Why Men Are Attracted to Crazy, Emotionally Abusive Women
Are you a crazy chick magnet? Have you had one turbulent relationship after another with women? Do you attract volatile, demanding, needy, emotionally unbalanced women? Have you ever wondered, “Why?”
Adult relationships are choices and you choose to become involved with these women. Even if your relationship makes you miserable, you’re getting something out of it. You attract these women because you’re telegraphing the signal, “Hey you, I’m into crazy ladies. Come torture me,” whether you’re aware of it or not.
There are a few possible reasons why you repeatedly get involved with crazy women in all their forms. If “crazy” gets you hot, it’s in your best interest to figure out why and break the pattern.
When you feel an overpowering, immediate chemistry toward a new woman, like you’ve always known her, without rhyme or reason, be wary. You probably already do know her. She’s most likely a new embodiment of unresolved relationship issues from childhood and adolescence—same issues, different packaging.
1) Yo’ Momma.
- Was your mom hypercritical and intrusive? Was your dad passive and henpecked?
- Was your dad around or did your mom drive him away?
- Did your mom, dad or siblings make you feel inadequate? Did they pick on you?
- Were you made to feel that nothing you did was ever good enough?
- Did you feel like you had to defend yourself from the people who loved you?
We create relationship templates when we’re kids based on our parents’ relationship and the way our parents, siblings, grandparents, or anyone we sought affection and approval from treated us. If we’re lucky, we have healthy relationship role models to emulate as adults.
If you’re not one of the lucky ones, you’re probably re-enacting childhood relationships in an effort to negate your original feelings of hurt and loss by trying to have an emotionally corrective experience. “If only I can get this person to love me the way I want to be loved then it will mean I’m good enough and everything is okay.” This is usually totally unconscious.
You’re trying to “get it right” as an adult, but with the wrong person. The women you’re attracted to aren’t anymore capable of giving you what you need and want than your parent(s), sibling(s), or whomever caused your original emotional injury. You end up repeating the same doomed relationship pattern with the same type of person. This pattern will keep repeating itself until you become aware of it and begin to make different relationship choices.
2) Knight in shining armor.
- Did one or both of your parents have substance abuse or addiction problems?
- Did your caregiver(s) suffer from depression, anxiety or extreme mood swings?
- Did you feel like you had to protect your mom or dad from being hurt or upset?
- Did you act as a referee or peacemaker because your parents had constant conflict?
- Did your mom and/or dad make you their confidante when they divorced or during their marriage?
- Did you feel like you had to protect your family from each other and outsiders?
If so, you were probably a parentified child—having to take care of the grown-ups who were supposed to be taking care of you. Parentified sons often grow up to have adult relationships with women who need to be “rescued,” when in reality, it’s the men who need to be rescued from these women who appear to be fragile waifs, but quickly turn into abusive aggressors when you disappoint them or fail to meet her expectations, which are often unrealistic.
Emotionally abusive women often present themselves as “helpless victims,” which makes the men who are attracted to them feel needed, strong, and powerful—at first. These women are usually bottomless pits of never-ending, un-meetable needs. They’ll make you suffer for not meeting their unrealistic expectations or for hurting one of their many ultra-sensitive feelings, which may or may not have a basis in reality.
This type of woman doesn’t need rescuing; she needs a mood stabilizer and a warning label. You can’t save another person. You have to start taking care of yourself and that means protecting yourself from professional victims who prey upon kind hearted rescuer types.
3) The first cut is the deepest.
- Was your family healthy, loving and supportive for the most part?
- Are you attracted to women who take you on an emotional roller coaster ride and aren’t able to reciprocate your affection?
- Was your first girlfriend or crush exciting? Did you experience extreme highs and lows with her?
- Does your family worry about your relationship choices?
Some men recreate their first painful romantic relationship from adolescence over and over again, even though they had healthy relationship models as children. You may be so scarred by your first love that you fall for the same type of woman as an adult, trying to finally “win” her love.
Having your first love crush you is a shock to the system. It didn’t compute and you have probably spent a lot of time and energy trying to make the same relationship work with different women. My advice: Give it up and follow the path of least resistance.
Additionally, because this was your first relationship experience, you may mistakenly believe that it’s what relationships are supposed to be like and have patterned subsequent relationships on it. Perhaps you believe that romantic relationships are supposed to hurt and make you suffer and, therefore, are attracted to women who guarantee that outcome.
In all three cases, men choose the same kind of women repeatedly with the same results—painful and futile relationships. You’re compelled to make these women love you and treat you well, with the childish insistence that it turn out differently this time. Why?
- It feels familiar.
- It reconfirms what you believe/feel about yourself and relationships. This includes feelings of not being good enough, being unlovable, that there’s something wrong with you, that love is supposed to hurt or make you feel bad, or that you have to “win” love through meeting unreasonable conditions.
- To finally gain the approval/acceptance you didn’t receive as a child.
- To try to “save” the parent you couldn’t help way back when.
- To win over your first love.
Explore what needs you’re trying to fulfill and what the old, no longer applicable rules of relationships to which you’re still abiding. Understand that these women are highly unlikely to ever meet these needs, which are typically for approval, acceptance, and unconditional love. Acknowledge how you were hurt in the past AND THEN MAKE DIFFERENT RELATIONSHIP CHOICES.
This won’t be easy. Initially, being loved and accepted for who you are will feel unnatural and uncomfortable. Ride out the discomfort until feeling good in a relationship feels normal. You couldn’t choose your first familial love relationships as a child, but you can choose the kind of woman you want to be with now that you’re an adult.
by Dr Tara J. Palmatier, PsyD
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Maman by Louise Bourgeois on The Guardian.