5 Reasons Why Women Like Toxic Men (And How to Break the Pattern)

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It seems strange that some of the most together, competent, friendly, and enjoyable ladies end up in toxic relationships. It defies all logic and makes us wonder if there is any justice in the world.

If you have wondered why women like toxic men, we are here to help.

There are many reasons women get into and stay in toxic relationships. Here are our top 5 reasons women like toxic men, how to break the chain of heartbreak, and the answers to some frequently asked questions.

Why Do Women Like Toxic Men

There are a number of reasons that women are attracted to toxic men. Needless to say, none of them justify putting yourself through the stress these relationships bring.

1. They enjoy the attention.

domestic abuse victim

The saddest reason some women are drawn to toxic men is that they love being the center of attention. Some people actually enjoy playing the victim. Women get addicted to the attention that their family and friends lavish on them.

These people, both male, and female, always find themselves in bad relationships, underappreciated by their employers, and uncared for by their families; depending on who the audience of the moment is. They fear that if they had a happy life they would lose their importance. 

2. Toxic people make you feel good at first.

If you haven’t heard the term “Love Bombing” then it could pay to become familiar with it. Love bombing is one of the most consistent signs of a toxic relationship, especially in the beginning. 

Narcissists are master manipulators. In the early part of a relationship, they lavish attention on a lady, go to extremes to make her feel special, and make her dependent on them for her emotional needs. For a person that has been lacking attention, this can be a heady experience.

Be warned, once a preditor has their prey snared, withholding attention and abuse quickly follow as a means to control their partner and feed their own toxic personality needs.

3. Toxic relationships are literally addictive.

sleeping in couch holding whisky bottle



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Toxic relationships can be as addictive as using drugs. You can literally become physically addicted to your body’s reaction to the stresses they cause.

Both emotional stress and physical pleasure cause the body to release the hormone Dopamine. Dopamine activates the pleasure centers in your brain. Because this hormone has such a strong effect on the pleasure centers in our brain. It is highly addictive. The push-pull nature of a toxic relationship can constantly flood your system with this hormone and make you an addict.

In addition, a women’s body releases Oxytocin whenever they experience an orgasm. So, beyond the Dopamine, you have a double shot of mind-altering experiences that can not easily be gotten over.

4. Low self-esteem makes people vulnerable to toxic people.

Many women fall prey to toxic men because they have low self-esteem. They don’t believe they deserve better so they stay with what they know. Sadly, many women actually believe they deserve to be abused mentally if not physically. They don’t even hope for anything better. 

Narcissistic men can smell these women out like a wolf can sense a lame antelope. They are experts at giving just enough pleasure to make the pain of the relationships worthwhile to the lady. They play on the women’s insecurities. Like a fisherman with a prize catch, they pull them in. Then they make life hell for the lady to satisfy their own emotional needs.

5. Dysfunctional can be functional.

People, women included, are uncomfortable with the unfamiliar. They come from an abusive home or have a history of being in toxic relationships. Then their normal is to be with toxic men no matter how abnormal it may appear to the rest of the world.

child sitting in the floor with her toy

They may stay in bad relationships because they fear the unknown. Possibly they look for men who display the personality characteristics that they have always dealt with. The point is that to them dysfunction is functional. Just like a functional alcoholic can work with a hangover every day, these women stay in painful relationships because it is less scary than trying for something better. 

How to Stop Being Addicted to Toxic Men

Being addicted to toxic men can be just as devastating as drug addiction. Some may say it is even worse. It can have negative effects on your other relationships, destroy your mental and emotional well-being, and in extreme cases even cause physical ailments. 

Find a purpose to change

The good news is that it is possible to break the cycle of dating toxic people. This isn’t to say it is an easy process, giving up bad habits rarely is. But, with determination, you can free yourself from a toxic relationship and avoid getting in one again.

Like, quitting anything harmful in your life, you first have to determine why you want to escape. people don’t like to give things up or quit. You have to be able to see something you’re gaining. A few possibilities could be:

  • Quitting because you want to have children and provide them with a stable home
  • Deciding you want to have friends again
  • Making up your mind to love yourself
  • Wanting to have a life and/or career of your own

Seek professional help

seeking help sitting with a therapist

You know you have a problem with being attracted to toxic men but identifying the underlying reasons and how to correct them can be difficult. There is no shame in asking for help. Do yourself a favor and seek professional advice.

Please talk with a life coach, therapist, or addiction counselor and be honest with them about your situation. They can help you understand what is truly affecting you and offer methods that can help you break this unhealthy cycle.

Decide on a plan

Every person and situation is unique. Only you and your advisors can determine the best path for you to follow. 

It is important though that you have a plan and write it done. Include what you are going to start doing and what you are going to stop. Make the plan as concrete and detailed as possible. Be sure your plan includes a timeline to help you avoid procrastination and backsliding. Read your plan every day and follow it.

Set a deadline

A plan is of no value till you put it into action. Set a start date for your plan or quit date for your current bad relationship. With your advisors’ help, prepare yourself mentally and make any arrangements that will be needed.

group therapy session

When the deadline comes act. Freedom can only come through action.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do toxic men use you?

Toxic men use you any way they want to. There are many different types of toxic men. For most, it is a power game they play to feed their own egos. For others, they are looking for a meal ticket with benefits. 

Since no two are exactly alike, they will vary somewhat in their ultimate goals. The one thing that is consistent is them satisfying their own needs at your expense.

What types of men are considered toxic?

Here are the 12 types of toxic men you should avoid becoming involved with.

  1. The bad boy
  2. The that jobs below me guy
  3. The undiscovered artist or genius 
  4. The dream chaser
  5. The workaholic 
  6. The alcoholic
  7. Momma’s boy
  8. The all-night party guy
  9. The womanizer
  10. The control freak
  11. The trust-fund baby
  12. The I forgot guy

Wrap Up

Getting into relationships with toxic men can ruin your life and leave you doubting your own sanity. If you find yourself in a relationship with a toxic man, get out. If you find yourself continually being attracted to toxic men seek help.

No one deserves to be used and abused for the gratification of someone else. Despite what your own personal history may tell you, there are good men in the world and you deserve one of them. 

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