On Alpha Males and Beta Males and Getting a Mate

by | Jan 12, 2021 | Uncategorized | 29 comments

What does Alpha Male mean? And is it overblown?
Merchandise is Here!

Do alpha males always get the girl?

The comic book character Archie was always your typical beta. So was Richie Cunningham from Happy Days, while Fonzie played more the alpha.

And girls prefer bad boys! Don’t they?

Well, maybe the whole alpha and beta thing isn’t that simple.

Even though our book The Great Sex Rescue is launching March 2, Keith and I are in the middle of writing the first draft of The Good Guy’s Guide to Great Sex. Keith’s been doing all this research and going down all these rabbit holes to figure out what makes sex best for both men and women.

Not surprisingly, the idea of “confidence” and the alpha male has come up a lot. But the more that Keith’s done research into this, the more he’s found both that alphas don’t exist in human societies the way that we think; but also that the whole idea of what will make an alpha is skewed.

The most dominant, meanest, strongest animal often loses out on alpha status

The idea for the “alpha” really comes from animal studies, where one male animal seems to be in charge of a whole group of women and children, providing them protection in exchange for mating rights. And that male fights off both other males and other predators. In other animal groupings, the  non-alpha males aren’t expelled, but one dominant does rise to the top. So how do these groups decide who is dominant? Is it always the most aggressive, meanest, and strongest?

Turns out it’s often not. Animals can gain alpha status by doing favours for other animals. Sometimes the animals just realize they don’t want a bully in charge, and so they find an alternative. In many primate groups, the females are quick to defend the group against intruders as well, and don’t rely only on the male to be strong. So they’ll choose a male who won’t abuse them. In fact, in many animal societies it’s the women who decide who they want to be in charge–and again, it’s usually not the most predatory. It’s usually a combination of strength, yes, but also an alpha who will treat them and their children well.

When it comes to human societies, we tend to prefer stability over bullying behaviour, too. While there is a certain amount of typical “alpha” behaviour that societies may tolerate, and even like, at some point it becomes too much. A person who is violent disrupts the entire society, and so they’ll be ostracized.

We may talk about the macho, controlling, bullying alpha man as being the most attractive, but it turns out most women would rather have a caring man, just like most chimps or wolves or any number of other animals.

What makes “alpha” attractive may not be what we think.

I read a really interesting study as Keith and I were looking into this that I want to share with you that helps illuminate what it is that women want. It was one of the earliest studies done on dominance and sexual attraction, and it’s talked about in this article on alpha males.

In the original study, college-aged women were given one of two descriptions of John, a tennis player. Both descriptions started out with the same sentences:

John is 5’10” tall, 165 lbs. He has been playing tennis for one year and is currently enrolled in an intermediate tennis class. Despite his limited amount of training he is a very coordinated tennis player, who has won 60% of his matches. 

The Myth of the Alpha Male

Greater Good Magazine

Then one group was given a further description of John that used words like confident, dominant, authority, and assertive. Another group read a passage that described John as “not particularly competitive“, and somebody who preferred to play for fun rather than to win, and who was easily dominated by others.

When given those two descriptions–one of the typical Alpha, or dominant male, and one of the typical Beta, or submissive male, dominant John was called the most sexually attractive, but also the least appealing as a spouse.

But then the researchers wondered, what words are women actually reacting to when they called alpha John sexually appealing? 

In follow-up studies, they found that “dominance” and “assertive” were appealing, but “aggressive” and domineering” were not.

But guess which John scored the best between dominant and assertive John, aggressive and domineering John, and John with no adjectives, where it was just three-sentence John with no qualifiers?

Turns out sexiest John is three-sentence John, with none of these descriptors at all (like above).

 

What’s going on? Well, this most certainly doesn’t mean that the extremely brief three-sentence description of the John depicted in the control condition was sexually appealing. Rather, it’s more probable that hearing about either dominant or nondominant behavior, in isolation of other information about him, made him less sexually attractive. The researchers conclude: “In short, a simple dominant-nondominant dimension may be of limited value when predicting mate preferences for women.”

The Myth of the Alpha Male

Greater Good Magazine

They went on and measured more words, and developed a new way of looking at what actually is sexually appealing. Here’s what they concluded:

Instead of thinking about alpha males and dominance, we should start thinking about prestige.

