Sunday, May 5, 2013

Are We Programmed to Choose Mr. Wrong?



The other day I was talking with a woman who claimed she was envious of me because my husband and I were taking off to celebrate our first anniversary. She confided that she and her husband never do anything special to celebrate. She admitted she’d hoped the second marriage would be better than the first, but it wasn’t. My friend is an intelligent, likable, attractive woman why did she end up with a man who virtually ignores her. Over 70% of divorces are initiated by women who are anxious to escape a marriage or mate who didn't turn out to be what they originally thought.

On the same day, I read an article on Live Science that explained our hormones make us go for the sexy rule breaker when we are ovulating. At one time, the muscular male might have been able to run down a mastodon, but now he only hunts hot women.  A thinking woman knows a dependable engineer would be a much better father and husband than the rodeo bull rider. Yes, but what does intelligence have to do with sex appeal? Obviously, very little, since women even those who confess to wanting to get married have negligible interest in men when they aren’t ovulating. They may enjoy the idea of men, weddings, and the ivy-covered cottage, but not the actual male so much.

When women are ovulating, they want a he-man male with a deep voice and wide shoulders, and buckets of testerone. In the back of Popular Science, there is a pheromone-based cologne average guys can buy to attract women like a bad boy.  The Scent of a Man article stated that when women sniff t-shirts worn by men. The men with more he-man characteristics received many more thumbs up from the female participants. Why do women choose taller, muscular men with more defined male characteristics?

It is two-fold. In primitive times, the bigger, stronger man would pass on his dominant characteristics to the offspring and be a good provider. Keep in mind, in earlier times, the alpha male had several partners. Marriage didn’t stop most men from having a mistress, girlfriends, or the occasional fling.  Bad boys haven’t changed over the years; it is the wives or girlfriends’ protests that have become louder over the last fifty years.

Now women, even those non-ovulating females, go for the sexy tall man every time, well almost every time. Why is that?  Instinctual response may cause women to pick the most masculine sire for her children, but what happens when a woman isn’t ovulating. Why does she go for the same bad boy? Even to the point of dumping her dependable husband or boyfriend.

       Media myths and internal lies are the reason. Every romantic comedy and many romance novels feature bad boys who tantalize the heroine with their charisma. After several grand gestures, he realizes he’s in love, then makes the ultimate grand gesture devoting himself to the heroine. It wouldn’t be a sacrifice unless he had women chasing him. All the females in the audience sigh and press their hand over their heart hoping they can meet such a guy. Often women know they are being played, but will suspend knowledge so they can hold onto the bad boy. Of course, they are holding onto nothing since he is doing what he does best wowing other women.

Media informs us that the bad boys will be super romantic, whisking us off to exotic locales, wining and dining us, bringing us flowers and extravagant gifts. Some bad boys might because it is part of their shtick. Most won’t because they do not have to do anything, but be a bad boy to get the woman. They do not have to be thoughtful or dependable. Often they will stand women up, but the women are still eager to go out with them. The women believed they reached some sort of status among other bad boy-loving women.

Often women marry the bad boy they fell for in the wedding of her dreams. The romance was great, but the happily ever after isn’t happening. I am not saying that bad boys don’t want to marry many do, but they cannot change overnight, and usually don’t change at all.  All those bad boy characteristics that drew the women are also the predictors of him straying. The life the wife imagined never happens.

There comes a time when your bad boy ages out of the pheromone rodeo. In the animal world, there are almost no old alpha males because the younger males kill them. There are few things sadder than a middle-aged man trolling the bars using tired pick-up lines that used to work. You probably can lasso a bad boy then since his best days are long behind him. What do you get besides an embittered man who resents you since you now represent the best he can do.

Smarter women go for what is often mistakenly called the Beta male, but he’s not second best. Instead of being a strutting peacock, he uses imagination and thoughtfulness to meet his woman’s needs. Interestingly the higher a man’s intelligence and education, the less likely he is to cheat. Here’s a man who has figured out a one-night fling with a girl he met in bar isn’t worth tossing out a twenty-year marriage. Not so with the bad boy, another day, another woman, remember that next time you consider taking Too Handsome to be True home with you.

3 comments:

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  2. Don't forget birth control pills messing up her hormones...

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