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What is a bad boy really? Is it someone who does drugs?  Someone who sleeps with a different girl every night? Someone who has done a few stints in prison? Sure, as far as society is concerned, these guys aren’t all that great. But, for the purposes of dating, a bad boy is just one who isn’t making you happy. One who doesn’t think about your needs—whether he means to or not—and isn’t giving you what you want. You can make all the excuses in the world for the guy, but those excuses aren’t going to keep you warm at night or text you back when you’ve been waiting hours for a response. Any of these excuses sound familiar?

He’s ambitious

He has his own thing going on—maybe he is a rising star, he has started his how own company or is directing his own film. You know he will be able to one day provide for a family, and provide a pretty nice life at that. You love his entrepreneurial mind. You love his business savvy. To you, that’s what a man looks like.

The bad in the good

He doesn’t have as much time for you as he would have if he were a 9 to 5 every day Joe. But you don’t want a 9 to 5 Joe. You want your own personal rock star. So, you sit back as he flirts with people because it’s “part of the business,” and you’re not allowed to say a word when he doesn’t call for days because you know how important his work is to him. You know but…it still doesn’t feel very good.

He’s the life of the party

He is always the one throwing the party. If everyone is gathered around one person laughing their a**es off, that person is probably him. His phone is constantly going off with event invites. Basically, he is out and about all of the time. You love the excitement of being the one girl out of many that he actually dated.

The bad in the good

But you have to tell yourself daily “I’m a secure girl. I can handle this. It’s fine that Tina and Meredith and Jamie just texted him and I have no idea who they are.” You tell yourself you don’t mind sleeping alone for the most part and that you’re happy to get the few minutes of drunken cuddles you get when he gets home from a rave…but you’re actually not. You just don’t want to face the fact that—like any normal girl—you need a little more assurance that you’re a priority to the guy you’re dating.

He is the “mysterious” type

He is wildly intelligent. He goes on rants for an hour, and they are brilliant rants, that you learn a ton from. You know he’ll write a Pulitzer prizewinner one day or solve the energy crisis.

The bad in the good

But…guess what? He rarely asks you about you. And your friends think he is extremely self-important because he doesn’t talk to them at parties. He is “too good” to talk about the last episode of Breaking Bad. Sure, he is a genius, but so what?? You can’t have fun with this guy! Sure, he might win a Pulitzer Prize but it’s going to be a hell of a lonely and boring ride if you go with him.

The hot deadbeat

He’s a bartender, a cashier at an organic market, he works in a snowboard shop. He is charming and extremely good-looking. He turns his nose up at corporate America, suits, and entrepreneurs. He “knows what’s important in life.” Having fun. Enjoying nature. Smoking pot with friends. Whatever it may be. You like his free spirit. You buy into the idea that getting a real job is a bad idea. That this guy’s got the idea of what life is all about.

The bad in the good

You end up fronting him money a lot. He can’t afford to do things you want to do like take trips or even go to a steakhouse. And, let’s face it; there is not a future with this guy. There’s not.

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