Prestige is formed when people (males in this case) use their assertiveness and confidence to gain other people’s approval and to gain status in the long-term. It’s not about being domineering in the here and now, but about demonstrating a particular character over time. They further elaborate:

The dominant male who is demanding, violent, and self-centered is not considered attractive to most women, whereas the dominant male who is assertive and confident is considered attractive. As the researchers suggest, “Men who dominate others because of leadership qualities and other superior abilities and who therefore are able and willing to provide for their families quite possibly will be preferred to potential partners who lack these attributes.”

Their results also suggest that sensitivity and assertiveness are not opposites. In fact, further research suggests that the combination of kindness and assertiveness might just be the most attractive pairing.

The Myth of the Alpha Male

Greater Good Magazine

What I find so interesting about this is that you’re basically describing Jesus.

Jesus was confident and assertive, but he also cared deeply for people. His kindness was what gave him moral authority and status–basically prestige.

And these characteristics of being assertive and confident but also kind and sensitive are not true only for males, but also for females.

I worry that the “Alpha Male” that many talk about in the church isn’t Christlike at all–and also is the least appealing to women.

We tend to divide men into “real men” and “wimps”.  And yet this isn’t telling the real story. That “real alpha man” who is domineering, aggressive, controlling? He doesn’t usually win, either in the animal kingdom or in love.

As the study concluded:

Taken together, the research suggests that the ideal man (for a date or romantic partner) is one who is assertive, confident, easygoing, and sensitive, without being aggressive, demanding, dominant, quiet, shy, or submissive. In other words, a prestigious man, not a dominant man.

The Myth of the Alpha Male

Greater Good Magazine

I find this whole thing fascinating, and if you want a shorter look at the alpha male debate, here’s an awesome four minute video from the Adam Ruins Everything YouTube channel:

 

Now, that still doesn’t answer the question about why women often go for bad boys.

I think for that we need to look more into trauma theory, and how, when we’ve been traumatized and hurt in the past, we often subconsciously recreate those relationship dynamics because they feel normal, but also because it gives ourselves a chance to get it right this time.

The only problem? It never works.

So all that is to say that aggressive, domineering behaviour is not what is sexy.

Women: we need to see these behaviours as red flags. We need to steer our kids clear of them by teaching empathy and real Christlikeness. And men? Let’s stop idolizing and propping up other men who display these character traits. Let’s prop up men who are assertive but also humble, who are kind, and who show empathy. That’s what Jesus did, and I think He’s a pretty good example!

Are Alpha Males Most Sexually Appealing?

What do you think? Do we emphasize the wrong things in masculinity? What do you think are the most appealing traits? Let’s talk in the comments!

Sheila Wray Gregoire

Sheila Wray Gregoire

Founder of Bare Marriage

Sheila is determined to help Christians find biblical, healthy, evidence-based help for their marriages. And in doing so, she's turning the evangelical world on its head, challenging many of the toxic teachings, especially in her newest book The Great Sex Rescue. She’s an award-winning author of 8 books and a sought-after speaker. With her humorous, no-nonsense approach, Sheila works with her husband Keith and daughter Rebecca to create podcasts and courses to help couples find true intimacy. Plus she knits. All the time. ENTJ, straight 8

Related Posts

Sheila Wray Gregoire

Author at Bare Marriage

Sheila is determined to help Christians find biblical, healthy, evidence-based help for their marriages. And in doing so, she's turning the evangelical world on its head, challenging many of the toxic teachings, especially in her newest book The Great Sex Rescue. She’s an award-winning author of 8 books and a sought-after speaker. With her humorous, no-nonsense approach, Sheila works with her husband Keith and daughter Rebecca to create podcasts and courses to help couples find true intimacy. Plus she knits. All the time. ENTJ, straight 8

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29 Comments

  1. Libl

    I never liked the terms alpha or beta male because it reduces men to an animalistic generalization, kind of like is done with male sexuality. And I’ve found that it isnt really true.
    Most men are some sort of combination, a bell curve. And with so many different character traits, good and bad, on either side, you can’t label one as better than the other.
    In the happiest marriages I know, the spouses seem balanced. Neither are too alpha or beta. In the discontent marriages, I either see a domineering “alpha” spouse or a spouse is too beta, leaving the other one to carry the load.
    Maybe we should just stop labeling men animalistically, though, and just focus on character. Using alpha as a positive can cover up a lot of abusive negative. Using beta as a negative can shove great husband material men into the friend zone.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Very true! I agree. I think that’s what the study found, really–that our whole concept of “alpha” is wrong, anyway. The problem is that so much rhetoric about what makes a real man is caught up in so much of this alpha/beta dynamic. When we see that it’s totally off, hopefully people will start rejecting it, like Adam said in that video at the bottom (which is really very good!).

