You have met a new guy, and he warms your heart (and your toes with a great foot massage). Your friends are fairly quiet, but you don’t particularly care, because your time is occupied with him, anyhow. You haven’t introduced him to your children and are reluctant to do so, until you know him better.
Before you fall too deeply, check out the 10 warning signs of a bad-news boyfriend below:
- What do your friends think? It may be old-fashioned to rely upon your friends’ opinions and different friends may have different opinions; nonetheless, the opinions of long-time friends does matter, and they can see the situation in objective terms, whereas you may be biased by your raging hormones.
- Does he accept you “as is” or does he want you to make changes for him? A good partner will support you and although he will want you to be the best that you can be, he will not try to persuade, coerce or otherwise convince you to make changes to please him.
- Does he want to know your thoughts and feelings on different subjects or is he too tired or indifferent to enquire? A bad-news boyfriend simply doesn’t care, a good partner is curious and receptive.
- Does he share your fundamental values? Draw up a list of your priorities in life that you refuse to sacrifice, for example, commitment to family. Does he share your values, or do his values conflict with your own?
- Does he share your vision of the future or do both of you have different ideas of where you want to be, in 10 years, in 20 years and so on. If he is picturing a jazzy condo downtown, whereas you are picturing a white house filled with children, you have a problem.
- Does he seem eerily similar to the man from whom you are divorced or separated? Statistics indicate that women tend to re-marry men that are similar to their former spouses. If he looks or acts similar to your ex, you need to analyze the reason for the attraction. Do you like him because he seems familiar or do you like him because of his great, unique personality? Also, if you are repeatedly drawn to a particular type of personality, you need to consider whether the personality is a positive for your lifestyle. For example, if you are historically drawn to men who are very assertive, you need to ask yourself why you are drawn to this character, and use a filter to screen out men who cross over the line from assertive to over-controlling.
- Is he financially stable? If your new boyfriend is starting a business, he may be financially unstable as a result. However, unless you want a “make shift” project, your new boyfriend should be, at minimum, financially stable. This is particularly important if you have children.
- Does he have any addictions, present or past? You need to know your new boyfriend’s proclivities. In particular, you should know if he has any skeletons in the closet, including past addictions. It might be that your new boyfriend was an alcoholic but he has taken many steps to deal with this issue. However, generally, when a person successfully deals with an addiction, it’s not “over” per se; it may be a life-long challenge to be dealt with, on a day-to-day basis. If your own life is challenging, you may have to think twice before you involve yourself with a person who has their own unique challenges.
- Is your new boyfriend trustworthy? Trust your intuition, as long as it is not blinded by emotionalism. In addition to trusting your instincts, if you are planning to enter into a serious relationship, you can take steps to actively investigate your boyfriend’s history (Google search and so on).
- Do you enjoy similar activities? It’s not necessary to share all common interests and probably not healthy! However, while attraction ignites a relationship, it’s not enough to maintain it – you need to have a few shared interests, whether they are sports activities, hobbies or pastimes.