust that. A good looking guy who doesn’t reinforce her negative feelings about herself will send her running for the hills. Heck, when I first started dating my boyfriend, I thought to myself, “This is weird. He’s being nice. He returns my phone calls,” and then it dawned on me, “Yeah, because that’s what grown ups do. And grownups with enough self-love allow themselves to receive this kind of goodness, so don’t fuck it up, kid.” But these sorts of inquires aren’t going to get people’s attention. That’s not going to sell journals and magazines to have the ugly truth out there. I don’t want to discredit the research that Durante and her team did, but I refuse to except such a pat conclusion that ovulating makes women want to date bad boys. After all, periods, on average, last about five days. What about the other twenty-five days? These women are dating the bad boys all month long, so we have to look at what’s really going on and not only do we have look outside the realm of this study, but that looking is also something people don’t want to do.
It’s easier to say, “Pesky ovaries are at it again!” then to admit, “Yeah, biology plays a role, but the fact is you need to get your shit together, women. Men do, too, but I’m talking to you. If you want the sexy good guy, then make sure you’re the sexy good lady who can attract that into your life. Once you get in through your skull that it’s not about changing a bad boy, it’s not about listening to your dumb ovaries during that time of the month, but it’s about doing the real work on yourself until you get to a point that bad boys don’t even appeal to you anymore.” But why can’t we blame the vajayjays,” you may ask. Because they get blamed for enough ranging from bear attacks in the woods (Google it) to emasculating men for daring to be equals in the workplace, so put some of the responsibility on what’s in your heart and mind, ‘kay? In summation, just like model Kate Upton didn’t dance half-naked for Terry Richardson (a photographer, bad boy, and known sexual harasser), then allow him to film the dance and put it on the internet because she was ovulating:
The average woman isn’t into bad boys because of her yoot (that’s my abbrev for uterus). There’s something else going, maybe even a multitude of things, that no scientific study is going to be able to sum up in a few pages. So ladies, look inside yourself (didn’t mean for that to sound perverted) and ask yourself why you really date bad boys.