How To Tell A Good Guy From A Bad Guy

I think it’s safe to say that we’ve probably all met a guy who seemed to be perfect: funny, smart, charming, the whole nine yards. But the more time you spent with him, the more warning signs started to appear to show you that perhaps Mr. Perfect wasn’t so perfect after all. When the red flags start popping up, sometimes we have to look a little deeper than the surface to ensure that the guy who wants to be with us isn’t just an bad guy in nice guy clothing.

  1. He genuinely seems to care about you. This is probably the most important item on the list, and perhaps the most obvious. Finding someone who really cares about you is hard to find, but if you’re with someone who doesn’t, what’s the point? You need a man who will genuinely want to know how your day went and want to cheer you up if you’re down.
  2. He doesn’t belittle or talk condescendingly to you or any other woman. Any man who doesn’t see women as equals is not someone you want to spend your life with. You’re supposed to be his partner, not his cook/mother/maid/planner.
  3. He’s nice to waiters when you go out and leaves decent tips. If he’s not polite to people who are waiting on him and doesn’t tip for good service, it’s a huge red flag that speaks to his character at large. Not only is he cheap, but he’s an bad guy.
  4. He understands that you need your space. He’s not going to freak if you go out for a girl’s night because understands that sometimes you just have to let off some steam and hang with your friends. Or, if you just need to chill with some pizza and Netflix on your own, that’s cool with him, too.
  5. He’s kind to animals and children. This is a must. If he’s anything but nice to the meekest of us, he’s not going to be any nicer to anyone else, and he shouldn’t be someone you want to spend your time with.
  6. He looks you in the eye when he’s speaking to you. Of course, I understand that some guys are shy, but as an adult, he should definitely be comfortable enough to look at you when he’s speaking to you. It’s disrespectful to you for his gaze to be wandering while you’re engaged in a conversation.
  7. He doesn’t pressure you to make decisions too quickly. Whether it’s the little things like where to have dinner or what flavor ice cream you want or the bigger issues like moving in together or having kids, he knows you need time to self-reflect and will never rush you into doing something you’re not sure about.
  8. He doesn’t second-guess everything you say. When you tell him your phone died, he doesn’t flip out and think you’re lying so you can cheat on him. He trusts you when you tell him you’re texting your best friend instead of insisting that you’re being unfaithful. In my experience, it seems like the men who always think you have something to hide usually have a few things to hide themselves.
  9. He doesn’t unload or take out all of his frustrations on you. Work can be stressful, but if he’s coming home every night and taking that stress out on you (i.e. yelling at you, answering you shortly, closing himself off completely, etc.) that’s not okay.
  10. He’s honest with you, even when it’s not an easy subject to tackle. It’s hard to be honest about what you really want out of life and it’s even harder to be honest about what you need to work on to achieve those things. If he can’t be truthful with you, he’s probably not being truthful to himself, either. And if that’s the case, he has a lot of growing up left to do.
  11. He shows you how much he cares about you with actions, not just words. Even if it’s something as small as coming home with your favorite candy bar or noticing when you’re down about something and rushing over to give you a hug, actions speak so much louder than words. Anyone can say they love you. Not everyone can show you what that looks like.
Tiffany is a New Orleans-based boudoir photographer ( and freelance writer. Follow her on instagram: @onesmallflower or view her boudoir photographs: @lushboudoir