      Reply
    • VoxClamatisEnDeserto

      The “great husband material” guys are going to end up friendzoned anyway; nobody’s fooling anyone there. Except females. They seem to keep on swallowing the same Oprah/Dr. Phil/Dr. Oz snake oil as always.

      Reply
      • Sheila Wray Gregoire

        That’s absolutely not true. Yes, not every man will marry, any more than every women will (although Christian men marry at greater rates than Christian women). But the men who are the most attractive as mates are ones who are kind and generous. That’s what so many women say about their own husbands, and certainly what I say about mine!
        Just because not every male marries doesn’t mean that all women reject the “great husband material” guys. I’d suggest we stop with that line of thinking, because it breeds resentment, and has no bearing in research. Even in this study, women said they found the domineering guy sexy, but the least attractive for marriage. When it comes to marriage, women want someone they can count on.

        Reply
      • Meghan

        My dude, women don’t owe you a relationship no matter how awesome you objectively are so can we please stop with the friend zone stuff? And calling us “females” is derogatory. This comment reads very much like an incel wrote it, which is a philosophy I very much hope you don’t ascribe to as it’s very harmful to both women AND men and is only going to hurt you in the long run.

        Reply
      • Jane Eyre

        Not trying to pile on (like Meghan, I hate the term “females” in this context).
        Thinking about this: I have always been attracted to responsible, smart men. Some of these men might be a bit socially awkward, nerdy, what have you. The people who have straight up made fun of me for the men I date or just been horrifically rude to my dates? Other MEN.
        I am also wondering what type of women you are trying to date. Are you going after kind, churchgoing women your own age who might be carrying around an extra 15 or even 30 pounds, or are you chasing sexy young things for their bodies and then getting upset when they have similarly shallow standards for men?

        Reply
      • Anon

        Godly, caring Christian women tend to be attracted to Godly, caring Christian men. So if a Christian guy is struggling to find a wife, I’d suggest he takes a long hard look at his own character and that of the women he’s been trying to date. I’m not saying that every Christian man who is unable to marry is single due to character flaws, just that often, it’s much easier for a man to blame ‘Christian women’ for his singleness than to contemplate the possibility that his own attitude toward others might be to blame.
        I know a few guys who are long-term single because, according to them ‘Christian women are so shallow and only interested in looks and money’. Yet they speak dismissively or mockingly of others on a regular basis and treat people with arrogance. No wonder wise girls avoid dating them!

        Reply
  2. Anon

    For me, one of the most attractive qualities in a man is that he treats others well, regardless of their status.
    I once went out with a group of friends for a meal. One of the men in the group threatened to complain to the manager because we had to wait a few minutes for our table, and when the waitress accidentally brought the wrong side dish for my meal, was very rude to her and demanded that the whole cost of the meal be knocked off the bill (even though the mistake was corrected immediately). On the way home, he asked if he could date me and was stunned when I said no, but to me, the way he treated the people who ‘didn’t matter’ in his eyes was a deal breaker.
    By contrast, one of the things that attracted me to my now husband was the way he speaks to everyone who crosses his path – he even thanks the rubbish collectors in the park for their work! A man who is respectful and kind when it provides no benefit to himself (and to people who would have no comeback if he were rude to them) is a man who is also very likely to treat his life partner well.

    Reply
  3. Anon

    FWIW, I was always attracted to the bad boys, but can not look back on any trauma whatsoever. My childhood was good. But I was in a culturally Christian part of the country and a conservative Christian home, but without any personal saving faith of my own until adulthood. I heard a saying that resonates with me: “Rules without relationship breeds rebellion.” God was reduced to a set of rules, and I didn’t like them! I rebelled heartily, and flocking to the bad boys was a way of expressing it.

    Reply
  4. Rebecca

    My sweet husband helped me with my car the day after he met me. He’s incredibly helpful and generous with his time, and that was something that really attracted me to him. He’s also confident without being arrogant, which is so great. He’s not the traditional “alpha” but it all works out because I just want him the way he is!

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Yay! That sounds like an incredible man. My husband is so giving and generous, too.

