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She Dates Assholes Because You’re a Pussy

She Dates Assholes Because You’re a Pussy: Illustration by Sean Noyce

Illustration by Sean Noyce

Why do women date assholes?

Ah, yes. The age-old question—right up there with “What is the meaning of life?”

After I pitched this story, I interviewed dozens of women and men, a sex therapist and a relationship psychiatrist. When I asked my friends why they dated assholes no two of them answered the same. It seems there is a toxic cocktail of psychological reasons women fall into this trap. I compiled a nice list, worthy of Cosmopolitan or Elle, with points like “daddy issues” and “ticking clock.” Then I deleted the whole fucking thing.

Frankly, I’m tired of the conventional wisdom that women date assholes because we need lessons in “self-love ” or “manifesting self-esteem” or some psychobabble blah-blah fucking blah about “healing your aloneness.” They’re always about what’s wrong with women and never about what’s going on with men.

In my experience, if a man is asking the question “Why do women date assholes?” he falls into one of three categories:

1. He’s the best friend of a woman who dates assholes, and he’s in love with her

2. He assumes that if a woman rejects him it has nothing at all to do with his shortcomings such as for example the fact that he’s rolling hard on Tinder from his parents’ basement

3. He’s a Beta Male

Famous misogynist and one of my personal heroes, Picasso said, “There are only two types of women—goddesses and doormats.”

I believe there are only two types of men—assholes and pussies.

I should probably define what an “asshole” is. Womanizer? Unfaithful married guy? Commitmentphobe? Gregory Louis Carter of the University of Durham led a study into the “bad boy” phenomenon and described them as men who “possess the Dark Triad personality traits of narcissism, psychopathy and Machiavellism.”

But I think, like autism, assholes fall on a spectrum. On one side you have the Dark Triad douchebags and sociopaths, and on the other you have the kings who would risk their lives defending you. But they’re still assholes. You have to be to survive. In my over-generalized, simplistic view of the world, if you’re not an asshole, you’re a pussy.

Full disclosure—I love assholes. I’m sure any shrink would say I have latent daddy issues and blatant commitmentphobia polluting my psyche, which undoubtedly contributes to my fetish; but for now I blame sexual selection. I gravitate to The Asshole. In fact, the Dark Triad description reads like an erotica novel to me.

I don’t like sociopathic assholes (although I did in my 20s when I didn’t know any better). In my 30s I prefer the confident, well-adjusted asshole who knows how to grow food, take care of kids, build houses, fires, cars … maybe throw some knives. I have two requirements for my men: Can you protect me? Can you survive in extreme conditions? When I talked to my sister about this she said, “Yeah, I guess if you want a real man, you’re gonna have to be willing to put up with a little chauvinism and arrogance.”

I tend to agree. Assholes aren’t pushovers. And I don’t feel safe with a pushover. If I can walk all over a man, it doesn’t leave me feeling confident about his ability to defend me from the dangers of the world. Sure, I’m a feminist, and I’m self-reliant. Sure, I have a dog, some Mace and know basic self-defense. I’m satisfied with my ability to protect myself. But honestly, I feel safer with a big, strong man around. What’s the point of even having a man around if he can’t at least stave off a marauding attacker?

Carter and his colleagues found that “with respect to short-term mating, women may be drawn to men who demonstrate confidence, stubbornness and risk-taking tendencies.” Without boring you with a bunch of evolutionary psychology, I’m essentially just responding to signals of “male quality.” I like men who can shield me in a dark alley or kill a bunch of motherfuckas in defense of our post-apocalypse rations.

I LOVE THE IDEA OF A TRADITIONAL MAN

The Alpha Male. The warrior. The provider. The protector. The hunter. The king. I know this is not the popular opinion. I realize the PC police have us so scared to encourage traditional gender roles and, God forbid, a little bit of backbone. It’s REVOLUTIONARY for me to say I like my men to act like men. I think because of this war on masculinity we now lack men who actually know how to do man shit, and trust me, that’s going to bite us in the ass down the road. And everyone is too fucking scared of the feminists to call it out. I don’t give a shit.

Women date assholes because through all of time assholes have been the alpha male. Yes, many of them have been murderous rapists. But MOST of them have been fighting for our honor, protecting women and children. If that weren’t the case, our species wouldn’t have made it out of the caves. Period.

So I’m not interested in dating a man who talks about his therapy and has more dietary restrictions than I do. I’m not interested in a man who will cower in fear when the passengers on the plane are taken hostage. I’m not interested in someone who’s going to sit around bitching about the world on social media. (That’s my job.) I realize not all women want or like the Alpha Male. That’s fine. That’s their prerogative. I recommend they find themselves a nice, domesticated pussy, settle down and pray global warming isn’t real.

