Once again, science has backed up something that many of us knew all along: Overall, "bad boys" get the girl (or get more girls) more often than "good boys."
Specifically, a study done by New Mexico University shows that there are certain personality traits that women, despite all common sense (and despite the advice of their mothers) seem to fall for: self-absorbption, thrill-seeking, and deceptiveness. This doesn't seem to make sense on the face of it: if the purpose of sex is to continue the species, these are traits you wouldn't think that the species needs.
A female friend of mine once offered the opinion that these traits (sometimes referred to as "the dark triad") are merely amplified examples of "maleness," so naturally women are attracted to them. I'm not so sure I agree. That's a little like saying women would rather date a cardboard box doused with pheromones than an actual, living "nice guy." It also implies that women are never, ever selfish thrill-seekers who lie or cheat. I had hoped to discuss this further with her, but her husband was on his way home from work early that day, so she had to rush me out the back door. I'm sure she had a perfectly good reason for that, though.
I've had a look through the birth charts of clients and friends who have found themselves in the habit of getting involved with these "bad boys," and it's hard to see a definitive astrological cause. However, two patterns do seem to stand out.
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1) The "bad boys" in question seem to have major placements that fall in the Twelfth House of the women they get involved with.
2) The women in question seem to have stronger-than-average Mars placements.
At least part of this makes astrological sense to me. The 12th House is traditionally associated with things like deception and intrigue, so certainly that works. And in Vedic astrology, the Twelfth is associated with what they call "bed pleasures" (which includes sleep among other things, by the way). So there may be a case to be made for "badness" being inherently sexy that way. And a strong Mars at least implies an interest in aggressiveness... which is often expressed in terms of cunning and deception to get one's way. Mars, of course, also has a lot to do with one's sex drive.
Still, the whole matter doesn't really make sense. As much as I would like to rely on the notion that a woman's definition of a 'bad boy' is a 'good boy' who won't stick around, it isn't that simple. Also, since (theoretically) a birth chart is a birth chart, gender simply shouldn't matter... and yet men don't seem to be as attracted to "bad girls" as women are (traditionally) drawn to the male equivalent.
Regardless of the astrological factors, psychologically, The Romance Of The Bad Boy continues. And in fact, "romance" is (I believe) the operative word. I suspect that when it comes to "bad boys," woman are (in part) falling into the tendency we all have to mythologize our romantic partners. In Part Two, I'll be delving into the astrology a little more, as well as the literature. Expect passionate encounters on the foggy moors of Scotland... and a dire warning to keep your teenage daughter away from vampires, no matter how pretty and glittery they may seem at first.
Sherene Schostak is a Jungian psychotherapist, author and metaphysician who specializes in helping creative artists transform their addictions and blocks. She has been in private practice in New York City for the past 13 years consulting, writing and... read more