      Reply
  5. Jane Eyre

    Great post.
    One thing to keep in mind if that “women like bad boys” describes some women, and there are also men out there who prefer women that are not exactly upstanding. It’s not a man’s job to appeal to most women, the plurality of women who may like bad boys, or his friend’s idea of women; it is his job to lead his life to appeal to the kind of woman he wants to marry.
    Same goes for women. Plenty of men are quite picky about looks and physique, have a “three date rule” for sex, do not go to church, etc. That might even be most men! But you aren’t trying to find “most men” or the man your coworkers think is a catch; you’re trying to find one man to be your husband.
    The advantage of this kind of thinking is habit engenders a certain amount of confidence. If women roll their eyes at you because you are a nerd who goes to church, then you can wish them the best finding a good man for them (and Jesus), and wait for the woman who swoons over nerdy, church going men.
    Don’t ask men how I know these things…..

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      That’s a great way of looking at it! I’ve phrased it before, “become the kind of person the kind of person you want to marry wants to marry.” You only have to appeal to that small subset! Who cares what everyone else thinks? And hopefully the kind of person you want to marry is someone who will put Jesus first and run after Him with you.

      Reply
  6. Anon

    I should show this to the men’s group I am on in Facebook. I’m so tired of the alpha male talk. They don’t promote aggressiveness but it’s so much talk about the man being dominant. “You don’t ask your wife where she wants to eat , you tell her where you are going to eat. You show that you are the leader” and according to one of these guys this leads to a tons of sex because women like men who are strong and dominant and who leads.
    I don’t know why I get so tired of that message. It can be because I am not a leader type or alpha male at all. Not the wrong alpha male or the Jesus alpha male type to be honest. My wife is much more dominant and I love that but I know that in the long run I some how have to find confidence to be the Jesus type alpha male or my wife will leave me for someone who is(that’s one thing that I envy about women, you don’t can emotionally sensitive and it’s ok but not us men).
    Anyway, this message of what a alpha male means should be preached more. Together with how to be more confident. I think many men struggle with that and sadly can take to the extreme to try to display such confidence. I think many of those men that act the wrong “alpha way” are very insecure deep down.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      That’s actually a really good point, Anon. How do we encourage confidence and assertiveness without it becoming aggression? I’m going to have to ponder that.
      As for those Facebook groups–get off them. 🙂 They sound awful!

      Reply
      • Lindsey

        Telling the wife where you’re going to eat instead of asking her very well may lead to more sex – but not necessarily because of dominance. A husband who has picked out a restaurant feels like a husband who is actively planning your special time together – and assuming it’s a restaurant that you both enjoy – it feels like he knows you and is putting effort into pleasing you. A husband who always defaults to “what do you want to do?” makes a woman feel like she has that much more mental load to carry, and that her husband doesn’t care that much about doing stuff with her.

        Reply
        • Sheila Wray Gregoire

          That’s really true, too. I think it just depends on the dynamics.

          Reply
    • Anon

      Lindsey I get what you mean. I guess I am more of a “let’s decide together” man. And as Sheila says I think it depends on the dynamics. I think what you say may work in a traditional home with the woman being the one with the biggest mental load.
      I come from a country where equality is extremely important. I cook, clean, take care of the kids, play with them even more than my wife and I try to serve my wife in all the ways she can. She does about the same but I dare say that I for a long time in our marriage did more than her until I felt exhausted from doing that and working while she mainly focused on studying.
      In a relationship dynamic like ours I would only think it’s fair that women also take responsability to be romantic and make decisions like that.
      The traditional roles are changing in all society and I am interested in how things like this will change or not change. I notice sometimes my wife wants me to be this “macho man” but at the same time also do the typical “house wife” stuff. She once told me
      That it was my responsability to call someone about a problem we had at our home because I’m the man. So then I asked her so why is it that I have to cook and clean if you are the woman?
      She ignored the question but hasn’t mentioned me doing it because I am the man again.
      So I agree with Sheila it depends on the dynamics . the world is changing. And I think gender roles will too because of this

      Reply
  7. Maria

    Wholly agree with you, Sheila! Men who are bully’s are not attractive at all and shouldn’t be tolerated. I think what attracted me most to my husband was his wonderful combination of strength and confidence without any arrogance or cockiness, and his good nature. He treats everyone the same, regardless of socioeconomic status/race/religion/etc. He actually goes out of his way to be extra kind and respectful to people in service, like our waiters when we go out to eat. And he’s very protective in the best ways possible. We were leaving a restaurant once and he noticed a young woman walking in the dark parking lot by herself and there were some men hanging out close to her car. He stopped and waited to make sure she was in her car and driving away before we left. Men using their strength to protect those weaker or more vulnerable than they are is always the most attractive thing!