Astronaut: Scott MacDonald/NASA; Miner: National Archives and Records Administration; Clown: Laragiddingsofficial; Trump: Gage Skidmore; Magician: Strobridge Litho. Co.; Shoes: Michael Schwern; Zoolander: Flickr; Mime: Nikita Kapranov

Astronaut: Scott MacDonald/NASA; Miner: National Archives and Records Administration; Clown: Laragiddingsofficial; Trump: Gage Skidmore; Magician: Strobridge Litho. Co.; Shoes: Michael Schwern; Zoolander: Flickr; Mime: Nikita Kapranov

The trouble is, because we aren’t in constant survival mode, it’s easy for a pussy to pose as an asshole. He can hide behind money or tech skills, but the reality is—he’s a goner the first week after the dollar collapses. Here are some easy ways to identify a pussy:

1. He’s a mommy’s boy

He was breastfed until he was 10 like that weird kid in Game of Thrones. He’s looking for another mommy. I don’t mind if you suck on my titties occasionally, but I’m certainly not here to blow smoke up your ass and coddle your flimsy ego. There’s nothing more unattractive than neediness.

2. He’s afraid of rodents, insects or reptiles

I was dating a man. We’ll call him Mr. 1%. He treated me like gold. Flew me around the world. He is ruthless in business but soft in bed. By all accounts he is an Alpha Male. He exudes confidence and assertiveness. One day we were at his house in Maui and a mouse ran down the hall right towards him. I’ve never heard a scream so loud. There is honestly nothing more terrifying than a grown man screaming. He immediately picked up his phone and called the gate security. “SECURITY! THERE’S A MOUSE IN THE HOUSE!” I picked up a broom and ushered the cute little thing out the door. I couldn’t stop laughing. Days later, we tried to laugh it off, but I knew it was over. I would never be able to look at him the same way again.

3. He’s over 35 and on Instagram

There’s something desperate about it. I associate Instagram with teenagers and cougars. Most of the men I know who could survive in the woods for two weeks could give a shit about their follower count.

4. He’s a hipster

FACT: All hipsters are pussies.

5. He believes in “participation trophies"

Put any amount of pressure on this guy, and he will crack. He’s the dude who’s cool with Coldplay at the Super Bowl.

6. He’s pussy-whipped

His wife publicly humiliates him all the time. She makes him carry her Birkin bag. Think Brad Pitt.

7. He’s rich but defenseless

He thinks he’s a real man because he has money. He’s not. In fact, rich dudes are some of the biggest pussies I’ve ever met. Money can’t buy you bravery in the face of danger. It can’t buy you self-reliance. In our modern society women gravitate to men with money because now that we’re out of the caves and thanks to the industrial and technological revolutions money is the modern equivalent of “security.” It’s an illusion. Unless he’s willing to spend his money on HAZMAT suits, generators, an apocalypse bunker, seeds, water and a helicopter – don’t bite.

8. He’s spoiled

I’m looking at you trustafarians, with your never-done-a-dish “butter hands.” He might act like an asshole, but it’s a cover-up to hide the fact that he’s never endured a hard day of manual labor in his life and probably can’t lift a TV.

9. He’s pathetic

He has to call AAA to have it change his tire. He’s afraid of power tools. He’s passive-aggressive. He plays video games 25 hours a day and calls women derogative names online. He’s angry because women reject him yet takes no responsibility for self-improvement or acting like a man.

10. He’s a bully

Bullies over-compensate. Real men are wise, just and humble. They are aware that vulnerability, intimacy and emotional intelligence aren’t signs of weakness but evidence of deep, inner strength. Everyone knows the biggest pussies are the macho, in-your-face, tough guys. Like rich dudes and trust fund babies, bullies also occupy the intersecting space in the Pussy/Asshole Venn diagram—but when push comes to shove these boys will reveal their cowardly colors every single time. A bully will turn on you. An asshole would do his time before he went down labeled a “snitch.”

I’m not saying all pussies are all bad. I know they have their place in modern society. They can wear their Lululemon gym gear, brew their craft beer, drive their Prius or hybrid/electric of any sort, do their juice cleanse and upload their Snapchat, and it doesn’t bother me one bit. I’m just saying that when the worldwide algorithm crashes—and it will—then we’ll see who the real men are. And I think I’ll take my chances with an asshole.

DISCLAIMER: THIS IS MY OPINION. SO BEFORE YOU START GATHERING THE VIRTUAL STAKES UPON WHICH TO IMPALE ME WHILE USING BUZZWORDS LIKE “HETERONORMATIVE” AND “TRADITIONAL GENDER ROLES” AND “CISGENDER” JUST CALM THE FUCK DOWN. Quit being such a pussy.


Bridget Phetasy is a writer and comic in Los Angeles. Twitter: @BridgetPhetasy.

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