(Stick with it until about 2 minutes in. Or, pay attention to the first two minutes to hear how teen girls talk when they are on YouTube.)
A comment from this video:
“You know how girls are usually complaining that they always get hurt from dating bad boys, and regardless, end up going back for more? This isn’t because they enjoy getting hurt (physically/mentally), it’s because they are attracted to that confidence and “drama” (they find a challenge “sexy”), something the average nice guys don’t tend to provide and shy away from.”
The girls-like-jerks phenomenon used to be a 20 and 30 something dilemma. Now, as teens become more and more mature and date at even younger ages, the attraction to ‘bad boys’ has some serious consequences. First, I think there are a few reasons why teen girls like jerks:
1. Teen Girls Hope They Can ‘Fix’ Them
Many girls who date jerks, think that after a while they will be able to transform them. I hear them say, ‘he is just overly confident. In private he is nice to me, or he will be as we get more comfortable around each other.’
2. Teen Girls Are A Bigger Challenge, And Therefore A Bigger Ego Bump When ‘Gotten’
Jerks are the bad boys and typically attention hogs. This therefore makes girls see them as more popular and harder to tame. So, when they finally get them (hook up or date) it makes them feel worthy and good about themselves even though this is a faulty self-esteem boost.
3. Teen Girls Feel Like They Don’t Deserve Better
Many girls think they cannot do any better. They have either been abused in the past or by father’s and feel they deserve to be treated poorly by a jerk.
4. Teen Girls Feel Nice Guys Are Boring
Nice guys get a bad rap. Many teen girls, who are already pre-disposed to more risky behavior, see jerks as a challenge, as more fun and more risky. This is not the case!
We see the appeal of jerks all over the media on Gossip Girl and even how Quinn chooses bad boy Puck over Finn to lose her virginity to on Glee. The consequence of this behavior is that girls self esteem is put in even more precarious situations. When we see this in the media o
r hear our daughters talking about this phenomenon it is important to address the issues right away. Bringing their awareness to the issue will help them choose men who treat them well in the future.