    Reply
  8. B C

    In the very balanced (but not Christian) men’s group I’m in, we talk about the ‘mix’ of being the lover and the provider. You want both, with lover just a hair stronger than provider. Being the lover you are a strong leader with more alpha tendencies (among many other traits) and being the provider you are showing the softer side of compassion, providing for needs etc. If you’re all/mostly alpha you end up being a bad guy who mistreats and if you’re all/mostly provider you end up being a caretaker and have the dreaded nice guy syndrome (which I’m still recovering from!)

    Reply
  9. A.Daniel

    It’s a bit concerning that all of your alpha qualities are negative. Even in the picture, the guy doesn’t look “alpha.” He looks angry, unable to control his emotions, and therefore WEAK. You equate alpha characteristics to dominating, violently aggressive, and abusive. Alpha males exude masculinity. Masculinity is characterized by strength, courage, mastery, and honor. A male that exudes these characteristics at the highest degree becomes the alpha male in his community/circle/clan.
    To preface my next statement, my wife actually sent me this article (and several others, as she has been doing for over a year). I actually bought her your book on a good girl’s guide, for admittedly self-serving reasons at the time (to be fair, it was very helpful to her in other aspects and she needed to hear what was said). Moving on: the vast majority of your blog is written for women who don’t find their husbands attractive (if they did, the relevance of a significant number of your posts would be lost). Allow me to explain.
    I went through a period in my life when our sex life was a constant struggle. I said we didn’t have sex enough, it wasn’t good enough, she said she was doing her best, she said she was trying, but I kept feeling hesitation. She said she loved me, but (in my mind) not enough to “let it go” sexually. I’ll cut to the chase. After several years of this, I hit a low point in my life, and then had a revelation after reading an e-book and perusing my 20-volume library on masculinity. That revelation is: women cannot force attraction. It’s not a switch they can flip. It’s a primal response.
    Now, I make a multiple six figure income as a provider. I treat people kindly, I’m generous, I’m a devout Christian and I give back to the church cheerfully and with gratitude. I love my wife, love my kids, and provide anything they need, but MY WIFE WASN’T ATTRACTED TO ME. Your blog continually gave her ways to ignite some fire, or to “get in the mood,” or to take steps toward a better sex life. The problem with all of this is, SHE WASN’T ATTRACTED TO ME. Oh, she loved me, no doubt about that, enough to want to spend the rest of her life with me and endure any amount of suffering necessary, but SHE WASN’T ATTRACTED TO ME. There’s a difference between attraction for the sake of comfort and stability, and raw, lustful, primal, sexual attraction. As a man, I can’t “nice” my way into my wife’s pants (oh boy, did I ever try). The world doesn’t contain enough gifts for me to buy to flip that switch.
    What did flip that switch?
    1. not treating my wife like my mommy (thus suppressing primal sexual desire)
    2. ignoring her when she said she liked the “dad bod” and hitting the gym with a vengeance
    3. daily dating her with seductive confidence, as if to say “I see you there, sexy lady.”
    4. taking my physical appearance seriously. I went to a barber instead of letting her cut my hair, stopped wearing baggy white shirts to bed, and upgraded my wardrobe
    Don’t get me wrong, she gets a soft spot in her heart when she sees me playing with the kids, and wants to be intimate with me as a result, but that’s not the switch I’m talking about. I’m talking about the switch that eliminates all sexual inhibition and turns my wife into a sexual freak that makes me repeat, “where the hell did that come from.” My wimpy “IT computer guy” arms never flipped that switch, but soon as these firm, strong arms held her, it was game over. She WANTED me.
    The alpha male knows how to push those buttons.

    Reply
    • Anon

      A.Daniel I’m intrigued to know what book you found helpful – and wondering whether Athol Kay was the author. He describes ways for men to help their wives to be attracted to them by combining the best of ‘alpha’ and ‘beta’ male traits. He has abandoned his Christian faith but I could detect elements of his background coming through in what he had to say. Yes, I think we need both confident and kind character traits coming through. I agree with the other commenter who said that having someone decide where you are going to eat and organise it is attractive because it doesn’t add to your mental load, for example. I have read an awful lot of marriage books, aimed at women, couples and men but I wonder how many men actually seek out the advice of marrriage books aimed at them? Kudos to you for that. Never persuaded my husband to read Athol’s book or several others, it’s just not his thing. I made a decision a while ago to stop waitingfor/wanting him to be different and try to appreciate all the good things about him, but sexual desire/attraction has dwindled a lot. Maybe it’s just my age.

