I found this post in Reddit’s “dating over thirty” forum. The author admits that she’s had trouble choosing bad boys in the past. However, her new boyfriend – not a bad boy – has other problems.
Hi Dating Over Thirty,
I have a conundrum. I have met someone great. We have been on 6 wonderful dates over two weeks. Even if he’s not my “usual type” I’ve been open to trying something new and seeing where this goes (shout out to my therapist). My usual type is masculine bad boys, and obviously that hasn’t worked out well for me – usually their emotional immaturity or ego makes relationship impossible and leaves me emotionally shattered.
This time, I’ve met a handsome, extremely kind man, who is driven in his career, and really likes me. I really enjoy spending time with him too, we can talk for hours, and there is chemistry (though not the ‘fire’ that I’m usually used to… more of a slow burn, but it’s definitely there).
When we first kissed and when we first started dating I was wondering if he wasn’t super attracted to me… he seemed hesitant or holding back on our first kiss. Our kisses have improved greatly but I can’t shake the feeling that he lacks a bit of confidence. I don’t feel confident that he would… be assertive in a situation requiring it or stand up for me it I needed it (dumb example I know). Sometimes I wonder if his gentleness is actually meekness, and one thing I desire from a partner is a feeling of protection.
I feel like a total a**hole because I’m used to dating… a**holes, mistaking masculinity and assertiveness for confidence. My dad is kind of that way, and I’ve seen how it’s been difficult in my parents marriage. I’ve fallen into traps of dating assertive people who are not actually confident but overcompensate for their insecurities by being d*cks. So I feel caught – knowing that this hasn’t worked for me in the past, but feeling like something is missing here.
I want to keep dating him to explore what’s there, and because I genuinely like him. I feel safe and cared around him, and we have a lot in common. He is 100% husband material. He’s already starting to ask me to meet his friends but I feel like I need to get to know him more and clear this one doubt. I know I have my own fears of intimacy and commitment too that factor in here.
Sincerely, a**hole lover
TLDR, Perfect man I’m dating lacks confidence, maybe. Not sure if this something that can be resolved or if I should move on?
She seems to be concerned that this man is lacking confidence, because he is not a bad boy. What’s a bad boy? A bad boy is a man who has certain physical features and mannerisms which are attractive to women, but he won’t commit to marry any woman. And many women mistake the presence of these features and mannerisms as being signs of “masculinity”.
Here’s a study about it from Evolutionary Psychological Science, reported by PsyPost:
Men with psychopathic traits tend to create favorable impressions on women, according to a new study published in Evolutionary Psychological Science. The findings indicate that psychopathy may include features that make men appear as more attractive romantic partners despite having a reduced interest in committed relationships.
“Psychopathy as a way of describing some people — mostly men — who have specific personality and behavioral tendencies has led to some enigmatic and quite frankly alarming findings from prisons, many of which had sexual and romantic consequences,” said study author Kristopher Brazil (@brazkris), a PhD candidate at Brock University.
“For instance, clinicians and psychologists working in prison settings have long known that inmates with more psychopathic features tenaciously try (i.e., are preoccupied with sex) and often succeed (i.e., must offer some attractive qualities, even if faked) at seducing prison staff, including clinical staff supposedly equipped with the tools to not be subverted by manipulation and charm that psychopathic men deploy.”
“Yet these individuals were some of the most violent and disruptive individuals in the institutions they were housed. The enigma of presenting such a positive image of themselves successfully despite their negative effect on others is what strongly influenced our ideas for this study,” Brazil told PsyPost.
[…]Brazil and his colleagues found that psychopathy was positively related to both men’s social intelligence and favorable attitudes towards casual sex. They also found that women’s ratings tended to be more favorable to men with more psychopathic traits — even after controlling for physical attractiveness ratings.
“Psychopathic men have a personality style that makes them appear attractive to women in dating encounters. This may be because they are extra confident or feel at ease or know exactly what to say to get the attention of women,” Brazil told PsyPost.
In the past, women evaluated men for marriage, because they grew up in homes with fathers and mothers. They watched their fathers love their mothers, and hold them accountable for acting selfishly. They saw their fathers acting like husbands, and they chose men who would make good husbands.
Today, thanks to feminism, any focusing on marriage and preferring men suited for marriage is seen as sexist. What’s left? What’s left is chasing the bad boys. The psychopaths. And if it doesn’t work out, well – that’s what big government is for.