Dating bad boys is fun when you’re young and not yet jaded by love, but it isn’t usually a sustainable option. Falling for them can teach you a lot about what you want and what you don’t, but eventually, you’ve learned enough and you grow out of these toxic guys. Once that happens, your dating life changes dramatically.
You start to do what works for you. Bad boys have their own best interests in mind, not yours. When you’re tied up with one, it usually means you end up ignoring some of your own needs. Once you shift into a place where that feels like a BS setup you want no part of, you start prioritizing what works for you without caring what those guys think about it.
It gets easier to spot the wrong guys. As soon as the bad boy spell is broken, it’s easy to see why a guy might not make the best boyfriend no matter how cute he is. Spotting the wrong guys from a distance means that you don’t have to go through the treacherous journey of falling head over heels for someone before realizing that he’s a jerk.
You cry a lot less. If you’re an emotional person, you’ll never stop crying completely (let’s be honest), but when you get away from bad boys, you WILL cry less often. It’s easy to blame yourself in the midst of bad boy drama because that’s what they want — and to a certain extent, it IS your responsibility to take it on since you chose to be there. But when you switch to dating men who would prefer that you didn’t cry every day, suddenly you won’t. Funny how that works out.
You start learning an entirely new set of lessons. Closing up the chapter on bad boys means you’ve come a long way, but you’re definitely not done. Think of bad boys as the prerequisite courses that you needed to move onto Loving Relationships 101. These lessons are a whole lot less painful, that’s for sure.
You suddenly have more energy. Expending excess emotional energy can be even more draining than physical energy, and the bad boy relationships generally require a lot from you. Once you cut those cords and focus more on your needs, you get a sudden burst of energy to better deal with the rest of life as well.
Guys get more honest. When you start spending time with men you have deeper connections with, there tends to be a lot more honesty involved. Bad boys avoid The Talk like the plague, but serious guys won’t just tell you what they want — they might even start calling you out on things that they don’t want. This can be slightly shocking when it starts to happen.
You start owning your own power in new ways. As soon as you stop chasing after bad boys, you might stand still long enough to get to know yourself in a new way. When you know what you want, you can redraw your boundaries in the proper places, and the confidence that comes from that process will draw the right people to you.
People start meeting you halfway. Bad boys tend to take as much as you’ll give them, but when you stop overextending yourself in an attempt to make other people happy, other people will respectfully start coming to you. Serious men can seem alarmingly kind in comparison to bad boys.
Any lingering fears about commitment will bubble up. You can only get so close to bad boys, so when you switch over to emotionally available men, it can be slightly terrifying. Suddenly you’re making yourself available to something that might actually work. But feeling those fears isn’t a bad thing — they’re bubbling up because they’re on their way out.
Someone will absolutely sweep you off your feet. In the bad boy years, you sort of place yourself in a holding cell. Nice guys don’t have the same appeal, so even if the guy of your dreams came into your life, you might not realize it. But life adjusts when you do, and you can be certain that as soon as you’re ready to move on from a dramatic dating life, one of those amazing guys will finally catch your eye.