      Reply
  10. Maria Bernadette

    A. Daniel, you wrote:
    “Masculinity is characterized by strength, courage, mastery, and honor. A male that exudes these characteristics at the highest degree becomes the alpha male in his community/circle/clan.”
    Do you have any research to back that up? Otherwise, it’s just your opinion.
    Sheila and her team have a lot of research to back up the claims they make. Well, done research, IMO. And when she’s saying something not backed by research, she phrases it like an opinion, not a statement of fact.
    The way you speak about your wife is concerning. You claim to have turned her into a sexual freak. And said something about alpha males knowing how to “push those buttons” when talking about trying to get your wife to have sex with you.
    You also said, earlier in the comment, that she was hesitant when having sex with you and then threw yourself a pity party over it. What about your wife?

    Reply
    • A.Daniel

      I have a collection of at least 20 books on masculinity. Want me to give you a list? There’s no shortage of resources out there. Peel back the layers and go back in time and think about what a clan would need for survival. It won’t take long to figure it out, but I can give you a few resources if you absolutely need them. Not like the majority of men these days know what masculinity looks like or what it means to be a man in the first place (I was in that boat as well). Society hasn’t exactly embraced masculinity, nor has the church for that matter, yet we’re surveying emasculated men and drawing conclusions?
      Look at Christ. Strength: is this even something I have to explain? He was a carpenter and exuded more emotional strength and fortitude than anyone in existence. Courage: he literally died on the cross. Mastery: he was a craftsman, a speaker, and a master of Jewish law. Honor: also a given. Why are we questioning this again?
      The way I speak about my wife is concerning? Really now…I understand that women are human and that they have triggers for primal attraction. You’re insinuating that I’m some kind of manipulative (or worse, malicious) idiot that has somehow seduced her against her will. I’m not doing anything to try to get her to have sex with me; that’s absolutely pathetic and even creepy. I simply recognized my deficiencies, what about me it was that hindered her attraction for me, and what it was that I could do to become more primally attractive to her. Humans still have instinctual sexual responses. Let’s stop pretending that this doens’t exist. Pretty sure Sheila wrote an article on this one as well. Found it:
      https://baremarriage.com/2020/12/christian-marriage-books-and-gender-stereotypes/?fbclid=IwAR1j_UpDjOXvl7NHdnlBV-UWr0yE_Zwindf4axbk33px7vl5YnA5XiO3OfY
      Yes, I said she was hesitant to have sex and I threw myself a pity party. Not in those exact words, but we’ll go with that. She felt terrible about it and kept repeating that she must be broken or something. Nope, she’s actually quite alright; it was me that was the problem. My attitude, my appearance, my lack of masculinity and leadership. All me. I didn’t show up as a husband and leader. I created the problem, and I solved it. My loving wife of 11 years that had not been attracted to me for years rocked my world in the bedroom after I realized everything I had been doing wrong, and it wasn’t because I asked or as a “reward” for anything. What about her? Well, let’s just say I generally spend more time on her than she does on me, and I absolutely love every minute of that.

      Reply
    • A.Daniel

      One final comment regarding this. Just think back to high school; any stereotypical high school. Who did all of the pretty girls flock to? The jocks. The muscular athletes.
      Sure, you can call them superficial if you’d like, but on a physiological, instinctual, or primal level, women will still be attracted to objectively attractive men, if they allow themselves to be.
      The dad bod doens’t scream attraction; it screams comfort and complacency. Don’t confuse this for a shallow marriage based on nothing more than physical attraction. We love each other to death. I realized what was missing and I fixed it. No need to overcomplicate this one.

      Reply
  11. Rosanne

    I am a writer. I don’t write romance myself, but there are a lot of romance writers in my writing group. What I see is that those alpha-male romances are super popular and sell like hotcakes. Equally, there is a disturbing trend in YA fiction where these abusive guys are the love interest because basically, they are hot. These also are very popular. I’m not sure what this says about women in general, but I found it kind of disturbing that abusive men and jerks seem to be so popular with women romance readers.

    Reply

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