Why Are Many Women Attracted to “Bad Men”?

Why Are Many Women Attracted to “Bad Men”?

Colombian Alejandra Quintero, psychologist and sex educator with a gender perspective, explains why this phenomenon occurs.

Many movies and series on streaming platforms display perverse male characters that are striking due to their personality. Many female minds idealize them and, in dreams, would like to relate to such a partner in real life.

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We are talking about self-confident men, rude, narcissistic, despotic, abusers, sexists, and even murderers who show no respect for the women they usually use to achieve various goals or for sexual satisfaction: Why do many Women like this type of man? It is strange that in the 21st century, in which there is permanent talk of female empowerment, when women leaders abound worldwide, the strong voice of multiple feminist movements is heard and gender equality is spoken everywhere, something like this happens.

The perfect example of the man we describe is the character from the successful medieval fantasy series The House of the Dragon: Prince Daemon Targaryen – played by actor Matt Smith – who shows a strong and determined personality but with dark overtones and an evident thirst for power. He has no qualms about lying, killing anyone who opposes him on the way, despising women, and using them if it suits his purposes.

This "prince" awakens in many women consumers of the television series, unusual opinions of fervor and passion that they, without any hesitation, expressed through social networks: "I would marry him", "I would like to have sex with a man like that”, “I am fascinated by his cold and despotic posture”, “I love him because he shows that he cares about nothing more than achieving power and dethroning his brother the king”, “I would not hesitate to sleep with a man like Daemon”, are female opinions collected by THE WOMAN POST.

To clear up doubts about the reasons why Daemon Targaryen (and so many other fictional characters with his traits) are preferred by many women, we consulted Alejandra Quintero Rendón, a Colombian psychologist and sex educator with a gender perspective and training in EMDR ( Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), director, in addition, of El Diván Rojo (@eldivanrojo) a strategy to promote sexual health and well-being created since 2007, which provides transformation tools for the experience of a positive and dignified sexuality.

Quintero explains: “One thing is what passes through human cognition, and another is what passes through her body. If the body has experienced violence in its childhood, no matter how much cognitive capacity there is to understand that violence destroys, this body will likely reproduce the learned patterns, even the violent ones. Hence the importance of psychotherapy to transform destructive patterns and activate the resilience of each human being”.

Faced with the female response of desire to have a bad man in their lives, the specialist comments: "I see an explanation for this inside my office, which is regularly attended by women with economic independence, productive professional careers that share some feminist ideals and they live stormy relationships with macho men”.

The question that follows is: What could this be due to? Alejandra Quintero Rendón affirms that part of the explanation that she finds in the face of this type of attraction is due to 5 factors:

1. There is usually an insecure attachment model of the anxious, avoidant, or ambivalent type that makes these women end up feeling attracted to people who allow them to reproduce an inappropriate bonding pattern.

2. They are women who in their childhood were exposed to domestic violence or in their upbringing experienced neglect, abandonment, or sexual abuse.

3. Have alcoholic fathers or mothers.

4. Some of these women may have problems with depression or anxiety.

5. Men who make women suffer usually have personality traits with intent to harm, such as narcissists, antisocials, or psychopaths, which are often very seductive. They are irresistible men as part of their manipulation strategy that turns out to be very effective.

Do women carry on their backs that lack of identity that has historically made them fragile and submissive?

According to Alejandra Quintero "even though we still have a type of education that relegates us as secondary subjects to the periphery of men, there are many more women who are seeing, denormalizing, and identifying the patriarchy that permeates their bodies, relationships, and lives in general. We have been in times of transition for a few years and this will continue to happen, we will not be the same. Comprehensive sexual education, feminist and social movements, the phenomenon of social networks, the climate crisis, literature, and cinema, among others, are promoting cultural changes that open spaces for a more diverse, inclusive, equitable, and respectful society to guarantee women's human rights”.

The psychologist denies the fact that emotional dependency is a female condition: “People with emotional dependency share wounded childhoods and deregulated nervous systems that learned to 'calm' anguish from the presence of someone toxic in their life, even if involves risk of death. Emotional codependency requires two people, and the woman is not the only codependent. The narcissistic male is also codependent on this type of woman, he is codependent on his victim and without victims, there are no aggressors”.


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