There are men who seem to have been created to torment the world’s women: everyone knows they’re bad news, and yet women can’t seem to stop falling for them. Maybe you’ve seen them, dated them, lived with them, or even married them—and lived to regret it.
Before you fall for another bad boy, check out these profiles and learn why you need to steel your heart to resist their dubious charms. Even more helpful, if you’re already stuck with one of these fellows, we share some tips to help him zap his bad habits and turn into a perfect Valentine.
Peter Pan in Neverland. This guy may look like a man on the outside, but inside, he’s a quintessential Lost Boy who’s never grown up and is still looking for a mother. Immaturity can come in many forms—pettiness, selfishness, an inability to make his own decisions—and the truth of the matter is that in a relationship, you’ll want a partner and not a child.
Tell your boy to man up and pull his weight. That way you can enjoy the fact that happy thoughts have him flying without resenting his commitment to having fun that has you picking up after him.
Mr. Cling. So you like his company. That’s why you’re with him, after all. But he doesn’t exactly need to follow you to the ladies’ room, now, does he? Maybe he’s never heard it said that familiarity breeds contempt and absence makes the heart grow fonder, because he’s basically camped out on your doorstep. And while you may appreciate the advantages that come with having him within shouting distance all the time (such as the convenient hatid-sundo service and his eagerness to cater to your every whim), you’ll eventually feel the need for a little bit of breathing space.
The Caveman. As far as he’s concerned, your life’s purpose is to be courted, married, then kept barefoot and pregnant. He thinks fem lib is a fad, and women will eventually give up this insane idea of working for a living and take their rightful places in hearth and home. And if you just happen to be one of those crazy feminists, well, he likes a challenge, ala The Taming of the Shrew. He wants a pretty little woman to cook his meals, clean his house, bear his children, and raise as little wifely fuss as possible—and he thinks you’ll fit the mode.
Better remind him that we’re in a country that has had two female presidents in its sixty years of constitution. Show him it’s not a question of who wears the pants in your relationship, and only a strong, confident man can manage and equal-opportunity relationship with a strong, empowered woman.
The Loudmouth. So men like to say that women are inveterate gossips and incapable of being discreet—well, there are just as many Mr. Kiss-and-Tells as there are misses. The loudmouth will tell friends, family, acquaintances, and even strangers all about you and your relationship. Maybe he thinks you’re boring in bed, or maybe he’s delighted that you’ve decided to experiment. Maybe you have a secret tattoo only your intimates are supposed to know about. None of this information is sacred to this type of guy—and you may find yourself fielding knowing looks from his friends or see details of your sex life recounted in his Facebook status updates.
The Seven Faces of Man. He’s sweet one minute, acerbic the next. Some days he’s Mr. Nice Guy, and some days he’s a raging brute. His moods are mercurial, to say the least—the less polite would call him a schizo. He’s basically many men in one body, and you may find yourself having to adjust frequently to his mood swings.
Is this really the guy you fell for? Maybe part of him is, but if the other parts are toxic, you may need to consider getting the hell out of Dodge because you’ll never know if you should move in for a hug or prepare for an assault. The ups and downs of hanging on to a guy with the next best thing to multiple personalities will stress you out, and you’ll eventually see that the sheer unpredictability of his moods will have the bad or humdrum days outnumbering the good.
The Addict. Maybe he’s addicted to drugs or alcohol. Maybe he gambles. Maybe he’s a sex addict. Or maybe he spends all his time playing video games. Addiction takes many forms, and all of them can be very damaging to your relationship because the addict is basically cheating on you with whatever it is he’s hooked on. He’ll stand you up on dates or deal in last-minute cancellations; he’ll spend all his money on his addiction and need to borrow from you; maybe he even tries to drag you down into the quagmire of addiction with him.
In a relationship with an addict? Tell him it’s time to get clean or get going; otherwise, you may find yourself broke—both financially and emotionally—while he continues in his pursuit of his one true love (and here’s a hint—it’s not you).
The Don Juan. He wines you and dines you and makes you feel like the most special woman on the planet. There’s just one problem: he’s got dozens of ladies he wines, dines, and romances as well. The Don Juan is known by several names: the Player, the Lady-Killer, the Rake, the Romeo—the list goes on and on. Basically, he’s the original Mr. Love-‘Em-and-Leave-‘Em, and girls would do well to remember that this red-blooded male with the hot bod hides a cold heart, and he is entirely too good at the business of love and lust and heartbreak.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that every guy who’s slick in the in the romance department is a player, but there are some guys who just seem allergic to exclusive relationships. If you are the woman to tame him, then more power to you. But in most cases, hope as you might that you’ll be the woman to change his rakish ways, he’ll keep stomping all over your heart in his pursuit of other women unless he truly wants to change.
Mr. User-Friendly. This guy’s sometimes called a scholar since his activities are funded by the generosity of the people he’s with. While he may not be in a relationship just for the sake of getting a meal ticket, he definitely enjoys the perks of being your honey. You may notice he rarely offers to pay or go Dutch (KKB), and you often find yourself shelling out money for your dates—or even lending him money when he’s low on cash, as he frequently is.
But cash-cows aren’t the only things this type of guy is after; he’s opportunistic and self-centered, and he’s out to get what you can give him. Maybe you can help him out in other ways—perhaps you work together and you can cover for his failings or you have a number of connections he’d like to tap socially or professionally. Sure, you don’t mind it once a while, but if it starts to look like he’s with you because of the things you can give him and not the person you are, it’s time to look elsewhere. He may be using you, but that doesn’t mean you can just lie down and take it when you’ve clued into his game.
The Philanderer. Philanderers and suspected philanderers have always made news—think Tiger Woods, Manny Pacquiao, and James Yap—so us telling you to avoid their type shouldn’t be news to you. These men have made commitments to one woman then broken them with others. They may think they’re modern-day Romeos, but by breaking the promises to the women they’re supposed to love and respect, they’re actually worse than the love-‘em-and-leave-‘em types who don’t make promises in the first place. But cheaters are hard to detect before they’ve strayed and often hard to catch once they have. Watch out for the signs that yell philanderer, even if you’re convinced he isn’t the type.
Better yet, when you establish the ground rules for your relationship, tell him what you expect out of him as a partner (such as fidelity, honesty, and respect) and assure him that he’ll get the same from you. Don’t let him think you’re likely to forgive an affair once you’ve both committed—respect yourself enough to show that a deal-breaker is a deal-breaker. Just be sure not to jump the gun too quickly; if he’s earned your trust throughout your relationship, allow him the chance to prove that trust hasn’t been misplaced.
The Abuser. When you think about abuse in relationships, it’s easy to box the term according to bruises, cuts, and broken bones. But physical abuse, while terrible, is often easier to recognize (and therefore escape and recover from) than emotional or psychological abuse. Much of abuse in any form is about power, control, and ego—the subjugation of your ego to his so that he controls you, which makes him feel more powerful. The abuser will often make you feel bad about yourself and/or dependent on him through threats, lies, verbal abuse, even mind games.
One of the most damaging effects of an abusive relationship on a victim is the adoption of the mindset that you deserve his mistreatment and the association of this type of ill treatment with love. The self-esteem, trust, and emotional issues that result from abuse can last a very, very long time, even after the relationship has been severed. If your relationship has abusive characteristics, take the necessary steps to reclaim control of your life (chief among these being to dump him like a tray of rotten eggs) and don’t be afraid to seek help from friends, family, and professionals.
(Photo source: sxc.hu)