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Bianca Knows Best ... About "Bad Boys"

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Dear Bianca,

I'm attracted to bad guys, but I think it's destroying any chances at finding real love. Many of the guys I'm attracted to don't have reliable jobs, and most recently, I dated a guy who commonly had violent freak-outs. He often yelled at me, and he even hit my dog once during an angry moment.

Of course, I left him after that, but I still find myself daydreaming about the spontaneous fun times we had on his good days. Bad boys are so much more fun than boring, nice guys, but why do they come with so much baggage? Is there a happy medium between nice dude and bad guy?

— Not Looking for Mr. Nice Guy

Dear Not Looking,

For starters, please steer clear of abusive men. I can’t believe you're still daydreaming over a guy who hit your poor, defenseless dog! Any man who hits an animal will likely not think twice about hitting you. Dump this guy from your daydreams!

Most women have the hots for non-abusive rebellious types. Think James Dean, Colin Farrell, Robert Downey Jr. But we need to learn to lust from afar. After all, rebels typically die young or end up in rehab.

The main appeal of bad boys is the challenge of changing them. Women like the idea of roping one in and making him settle down despite his unruly ways. And that, in effect, is really a control issue.

Women have been dominated by men for so long (and yes, we still often get unequal pay for equal work) that we get a certain sense of gratification when we manage to actually tame one. And sometimes, it works. But more often than not, bad guys don't change for long. They're back to their old habits as soon as the initial love butterflies wear off.

Of course, there are men who enjoy a spontaneous good time, but still respect you in the morning. Finding one may seem like searching for the proverbial needle in a haystack, but if you keep trying, you'll find one eventually.

Try online dating, since it opens the pool up to men you might not find in a bar or club setting. Guys in bars can often be trouble anyway, and since you might be a little tipsy in that environment, your judgment probably isn't at its best.

The key issue to dating around for the right guy is remembering to ditch the duds. If you do go on a date with a bad guy, don't get blinded by his rebellious appeal. Think about what he'll be like five or six months down the road when he's jobless and relying on you for a handout.

Got a problem? E-mail Bianca at bphillips@memphisflyer.com.

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