EDITOR’S NOTE:  Each He Said-She Said column features a question from a Crosswalk.com reader with responses from a male and female point of view.  If you’ve got a question about anything related to singleness, please CLICK HERE to submit (selected questions will be posted anonymously).

QUESTION:  I am 44 years old and have never been married.  From my high school years and on, I've noticed one thing happening that I don't understand:  Why do women today prefer the "bad boys" they know will mistreat them over the "good men" they know will treat them right?

HE SAID:  By “bad boy” I am assuming you are referring to an overtly masculine, self-centered, arrogant male who generally forms relationships to purely satisfy his own physical needs.  The type of guy other men hate, yet the ones some women seem to love?  Is this close to what you are alluding to?

I have wondered this myself since I am never “bad” enough for those women, but “good” enough to listen as they struggle through their relationships with guys having these traits.

Every woman has her own specific wants, desires and needs.  These differences lead to a number of reasons why some women prefer to date guys with an edgier side to them.

  • She may see a Good Man as a friend, but a Bad Boy as real, exciting and confident.
  • She may see an opportunity to utilize her natural desire to nurture or to fix a guy.
  • She may be charmed (or manipulated) by his salesman-like skills.
  • She may feel safer or more protected as he is less likely to be messed with.
  • She may lack self-confidence and want to be controlled.
  • She may want to experience someone less conservative and predictable.
  • She may not be ready for a commitment (a Good Man sometimes represents).

Regardless of a woman’s ultimate motive (or motives) in choosing a “Bad Boy” over a “Good Man,” there is not much we, as “good” men or possible suitors, can do.  We can sit back and wonder why, evaluate her for doing so, or try to understand her rationale; however, none of this is useful or productive. 

Then again, if we are a friend or a close brother in Christ, we should encourage her to walk with God and seek godly relationships, not for our best interest, but for hers.

Preach the Word … correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction (2 Timothy 4:2).

I may not know the reason for or understand the actions of others.  Likewise, I don’t know how God is going to use a situation in someone’s life in order to bring them closer to Him. 

In some incidences, helping others out of trouble or giving them advice actually prolongs their circumstances by stunting their spiritual and personal growth.  At other times, not being forthright with a person and not assisting a person through a situation allows the person to fall further away from God.

As a follower of Christ, my role is to always be in prayer for myself and for others so I can discern how and when I may be used in their life.

Whatever the case may be with the women you know, I understand the frustration in seeing them seek someone other than who you (and seemingly God) would want for them. 

There is a passage in the Bible that helps me in quandaries like this.

When I thought deeply in order to understand this, it was painful for me, until I went into the sanctuary of God (Psalm 73:16-17).