Lions and Tigers and Bears: Why Some Women Attract “Bad Boys?”
By Guest Blogger Sam Alibrando, Ph.D.
We attract (and are attracted to) personality aspects in others that are underdeveloped in ourselves. And often and eventually these aspects in the other person end up being negative. In the chapter in my book “Melt Your Witches,” I wrote:
I suggest that one reason a woman might attract and be attracted to “bad boys” (in a way that becomes dysfunctional and harmful) is because she has not dealt with her own “Inner Bad Boy.”
Dorothy’s “LION” represents what Karen Horney calls the “moving-against” part of our personality. It is the part of us that is concerned with our SELF (where TIN MAN or “moving-toward” is concerned with OTHERS; and, SCARECROW, moving-away” is concerned with KNOWING what is true.) Many females –for a whole bunch of reasons –were never permitted to develop their inner LION, the part of them rules and roars, that is Queen of her pride. LION in his negative form is self-centered, nasty and even cruel –like we find Lion when we first meet him attacking Dorothy’s little entourage in the forest. LION in his positive expression is confident, can set boundaries, protects himself and is able to get what he needs– like who Lion becomes when he find his courage. When a woman–or man for that matter–does not develop positive confident LION, she will inevitably attract people and partners who have a negative LION. (It is like two hydrogen atoms attracting one oxygen atom … to get H2O.)
What’s a girl to do?” Develop positive LION! Instead of trying to get your needs met by seemingly “strong” men (what I call Wizard-seeking in my book), set out to develop your own inner strength, confidence and courage. If you find your “nerve” you will eventually find your balanced man– a man who is both strong (LION) but also kind (TIN MAN) and who has self-control and wisdom (SCARECROW). Why will you find this better & balanced man? It is because you are better & balanced– and happy – person yourself. Balance and maturity attracts balance and maturity.
Wishing you good travels on your Yellow Brick Road.
Dr. Sam Alibrando is a clinical psychologist in Pasadena California and a national business/organizational consultant and speaker. He is the author of Follow the Yellow Brick Road: How to Change for the Better When Life Gives You Its Worst. www.apc3.com or www.yellowbrickroad-book.com.